Travel destinations

America’s Most Underrated Travel Destinations

Not all stereotypes of the city are smoke and mirrors. New York is actually 40 theaters in five square blocks. Austin smokes a hell of a chest. And you can’t walk a mile in Denver without going through a dispensary.

But following the masses on your next long weekend isn’t just narrow-minded – it also tends to be more expensive and crowded. It’s like waiting six minutes to spend $ 10 at a Heineken airport – they have you where they want you and charge you accordingly.

With the country open for business again, you know the busiest places will be more crowded than ever. In a spirit of discovery, we therefore offer you a variety of alternative American Destinations: A series of venues that serve a particular convenience (eg, live music) just as well as their more fancy counterparts.

From touring the Oregon wine country to surfing on Long Island to wig in an open container in a southern town that is not New Orleans, find our favorite little-known destinations below.

Absurd views and tantalizing tri-tip. It is impossible to screw up in SLO.

Mimi Ditchie Photography / Getty Images

a barbecue: Instead of Austin, TX, head to… San Luis Obispo, CA

SLO is a haven for California coast tri-tip grilling (triangular pieces of beef cut into the sirloin, grilled on the edges to a dark crust) and a welcome change of pace from the barbecue scene. from the south… Head to Old San Luis BBQ Company for three point sliders… Come back with a three point sandwich at Firestone Grill (or grab an ABC burger)… If you’re still hungry, try Rib Line or Mo’s Smokehouse… Oh and the eyesight shouldn’t be too bad either.

Coffee Culture: Instead of Seattle, WA, Head to… Ann Arbor, MI

Someone Calls Jerry Seinfeld: University Towns Are Java Wonderland… Look for Black Eye Diesel Coffee for Michigan Roaster Beans… under the local Leatherworkers and Watchmakers Outpost… And you’ll stay at the Graduate Hotel, which houses – you guessed it – the Poindexter Coffee.

Live Music: Instead of Nashville, TN, head to… Jackson, MS

Reintroducing The City of Soul… First, head to Duling Hall, a stained-glass elementary school turned into a concert hall, for country, blues and jazz… Hungry? Try Hal & Mal’s for bites and honky-tonk in a multi-room setting … More of a festival-goer? Cathead Distillery hosts one every summer… And there’s also Spacecamp for alternative rock.


Over the past decade, Asheville has grown into one of the East Coast’s most exciting food scenes.

Walter Bibikow / Getty Images

Food: Instead of Portland, OR, head to… Asheville, NC

Welcome everyone to the stopover in the South should talk… Sovereign Remedies serves dishes from local farmers / pickers, from jalapeño pig ears to shrimp sausages… Cúrate is a former bus depot that now produces mouthwatering Spanish tapas… Biscuit Head covers you with, uh, cookies ( and fried chicken)… And try Wicked Weed, Asheville Brewing or Hi-Wire Brewing for craft beer.

Lake Life: Instead of Minnesota, head to … Idaho

Minnesota is the land of 10,000 lakes and New York has George and Placid, but believe it or not, there is plenty of freshwater fun to be had in Idaho… Book a summer cabin at Hill’s Resort or to Elkins to Priest Lake… Then visit Pend Oreille Lake, the largest in the state and the fifth deepest in the country (over 100 miles of its coastline are rugged mountains)… Spend a few nights at Redfish Lake, located at walk to the Sawtooth National Recreation Area… And don’t forget CJ Strike Resevoir for watersports galore.

The Performing Arts: Instead of New York, NY, head to… Louisville, KY

Louisville offers more than baseball bats… Start at the Actors Theater, which has been in existence for 55 years and puts on 30 shows a year, while also hosting a nifty apprenticeship program… The Humana Festival of American Plays is approaching its 45th year of existence. existence. (three previous plays won the Pulitzer Prize)… Other notables: Louisville Theater for Broadway shows and Kentucky Center for the Arts for plays, comedy specials and concerts.

