So, you’ve decided to spend your winter in the USA. Great choice! But the US is a big place, and there are many potential places you could visit.
So, how are you going to make your choice?
As one of the most culturally diverse places in the entire world, you have the choice of mountain settings, national parks, city breaks, and much more.
Whatever the vibe you’re hoping for this winter, the US has the place you’re dreaming of.
Just because summer is drawing to a close, doesn’t mean that you have to stop having fun adventures.
There is plenty to do in the US in all weather.
Excited about your trip yet? Hopefully, this article will get you even more eager to plan ahead!
Let’s jump into our 29 best vacation spots in the US.
1. San Antonio, Texas
San Antonio is one of the most beloved areas of the state of Texas. It’s also incredibly set up for tourists, so you can guarantee a stress-free vacation in this city!
The climate is moderately Southern, which gives you the cozy winter chills without being too cold. Expect the temperature to remain above 60 degrees F on the coldest of days.
San Antonio is located between Houston and Austin but gives off a distinctly different vibe to these big cities.
San Antonio is more of a vacation town that is rich in history. In fact, the first chartered civil settlement in Texas is here, so there are plenty of things for you to do.
To name a few, the Riverwalk, the Alamo, the various historic missions, and more are all fun things to do around San Antonio this winter.
We found that our favorite activity to do was take a stroll on the riverbank after dinner with our family and friends.
The riverbank is complete with plenty of restaurants, impressive architecture, quaint shops, and street performances.
If you’re planning to spend your vacation over Christmas, the San Antonio lights are also lovely.
No matter how long you’re planning to spend on vacation, it never seems enough when visiting San Antonio.
There is so much to do that you’ll always wish you had more time. But doesn’t that make for the best vacation?
You can always visit again!
You might not be able to stay away once you experience the serenity, modernity, nature, and sense of community here.
2. Page, Arizona
Most people have never heard of Page, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not an excellent place to go this winter.
Page is near the Antelope Canyon, so most people will head straight to the natural wonder rather than stopping in nearby places.
For this reason, Page is often overlooked.
However, choosing this as your winter getaway location means that you can enjoy Antelope Canyon while also exploiting the surrounding areas.
One issue with this location is that the canyon can get incredibly busy.
It might be less so in the winter months, but expect to see plenty of tourists flocking to get a glimpse of this sight.
However, winter will see fewer crowds and the views are even more spectacular against the cold backdrop, so we think that it’s still worth the visit.
Plus, there’s more to Page than just Antelope Canyon.
You can also visit a number of other smaller canyons that are just as amazing to see, with fewer people around you.
You might even get lucky and have an entire canyon to yourself!
Horseshoe Bend is one of our favorites and very underrated in contrast to Antelope Canyon.
Check them both out and you won’t be disappointed.
3. Crested Butte, Colorado
Crested Butte is a small town located in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. If you love everything to do with snow, then this is the place for you.
The place is covered in snow all year round, so there’s no shortage of it for snow sports such as snowboarding, skiing, ice skating, snowshoeing, sledding, and more.
Anything that can be done on snow is offered here at Crested Butte!
Since this is such a popular wintertime destination, Crested Butte offers plenty of lodging solutions.
The town also offers plenty of places to dine, so there will be something for everyone in this quaint town.
Pictures truly don’t do Crested Butte justice.
The snow gives everything a blue hue, making everywhere you look the picture of winter. It is relaxing, comforting, and enjoyable.
Plus, you’ll have a hard time finding somewhere more beautiful than here!
There are also free shuttle buses to ski slopes further away, so make sure you take advantage of these!
4. New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans is another fantastic place to visit at any time of the year, but winter is one of our favorites.
With plenty of great food to try, jazz clubs to relax in, and lots of southern charm, you can’t go wrong with a New Orleans winter getaway.
Plus, the weather isn’t too chilly, so you won’t have to pack too heavily to make sure you’re warm enough!
Summertime in New Orleans is sweltering. It is too warm for many people to handle, which is why this thrives as a winter wonderland.
The weather is mild and enjoyable, and you have the added bonus of seeing Christmas lights everywhere you go.
We’re sure you know about the New Orleans attractions, but Bourbon Street really lives up to its potential in the winter.
The lack of crowds and stifling temperatures makes it an even better experience, too.
A ghost tour would be amazing in the winter, as well as exploring cemeteries and plantations, as well.
One of the most beloved things about New Orleans is the food.
There is so much to choose from, and most of it tastes amazing when warming you up from the outdoor chill.
