Culture

It’s Time For A Spontaneous Girls’ Trip: Here Are 15 Destinations In The US To Travel To This Summer

By Meghan Dillon··  9 min read
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No matter how great your life is at home, everyone can use the excitement and spontaneity of a girls’ trip once in a while.

You don't need to travel across the world or empty your bank account to enjoy a fun weekend with your girlfriends either! Here are some of our favorite girls' trip destinations across the United States and the best destinations in each city.

1. Charleston, South Carolina

Best known for: Beautiful pastel-colored streets and Southern hospitality

Possibly the most Instagrammable city in the U.S., Charleston is the perfect spot for a summertime girls’ trip. Take advantage of the balmy weather, walk down gorgeous historic streets (especially King Street), and check out all the local boutiques and restaurants the city offers. Also, be sure to check out some of the city’s most beautiful attractions like Rainbow Row, Folly Beach, the French Quarter, Waterfront Park, The Battery and White Point Gardens, the Nathaniel Russell House, the Charleston Museum, and Fort Sumter.

2. Chicago, Illinois

Best known for: Scenic river views and Chicago-style hot dogs and pizza

There’s nothing like summertime in Chicago, and there’s something for everyone. Sports fans can check out a baseball game at Wrigley Field (Chicago Cubs) or Guaranteed Rate Field (Chicago White Sox), and the Chicago Architecture Tour (preferably on a boat on the Chicago River) is fun for everyone. Be sure to take advantage of local pizza shops and hot dog joints, local museums like the Art Institute of Chicago, Field Museum and Museum of Science and Industry, and famous local parks like Millenium Park and the Lincoln Park Zoo. Other popular sights include the Shedd Aquarium, Navy Pier, and Willis Tower (note from a local: we call it the Sears Tower, so don’t be surprised if someone corrects you when you say Willis Tower).

3. Sonoma, California

Best known for: Beautiful wineries and ocean views

Sonoma is the perfect destination for wine lovers or anyone who wants a relaxing vacation near a beach. Take a stroll down the streets of downtown Sonoma to shop and visit iconic local restaurants like The Girl & The Fig, El Dorado Kitchen, and Della Santina’s. Check out some of the top wineries like Scribe Winery, J Vineyards, Littorai Wines, Ram’s Gate Winery, and Domaine Carneros. Be sure to take advantage of the beautiful beaches and adventurous outdoor activities like kayaking. 

4. New York City, New York

Best known for: The Met, Central Park, and Broadway

New York City is an iconic city for so many reasons with endless summer activity ideas, but we’d recommend visiting classic locations like The Metropolitan Museum of Art (be sure to embrace your inner Blair Waldorf and take a picture on the steps), Central Park, Times Square, and the top of the Empire State Building. There are also plenty of fun themed tours, including a Gossip Girl tour where you can see filming locations from the tv series. If you’re in the mood to splurge, a Broadway show or Fifth Avenue visit never hurt anyone.

5. Boston, Massachusetts

Best known for: Fenway Park and Freedom Trail

Boston has a little something for everyone. Sports fans can spend a summer afternoon checking out a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park, and history buffs will love the Historic Beacon Hill Neighborhood and Freedom Trail (which features historical landmarks like the Paul Revere House, Granary Burying Ground, and the Old State House). We’d recommend checking out local restaurants for some signature Boston dishes like lobster rolls or freshly made pasta before seeing popular sights like the Boston Common, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the New England Aquarium, and Quincy Market.

6. Nashville, Tennessee

Best known for: Country music and Broadway bars

Whether you’re a country music fan or just want to get a good bite to eat, the best area of Nashville is Broadway. It’s filled with honky-tonk bars and restaurants (which almost always feature live music) like Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, Honky Tonk Central, Hattie B’s Hot Chicken, and celebrity bars and restaurants like Jason Aldean’s Kitchen + Rooftop Bar and Miranda Lambert’s Casa Rosa. Other popular destinations include the Grand Ole Opry, the Country Music Hall of Fame Museum, the Johnny Cash Museum, and Centennial Park’s replication of the Parthenon.

7. Savannah, Georgia

Best known for: Well-preserved historical architecture and ghost tours

The first stop in any trip to Savannah is a stroll down River Street for the best local restaurants and boutiques, and other historic streets like Jones Street are a must-see. Well-known for its historic architecture, we’d recommend taking a historic tour of the city during the day and a ghost tour at night (Savannah is known as the "spookiest town in America"). Other must-see sights include the Historic District, River Front, Bonaventure Cemetery, and the city’s many town square parks.

