Who’s up for a road trip? On May 15th, TripAdvisor released its top 10 places we should travel to this summer based on a survey of over 3,300 U.S. travelers. Using seasonal booking interest and average costs for hotels and airfare, TripAdvisor aimed to keep our wallets in mind (without compromising our fun) while tailoring the top 10 list. As much as we love you Disney, you’re no good for our checking account.
The site calculated that out of the 87% of respondents taking a summer trip this year, 91% of them will travel domestically. And with most of the below destinations located in the eastern half of the U.S., one could easily drive from one location to another. We’ll ask again — road trip, anyone?
Many of TripAdvisor’s top 10 summer destinations are located in the Northeast. Based on the survey, TripAdvisor predicts that the Northeast will be the most popular place to visit during the summer of 2018. For each location, within the Northeast and beyond, the travel site did us a solid on top of tracking down the best deals — TripAdvisor predicted the least expensive week to visit each spot.
Where are the top 10 U.S. hotspots destined to be tourist meccas come summer? Start your engines, because this road trip is happening.
(Note: According to TripAdvisor, the below locations are “ranked by greatest increase in booking interest from spring to summer.”)
1Mackinac Island, Michigan
“Candy-colored facades” paired with homemade fudge, coastal breezes, and a relaxing vintage atmosphere. With roundtrip airfare costing about $476 on average from within the U.S., and nightly hotel rates averaging $347, a summer week on Mackinac will set you back about $2,900… which makes us sweat. But TripAdvisor notes that you can save the most during the week of June 4th (we certainly hope so!).
2Bar Harbor, Maine
The views from Acadia National Park are enough to make you want to move to Bar Harbor, Maine. And the 19th-century mansions and hotels are pretty to look at, too. If you head to Bar Harbor during the week of May 26th, you can save 26% on the average $2,321 per person price tag for a summer week’s stay.
3Block Island, Rhode Island
Quiet dunes, aging lighthouses, and pristine coastlines are what Block Island has to offer. But be prepared to pay for your charming New England relaxation. A week on Block Island during the summer can set you back over $2,800 per person. Go during the week of June 11th to save 19%.
4Lake George, New York
The “Queen of America’s Lakes” is the outdoor-lover’s dream. With some of the clearest water you’ll ever see, even Thomas Jefferson couldn’t get enough of Lake George. And you’ll like the price to stay there even more. Compared to the other top 10-ers, a week on Lake George will average around $1,958. And if you wait until the week of June 11th, you can save yourself 30% of that cost.
5West Yellowstone, Montana
Head westward to West Yellowstone if you’re looking for a different kind of vast and beautiful view. Explore Yellowstone National Park and catch a glimpse of the wild bison, bears, and elk. The average nightly hotel rate is $331, and roundtrip airfare averages at $419 from within the U.S. Travel to West Yellowstone during the week of August 27th to save 9% on the average $2,736 per week expense.
6Ocean City, Maryland
There’s always something going on at Ocean City’s three-mile Boardwalk — be it concerts, beach bonfires, or activities for kids. You’ll get your share of excitement while still being able to sit your butt down and ~relax~. You can save 33% if you head to Ocean City during the week of May 28th. Otherwise expect to spend about $2,269 on a week’s vacation.
7Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts
Popular for its quintessential New England feel paired with pretty Victorian “gingerbread houses” and bustling beach town vibes, Martha’s Vineyard is one of, if not the, tourist hot spot for Massachusetts visitors. But watch out, because the Vineyard can be a tourist trap. Be prepared to spend well over $3,500 on your Martha’s Vineyard vacation. Save 33% by heading there during the week of May 28th.
Cool off in Anchorage, where you can partake in a myriad of different outdoor activities amid the Chugach Mountains. A roundtrip ticket will set you back about $600 from within the U.S., and nightly hotel rates average at around $331. Head to Anchorage during the week of August 27th to save 9% on your average $2,917 week.
9Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Adventure-seekers must visit Jackson Hole in the summertime. Horseback riding, whitewater rafting, kayaking, hot air balooning, and hang gliding await you there. And honestly, exploring Grand Teton National Park is an adventure in itself. But be willing to toss down some serious cash during your trip to Jackson Hole. A week’s vacation will cost you $3,900, but you can save 20% if you book your stay for the week of May 28th.
It really doesn’t get more New England than Nantucket. The island off the coast of Massachusetts is home to shingled homes, dirt paths, and winding coastlines. You’ll also get a superb dose of history while soaking in Nantucket’s charm. Alas, the cost to visit is not so charming. A summer’s week stay will cost you over $4,800, thanks to a whopping average nightly hotel rate of $661. Go during the week of May 28th to save 31%.
Make sure to check out all the stats provided for the above destinations on TripAdvisor’s blog. And always feel free to check sites like Airbnb to save a few bucks on lodging. And hey — you can save on airfare if you drive. Road trip! Road trip! Road trip!