We just got back from NYC and even though I’ve been more than I can count (and lived up there for a time being), it never gets old. I always love being up there, and it’s definitely one of my favorite places I’ve traveled to within the US. So Stephen and I started talking yesterday about our other favorite domestic travel spots. We’ve been to a fair share of cities and while we haven’t left any of them being like “wow, that trip/city sucked” lol, there are definitely a few spots that stand out to us that we really loved! Figured I’d go ahead and share this list with y’all especially since we can travel again. Woohoo! Okay, so in no particular order:
NYC Like I said above, this is one of our favorite cities. There is something about the energy here that feels unlike any other cities. There is so much to do from restaurants, museums, parks, shopping, even just walking around the city itself and exploring is an activity. If you can’t afford to go abroad, I feel like NYC is the next best thing with the variety it has to offer. Also, their subway system is so easy to use/get around. Other big cities may have public transportation but the convenience of the subway here is really unmatched.
Maui, Hawaii We went to Hawaii for the first time in 2019 (well it was my first time) and omg it was so gorgeous. The plane ride (from NC) was as long as if we were flying to Europe but totally worth it. You can find my whole blog post on our trip here, but in general I feel like Hawaii is perfect because you can relax by the beach/pool, and have a lot of options for various hikes and trails. Basically, you can get the best of both worlds with the most amazing scenery. One of my friends Amy who is a travel blogger has been to Hawaii a ton and has so many blog posts on it. All I can say is that it’s one of our favorite trips but if you’re looking to visit, definitely check out her blogs.
Charleston, South Carolina Charleston is an easy drive from Raleigh so we’ve been several times but I would recommend visiting regardless of where you’re traveling from! The two things that stand out to me about Charleston are the history and the food. You could spend a whole day just walking around the city admiring all of the houses/architecture, and Charleston has some of the best restaurants I’ve ever been too. Their food scene is really next level and I don’t know about y’all but the food for me is always one of the most important parts of the trip! Previous blog I’ve done on Charleston here.
Blowing Rock, North Carolina Okay, so I’ve been to various other “mountain” towns and Blowing Rock in NC is still one of my favorites. I would go back to Blowing Rock during any time of the year, but fall is our favorite time to go. Blowing Rock itself is a small town, so we typically just spend one afternoon or a couple hours walking around but otherwise we spend our time going to wineries, restaurants, seeing the view on Grandfather Mountain, and driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway. All the leaves are changing on the Blue Ridge Parkway (in the fall) so you just drive around and take in all the foliage. If you want to go somewhere during the fall that feels quintessential, Blowing Rock is definitely that! Also, if you want to do a weekend of wineries and not spend what a trip to Napa would cost, Blowing Rock has a ton of them and it’s much more affordable. Blowing Rock travel guide in this blog post!
Savannah, Georgia Savannah kind of reminds me of Charleston in that it has a similar vibe. It’s a smaller city with lots of history, good food, and cute shops. I feel like this is a perfect weekend getaway especially for something like a girls trip. Overall, it’s a much more affordable city that still has a lot to offer so I feel like it’s in a good sweet spot. It’s also right on the water too, so very scenic as well!
Emerald Isle or Hilton Head So I group these two spots together because they are similar in proximity/location and have a similar activites. In both locations you can kayak, paddle board, do a boat tour, etc. I feel like the main difference is that in Emerald Isle feels very much like a beach town (because it is) and if you want more of a “downtown/city” you can drive the 30 minutes to Beaufort and be on the waterfront (I rounded up our trip to Emerald Isle here). When we’ve gone to Hilton Head we’ve rented a house and taken advantage of all the bike trails the area has to offer, in addition to the pool, beaches, water activities, etc. But it has more of a full on “neighborhood”/ “suburb” feel than Emerald Isle. As you can see, they both have a lot of the same activities just a slightly different vibe.
Napa, California Before sh*t hit the fan in 2020, Stephen and I went to Napa with another couple and loved it. Obviously the main event was the wineries but there’s also really cute shops, great restaurants, hiking, spas, etc. If you want a more boujee spot to enjoy some amazing wineries, and just relax and unwind but still have options of various things to do, I think Napa is such a great spot. Full blog recap on our Napa trip here.
Have you been to any of these spots or any favorites you’d add to the list?