New Orleans is a location that isn’t afraid to give you the best time possible.
If you want to have fun, enjoy good food, and spend time with loved ones, then this is the winter vacation for you.
5. Kings Canyon National Park, California
Another national treasure here in the US is the Kings Canyon National Park.
It’s full of natural beauty, and the ticket grants you entry to both this park and Sequoia National Park, too! Two for the price of one? Yes, please.
The park is simply beautiful, with granite cliffs reaching above you from all angles, glacier-carved valleys diving deep below you, the Kings River roaring throughout, and the tightly packed forest.
There are horseback riding opportunities around here, as well as numerous hiking trails to enjoy.
Head to Grant Grove to have a look at General Grant, otherwise known as the US Christmas Tree.
It’s the second-largest tree in the world – and what better time to see it than winter?
If you’re looking for even more picturesque scenery, though, head right to the bottom of the canyon to view Cedar Grove.
It’s a long trek, but the sights are so worth it!
Zumwalt Meadow is also worth a visit, as well as Boyden Cavern, where you can see huge stalagmites and stalactites in the marble caves.
Kings Gate and Windy cliffs are also sights to behold.
6. Salt Lake City, Utah
If skiing is the main goal of your winter trip, then Salt Lake City is a great choice.
There are four ski resorts around the area that are all world-class and excellent at attracting visitors from all over the world.
These resorts are all in close proximity to the city, so you’re never 40 minutes away from Salt Lake City’s unique attractions.
Coined as ‘steep and deep’ skiing, there is more snowfall here than in any other North American skiing spot.
The terrain is also rather challenging to beginners, but there are still plenty of opportunities for you to learn and build up your expert level.
The great thing about SLC is that the ski resorts all cater to different people, ensuring that there is something for everyone.
Here’s a breakdown of the resorts and who they’re best for:
- Solitude: Great for anyone who loves open spaces and wide runs for skiing.
- Brighton: Excellent for snowboarding.
- Snowbird: Offers thrilling steep slopes for advanced skiers.
- Alta: Get the most snow out of any resort in Utah and is ideal for any type of snow sport.
However, you don’t have to be a skiing fanatic to visit Salt Lake City.
There are plenty of alternative activities, such as snowshoeing and Canyon hiking. City Creek Canyon is one that sticks out to most tourists, and for good reason.
There’s also Millcreek Canyon, which closes for winter and offers snowshoeing and other winter sports in the nearby forest.
If you’re feeling up for the challenge, there’s also a 51-mile trail that runs along the Jordan River suitable for hiking, running, or cycling.
There are also plenty of coffee shops and craft beer taps to try out when you’re tired of exploring this magnificent city.
7. Castle Rocks State Park, Idaho
Castle Rocks State Park is an excellent choice if you want to get away from everything you know.
The park can be found at the bottom of the Albion Mountains at Big Cove and features plenty of Nordic hiking trails.
Some of these trails are even snowshoe trails, so perfect for winter!
The trails wind around and throughout amazing terrains that you don’t often see in hiking hot spots, such as farmlands, pine forests, and impressive rock formations.
There is no shortage of wildlife to spot, either, such as coyotes, mooses, deer, cougars, birds, owls, and more. Make sure to bring your binoculars!
Castle Rocks State Park is a wonderful place to visit any time of the year, but the winter weather makes it even more impressive.
The landscape is covered in snow and the nearby caves make a great show of icicle formation from their ceilings.
There are plenty of lodging options here, from yurts to ranch cabins.
They’re comfortable, warm, cute, and private. This is the ideal place for independent travelers to spend their winter months.
8. Washington DC
Washington DC is the ideal place to spend your Christmas vacation. We all want a white Christmas, and Washington DC delivers.
There’s a chance of seeing snow in December and an even higher likelihood in January.
Washington DC is also quite cold around wintertime, but not so cold that it stops you going out and exploring this wondrous city!
Think National Mall, Arlington Cemetery, Smithsonian Museums, the White House, and much more.
There are plenty of museums in Washington DC to explore and get away from the cold weather.
Many also offer cafes where you can stop for a hot drink and snack before braving the winter weather again.
The great thing about Washington DC is that many of the biggest attractions are all located in one specific area, so you can easily walk to each one.
If you’re staying at one of the Central Business District hotels, you’ll be able to walk to the Lincoln Memorial, National Mall, Washington Monument, Vietnam War Memorial, United States Capitol Building, World War II Memorial, and more.
This ensures that you can see all of these great monuments as well as having plenty of time on your trip to enjoy the dining experiences and other attractions Washington DC has to offer.
