13 of the Best Girls’ Weekend Getaways Across America
Pack your bags for some fun with your pals—no passport required.
Whether it’s partying or gourmet adventure that you’re after, Austin is one of the best weekend getaways. The “Blueberry in the Red State” is known for its legendary live music, vibrant culture, and open-minded attitude. Another highlight is Rainey Street, a row of historic, bungalow-style homes turned bars. And between the food trucks, brunch spots, and BBQ joints, we promise you won’t go hungry. What would a trip to Texas’s capital be without a stroll down Congress Avenue? Another perk: Austin is as affordable as it is fun. In fact, the Lone Star Court is one of the best value hotels in the country.
Waiting until the warmer months to travel? Chi-town is an amazing place to escape with your pals this summer. Take advantage of the nice weather with a stroll around the Chicago Riverwalk, the pedestrian waterfront that spans from Lake Shore Drive to Franklin Street. Next up, a glass of vino with waterfront views at City Winery Chicago on the Riverwalk. Then head over to the Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise, a 90-minute boat tour of the city’s most spectacular buildings. It sells out fast, so be sure to book tickets well in advance.
Our nation’s capital may not be the first destination that comes to mind when you think about the best weekend getaways, but it’s time to reconsider. The newly built District Wharf area along the Potomac River offers everything you need for a fun weekend away. There’s plenty of shopping and plenty of outdoor activities to keep you occupied; winter’s include ice skating and curling. The Anthem is the District’s newest concert hall in a space that bills itself as a club with a 6,000 person capacity—so far it has attracted a variety of headlining names from the Foo Fighters to MGMT to Vice President Joe Biden. Come evening, crash at the brand new Wharf InterContinental Hotel. Many of the sleekly designed rooms face the water, where you can watch planes take off and land at Regan National Airport across the river, or marvel at the yachts docked in the marina below. When it’s time for dinner, you can’t do better than the hotel’s Kith/Kin, featuring Afro-Caribbean cuisine. Order one of its punch bowls of specialty cocktails for a festive evening, and be sure not to miss its Brussels Suya—you’ll never look at Brussels sprouts the same way again.
For those who want to party till dawn, Miami is the place for you. From massive mega-clubs and underground EDM dens to old-school speakeasies and swanky lounges, it does not disappoint. You’ll also enjoy luxurious lodgings, such as 1 Hotel South Beach and The Miami Beach EDITION, and trendy restaurants helmed by acclaimed chefs. And, you can’t talk about Miami without mentioning the beach. Don’t forget to pack your sunscreen! Here are more of our favorite places for girls’ getaways.
Savannah is renowned for its antebellum architecture, genial hospitality, and ghostly lore. Its historic district flaunts cobblestone squares, manicured parks, and ancient oak trees draped with Spanish moss. And then there are the spooky sites like Sorrel Weed House, Foley House Inn, and Bonaventure Cemetery. More into sweet than scary? Stop by one of the candy shops on River Street for homemade saltwater taffy.
If you can’t find a spot to grab a beer and kick up your heels, err cowboy boots, in Nashville, chances are you won’t find it anywhere. Music City is brimming with bars, honky tonks, concert halls, and venues where you can catch live performances, like Analog, at the iconic Hutton Hotel. It’s also home to the Country Music Hall of Fame and the highly-regarded Grand Ole Opry. When you get hungry, dig into some BBQ at one of the many ‘cue joints on Broadway or savor upscale fare at Etch or The 404 Kitchen. Check out these best weekend getaways in small towns across the U.S.
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans likely conjures up images of beads, booze, and Bourbon Street. But it has much to offer beyond its most infamous drag and its Mardi Gras for that matter (but if you are there in February, don’t miss out on a chance to try a piece of king cake). Starting with its vibrant nightlife and live-music scenes (it’s the motherland of jazz, after all), the “Big Easy” doesn’t mess around when it comes to cuisine—a delectable fusion of French, Spanish, and African influences. It doesn’t get any better than digging into a bowl of shrimp gumbo, crawfish etouffee, or a fried-oyster po’ boy. Of course, no trip to NoLa is complete without tasting the world-famous beignets at Cafe Du Monde.
San Francisco, California
San Francisco is a place that’s hard to define, but easy to love. “The Golden City” temps travelers with its great restaurants, pedestrian-friendly streets, and distinctive neighborhoods. The Mission is a hub of hipster bars and restaurants ranging from elevated new American to modest Mexican (this is the birthplace of the Mission-style burrito). Preserved Victorian and Edwardian homes line Pacific Heights. And Chinatown is bursting with authentic fare. Of course, the Golden Gate Bridge is a must-see. These are the best trips to take with your sister.
New York City
“The City That Never Sleeps” lives up to its epithet with non-stop fun for all. And we’re not just talking about partying, although that’s certainly part of it. New York boasts midnight movie screenings, late-night eats, and 24/7 bodegas (small convenience stores) to stock up on all your essentials no matter the time. Simply put: You’ll never be bored. More of an early bird than a night owl? You’re also in luck. If this is your first trip the Big Apple, you’ll definitely want to visit the Empire State Building. Beat the crowds by getting there right when it opens at 8 in the morning.
San Diego, California
For a low-key beach weekend, set your sights on San Diego. Its picture-perfect weather and laid-back vibe make it one of the best weekend getaways. Not to mention, this coastal gem offers ample opportunities for gorgeous group photos. During the day, soak up the California sun or channel your inner Alana Blanchard with a surf lesson. At night, indulge in some authentic, Cali-Baja cooking at Galaxy Taco. Wondering where to stay? Get your old-Hollywood glam on at La Valencia, a 1920s-era hotel that once called Cary Grant a regular guest.
Portland has this quirky-cool appeal that sets it apart from any place else. From the coffeehouses and microbreweries to the food trucks and farm-to-table restaurants, there’s plenty sip and savor. And lest we forget the local Willamette Valley wine! This hipster haven also impresses with its design-focused digs, such as Hotel Lucia, Dossier, and Hotel deLuxe, hiking trails, and manicured parks. Just make sure you don’t make these important travel mistakes everyone should avoid.
Move over, Las Vegas! Scottsdale is emerging as the next bachelorette hotspot—and it’s easy to see why. This desert paradise has something for everyone. Outdoorsy types can hike the myriad trails at Camelback Mountain. Craving some R&R? Treat your pals to a pampering massage or facial at one of the area’s premier spas. As varied as the activities are the accommodations, which run the gamut from sprawling golf resorts to hip, modern hotels like The Saguaro. Foodies may want to plan their trip around the Arizona Taco Festival in October.
Charleston, South Carolina
It’s no surprise travelers are flocking to Charleston. This coastal city epitomizes southern charm with its historic landmarks, cobblestone streets, friendly locals, and flourishing food scene. From the majestic church steeples to the antebellum mansions, there’s no shortage of Instagram-worthy sites. The best way to take it all in? A guided walking tour. After a day out and about, kick back with a cool (stiff) drink at The Rooftop at Vendue or Stars on King Street. Next, check out the best places to travel every month of the year.