Looking for a trip with safety in mind?  Here are some fabulous destinations that have reinvented their dining programs to offer guests some really beautiful culinary experiences that take full advantage of the great outdoors
-- think a Guatemalan tea time that overlooks Lake Atitlan and its volcanoes or a fresh catch and grill experience in Punta de Mita that dates back hundreds of years -- all enjoyed with your toes in the sand. Sounds nice, right? Others are offering delightful experiences such as oceanfront sunset picnics in Puerto Vallarta and Fire Kettle Cooking demonstrations at Georgia's Barnsley Resort.  
Indulging Al Fresco: Unique Resort Outdoor Dining Experiences
Craving a getaway? From trendy Cape Cod to colorful Guatemala to tropical Puerto RIco -- and beyond -- these dynamic resorts are tapping into one of the best ingredients in their arsenals -- the great outdoors -- to create memorable culinary experiences where the only other guest at the table is Mother Nature. 

Guatemalan Tea Time

Casa Palopo

Casa Palopó is perched above spectacular Lake Atitlán — famous for its natural beauty, three mesmerizing volcanoes and 12 colorful Mayan villages that dot its shores, each with its own personality.  The private home turned boutique hotel offers just 15 uniquely decorated guest rooms, adorned with colorful walls, Latin American artwork and handwoven textiles made in Guatemala — all perfectly complemented by breathtaking views. It is the first and only Relais & Chateaux property in Guatemala, guaranteeing an escape as exclusive as it is unique. A paradisiacal escape surrounded by some of nature’s most beautiful wonders, Casa Palopo is leveraging its expansive outdoor areas to offer guests new private experiences. Among these experiences is a Guatemalan tea time set up under a canopy that gives way to panoramic views of the lake and volcanoes, with delicacies prepared by new Executive Chef Alvaro Pereira. An Instagram-worthy pop-up glamping tent is also available for guests who want a unique place to lounge and relax while enjoying some of the hotel’s unique menu items -- like a beautiful charcuterie board featuring cheeses and honey made locally at farms around the lake. 

Sunset Picnics Overlooking Banderas Bay

The Westin Resort & Spa Puerto Vallarta

A direct flight from many US cities, Puerto Vallarta draws in guests with its mountains-meets-the-ocean landscapes, colorful culture, culinary delights, and of course, its refreshing beaches and many water activities. Just a five minute drive from Puerto Vallarta’s international airportThe Westin Resort & Spa Puerto Vallarta -- a former palm tree plantation turned luxury wellness resort -- is leveraging its unique outdoor spaces to expand its food and beverage program. The newest addition, a private oceanfront picnic catered by Arrecifes restaurant, featuring a gourmet selection of charcuterie, sandwiches and of course, bubbly, to accompany the majestic sunsets Puerto Vallarta’s bay is known for - an inspiring, reenergizing nightly occasion. 

Frost Bar with Private Igloos

Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club | Cape Cod, MA

The -coolest- news on the Cape; for a limited-time, Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club has transformed its Ocean Terrace restaurant into an Insta-worthy pop-up Frost Bar. While indoor, fireside seating is available at the bar, the star of the show is the outdoor deck, now dotted with multiple geodesic igloos for private dining. Each igloo can seat up to six and includes adirondack chairs, a toasty heater, bluetooth speaker, twinkling lights and comfy individual blankets. Guests can stay warm while savoring the flavors of the Cape with specialty pre-arranged cocktail and dining menus. The Jack Frost and Hot Cocoa Martini cocktails are not-to-be-missed, alongside the gouda and caramelized onion fondue, lobster poutine and butternut squash risotto. Igloo seatings are capped at 90-minutes each and thoroughly sanitized between groups. For more information, visit oceanedge.com/frost-bar

Fire Kettle Cooking Demonstrations

Barnsley Resort

Georgia's best kept secret, Barnsley Resort has elevated and expanded its culinary program with the debut of its new Fire Kettle Cooking Demonstration series. Once a month, Executive Chef Nicolas Lebas will host this open-air culinary exhibition where he prepares one of his favorite seasonal recipes over the open flame of a Sea Island Forge fire kettle. Each participant enjoys a starter salad, the featured dish with wine pairing, and a delectable dessert bite to finish. The main dish will rotate each month depending on the ingredients most in-season at that time. The January session featured Charred Oysters with Pimento Cheese Compound Butter, while the February session will showcase Grilled Tartine with Creamed Mustard Greens and Kalamata Olives, and the March class will include Roasted Broccoli Rabe with Bourbon-Smoked Pecans and Sumac Vinaigrette. The full recipe is shared with guests following the experience so that they can remake the dish at home. The Fire Kettle Cooking Demonstrations cost $80 per person, are limited to resort guests and are limited in size to provide intimacy. For more information please visit  barnsleyresort.com or call 770-773-7480.

Zarandeado Experience: A Sea-to-Table Lunch on the Beach  

Conrad Punta de Mita 

Situated among Riviera Nayarit’s serene natural landscapes and aquamarine waters lies the brand-new Conrad Punta de Mita, offering today’s traveler a tranquil reprieve in Mexico’s Pacific coast. Accentuated by lush tropical vegetation, open corridors and contemporary coastal décor, the resort’s nature-centric aesthetic blurs the line between the natural and built environment. Thoughtfully designed spaces throughout the resort offer guests direct access to discover outdoor oases and experiences, such as the Zarandeado experience, a sea-to-table lunch set in the resort’s stunning beachfront MEZQUITE restaurant. Guest’s will discover one of Nayarit’s classic cooking specialties, Zarandeado - a 500-year-old method for grilling fish over hot coals in a wood-fired oven. The experience kicks off with a special fish delivery, fresh off the boat of the fishermen from the local fishing village. Guests will witness the exchange of the fish from the boat to the Chef’s cooler right on the beach, just steps away from their private lunch table! The chef will then prepare the fish right in front of guests as they relax and enjoy the gorgeous beach setting, refreshing cocktails, beers, and ceviche appetizers. The final product is a delicious Zarandeado cooked fish, and not to mention a totally instagrammable moment. This experience must be booked at least 48 hours prior, for more information please visit conradpuntademita.com.

Seaside "Sol in the Sand" Launching at Playa Largo 

Playa Largo Resort & Spa will be launching a new culinary event called Sol in the Sand, a play on their marina-facing restaurant "Sol by the Sea." This chef-driven experience will take place after their Eventide sunset celebration and include community style tables set right beside the water on the beach. It will have a tiki-style, Caribbean inspired menu with entrees such as whole fish, jerk chicken and peppers, indigenous grilled fruits and seafood. Guests can also sip locally inspired cocktails like a papaya star fruit lemongrass sangria and a jackfruit red sangria. The menu will change seasonally and open to an exclusive group of 36 guests per night.

It isn't hard to imagine getting away and now travelers have plenty of exciting options, with safety in mind. 

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