9. Beaver Creek, Colorado
Beaver Creek is another place in the US that you might have never heard of before, but it is one of the best winter vacation spots the country has to offer.
It’s located very close to Vail, Beaver Creek is the perfect embodiment of a mountain village you’d expect to see on a winter-themed postcard.
It’s picturesque, quiet, and relaxing. What more could you want?
Here you’ll find the famous Beaver Creek resort, which has hundreds of athletes and spectators coming to visit every December for one of the world’s most renowned ski competitions.
You can also enjoy the 1800 acres of snowy terrain, ranging from gentle slopes to steeper thrills.
No matter what your current skiing skill level is, there is an opportunity for you at Beaver Creek.
After a long day of winter sports, enjoy the performing arts center and children’s museum for a quick injection of culture.
There are also plenty of hiking trails along the edge of the village – if you’re not already tired enough from skiing!
Enjoy trying all of the coffee shops and independent restaurants Beaver Creek has to offer, with plenty for everyone of all varied budgets and tastes.
You’ll never have to eat at the same place twice!
The one thing that everyone marvels at as soon as they reach Beaver Creek, though, is the unbelievable mountain views you have access to from every single spot in this village.
Every picture you take will have the mountains in it, and you won’t want to forget them for a while.
10. Mammoth Lakes, California
Mammoth Lakes can be found in the Eastern Sierra of California.
This place is simply divine, and we highly recommend visiting at any time of the year. Winter is a great option, but so is summer and fall.
The winter backdrop against the icy water is one that you won’t want to miss.
The town is surrounded by evergreen trees and tall mountains, making it look like a real life winter wonderland.
If you get there before the lakes freeze over, the water will shimmer like precious stones among the snowy mountains.
Words simply cannot do Mammoth Lakes in the wintertime justice – you’ll have to visit and see for yourself!
There are plenty of activities around Mammoth Lakes during the winter, such as skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and taking a thrilling ride on a snowmobile.
There’s also the option to try snow tubing! If you’d prefer a more relaxed activity though, feel free to make a snowman or have a snowball fight with the family! Kids will love it.
Once you’re finished playing in the snow, take the gondola up to the top of the mountain to warm up with a hot chocolate.
Here you’ll be able to relax with the amazing view from the high mountain.
You could also check out the ice skating rinks, take a tour of Minaret Vista, or even ride a snowcat!
There are plenty of things to enjoy around Mammoth Lakes, although we wouldn’t be surprised if you were captured by the beauty of the lake for your entire trip.
There’s also plenty of accommodation around this area, where you can relax and warm up in front of a roaring fire. Is there any better way to end a wintery day than that?
11. Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
Bryce Canyon has one of the best reputations for being an incredibly beautiful and popular tourist destination.
It’s not surprising, either, when you get a glimpse of the park yourself. There are a number of viewpoints to stop and marvel at.
Bear in mind that the elevation of this park is more than 8000 feet above sea level, so the air is quite thin. In winter, this can get super chilly.
As long as you’re bundled up in sweaters and coats, you should be able to enjoy the views all the same despite the cold breeze.
The Bryce Amphitheatre is massive. Seriously, pictures don’t do it justice.
You have to see it in person to really appreciate the sheer size of this attraction.
It spans 12 miles in length and is 3 miles wide, with 800 feet of depth.
Erosion has been digging this canyon deeper for thousands of centuries, creating exquisite cliffs and multicolored spires reaching 200 feet up.
Each is unique in its own right, making them even more impressive.
The rocks all have different hues of oranges, reds, pinks, and whites.
The snow in the wintertime makes them look even more beautiful. This is a great place for visitors that love capturing pictures.
Once you have finished marveling at the Amphitheatre, there are plenty of skiing, hiking, skating, sledding, and snowmobiling opportunities for you to enjoy.
The park is 35,000 acres, so you’ll never get bored here!
12. St. Augustine, Florida
Another warmer winter destination is St. Augustine in Florida.
There are plenty of activities to enjoy here, from relaxing on the beach to delving into the area’s deep history.
St. Augustine has been nicknamed the Nation’s Oldest City, making it a highly desirable vacation spot all year round.
This means that there are plenty of restaurants and attractions to enjoy while you forget about the wintery conditions back home.
One of our favorite things to do here was the trolley tour, as it takes you around the city to show you the most important areas.
You’ll get a better idea of where you are before deciding which activities you’re going to explore.
We recommend the Castillo de San Marcos where you can see a reenactment of a cannon being fired.
