The recreational marijuana industry is booming, and has been helped along nicely by legalization in Canada and throughout the United States. These days, it seems like everyone from big businesses to celebrities are trying to dabble in and make a quick buck off of the growing marijuana craze. Cannabis tourism is just one sector that’s absolutely thriving. Previously, when someone mentioned going to a 420-friendly city, they were probably talking about Amsterdam, but now you don’t have to travel all the way to Europe for an amazing (and legal) marijuana vacation.
You can’t talk about marijuana destinations without at least mentioning the “Venice of the North”. From coffee shops and 420-friendly hostels, to potent space cakes, everyone across the globe knows about Amsterdam’s reputation as a pothead’s paradise. But did you know that weed is illegal in the Netherlands? Yup, sorry to burst your bubble. Marijuana is decriminalized, but not legal, so it is against the law to grow cannabis, hold over five grams on your person, or smoke in public (e.g. in a coffee shop or private residence). Cannabis has been decriminalized for recreational use in coffee shops since 1976, so as long as you follow the rules, you’ll have a blast. Be sure not to miss doing a coffee shop hop (think bar hopping where you’re smoking instead of drinking) or smoking and exploring the city. Amsterdam also has amazing museums, so light up and prepare to see Van Gogh’s famous paintings in a whole new light.
Colorado became the first U.S. state to legalize weed, a title shared with Washington and has seen millions of marijuana enthusiasts pass through the Mile High City. In 2016 alone, Denver had 6.5 million people visit the city for cannabis tourism. This Colorado city is at the forefront of cannabis culture with stoner-friendly hotels and tons of marijuana tours and activities to fill your vacation. Choose from elevated yoga, an infused cooking class, 420-friendly sightseeing tours, cannabis grow tours, and even a sushi and joint rolling class. Don’t miss a trip to see the vibrant psychedelic murals and laser light show at the International Church of Cannabis, which uses the green goddess to build self awareness and inspire creativity.
Canada legalized weed completely in 2018, making the entire country particularly enticing for pot smokers. It is the hottest cannabis destination right now and the legal age to buy is just 19 years old, plus you can carry and possess up to 30 grams at a time. That’s the equivalent of 60 to 75 pre-rolled joints, so you’ll have no excuse to ever run out of bud. Even before legalization, British Columbia has always been the most tolerant province when it comes to pot smoking, with Vancouver leading the charge as the unofficial pot capital of Canada. From walking tours to cannabis cafe visits and dispensary tours, there’s lots of fun things to do. Other ideas include heading to the outdoors and going for a hike or blazing before going on an orca watching tour (you won’t regret it).
As soon as you arrive in the city, you’ll get a whiff of the sweet Mary Jane wafting through the air. Uruguay often makes headlines for decriminalizing recreational drug use. Yes, all drug use. This includes marijuana, which has been decriminalized since 1974 and fully legal since 2017. Only citizens and residents are allowed to purchase pot from a pharmacy, but bud is not difficult to find. Locals are known to be extremely generous with their home grows, so make some friends. Here, marijuana smoking laws are the same as tobacco laws, so no smoking in enclosed workplaces, but restaurants with outdoor seating get the green light. Though not particularly potent, legal pot from a pharmacy in Uruguay goes for a little over $1 a gram, which is a lot cheaper than in the U.S.
Los Angeles, California
The City of Angels is a top U.S. tourist destination that’s jam packed with fun things to do both sober or baked. California is known for that dank west coast bud and was the first state to legalize medical marijuana, way back in the 90s. Los Angeles recently became home to the first marijuana restaurant in the country, aptly named the Original Cannabis Cafe located in the trendy West Hollywood neighborhood. Get stoned and join a celebrity homes tour, try your luck at surfing, or hop on a bike and ride down the coastal boardwalk. LA locals have come up with some unique cannabis tours that will satisfy even the biggest of stoners. Try the Malibu sightseeing and dispensary tour, weed and craft beer pairing, elevated paint party, a munchies tour, or CBD yoga on the beach. Although you can get your pot delivered directly to your hotel or Airbnb, don’t forget to visit one of the amazingly curated dispensaries that can almost pass off for an Apple store.
Other pot-friendly cities
- Portland, Oregon
- Barcelona, Spain
- Las Vegas, Nevada
- Nimbin, Australia
- Lisbon, Portugal
- Bay Area, California
- Buenos Aires, Argentina
- Toronto, Canada
- Boulder, Colorado
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