You did it.
After 11 weeks of nose-to-the-grind work, you’ve successfully put another filing season behind you.
Looking back, you undoubtedly see how this year’s season was like no other. A government shutdown, tax transcript changes, new rules — you navigated them all. You’re a champion for your clients, and you deserve some time to rest and recoup.
However, this respite is limited, and you’ll be back to the grind before you know it.
As time is of the essence, here’s a list of the best places to recharge your batteries. And for a little extra help, you’ll find a few packing suggestions to ensure you have what you need when you get there.
Adventure location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
What to pack: Yoga mat
After a stressful busy season, what you really need is a chance to unwind, and there’s no better place to do that than Thailand. Home to some of the most popular yoga retreats in the world, the city of Chiang Mai is a dream come true for yogis. If yoga isn’t your thing, you can relax in luxury at one of the city’s many spas.
Need to chill out but stay a little closer to home? Visit Minneapolis. Take advantage of one of the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum’s yoga classes or practice your poses in the city’s sculpture garden. Embrace your love of animals at Yoga Ananda where llamas happily serve as pose support.
Adventure location: Zermatt, Switzerland
What to pack: Wool socks
The weather may be getting warmer in much of the U.S., but that doesn’t mean skiing is off the table. Zermatt, Switzerland, offers some of the best spring skiing in the world. Visit the Theodul Glacier for more than 13 miles of slopes. The glacier crosses into Cervinia, Italy, so when you get hungry, be sure to slide over the border for a snack (no passport needed).
If you’re looking for a place closer to home and still have an experience that’s outside the box, look no further than Alaska’s Western Chugach Mountains. There you can go “heli-skiing.” This means advanced skiers are dropped from helicopters onto slopes unreachable by chairlifts.
Adventure location: Marrakech, Morocco
What to pack: An appetite
If you want to be a gastrotourist, then no other city in the world has as flavorful and aromatic foods as Marrakech, Morocco. Try traditional dishes like tagine and couscous at Ksar Es Saoussan and grab a refreshing mint tea (served hot) at Atay Cafe.
If you’re not feeling up to a 14+ hour flight time to get your dinner, check out the creole food haven of New Orleans. Nosh on traditional gumbo at Galatoire’s Restaurant and indulge your sweet tooth with beignets at the famous Cafe du Monde.
Bonus location: Another great foodie site is Las Vegas, but I recommend you wait and visit in June to also take advantage of the learning opportunities at the AICPA ENGAGE Conference.
Adventure location: Oberon, New South Wales, Australia
What to pack: Spade and shovel
Did you know there are places in the world where you can dig for your own gemstones? One such place is Australia, where the popular practice is called “fossicking.” Gold, sapphires and zircons — and occasionally diamonds — can all be uncovered near the town of Oberon.
You don’t have to go halfway around the world to mine your own gems. You can visit the Crater of Diamonds State Park in Murfreesboro, Ark. Last year, a woman visiting from Colorado found a 2.63-carat diamond, and in total, more than 250 diamonds have been found at the park. Full disclosure — I’ve been to the Crater of Diamonds. In addition to a spade and shovel, pack a change of clothes because you will get muddy. And no. I didn’t find a diamond.
Adventure location: Gansbaai, South Africa
What to pack: Shark cage
Admittedly, this trip isn’t for everyone. Get up close and personal with unique marine wildlife in Gansbaai, South Africa. The good news is it’s only a 20-minute boat trip to get to the dive location. The bad news is that once you get in the water, you’re likely to come face to face with a great white shark.
The best news is that you don’t have to travel far to go shark diving! Visit South Florida to dive with bull and tiger sharks. Several businesses in California offer multi-day excursions to meet great white sharks. If that wasn’t enough adventure for you, try swimming cage-free in Hawaii.
No matter how you plan to spend your post-season downtime, the break is well deserved. And we’ll be here to help you get back into the swing of things when you return.
The AICPA Tax Section will host their annual post-busy season webcast on May 9. Learn more about billing best practices, staffing and workflow management issues and key AICPA resources so you’re ready to tackle fall busy season and beyond.