You’ll find this in downtown St. Augustine right next to the water.
One thing in particular that everyone loves about St. Augustine in the winter is the warmer temperatures.
You won’t be too chilly to enjoy your day on the beach (although the water might be a little nippy!).
You’ll most likely see fewer crowds around winter, too, which is nice for anyone who wants a more relaxing holiday.
We’re not saying it will be quiet, but you won’t have trouble finding a space to relax on the beach.
Who says you need to stick to sunbathing on the beach?
There are plenty of seashell treasures to find, and you could even rent a bike and go for a ride along the shoreline.
13. Vail, Colorado
If you’re planning a trip to Beavers Creek, you might also consider adding a stop in Vail to your itinerary.
Vail is an amazing skiing destination, awesome for anyone who loves this winter sport.
Just a small while away from Denver, Vail is a tiny town with an impressive number of ski slopes to explore.
It’s surrounded by 350,000 acres of forest and 5,000 acres of ski slopes, enveloped by amazing mountain scenes.
The town is squeezed into the depths of the Vail mountain range, making for a lovely escape from real life.
If you want to visit a town that would be featured in Lifetime movies, Vail is an excellent choice.
Don’t think you’ll be confined to skiing here, though.
While there are plenty of snowsports to enjoy, there is also shopping and lots of choices for both dining and lodging.
Everyone will find something they’re happy with in Vail, making it the ideal place to take the whole family.
Don’t worry if you’re not that energetic, either.
There are plenty of things to do other than skiing, such as walking along the cobblestone streets of the village, Golden Park, Lionshead, and more.
Everywhere you look will be magnificent.
There’s a reason why Vail is so popular among photographers!
14. Lake Tahoe, California And Nevada
Lake Tahoe is a tourist attraction all year round – you might have heard of many celebrities talking about it as their favorite vacation spot.
However, it really comes into its own in winter, when its many ski resorts open for visitors.
While skiing, you’ll be able to take in the breathtaking views of the lake itself, which makes a lovely change to staring at other snowy mountains for the entire duration of your vacation!
The slopes are world-class, too, and there are options for every expertise level.
Everyone can try their hand at skiing here if you don’t get caught up by the blue shimmering waters first.
Squaw Valley is one of the best skiing destinations in the country, with plenty of people flocking here every year.
It was also where the 1960 Olympics took place, and there is a museum to celebrate the games and teach everyone more about them.
This isn’t the only impressive resort available here, though, as you can also choose to visit Heavenly Mountain, Alpine Valley, Mt. Rose, Northstar, Homewood, and Diamond Peak.
After a long day of winter sports, you can enjoy the dining options at one of the resort villages open to you.
There is much more to do than just skiing here, with lovely scenic drives around the lake’s shores, picturesque spots to find and appreciate, and much more.
Lake Tahoe is in the middle of the Nevada/California border, so you could also visit one of these neighboring states for a day trip.
One thing to be cautious of is the roads around Lake Tahoe.
In the winter they can get very icy and dangerous, so always look out for warnings and road closures.
We would also recommend using snow chains in case the weather takes a turn for the worse.
As long as you’re safe on the roads, you could have the vacation of a lifetime here at Lake Tahoe!
15. Cibola National Forest, New Mexico
Cibola National Forest is a mere 12 miles away from Albuquerque, but it is another unknown treasure that you could enjoy all by yourself.
This retreat is in the Sandia Mountains and features a gorgeous pink expanse of mountainsides.
The pink hue comes from the potassium feldspar crystal deposits within the outer granite layer of the mountain.
This is particularly noticeable at sunset, so we highly recommend enjoying a sunset walk.
Sandia is Spanish for watermelon, which is where these mountains get their name.
This mountain is also where you can find the Sandia Peak Tramway, which is the longest tramway in North America.
Not only that, but it’s also the second-largest tramway in the world!
We highly recommend you take a tram ride during your stay, ascending more than 4,000 feet over an overall distance of 2.7 miles.
You’ll end up at the crest, where you can then set off on foot around the plenty of trails on offer.
These all give you amazing sights of Albuquerque and even further beyond New Mexico.
If you don’t feel like taking the tram, you can also reach the crest by car.
The drive is a spectacle in itself, with lots of shops and restaurants dotted around to stop on the journey.
Aside from hiking, you can also have fun completing numerous snow sports around here, too.
There are cactus forests, wild sage forests, and pine forests to explore, as well.
Lodging is popular among ski resorts and hotels, and there are plenty of places to get your needed amenities, too.
