In the past, when we thought about "travel," it usually meant going far away to Bali for a detox or spending a long weekend in a foreign land. But now, what we really need is a mix of new, enjoyable, easy, and spontaneous experiences: quick weekend getaways that only require a short drive, flight, or train ride, yet still satisfy our desire for fresh faces, sights, sounds, and food that we can't find at home.
Here are some of the top places for a fantastic long weekend in the United States, ranging from well-known classics like New Orleans and Las Vegas to quieter favorites like Miami and Chicago.
If you're looking for some sun-soaked fun during your weekend trip in the USA, Miami is the place to be. South Beach is often ranked as one of the best urban beaches globally, and we completely agree!
But don't limit yourself to just the beach – make sure to explore the remarkable Art Deco architecture in Miami Beach, savor the flavors of Little Havana, appreciate the street art in Wynwood, and take in the views from Biscayne Bay.
For those who want to experience unique nature in South Florida, consider planning a trip to the Everglades, or if you have a few extra days, embark on a road trip all the way to Key West, the southernmost point in the USA!
Hotel Impala: We adore staying here! The rooms are clean, the showers are heavenly, the customer service is excellent, and most importantly, the location on Collins Ave. is absolutely ideal. Situated in the heart of the Art Deco district and just a five-minute walk from South Beach, Hotel Impala offers an unbeatable location in Miami Beach.
The Marlin Hotel: This hotel provides a chance to stay in one of Miami Beach's historic Art Deco buildings! With a fantastic location on Collins Avenue, outstanding customer service, stellar reviews, and spacious suites, the Marlin Hotel is the perfect choice for those seeking a luxurious experience while also exploring Miami Beach's Art Deco history, which not all visitors get to enjoy.
Out of all the weekend getaways in the USA mentioned here, Asheville is one of the best options for groups split between visiting a city or enjoying the great outdoors. Home to a thriving craft beer scene, the magnificent Biltmore Estate, a plethora of street art, and delicious dining options, Asheville is a surefire hit with urban enthusiasts.
However, its proximity to the Pisgah National Forest and Great Smoky Mountain National Park also makes it an excellent weekend destination for outdoor enthusiasts. There are plenty of easy hikes near Asheville, suitable for travelers of all skill levels, allowing them to appreciate the stunning mountain environment.
No matter your interests, try to set aside time during your visit to Asheville to drive a portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway, especially if you're there in the fall to witness the changing colors. Often regarded as one of the most beautiful road trips in the United States, it's a sight you won't want to miss.
The Applewood Manor: Located within walking distance of downtown via a scenic greenbelt trail, The Applewood Manor offers a tranquil, peaceful setting while still being perfectly positioned to make the most of your Asheville adventure.
Cedar Crest Inn: This charming pink mansion from 1891 is an ideal home base in Asheville. Bursting with historical charm and breathtaking architecture, it's like having your mini Biltmore experience.
Known for country music, spicy chicken, colorful street art, and lots of barbecue, there's no doubt that Nashville, Tennessee, is a fantastic place for a fun weekend getaway. While Nashville is very popular for bachelorette parties and girls' trips, it's not just for big groups. Anyone can have a great time in Music City, USA.
The top places to visit in Nashville include the Grand Ole Opry (for the show and a backstage tour), the Johnny Cash Museum, the Country Music Hall of Fame, and exploring Gulch, the neighborhood known for its street art, including the famous Nashville wings that you've probably seen on Instagram.
Don't forget to make time for Nashville's vibrant nightlife while you're enjoying the best things to do in the city. And you must try the hot chicken at least once, but make sure you know how spicy you can handle before you order!
Hutton Hotel: Stay at this stylish hotel for a romantic trip, relax on the hotel balcony, or take a 10-minute stroll to Music Row.
Virgin Hotels: Part of the Virgin Group, this hotel has all the luxury details you'd expect, with plenty of red and white touches.
They say there's no place like New Orleans, and that's absolutely true. Spending a weekend in New Orleans means enjoying lots of jazz, delicious food (gumbo, beignets, po'boys, muffulettas, and more), and good times.
Make sure to set aside time for a ghost tour to explore the mystical side of the city (even if you're not superstitious, I promise it's worth it!), and a bayou tour to experience the incredible landscapes of southern Louisiana.
While it's easy to have a blast in New Orleans, you can also add depth to your trip by considering a day trip to places like the Whitney Plantation to learn about the city's dark history or take a Katrina-themed tour to understand the serious impact of the 2005 hurricane.
