Easy Baseball Vacations To Maximize Ballpark Bucket List, Sightseeing
The weather is warming up, kids will soon be out of school and it’s the perfect time to begin planning summer vacations. Perhaps an option to satisfy a boy-crazed home or sports-loving family, a baseball-cation is the route to go.
As someone who has visited 23 active ballparks, it’s a tradition of my family to try and get to a ballpark on our vacations. This summer we’ll hit Houston and Arlington to knock two more off my list. If you’re so inclined, check out the MLB lines and place a bet if your favorite team isn’t playing.
There are several opportunities to check off multiple parks in one trip with tourist destinations the whole family will enjoy. Here’s a breakdown of several possibilities.
The Windy City is one of several travel destinations where a day/night doubleheader could free up a whole weekend of shopping, tourist attractions, deep dish pizza and Chicago-style hot dogs (remember to hold the ketchup for authenticity).
A lot of Chicago Cubs games are held during the day because Wrigley Field is situated in a neighborhood. There are plenty of restaurants and shops around the ballpark, and it’s easy to access off the train. Bleacher seats are an atmosphere in their own right that are worth experiencing, though if you have children sitting in a bucket seat is the safer play.
If the White Sox are in town, take the train over the Guaranteed Rate Field, or if you have a vehicle, there is plenty of parking unlike their North Side counterparts. The Sox have some of the best concessions in the league and there isn’t a bad seat in the stadium.
Depending on the length of your stay, a short drive up Lake Michigan to Milwaukee could knock off a third ballpark if the Brewers are also home. It would be a regional trifecta, and perhaps a dual-city weeklong vacation is in order with Milwaukee having plenty to offer and many state parks across Wisconsin or a trip to the Wisconsin Dells for an outdoors fill.
Another possible doubleheader is between the Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles, just a short drive down the beltway. Baltimore is a nice getaway for some crabcakes and a walk around the harbor to visit Camden Yards, a beautiful facility. The Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum is just down the street from the stadium to complete your daytrip.
Washington D.C. has plenty of memorials to see for one week. It’ll eventually be worth another trip back, especially for the history buffs in the group.
If it’s strictly a baseball trip, getting up to PNC Park in Pittsburgh is a must. Even if the baseball team isn’t good, the ballpark is the best in the league. A trip over to Philadelphia, another historic city with plenty to see, to get cheesesteaks before heading into Citizens Bank Park would make a fun week long trip.
Going up the Atlantic coast could create another day/night doubleheader with Yankee Stadium and Citi Field, along with a visit to Fenway Park to see the Red Sox and sing Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline.”
There are five stadiums alone in the state of California, and it leads to several doubleheader possibilities. The southern California swing of San Diego to see Petco Park, then Angel Stadium in Anaheim and Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles proper would be an easy weeklong swing, given all teams are in town.
Each city on that trip offers its own treats, whether the zoo or Legoland in San Diego, Disney Land in Anaheim, or Hollywood, any number of beaches, studio tours or other Los Angeles staples.
The northern trip to Oracle Park in San Francisco may as well lead you to Oakland to check off the Coliseum. Typically it’s a good atmosphere when the fans aren’t boycotting ownership for trading away fan favorites. But there is plenty to do with the family in the Bay Area.
If you’re really looking to make a week of just baseball, perhaps the Arizona Diamondbacks are home and a trip to the Grand Canyon can be accomplished as well.
Whichever the path chosen that best suits your traveling part, enjoy some good baseball, hopefully good weather and great eats along your baseball-cation!