16. Park City, Utah
Park City can be driven to in just 30 minutes from the east of Salt Lake City, so you’ll really be surrounded by winter sports and activities here!
You’ll even find one of the largest ski resorts in the United States here, too.
This vacation destination is full of activities for you to sink your teeth into, from skiing and sledding, to bobsled riding, snowboarding, and much more.
Don’t forget about the small town to explore!
The 2002 Winter Olympics were hosted by Salt Lake City, but the majority of the skiing and snowboarding events were held in Park City thanks to their world-renowned ski resorts.
If it’s good enough for the Olympics, then it’s good enough for you!
If you want a more thrilling winter sport activity, why not check out the bobsledding track here?
It was built for the Olympics to use for the bobsledding, skeleton, and luge events. But now it’s open to the public and you can buy tickets to try it out yourself!
There are also plenty of other things to do here when you’re all tired out from the snow sports.
The Historic Main Street is a must-see, filled with amazing bookstores, cafes, boutiques, and dining options.
There’s nowhere better to relax and unwind after a long day on the slopes.
Park City is an excellent winter destination for anyone who loves thrilling adventure and soaking up the great outdoors.
17. Mount Hood, Oregon
Mount Hood reaches a height of 11,240 feet and stands tall in the middle of one million acres of the Mount Hood National Forest.
If you’re looking to see something magnificent, this is an excellent vacation destination for you this winter.
The mountain is actually a dormant volcano and only a 90-minute drive away from Portland.
Many tourists flock to Oregon to see it throughout the year, but there’s something extra special about seeing the mountain covered in a fresh sheet of snow.
There are many ski resorts positioned around the mountain, all family-friendly and great fun.
You could also choose a forest cabin, a camping pitch, or other accommodation styles being offered around Mount Hood.
When it comes to snowsports, you can ski, snowboard, snowshoe, hike, or take a drive along the magical snowy landscape.
Or, of course, another alternative is just to have fun playing in the snow! How often do you really get to let loose and run around in the snow?
A vacation to Mount Hood would be the ideal chance to do just that.
But what about the people who don’t like snow sports? Don’t worry, there’s plenty out there for you.
Burnt Lake, Trillium Lake, Tamanawas Falls, and Ramona Falls – to name just a few!
These are all amazing places to visit, all within close proximity to Mount Hood.
18. New York City, New York
We couldn’t write a list of the best winter destinations in the US without mentioning New York City, could we?
New York City is one of the most expensive destinations on our list, but it is more than worth the trip. You have to visit New York in the winter at least once!
New York City has a large reputation for being super busy in the winter, which might put off some people who don’t like large crowds.
However, the good news is that winter in New York City can actually be rather quiet – as long as you beat the Christmas rush.
See, many people come to spend Christmas in New York, but they all leave by January and February. During these months you can get cheap flights and accommodation, too.
There is so much to do in New York City, you won’t want to leave for months.
There are museums to explore when looking to get out of the cold, amazing snow-covered parks, and more.
You need to see the famous Central Park covered in a layer of fresh snow!
Another option is Prospect Park located in Brooklyn, which features an ice skating rink to offer fun for all of the family.
This is a great find for anyone visiting in the winter as it is much cheaper and less busy than Rockefeller Center.
There are also plenty of dining establishments in New York City to grab a coffee or bite to eat.
The bars are also lovely and welcoming in the wintertime, with plenty of happy hours being offered across the city.
Make sure you try some of the special hot alcoholic beverages, such as mulled wine!
If you are craving a warm couple of hours out of the icy air, you can never go wrong with catching a Broadway show.
Like we said, New York City is an expensive holiday, but it is well worth the trip at least once.
19. San Diego, California
Another option for those who want to get away from the usual winter chill is San Diego.
This Southern Californian city is the ideal place to go when you want to run away from the bleak winter blues.
Firstly, the beaches must be music to tourists’ ears during the wintertime, with a 100-mile coastline to share with other sun chasers.
The sandy beaches are warm and sunny, beating the winter chill with ease.
Pacific Beach, Coronado Beach, and La Jolla Beach are among some of the best in the world and must-see attractions if you end up in San Diego.
The water might be a little chilly, but there are still plenty of opportunities to surf, swim, kayak, snorkel, or simply dip your toes in the ocean.
Alternatively, you can lounge around on the sand all day like other tourists.
Whenever you get bored of the beach, though, there are ample opportunities for entertainment. Think cruises, sailing, whale watching, and more.
