We’ve recommended some of the best places to travel on a weak dollar and many of you pointed out the comments that you don’t have to leave the country to do so. There are plenty of places around the US you can visit to make the most of the falling currency. Here is a list of 8 great places to visit and make your short dollar go a long way.
- Chicago – Although O’Hare is a United Airline hub, travel to and from this city is inexpensive. TravelZoo is loaded with holiday airfares you can take advantage of – and if you go in the winter you’ll find discount on hotel prices as well. Visit the Sears Tower, the (free) City Art Gallery, or go ice skating in Millennium Park.
- New Orleans – The city is still recovering from Hurricane Katrina and tourism dollars are welcome here. Aside from Mardis Gras, there are plenty of music and theater festivals to attend during the mild winters. Keep in mind that some of the places you used to be able to visit are still inaccessible due to Katrina, check out the city’s Web page before you plan you trip.
- Detroit – Let’s face it, this lively city doesn’t get any love from potential tourists. Visit Henry Ford’s home and museum in nearby Dearborn and get some good Middle Eastern food while you’re there. Easily accessible via train and MegaBus, you can even split the trip with a vacation to Chicago. Stop by Detroit’s Riverfront before you leave though.
- Phoenix – Many of you may disagre, but if you want to fill you vacation with variety, Phoenix is the place for adventurous travelers. Take a ride up to the Grand Canyon and see the desert on your way, go whitewater rafting in the Colorado River, and stop by Lake Havasu on your way back. There is hiking in the White Mountains in the east of the state and I haven’t even begun to focus on the city itself!
- Portland, Maine – Take a sailboat ride in Casco Bay and shop in the city’s Old Port when you get back. Those of you in the holiday spirit can make it just in time for the Christmas tree lighting in Monument Square. The Downtown Arts District is where you can stop by the Space Gallery, Portland Symphony, and the Children’s Museum of Maine.
- Seattle – Don’t believe the hype about the rain – it gets less than New Orleans annually. Buses in downtown Seattle are free between 6am and 7pm daily and it takes less than an hour to walk the length of it. Go up the Space Needle (duh) then the Experience Music Project right next door. Do not miss the Underground Tour of the old Seattle the current one was build on top of.
- Montana (the entire state) – Yellowstone National Park is free to all, and has 9 regions in Montana alone. The state will be celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Lewis and Clark expedition, has decent skiing, fly fishing, and a 75 mph speed limit 😉
I’d love to hear more opinions from folks around the US. There are plenty of free things to do in many cities overall and flights to and from mid-major cities are cheaper in general. Use FareCast to get an idea if you should wait or buy now to get the best deal on plane tickets or take the bus. If you plan on driving, sleep at airports along the way to save on hotel costs.