Saturday July 18, 2020
By Andrew Ward
Much of the world is clamoring to get outside – that includes cannabis consumers like you and me. While the travel bug is real, so too is the COVID-19 virus, and thus, for the time being, it’s best to stay put. However, once travel starts to become safe again, those wanting to exercise precaution may be hesitant to get back into a packed city, even if it is marijuana-friendly.
For alternatives, PotGuide spoke with several respondents who offered up pot-tolerant American and European locations that are also rich with spacious scenery to enjoy. Even if your plans are for 2022, why not get planning?
Relatively Pot-Friendly Social Distance Locations in the U.S
Check out some relatively 420 friendly social distance locations in the U.S. below for post-coronavirus travel.
The Berkshires, Massachusetts
The Berkshires are one of America's most talked-about destinations for a stunning getaway into nature. This Massachusetts region offers a plethora of natural wonders, from hiking in the warmer months to skiing in the winter.
Michael Cohen, president and co-founder of The Pass dispensary in the region, told PotGuide that Ice Glen in Stockbridge is a must-visit. Calling it “a trip to Middle Earth,” Cohen said, “Ice Glen is a payoff all to itself. It's like a journey inward, and thus perfect for cannabis consumers.” In addition to the Ice Glen Trail, all of the Laurel Hill trails are currently open, though visitors are recommended to avoid them if there is heavy foot traffic.
Olympic Peninsula, Washington
Washington State is home to some of America's most lush scenery and picturesque views of the ocean. Of all the landscape the state has to offer, the Olympic Peninsula ranks right at the top. The Olympic Peninsula bills itself as "a place to spark your senses," which sounds just about ideal for enthusiasts seeking the outdoors after a quarantine (or looking to spot a Big Foot).
A major destination of the region is Olympic National Park, which features opportunities to hike, camp and backpack, as well as see natural wonders in the park's diverse wildlife and starry skies (and don’t forget, beaches with some of the nation’s most picturesque coastline close by as well).
It should be noted that dispensaries are somewhat sparse depending on where you are entering the park, so you’ll want to stock up before you venture out. Also, be aware that cannabis cannot be consumed on federal land. James Alexander, a cannabis blogger and owner of GreenBudGuru, chose the region for its exceptional hiking trails. Alexander told PotGuide that the area is "relatively low-key," adding, "You don't have to worry about being shoulder-to-shoulder with other tourists during the COVID crisis."
Alexander recommended another U.S. destination further up north. Home to lush forests and snow-capped mountains, Juneau is a breathtaking destination in a pot-friendly state. The cannabis blogger said, “With beautiful downtown views and also packed full of hiking and outdoor experiences, Juneau is great for those looking for a cannabis vacation.”
Note that the majority of travel to Juneau is by plane, so it’s best to wait until the pandemic ends before visiting.
Those that do visit when things calm will have something to look forward to. Alaska recently passed public consumption laws, which allow visitors to consume cannabis products indoors at certain locations. The first licenses have already been granted, and while the opening of these spaces is still pending under COVID, when they do open up, these tasting rooms will be an exciting new step for cannabis. Be sure to keep a safe distance when partaking.
Relatively Pot-Friendly International Social Distance Locations
Though citizens of the United States cannot currently travel to either the European Union or the UK, many are looking forward to hopping across the pond once restrictions are lifted and it is safe to travel once again. No time like the present to get that passport up-to-date and ready.
Spain is home to relatively lax cannabis laws. While much of the attention goes to Barcelona and Madrid, home to the iconic cannabis clubs where legal purchases can be made, Patricia Palacios tells PotGuide that Seville in the south of Spain is where to go for ideal social distancing. Palacios, the co-founder of España Guide, regards the Andalusian city for its "flamenco, passion and tapas on a sunny terrace and cheerful locals with warm smiles."
She recommended several spacious destinations, including the Jewish quarter of Santa Cruz, the 12-acre Plaza de Espana and the Real Alcazar, a UNESCO World Heritage site and shooting location for season six of Game of Thrones.
Discussing cannabis access, she explained that “Although cannabis is technically illegal in the county, it is generally tolerated. Visitors will find several cannabis clubs in Seville that they should be able to easily join.”
The Iberian Peninsula is full of opportunities for tourists seeking space and relatively hassle-free cannabis experiences. Though the smaller in size, Portugal has made more substantial steps towards cannabis reform than its neighbor Spain so far. The nation has decriminalized all drugs. That said, Portugal doesn’t have the cannabis clubs as Spain has.
James Cave, blogger-in-chief for the website Portugalist, explained to PotGuide that, "In practice, this means that you won't find vendors or ‘coffee shops’ here but, should you get caught with a small amount – up to 5 grams of hash, for example – you won't face any problems."
In addition to being cannabis-friendly, travelers have the opportunity to take in several natural parks across the country, from Litoral Norte in the northwest, as well as the Serra da Estrela in central Portugal and the stunning rock formations jutting into the ocean at Sintra-Cascais in the southwest.
The Netherlands is a recommended destination for cannabis consumption and a bit of space, even in its busiest city. Writer Snezhina Piskova told PotGuide that those seeking social distancing and gorgeous views should consider Den Haag's famous beach strip, Scheveningen. The writer recommended people find a bench near the Ferris wheel and light up at their leisure.
Those looking to escape into the forest can head towards Hoge Veluwe, one of the country's larger national parks. Piskova chose the destination for its wildlife sightings, including red deer, foxes and woodpeckers. "Find a quiet spot with a pristine view – it shouldn’t be too hard – and take it all in alongside a nice big puff." Meanwhile, those in Amsterdam could head to Vondelpark, a location the writer compared to New York City's Central Park.
Micklegate, United Kingdom
Though THC is not allowed, if you seek a slice of cannabis history with your social distancing, consider heading to the United Kingdom. In the town of York, you'll find Micklegate, a street where cannabis seeds from a 10th century Viking settlement were found in a well.
In addition to the history, CBDiablo owner Sam Williamson said the area is excellent for social distancing. The CBD brand owner noted its location as an ideal setting for smoking and a possible look into how cannabis could fit into the U.K.
Williamson said, “The best thing about visiting this area is to note that it is right on the coast, which gives some insight into how cannabis farms could realistically fit into our current society if they were allowed.”
Didn’t see your favorite U.S. or European location on the list? Drop us a line in the comments! We may mention it in an upcoming article.