If you want to soak in some of the cultures, there are museums, art galleries, gardens, and even theme parks to visit.
The Air and Space Museum and the USS Midway Museum are some of the most beloved attractions in the city.
There’s even a bus tour that runs throughout San Diego to take you to all of the impressive sights.
There are other tours, too! The Ghost and Graveyard Tour was one that we’ll never forget.
San Diego is the perfect winter destination for anyone who dislikes the cold and wants to get as far away from it as possible.
20. Chicago, Illinois
Winter is not the peak season of tourism in Chicago, and that’s why it’s the perfect time to visit.
Not only will you have to deal with fewer crowds, but you’ll also benefit from things like cheaper accommodation and off-season ticket prices.
Winter in Chicago can get bitterly cold, so we recommend trying as many indoor attractions as you can while you’re here.
Examples might include the plenty of museums on offer, such as the Museum of Science and Industry, Adler Museum, Field Museum, and the Art Institute of Chicago.
There are other activities to partake in, too, such as watching a sports event, play, comedy show, or music performance.
There are also lots of tours offered around the city which will appeal to any history or architecture lovers.
If you’re feeling brave, head out to Millennium Park and enjoy the sights of Cloud Gate, the famous sculpture.
Many people who have been to Chicago will agree that the best thing to do there is to eat. You can find plenty of food options everywhere you turn.
In fact, plenty of restaurants serve every type of cuisine so you can pick what you want without restrictions.
Chicago is definitely the best place for food lovers to visit in the wintertime!
21. Sandpoint, Idaho
If you want to revel in the cold and experience a true winter vacation, Sandpoint is a good option for you.
It is north, so you can imagine how cold that will be! Make sure to take plenty of layers to avoid the chill bringing your mood down.
Sandpoint can be found on the shoreline of Lake Pend Oreille, otherwise known as the largest lake in Idaho.
Sandpoint is also surrounded by the Cabinet, Selkirk, and Bitterroot Mountain Ranges, giving you gorgeous panoramic views everywhere you turn.
There are plenty of ski resorts to enjoy here, offering you ample opportunities to show off your snow sports skills and have fun in the fresh snow.
Use one of the many ski lifts to take you up to the main ski station where you can marvel at the amazing scenic views.
There are also plenty of hiking trails to follow when you’re looking for something different from snow sports.
Each trail will be for different levels of fitness, so make sure you choose the best option for you!
No matter the difficulty, you can be certain that you’ll see some breathtaking views from the viewpoints.
These will be of the countryside, the lake, and the city you’ll be towering over.
One hike that we recommend to everybody is the Serenity Lee Trail, which features a long bridge over the lake.
Imagine the pictures you could take suspended over the gorgeous lake!
The lake even features a miniature Statue of Liberty, which is fun to look for and spot.
There’s also a winter carnival every year.
Since most carnivals happen in summer or fall, it’s refreshing to see one happening in winter – making this the ideal spot for winter vacations!
If you value dining and shopping experiences, there are plenty around the popular lodging areas for you to peruse.
This is a fantastic place to visit all year round, there’s just something about winter that makes it extra special.
22. Yosemite National Park, California
Yosemite National Park is a treasure guarded by everyone in the US. It is highly beloved and must be protected at all costs.
It’s famous for its amazing scenic views including waterfalls, granite monoliths, valleys, lakes, and more.
In winter, Yosemite National Park will be covered in a layer of crisp snow to turn it into a winter wonderland.
Most people consider winter to be the ideal time to visit this National Park, so why not make it your winter vacation spot?
Throughout the entire park, you’ll be treated to amazing views of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range.
Pictures are guaranteed to be amazing, no matter where you’re standing.
Also check out Half Dome, El Capitan, Yosemite Falls, Tunnel View, Tenaya Lake, and Glacier Point.
If you want to see the most picturesque sunset of your life, head to Horsetail Falls at dusk and wait for the magic to happen.
February is the best time to see the blazing sunset as it creates a fiery red hue along the icy park. It’s just amazing, and an image that we’ll never forget.
There is plenty of accommodation for you at Yosemite National Park, from camping spots to luxury rooms at the resorts.
Water sports are popular around here, with plenty of hiking, kayaking, ice skating, skiing, and snow-playing opportunities.
Yosemite National Park has something for all of the family, and you’ll be guaranteed a relaxing and fun-filled vacation here!
23. Whitefish, Montana
Any lover of winter sports is definitely going to be a big Whitefish fan.
The Big Mountain is one of the best places for skiing we’ve ever found, and you’ll love the thrill of it no matter your skill level.