Santa Fe

Santa Fe has a sprawling backyard, perfect for hiking, mountain biking, and skiing adventures.

Image by Erik Pronske Photography / Getty Images

Outdoor Adventure: Instead of Boulder, CO, Head to… Santa Fe, NM

Fill up with a world-famous breakfast burrito and get started. Plan a six mile round trip hike to the top of Atalaya Mountain… Take a few shots of volcanic ash cones along Petroglyph National Monument… Hike Carson National Forest on the South Boundary Trail… Hitchhike at bike with Taos Bike Tours while you’re at it… And once the temperature drops, head to Ski Santa Fe for a little New Mexico pow pow.

R&R: Instead of Scottsdale, AZ is heading to… The Ozarks, AR / MO

It’s hard to relax when Arizona wants half your bonus. Instead, try the Ozarks, starting with Beckham Creek Cave, a private lodge built into the mountainside with 260 acres of wilderness to explore… Then spend the weekend at the Big Cedar Lodge in Branson, MO, which will soon feature courses designed by Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods… You can also mix meditations and massages at Spa Shiki or Old Kinderhook.

Race Car Driving: Instead of Indianapolis, head to… Sacramento Valley, CA

No more tailgates! It’s time to get behind the wheel yourself… Explore Thunderhill Raceway Park in Glenn County, California. It can be rented for racing, drifting, karting, driving schools, advertising, weddings, etc. The city also hosts a pretty cool festival of lights when there are no cars on the road.

Washington state

You can catch pink salmon and chinook salmon in Lower 48. Set up your base camp in Washington State.

Nik Wheeler / Getty Images

Salmon Fishing: Instead of Alaska, Head to… Washington

It’s hard to replicate the legendary Alaskan salmon fishing, but Washington gives the Lower 48 a fighting chance… Head to Neah Bay in July for chinook salmon up to 50 pounds, and to the Skagit River in September (odd years) to catch pink salmon… Washington newbs should stay at Sun Mountain Lodge for an array of outdoor entertainment.

Street Parties: Instead of New Orleans, head to… Savannah, GA

One of the few places in this Puritan country with relaxed open-container laws – as long as you stay in the Historic District and keep your drink in a 16-ounce plastic cup, you’re good to go … heading to town for one of its many Irish celebrations (Irish Festival, Greening the Fountain, St. Pat’s)… Or, for a traditional drink inside, visit The Rail Pub or Treylor Park dive bar.

Surf, Brah: Instead of Southern California, head to… Montauk, NY

Welcome to The End, perfect for all kinds of surfers from barneys to bros… Head to Ditch Plains Beach for reliable waves or Terrace to avoid the crowds… Stay at The Crow’s Nest for casual digs and / or booth -up paddle on Lake Montauk… Take a longboard or beach cruiser into town and buy some food at Hideaway (Mexican, barbecue, seafood) or Herb’s Market (fried chicken).


Burlington has a relaxed college town feel with worthy views around every corner.

Walter Bibikow / Getty Images

Weed Haven: Instead of Denver, CO, head to… Burlington, VT

Rejoice, Vermont has joined the list of legal states (as long as you avoid smoking on Lake Champlain, in public parks, etc.)… Book a stay at the Mt. Philo Inn, a “Bud and Breakfast” at only 30 minutes from downtown Burlington… Visit the Champlain Valley Dispensary for refueling… Spend an afternoon biking the Burlington Trail… whet your appetite with a pastry or two starting August 1st .

Wine Country: Instead of Napa Valley, CA, head to… Willamette Valley, OR

A 150 mile valley teeming with over 500 wineries, Willamette is a slice of Pinot Noir heaven… Spend a few nights at the Black Walnut Inn & Vineyard or the equally well-appointed Atticus Hotel… Visit three to four wineries during an exclusive tour with Backcountry Wine Tours… Check out the absurd waterfall of Silver Falls State Park to extend the whole “pour” theme.

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