Enjoying New Orleans:
Best Western Plus French Quarter Landmark Hotel: This beautiful hotel embodies classic New Orleans style and serves a varied and tasty breakfast. It's conveniently located on the edge of the French Quarter, making it easy to explore.
Omni Royal Orleans Hotel: Located in the heart of the French Quarter, this lovely hotel is known for its stunning architecture, attentive service, and charming ambiance. Plus, there are stories of friendly ghostly encounters, like a ghostly maid who tucks guests in at night!
Situated just a few hours north of Savannah, Charleston shares many similarities with its southern neighbor, such as delicious southern cuisine, Spanish moss-draped trees, stunning architecture, and a rich history. However, Charleston has its own unique personality.
Be sure to visit the picturesque and Instagram-worthy Rainbow Row, learn about tea production at the Charleston Tea Plantation, admire the majestic Angel Oak Tree, take a leisurely stroll through Waterfront Park and Battery Park, and explore City Market.
If you have an interest in US military history, consider visiting Patriots Point to tour decommissioned US naval ships and Fort Sumter for its historical significance and scenic views. Even if you're not a history buff, these sites can still offer a fascinating way to spend your time. Beach lovers should also make time to visit nearby Folly Beach!
French Quarter Inn: Another fabulous historical hotel located in the French Quarter overlooking Charleston City Market. Guests are welcomed with champagne upon arrival, and there's a nightly port wine and cheese reception, along with freshly baked cookies and milk. It's the perfect indulgence for your trip, and the rooms are vintage-inspired and exquisitely beautiful. This is Charleston's loveliest spot to stay.
Market Pavillion Hotel: This stunning hotel in the historical district offers rooms with four-poster beds and charming classic decor. The hotel's amenities include a mosaic pool and an Executive Pastry Chef who whips up delightful pastries for breakfast.
When you go to Chicago, you'll have lots of pizza to enjoy, along with some sightseeing. Chicago is a big city right next to Lake Michigan. It's a great place for a weekend trip in the USA. There are many fun things to do in Chicago. You can explore its culture, savor delicious food, and enjoy the outdoors.
During your weekend in Chicago, take pictures at The Bean, test your bravery on the famous Chicago Skydeck, visit Navy Pier, and of course, indulge in deep-dish pizza.
Art lovers will have a blast in Chicago, with many museums to explore. One of the best is the amazing Art Institute of Chicago. Baseball fans can catch a Cubs game at the famous Wrigley Field.
If you love animals and are traveling with your family, head straight to Shedd Aquarium. And for families, don't forget to visit the American Girl Place; it was the highlight of my first trip to Chicago a long time ago!
Warwick Allerton: This hotel is on the Magnificent Mile in Downtown Chicago, a perfect spot for shopping and discovering iconic architecture.
Staypineapple: This uniquely named hotel was designed by a world-renowned architect and boasts stylish details like mosaic floors and marble ceilings. Every part of the hotel is carefully thought out, and the rooms show it.
Seattle is a beautiful and bustling city located right by the water, with the stunning Mount Rainier as its backdrop. It's no wonder that Seattle is one of the most popular weekend getaways on the west coast of the USA.
A weekend trip to Seattle is just the right amount of time to explore Pike Place Market, go up the Space Needle, visit the famous Chihuly Museum, and check out the fun and fascinating Museum of Pop Culture.
If you're looking for interesting neighborhoods, Fremont is the place to go. They even have a motto: "des libertas quirkas," which means "the freedom to be quirky."
And if you want to spend some time outdoors, Seattle is nestled in the heart of the magnificent Pacific Northwest. You'll find endless waterfalls, hiking trails, and mountains, including Mount Rainier, all within a day's trip from Seattle.
MarQueen Hotel: Another historic gem, built in 1918 in the Queen Anne neighborhood. The rooms have hardwood floors and period features, and the huge beds are perfect for a romantic getaway.
Gaslight Inn: Located on Capitol Hill, this historic building is a great choice for your stay in Seattle. It's a recognized historic landmark that's beautifully preserved, yet it offers all the modern luxuries.
Portland, much like Austin, proudly embraces its unique and quirky side, making it a super fun place to visit. If you're a bookworm , your first stop should be Powell's City of Books. It's probably the biggest bookstore I've ever seen. Foodies, on the other hand, will want to head straight to Salt & Straw, the local ice cream sensation. Voodoo Doughnuts, which started here and now has a few locations across the country, is also a must-visit for tourists.
During your weekend trip to Portland, be sure to visit the Japanese Garden and the International Rose Garden, especially when everything is in full bloom. Plus, you have easy access to the incredible Columbia River Gorge, including the famous Multnomah Falls, which should definitely be on your list of things to do in Portland!
