As summer approaches, people's thoughts turn naturally towards a well-deserved vacation. And after such a rough winter, many will flock to various tropical locations around the world to enjoy some sunshine, fruity cocktails and warm ocean currents.
For those that can't get away, an alternative is to find a suitable stand-in. And for us, that stand-in is the Tiki bar.
Tiki bars began springing up throughout the United States during the years following World War II. Many veterans came home with a fondness for the South Pacific and in response Polynesian-themed lounges, restaurants and bars opened in just about every large and small town you could find. These places had lots in common, like the use of Polynesian décor, Tiki statues and rum-based cocktails.
But sadly, many of these great old places disappeared during the 1970s-1980s as their style and atmosphere became dated. There has been a resurgence of late but there's something about those old places -- the history and ambiance -- that just can't be replicated. Here we feature the five oldest Tiki bars in the country. If you get a chance, stop by and have a drink or three, and soak in some authentic Polynesia from the past!