From big cities with some of the best nightlife in the world, to beautiful beaches and vast wilderness; whatever kind of vacation you’re looking to book, there’s a destination in the US that’s perfect for you.
If you want to jet off somewhere new, but are in need of some inspiration, then you’ve come to the right place! We’ve crunched the data and created a travel calculator that’ll tell you the best US destinations based on what you’re looking for in a vacation.
Whether you’re after some truly unforgettable nights out, you want to sample as many different cuisines as possible, or you need total relaxation on a beach break, simply input your preferences on our calculator, and discover the best destinations for you.
The top 10 US vacation destinations overall
Alternatively, if you’re not quite sure what you’re looking for, for your next vacation, or you want to combine a little bit of everything, then take a look at these cities, which are rated top overall in our index.
1. Las Vegas, Nevada
As soon as you’ve driven past the ‘Welcome to fabulous Las Vegas’ sign, you know you’re somewhere special, and there’s nowhere else truly like this city.
Signalling the start of Vegas’ famous strip, discover the extravagant, more-is-more hotels that are so committed to their theme, you’ll feel like you’re in a foreign country: think Mandalay Bay’s South East Asia vibes, or the replica Eiffel Tower you can travel up to the top of, for views over the city.
Casinos, pool parties, and concerts are what Vegas is so well-known for, and given its location in the center of the desert, it boasts the warmest weather in all of the US, at 95F on average, in the summer.
2. New York City, New York
Often referred to as the city that never sleeps, there’s no shortage of things to do, with 1,469 tours available in the city, alongside 577 landmarks, and 367 museums.
The Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, and Central Park are three key sights that are on many visitors’ bucket lists when visiting the big apple for the first time, but whatever you’re looking for, NYC has it covered.
For shopping, hit designer brands on Fifth Avenue, browse boutiques in Soho, or spend the day vintage shopping in Brooklyn. If you want to try a variety of cuisine, then there’s no better place, with restaurants and cafes everywhere you look. Chinese, Thai, and Mexican are the three most popular cuisines available, but whatever it is you want to eat, you’re sure to find it in New York City.
3. Houston, Texas
For some southern charm, there’s no better city than Houston. So, dig out your cowboy boots (or buy some while you’re there!), and head to one of the honky-tonks for a night of good ol’ fashioned two-stepping.
Of course, Houston offers so much more than cowboy culture. Home to NASA’s Space Center, it’s a must-visit if it’s your first time in the city, and it’s also home to the JPMorgan Chase Tower, which, at just over 1,000 feet high, is the tallest building in Texas.
What might surprise you, is that Houston is extremely affordable to visit, with the average cost of a room at a three-star hotel standing at just $56, which is the second cheapest on our list.
4. Chicago, Illinois
With 318 landmarks, 151 museums (the third highest on our list), and a huge 6,683 restaurants (also the third highest), Chicago is a great all-rounder of a city if you’re looking for culture, cuisine, and charm.
The Bean might be basic, but it’s a must-see the first time you stay in the city, but you should also check out Garfield Park Conservatory, Art on theMART, which is the world’s largest digital art projection, before dipping your toes into the water by kayaking on Chicago River.
If you love beer, then you’re in luck, as Chicago’s home to a thriving craft beer scene. In terms of food, you’d be crazy not to try at least one deep dish pizza, but you can sample so many other cuisines here, with Chinese, Mexican, and Indian the three most popular food types in the city.
5. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
An alternative to the US’ larger cities, Oklahoma City boasts some of the hottest weather in the states, at an average of 93F over the summer months, and the seventh cheapest hotel costs, at an average of $86 per night.
If you’re not into museums, then no worries! You can catch an Oklahoma City Thunder game at the Paycom Center, enjoy some thrills at Frontier City Theme Park, or spend the day at Oklahoma City Zoo, which is home to over 1,900 different animals, including camels, elephants, rhinos, and more.
6. Miami, Florida
If you can’t decide between a city or a beach break, then Miami’s the perfect destination! South Beach and Miami Beach both offer miles of golden sand, and are lined with dozens of beach bars to choose from, as well as lots of high rise hotels offering some of the best pool parties in the states.