Portland Regency Hotel & Spa: This historic hotel offers a hot tub, steam room, full-service spa, and other luxurious amenities that will make your Portland vacation truly memorable!
Portland Harbor Hotel: Located on the Portland Waterfront, this luxury and stylish hotel has beautifully designed rooms and a great restaurant. It's also a great base to explore more of Portland.
Perhaps the most famous among all these quick getaways in the USA is Las Vegas. It's a top spot for short trips. If you're visiting for the first time, you'll definitely want to explore the Strip, even if it's just to see the hotels, fountains, malls, and find out what all the excitement is about. But there's more to Vegas than just the Strip (if that's what you're looking for).
Whether you're into gambling at the casinos, catching some shows, exploring the less crowded downtown area of Las Vegas, or venturing out to experience the amazing natural wonders of the Southwest, Las Vegas has something for you.
While the famous southern rim of the Grand Canyon is a bit too far for a practical day trip from Las Vegas, there are options like Valley of Fire State Park, Red Rock Canyon, and the Hoover Dam that you can consider.
Enjoying Las Vegas
Bellagio: Fans of the Ocean franchise may recognize this hotel and its famous fountains, which are known to almost all Las Vegas enthusiasts. Staying at this renowned hotel promises the ultimate treat.
The Venetian: This is one of the most iconic hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, making it a fantastic choice for a romantic getaway. Everything about this resort screams luxury, from the 1.2-acre pool deck to the in-house shopping mall. Booking a suite here will make you feel like a true star.
The city known for its hills, ocean views, and the famous Golden Gate Bridge is a top destination for many people looking for the best weekend getaways in the USA. With a long list of things to do that cater to all interests, why not?
Make sure to visit the popular attractions that interest you the most, such as Fisherman's Wharf (and its charming sea lions!), Alcatraz, strolling across the Golden Gate Bridge, seeing the Painted Ladies (of Full House fame), and taking a peek at Lombard Street.
After you've checked off these must-see sights, take some time to explore lesser-known gems like San Francisco's Japanese Garden, the Land's End Labyrinth, and Fort Point.
And, of course, don't forget to take a stroll through the woods when you're in San Francisco; the Muir Woods provide an unforgettable experience that's well worth your time on any weekend trip to the area!
Enjoying San Francisco
Beacon Grand: Originally opened in 1928 as a hotel for San Francisco's elite, this historic gem has recently been restored, preserving its architectural details and artisan craftsmanship. Staying here allows you to experience a piece of history and feel like a star.
Petit Auberge: This charming hotel in Nob Hill is the perfect place to use as a home base for your romantic getaway. With a French Auberge-style decor, cozy furnishings, and rooms featuring fireplaces that open onto lovely terraces, this hotel also offers private parking, which is essential in the city.
Drenched in Spanish moss and boasting one of the most stunningly beautiful historic districts in the United States, Savannah is an ideal destination for a weekend trip. It's not too big, not too small, and is brimming with some of the finest Southern cuisine you'll ever encounter.
Visit to explore all 22 of Savannah's remaining town squares, tour a couple of house museums, take a leisurely stroll through Forsyth Park, and wander along the picturesque Jones Street.
If shopping is your thing, you'll be delighted with the boutiques on Broughton Street, River Street, and in City Market. Food enthusiasts will find a treasure trove of delectable dishes in Savannah, from traditional Southern fare at the Olde Pink House to delicious ice cream at Leopold's.
If you happen to be a former Girl Scout like me or have an interest in their history, don't miss the opportunity to visit the home of the organization's founder, Juliette Gordon Low.
The Marshall House: With a highly-rated breakfast included, an excellent location in the heart of Savannah's historic district, and rave reviews, The Marshall House is a surefire choice for your stay!
Foley House Inn: Among all the hotels I've stayed at in Savannah, the Foley House Inn stands out as my favorite. It's absolutely stunning both inside and out, and its prime location on Chippewa Square is hard to beat.
New York City
Exploring all of New York in just one weekend is impossible—actually, it's impossible even in a lifetime. But the fantastic thing about New York City is that regardless of who you are or what you enjoy, whether you want to visit famous places, savor the best food, watch a show or two, or uncover some lesser-known gems, you'll find something fascinating to do.
For tourists seeking the quintessential NYC experience, like we did on our initial visits, a weekend in New York is certainly sufficient to witness all those iconic places we've seen in movies and television shows throughout our lives!
