Plotting an escape this winter? If you’re dreaming of a respite after the busy holiday season, chances are you’re looking to keep it local to avoid long flights to international destinations (save those for summer!), so we’ve decided to round up some of our favorite winter destinations in the USA on this post.
Whether you’re looking for a place to make the most out of the cold weather and snow, or you’re looking for a place to escape the cold instead, these incredible winter destinations in the United States will not disappoint.
Here are some of our favorite winter destinations in the USA
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Yellowstone National Park is a gem year-round, but in winter, it becomes a winter wonderland of frozen lakes, snow-capped forests and alluring geysers. Plus, you’ll get to avoid the summer crowds! Plus, a ski or snowboarding session at one of the mountain resorts near Jackson Hole is something that should be on everyone’s travel bucket list!
Starting in early November, getting to Yellowstone becomes a bit of a trek, as most roads are closed to traffic and only accessible to winter modes of transit, like guided snowmobiles and tours. The views and activities once you reach the destination, though, are worth all the hassle!
New Orleans, Louisiana
Dreaming of jazz, amazing music, and rich history? If you love all things culture, music, food, and colors, then New Orleans is one of the best winter destinations in the USA for you!
New Orleans during January sees fewer crowds, but if you decide to visit in February, you’ll be greeted with the infamous Mardi Gras Festival. The festival takes place on Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, but tons of parties, parades, and festivities take place the weeks leading up to the festival, too! If you do decide to visit to witness the Mardi Glass, make sure you book a hotel way in advance.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Santa Fe is the queen of all things quirky and artsy, so if you’re in the mood for a winter vacation that allows you to escape the freezing temperatures while still leaving room for exploring tons of museums, quaint coffee shops, and art galleries, Santa Fe is the way to go!
Winters tend to be quiet in Santa Fe compared to summer, but the feeling and essence of the place don’t quite go away. While here, make sure you take a stroll through Canyon Road to soak up the heart of Santa Fe’s art scene, the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, and, if you’re in the mood for a day trip, make sure you leave space to check out the nearby Taos.
Scottsdale is one of the coolest places to visit in the USA during winter for those looking to escape the cold without having to fly internationally. Scottsdale is
Read More: The Ultimate Scottsdale, Arizona City Guide
St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands
The United States is home to an incredibly diverse landscape, and a trip to the Caribbean is never a bad idea. St. John is the most untouched of the U.S. Virgin Islands, so it makes for a perfect mix of a holiday feel and nature. Its national park takes up more space than the resorts do, and its pristine beaches are so clear that you can go snorkeling and see a ton of marine life without the need for a tour.
Aside from that, you can go on one of the many hiking trails on the island to get the chance to see the island’s incredibly lush landscapes and an array of wildlife.
Death Valley National Park, California
Death Valley National Park can get scorching hot during the summer (I’m talking 120 degrees +), but in the winter, you’ll get to see a very different side of this incredible natural gem. Backdropped my break-taking mountain views and home to dunes and badlands, Death Valley National Park is one of the most perfect destinations in the United States to visit in winter if you love getting lost in nature.
In the mood for something more beachy? Then Kauai is your go-to place for a winter vacay. Kauai sees pleasant temperatures all year, and during the winter, despite it being the rainy season on the island, the weather is perfect for activities like trekking through the jungles of the island or checking out the Na Pali Coast. Winter also greets visitors with the chance to see migrating humpback whales, a unique experience that very few places in the world allow.
Miami is yet another of our favorite go-to places to escape the winter cold. If you’re in the mood for the beach, an exciting nightlife, and an unbeatable art scene, Miami is sure to have them all. While exploring Miami, make sure to wander the Art Deco district, explore Little Havana, and enjoy the nightlife of South Beach. If time allows, don’t miss out on taking a day trip out to Everglades National Park, too!
Check out our guide to the ten best things to do in Miami here.
Palm Springs, California
Palm Springs is often dubbed the heart of the California Desert, but the first thing that comes to mind when we think of a trip to Palm Springs is: temperate weather, trendy shops, incredible boutique hotels, and killer views. Plus, if you want a healthy mix of city and nature during your winter trip, you can spend a few days exploring the city before heading out to Joshua Tree National Park.
New York, New York
Would it even be a legit guide to the best winter destinations in the USA if it didn’t include New York City? If you’re into all things big cities, New York is THE place to go. Even though it does get quite cold, the city offers an array of fun indoor activities to take a break from the weather, like checking out the Moma or catching a Broadway show.
And that’s our list! What are some other incredible winter destinations in the United States that we should check out?