Winter in Whitefish contains a whole load of snow, so you’ll never have trouble finding a fresh sheet of it to play in.
Unlike most mountains, the Big Mountain’s top is actually warmer than its bottom in the valley.
This gives you plenty of unique snow sports opportunities that you wouldn’t perhaps get at another mountain – it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience!
For thrill-seekers who want something even faster than skiing, we recommend checking out the Skijoring Championship that is held here every January.
This features a number of brave competitors racing along an obstacle course on skis. The twist? A horse is pulling them.
If that’s not your idea of fun, there are also plenty of snowshoe hiking opportunities at Glacier National Park.
There are also less busy Nordic ski trails around the golf course nearby, which are fun to explore in a more chilled setting.
Anyone who visits Whitefish should try out The Bulldog Saloon, offering both amazing decor and delicious food.
Another option is the Craggy Range, with local craft beer on tap and healthier options on the menu than the former.
Either way, you’re going to be eating well at Whitefish!
24. Big Bend National Park, Texas
Big Bend National Park can be found on the Southwest Border between Texas and Mexico.
It is near the Rio Grande river and can be amazing for anyone wanting to escape their current town for the winter.
The high temperatures of Big Bend reach well over 100 degrees F in the summer, and this forces some of the sections to be closed for public safety.
Due to this, many people consider winter to be the best time to visit this national park.
Don’t expect such scorching temperatures in the winter, but don’t prepare for ice, either.
The winter temperatures will be mild, so you’ll be able to hike without bundling multiple layers up.
Feeling cold here isn’t so bad, though – especially when there’s a hot spring to warm you up!
Big Bend is an excellent vacation spot for those who simply want a relaxing time either alone or with their family, hiking.
There are plenty of trails to explore, such as The Window View Trail, Lost Mine Trail, The Grapevine Trail, The Santa Elena Trail, and the Boquillas Canyon Trail.
You’ll never get bored with all of these different paths to follow!
Our favorite trail has to be The Santa Elena Trail, which takes you through the Santa Elena Canyon and around the Rio Grande.
It is truly a sight to behold, and we loved everything about it.
The hot spring is found on the Rio Grande, less than a mile from the main park.
Bear in mind that it can get crowded with visitors, so we recommend going earlier or later to avoid the busy periods.
The water can get quite warm, though, so be careful!
If you feel yourself getting a little too flustered, the Rio Grande is right next to you so you can cool off there.
Many people have never heard of the Big Bend National Park, so we highly recommend it as a winter getaway if you enjoy solitude and fewer crowds.
25. Breckenridge, Colorado
Don’t you just love a winter wonderland vibe? If your answer was yes, then Breckenridge is the place for you.
This tiny city is nestled into the valley between several mountains, offering ample ski opportunities.
Breckenridge is not too far away from Denver and makes a great day trip. Or you could spend your entire vacation here if you’d prefer a quieter time away.
Breckenridge has glorious mining town roots dating back to the Victorian era.
Now modernized slightly with shops and dining experiences, the main street is still super cute and picturesque.
There are also plenty of play areas for children and lots of fun activities for adults, too.
This is an excellent vacation spot for the entire family, and everything is within walking distance from each other.
Breckenridge’s ski resort is one of the best to find in the world and often hosts international winter sports events.
You can rent snowmobiles, take snowcat tours,, participate in sculpture contests, hike, ice skate, and so much more.
Eric’s is one of the top spots for eating in Breckenridge, so we highly recommend trying it for yourself.
It is popular so you might have to wait for a table, but the food is so worth it!
26. Key West, Florida
A lot of the winter getaway vacations we’ve looked at so far are quite cold and snowy.
If you’re not a fan of either of these things and are going on vacation to get away from the wintery weather, then we highly suggest Key West.
This island can be driven from mainland Florida by taking the Overseas Highway.
This winds through the Florida Keys, so your journey will be just as fun if you make a few stop-offs on the way! We highly recommend Miami Beach.
Once you reach Key West, you’ll be impressed with the tropical climate, with temperatures between 64 and 80 degrees F. In the winter?!
This island is ideal for anyone looking to beat the winter blues and enjoy warmer temperatures all year round.
If you love lounging on sandy beaches and looking out to the gorgeous ocean, then this is the ideal winter vacation spot for you.
If you get bored of relaxing, though, Higgs Beach, Fort Zachary Park, and Dry Tortugas all offer lovely snorkeling adventures, as well as sailing, fishing, scuba diving, kayaking, and more.