Central Park, Fifth Avenue, Grand Central, Times Square, the Public Library, a Broadway performance or two, a trip to the Top of the Rock or the Empire State Building, and a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge—over the course of a weekend, you can visit all of these attractions and more.
If you have an interest in museums, we also recommend visiting just one (no more, as there's too much else to do!) during your weekend in New York: the Met, MOMA, and the Natural History Museum are all excellent, classic options.
Enjoying New York
The Renwick: Offering stylish residential-style accommodation, this beautiful hotel is equipped with plenty of amenities and high-class comfort. It is also a short walk to the Empire State Building and Bryant Park for exploring.
The Plaza Hotel: For a memorable place to stay, this is one of the most classic and luxurious hotels in New York. It is located right by Central Park, the Rockefeller Center, and some of NYC’s most popular museums.
Incredibly beautiful and rich in both American history and its own unique, contemporary culture, Boston is a city that will capture your heart in just a weekend. While you're there, make sure to explore the charming North End, trendy Back Bay, and majestic Beacon Hill—three Boston neighborhoods that are absolute must-sees.
Also, consider taking a leisurely stroll through the Boston Public Garden (one of our favorite spots in the city) and the Boston Common, paying a visit to the penguins at the New England Aquarium, following the Freedom Trail, and embarking on a whale-watching cruise.
Book lovers like us shouldn't miss out on the Boston Public Library (especially the Reading Room on the second floor!) and the Brattle Bookshop. Sports enthusiasts, head straight to Fenway Park for a tour and maybe even catch a game.
Found Hotel Boston Common: This boutique hotel in the Theatre District is perfect for exploring Boston. Rooms are bright and comfortable, and there is access to public transportation a short walk from the hotel.
Revere Hotel Boston Common: Also located in the Theatre District and close to Boston Common, this stylish hotel boasts a stunning rooftop terrace and bar, perfect for enjoying afternoon drinks. Rooms are spacious and come equipped with a coffee machine for those who need their morning caffeine fix.
Our country's capital city, Washington DC, not only serves as the hub of our national government but also makes for an excellent destination for a weekend getaway in the United States. It's a highly sought-after spot for international visitors planning a trip to the USA!
Visitors interested in museums will find a wide variety of options to explore in Washington DC. There's something for everyone, from the numerous Smithsonian Museums to unique choices like the International Spy Museum and significant sites such as the US Holocaust Memorial Museum and the National Museum of African American History and Culture. There are so many options that you can't possibly see them all in a single weekend.
If you have a passion for US history and government, you'll find plenty to keep you engaged along the National Mall, including iconic landmarks like the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial. Food enthusiasts will also relish the city's vibrant culinary scene, with the opportunity to embark on a DC food tour.
Touring the US Capitol is always an intriguing experience, and with proper planning, you might even secure a tour of the White House! While Washington DC has attractions year-round, the cherry blossom season is undoubtedly one of the best and most popular times to visit. As an added bonus, many of the things to do in Washington DC, including all the Smithsonian museums, offer free admission.
Enjoying Washington DC
CitizenM Capitol: If you're looking for a stylish and comfortable stay, CitizenM Capitol in Washington DC is another fantastic example of CitizenM hotels.
Riggs Washington DC: Situated in the historic former home of Riggs National Bank, this iconic building has been transformed into a classic and beautiful hotel. The rooms are spacious, comfortable, and offer views of Penn Quarter.
Austin, often hailed as the "live music capital of the world," is not to be missed when seeking the best weekend getaways in the USA. It exudes classic American charm with a touch of country flair.
During your weekend visit to Austin, make sure to explore South Congress for fantastic dining, eclectic boutiques, and captivating street art. For unforgettable nightlife, head to "Dirty Sixth," or if you prefer a different vibe, consider Rainey Street or Guadalupe Street.
As the capital of Texas, Austin boasts typical cultural highlights worth your time during a weekend trip, such as a visit to the Texas State Capitol and the historic (and possibly haunted) Driskill Hotel.
Moreover, since Austin is enveloped by the picturesque Texas Hill Country, no trip is complete without embarking on at least one hike in Austin and taking a day trip to beloved nearby towns and wineries. Wimberley and Fredericksburg are both favored destinations.
Hotel Saint Cecilia: Nestled in beautiful gardens, this hotel provides a tranquil oasis in the city. You'll find an onsite pool with private bungalows, perfect for relaxation.
The Driskill: Originally constructed in 1886, The Driskill seamlessly combines old-world charm with modern luxuries. Enjoy dining at the award-winning on-site restaurant and relish the luxury offered by this iconic Austin landmark.