Great U.S. Holiday Destinations

Great U.S. Holiday Destinations

You can always celebrate like you’re across the globe by exploring traditions that you didn’t grow up with. Even better, though, if you’ve got the means and the time, celebrating the holidays on vacation will get you up close and personal with other cultures or, at least, other parts of your own. Here are five U.S. locations who celebrate the holidays in fun ways you might not have explored for yourself or your family.

Chicago, Illinois

The Windy City is beautiful year round, but there’s nothing like snow falling on Michigan Avenue, where you’ll find Chicago’s famous Lights Festival. Head up Michigan Avenue a little further, and you’ll find Winter Wonderfest at Navy Pier, featuring ice skating, slides, carnival rides and more, all like a European Christmas market, right in the middle of the US. For a little worldliness, you can check out the Museum of Science and Industry’s Christmas Around the World, featuring over 60 trees decorated to show around-the-world holiday traditions.

Lake Tahoe

Snow lovers of all stripes will love Lake Tahoe for its access to snow sports like snowboarding and skiing. It’s also filled with family options, like Christmas fireworks shows, live entertainment, sleigh rides and a breakfast with Santa. For a little after hours fun for grown-ups, there’s Santa’s Pub Crawl, where you can explore the city in a new way.

The Big Island, Hawaii

Christmas on the beach is unique and beautiful, and on the Big Island in Hawaii, temperatures tend to be in the 80s Fahrenheit during Christmas time. You can also visit Volcano National Park or participate in a Christmas Eve Hawaiian Luau. Why not try your favorite holiday while staying in one of the most beautiful climates on the whole planet?

Aspen, Colorado

You can find more skiing here in Aspen, but for holiday lovers there’s also 12 Days of Aspen, presented by the Aspen Chamber of Commerce, featuring many free events for all members of the family to enjoy. You can go snow-shoeing and check out bars with post-skiing specials for skiing drinkers, and Aspen Meadow Nights featuring Christmas light displays around town.

San Francisco, California

If you like your temperatures on the chillier side – but not too cold – San Francisco’s average high temperature is 58 degrees Fahrenheit during the holiday season. One highlight is the Bay Lights sculpture on the Bay Bridge. You can also visit shops at Union Square, where you can see its famous Christmas tree and ice rink.


A lot of us treat coming home for the holidays as a tradition all its own. What many of us learn in our own way is that the holidays come with the family. Whether it’s your birth family or your chosen family, going somewhere for the holidays with loved ones will make your destination holiday one to remember. As a bonus, if you’re feeling adventurous and want to celebrate the holidays overseas, you could always try Catalonia, home of the Christmas Poop Log!
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