There are even glass-bottomed boats to cruise around on!
Away from the beaches, there are also plenty of theaters, museums, art galleries, antique stores, and more to keep you busy.
Immersing yourself in the culture of Key West, Florida is an amazing way to occupy your winter.
In regards to food, there are plenty of local delicacies such as lobster, shrimp, locally sourced fish, and more.
Eat your meal while watching the street performers entertain you all.
Key West is an amazing vacation destination for lovers of warm weather. While the rest of us are shivering under blankets, you’ll be lying on a beach!
27. Sugarite Canyon State Park, New Mexico
Sugarite Canyon State Park is just 20 minutes away from Raton, and it is the ideal winter getaway for anyone who loves nature and wildlife spotting.
This is one of the smaller national parks at only 3,600 acres.
However, that doesn’t take away from its beauty.
There are so many natural wonders packed into this small park, from canyons to creeks, lakes to meadows.
There are two campgrounds to choose from, and we couldn’t think of a better place to disconnect from the outside world and reconnect with Mother Nature.
There are plenty of hiking trails around the Sugarite Canyon, offering simply gorgeous views everywhere you turn.
There is also a newer Lake-to-Lake trail which is lovely to experience at any time of year.
Winter brings new opportunities, too, such as ice fishing on Lake Alice.
Just make sure that the ice is safe to walk on, though, and if in doubt, ask one of the park rangers for advice.
There’s a visitors center on the park that will tell you all about its history as a coal mining area, as well as more interesting tidbits about how this serene national park came to be.
28. Mount Rainier National Park, Washington
Mount Rainier is one of the most popular winter vacation destinations for people to travel to in the US.
People come far and wide to visit this national park throughout the year.
The mountain reaches 14,410 feet above sea level, making it the tallest mountain in the Cascade Range.
It’s an active volcano encompassed by 142 square miles of terrain, including various waterfalls, lakes, rivers, glaciers that have been around for thousands of years, valleys, and more.
These parts are amazing for wildlife spotters since there are so many different habitats to explore.
Just be mindful not to disturb the wildlife as this will ruin the experience for others.
Longmire is an amazing place to visit around Mount Rainer, where you can visit a museum about the park.
Christine Falls and Reflection Lakes are also gorgeous places to see, as well as River Campground.
If you want a unique image of Mount Rainer, check out Reflection Lake.
The water is crystal clear and you can see the reflection of the mountain in stunning detail – even in winter.
There are plenty of trails up the mountain to cater to everyone, no matter what your fitness level is.
The easiest is found at the Grove of the Patriarchs and is 1.1 miles in length.
It will take you along the river and give you amazing views of thick forests.
Mount Rainer National Park is an awesome place to visit any time of the year and makes a great vacation destination for wintertime.
29. Boston, Massachusetts
Last but not least, Boston is another magnificent place to vacation this winter. First founded in 1630, Boston is rich with history, great food, lovely people, and much more.
The city is a great place to visit all year round, but Boston comes alive in the wintertime.
There are plenty of amazing places to visit, such as the Boston Common, Freedom Trail, Newbury Street, Fenway Park, and much more.
There are also lots of romantic things to do in Boston for those loved-up couples.
Boston is also home to the Ivy League Harvard University, renowned all over the world.
You don’t want to be the only tourist not checking this out, so a stop by Harvard Square is essential to your trip.
Snow is imminent in Boston during the winter, but this won’t stop you from being able to do all of the things you want to do.
Instead of boat rides, you can ice skate on the Boston Common Frog Pond. The Skywalk Observatory offers breathtaking views from above over this amazing city.
The Harpoon Brewery is an excellent place to warm up after a long chilly day, tasting some of the best local craft beers Boston has to offer.
The Faneuil Hall Marketplace also offers a unique shopping experience to anyone who wants a more relaxed day.
Boston is known for its museums, so it would be rude not to go visit at least one!
Plus, you’ll be able to escape the winter weather while getting lost in history.
No matter what you choose to do in Boston, you can bet you’ll have the perfect winter vacation here.
You might even want to visit every year afterward, too!
Thanks for reading our guide to the best winter destinations in the US. No matter which you pick, you can bet that your vacation will be fun, relaxing, and full of adventure.
Our list includes places for warm weather lovers, as well as snow sports enthusiasts, and families. There should be something for everyone on our list!
We hope that we have inspired you to get out there and enjoy your winter.
Just because it’s cold, doesn’t mean you can’t have fun! Enjoy every moment.
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