Miami’s international airport is only 7.5 miles away from the center, so you can really maximize your stay here if you’re on limited time, and it also has the sixth highest number of tours available, at 555.
in the evenings, head to the Art Deco district to see pretty pastel buildings. or to Bayside Marketplace or Coconut Grove for some of the best restaurants in the city. Miami’s well-known for its Latin heat, which is why it won’t surprise you that Cuban and Mexican are some of the most popular cuisines here, in addition to Chinese.
7. San Antonio, Texas
With joint top temperatures of 95F in the summer, and a short distance of just 9.5 miles from the airport, San Antonio is a great city to visit if you’re looking for a summer vacation.
Head to the charming River Walk, which spans five miles and hosts a range of shops, restaurants, hotels, and museums. If you don’t fancy walking the full five miles, you can catch a river taxi!
If you love nothing more than museums and galleries, then try working your way through San Antonio’s total of 50. The Museum of Art is a great place to start, as is Hopscotch, which describes itself as an immersive art experience complete with a full-service bar.
8. Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles offers another perfect combination of city and beach break, with the city of LA boasting the most number of restaurants in all of the states, at 10,887 (Mexican, Thai, and Chinese are the three most popular types, in case you were wondering).
With 165 museums, it sits only behind New York in terms of numbers; and with average summer temperatures sitting at 81F, whilst you’ll get to enjoy the heat, it’s not as blistering as it can be in other places.
Hiking to the Hollywood sign, indulging in some retail therapy (or maybe just window shopping!) on Rodeo Drive, and sampling the delicacies at Grand Central Market are just a few of the things you should try out. But, if it’s beaches you’re after, then hire a car and head to Venice Beach, Santa Monica State Beach, or drive to the nearby city of Malibu, which is about 30km away from Downtown LA.
9. Orlando, Florida
The only place to go for thrill-seekers, families, and big kids alike, if you love nothing more than being thrown around and upside down on a rollercoaster, then Orlando is the destination of choice for you.
Home to Walt Disney World (which has four parks in total, including Magic Kingdom and Epcot), Universal Orlando (which has Universal Studios, and Islands of Adventure), and SeaWorld Parks, there’s no shortage of fun in Orlando.
Once you’ve had enough of the theme parks, head to one of the nearby beaches for a day of relaxation – Vero Beach, which is home to hundreds of sea turtles, and Cocoa Beach, with its many watersports excursions, are some of the best.
What you might not realize is that Orlando is also home to a thriving restaurant scene – with 3,146 in the city, it has the 10th highest number in the US, with Chinese, Mexican, and Thai the three most popular types.
10. Augusta – Georgia
Rounding off our top 10 list of US vacation cities is Georgia’s Augusta, which has the cheapest hotel rates, at just $54 a night.
Home to eight museums, start with the Augusta Museum of History, before heading to Woodrow Wilson Boyhood Home, which is where the former American president grew up.
If you’re visiting in the summer, then you must spend at least one afternoon by the Riverwalk, where you can enjoy a picnic or sit in the shade under one of the trees, as you watch the world go by.
Finally, with Augusta perhaps most well-known for its golfing scene, it’d be a shame not to go putting at one of the many clubs. Forest Hills Golf Club is one of the most well-known, and also features a restaurant and a driving range, so you can make a whole day of it there.
So, now all that’s left to do is pick your favorite destination, and get your hotel, flights, and airport parking booked! We offer deals on parking across all major airports in the US, so whether you’re looking for Atlanta, Chicago, or JFK parking, we’ve got you covered. Alternatively, if you’ve got an early morning flight, or late night flight back booked, then why not browse our range of airport hotels, so you can enjoy a good night’s sleep?
For this campaign, we looked at a variety of variables to determine which US cities should be on your bucket list. In order to build a travel calculator, we first examined search data for the top 250 US cities. The top 50 vacation locations were then revealed based on a rating that took into account a range of themes and regions, including temperature, food, education, flights, and experiences.