8. New Orleans, Louisiana

Best known for: The French Quarter, jazz, and voodoo

New Orleans has a little something for every girl in your friend group, especially the foodies. There are plenty of food tours of famous restaurants, but some of the most popular spots are Cafe Beignet and Cafe du Monde. The city is famous for its historic French Quarter (especially Royal Street and Bourbon Street), the infamous mansion of Delphine LaLaurie (you can’t go inside because it’s privately owned, but the outside is beautiful), and the New Orleans Jazz Museum. If you’re into seeing something spooky, there are Voodoo tours and ghost tours.

9. Newport, Rhode Island

Best known for: Historic mansions and stunning beach views

A charming beach town on the coast of Rhode Island, Newport is a must for an East Coast girls’ trip that has both beaches and historical sights. Check out local boutiques and restaurants while strolling down historic streets like Thames Street and Bellevue Avenue before taking a trolley tour or a tour of famous Gilded Age mansions like The Breakers, Marble House, and Rosecliff, or spend the day at the beach. Other popular sights include the picturesque Newport Cliff Walk, Castle Hill Lighthouse, Greenvale Vineyards, and the Newport Art Museum.

10. Asheville, North Carolina

Best known for: The Biltmore Estate and breweries

Asheville’s crown jewel is the Biltmore Estate, the country home of George and Edith Vanderbilt and the largest mansion in the United States. Beyond the mansion tour, Biltmore also has a winery, beautiful gardens, boutiques, and restaurants. Though we’d recommend prioritizing Biltmore on your visit (it’s like Downton Abbey IRL), other popular attractions include breweries like the Highland Brewing Company and local restaurants like The Montford Rooftop Bar and Buxton Hall Barbecue. If you’re on the more adventurous side, Asheville has plenty of beautiful hiking trails and outdoor activities like ziplining and rafting.

11. Miami, Florida

Best known for: Beautiful beaches and diverse culture

Known for its beautiful beaches and diverse culture, there’s no place like Miami. Take a walking tour of Little Havana to absorb the city’s Cuban neighborhood and Cuban restaurants, take a stroll through the Art Deco district, spend the day at one of the city’s many beaches, and don’t forget the legendary Ocean Drive. Other popular destinations include South Beach, the Al Capone Mansion, the Bayside Marketplace, Casa Casuarina (a.k.a. the Versace Mansion), and the Vizcaya Museum & Gardens.

12. Sedona, Arizona

 Best known for: Beautiful hiking trails and Red Rock State Park 

Sedona is the perfect place for nature lovers, but it’s also a great place for a spa weekend. Sedona is best known for being the home of the beautiful Red Rock State Park and Slide Rock State Park, as well as beautiful sights on hiking trails like the Birthing Cave on Long Canyon Trail, Bell Rock Pathway, West Fork Trail, and Devil’s Bridge Trailhead. For those looking for a spa weekend, some of the best resorts are Enchantment Resort, Amara Resort & Spa, and Poco Diablo Resort.

13. San Diego, California

Best known for: Spanish-style architecture and white-sand beaches

Though most think of Los Angeles when they think of iconic cities in Southern California, San Diego is a much better destination for a girls’ trip. One of the most popular destinations is Balboa Park, which features the San Diego Zoo, the Spanish Village Art Center, Casa del Prado, and the famous El Prado restaurant. San Diego is also home to gorgeous beaches like La Jolla Cove, Coronado Beach, and Pacific Beach. Other popular destinations include the Gaslamp Quarter and local restaurants like the Tacos El Gordo.

14. Austin, Texas

Best known for: Live music and Tex-Mex restaurants

Like Nashville, Austin is famous for live music, but you’re likely to find more genres than country in Austin, specifically on Sixth Street. While the “I love you so much” mural is perfect for a group Instagram picture, keep your eyes peeled for other murals (there’s a Willie Nelson one) for more photo ops. Be sure to check out local Tex-Mex restaurants like Cielito Lindo Mexican Cuisine, Ramos Tex-Mex Restaurant, and Vazquez Taqueria. Other popular destinations include neighborhoods like South Congress, Rainey Street, and the Pennybacker Bridge. Austin is a very outdoorsy city, so don’t miss the massive Zilker Metropolitan Park or Barton Springs Pool.

15. Denver, Colorado

Best known for: Mountain views and cool museums

Take in the breathtaking mountain views while visiting the Botanic Gardens or City Park, catch a concert at the iconic Red Rock Amphitheater, check out the historic district at Larimer Square (which features plenty of great restaurants), or shop at the 16th Street Mall. Denver is also home to many cool museums like the Denver Art Museum, the Molly Brown House and Museum (yes, Kathy Bates’ character in Titanic), the Wings Over Rockies Air and Space Museum, the Denver Museum of Natura and Science, and the Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls, and Toys. You’re also less than 2 hours away from the Rocky Mountain National Park, perfect for a day of hiking and epic views.

Closing Thoughts

From the charming streets of Charleston to the white sand beaches of San Diego, we’ve got you covered for your next girls’ trip destination.

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