Best Places To Visit For Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is the perfect time to gather your nearest and dearest and celebrate. But sometimes, going back to the family home gets a little boring, especially after being told to stay at home for so long. Why not try something new this Thanksgiving? Plan a family trip to celebrate all that you are grateful for! There are some amazing destinations in the US that will really help you have a weekend you’ll never forget!

Take a step away from the kitchen and the pressure of cooking a big family dinner… Just escape! These getaways will be perfect for taking your mind off the year been and almost gone. Let us whisk you away and help you decide where your Thanksgiving weekend will be spent.

Santa Barbara, California

Santa Barbara California beach Thanksgiving getaway

Santa Barbara has a Mediterranean climate all whilst staying within the US. You’ll get to have long strolls across its beaches, even in the colder temperatures. Its beaches are pristine, and its waves surf-friendly for water sports fanatics. If you have a furry friend to take on the adventure, then Arroyo Burro Beach is loved by dog walkers. Summerland Beach is also dog-friendly, and even horse-friendly! You can enjoy a sunset horseback riding tour. Tour the beaches on horseback and take in the striking views.

There is something for everyone here – fine-dining, hiking and incredible nightlife. Whether you’re on a family getaway, or a couple’s retreat, Santa Barbara certainly offers choice. Santa Barbara has amazing parks and gardens for you to fall for. Enjoy this little bit of paradise and discover the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden. Here, you can see over 1000 kinds of plants and admire the panoramic views of the ocean and the mountains while walking one of the trails. Chase Palm Park is a park facing the ocean and it is the perfect place to play for your little ones. They will love the shipwreck-themed playground!

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Gatlinburg Tennessee Dollywood kids Thanksgiving

Gatlinburg is an up-and-coming travel destination that will appeal to adventurous children as well as thrill-seeking adults. The city is known for Dollywood, a full-scale amusement park, co-owned by the iconic Dolly Parton. You can ride the rollercoasters and tuck into a jumbo corn dog. It will make a great day out for all the family! They also have a birds of prey exhibit where you can learn all about America’s most famous species.

Fancy a drink? Then Gatlinburg has a wide range of breweries, wineries and distilleries for you to choose from! The city also has an extensive list of restaurants for you to enjoy a delicious meal – you won’t need to worry about cooking a turkey! You can enjoy Italian, or a steakhouse if you still want to devour some meat. You may want to walk off your delicious meal the next day, so go for a stroll at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, opened in 1934.

New York City, New York

New York City Thanksgiving parade Macy's Rockefeller Center

If you want Thanksgiving-inspired activities to do on your getaway, then fear not! NYC has more than enough to keep you busy over the holiday weekend. Obviously, you have the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. It is loved and admired by millions of people, not just in the US but all over the world. Get up close to the marching bands, floats and celebrities who perform during the special event. Be sure to check out Macy’s window displays during the holiday, which will be animated and breathtaking. Watch out though – there will be plenty of shoppers racing to get in with the launch of Black Friday!

Close by, the ice skating rink at the Rockefeller Center will be open. It’s the occasion to perfect your moves on the ice! Your travel companions will certainly be impressed! Being a huge city, New York has plenty of places for you to have your Thanksgiving meal at. Restaurants will be high in demand during this celebration, so make sure to book your table in advance.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago Illinois Thanksgiving weekend Art Institute Lincoln Park Zoo

Chicago is an international city treasured by tourists and locals alike. Its vibrant art scene will keep you busy all weekend thanks to the city’s museums and galleries. The Art Institute of Chicago will make your itinerary for your getaway as you can see all the classics. It features over 300,000 works from all over the world, and the museum also features an impressionist collection, with artists such as Van Gogh, Monet and Renoir.

While you’re spending the holiday weekend here, we recommend you take the time to see the city’s Christmas tree for a bit of festive cheer! You can find it in the iconic Millenium Park where it really lights up the cityscape. To really embrace the holiday magic, go to Lincoln Park Zoo to see the ZooLights. You can see some incredible light displays in the heart of the zoo. Of course, no winter getaway is complete without some ice skating! Maggie Daley Park has the Skating Ribbon that swerves all around the park, giving you the perfect excuse to show off those moves!

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans Louisiana French Quarter race course FairGrounds

You’ll love discovering New Orleans on your Thanksgiving getaway! Enjoy a day at the races at the FairGrounds with your best fascinator or blazer for the 97th Thanksgiving Classic. Couldn’t face cooking this year? Then pick up a pie from some of New Orleans’ best bakeries. They are already taking pre-orders so yours is ready to enjoy on the big day! If you’re a foodie (who isn’t?!), then explore the French Quarter and its incredible restaurants for your Thanksgiving meal. The restaurants usually offer a fixed-price menu at this time of year, just make sure to book in advance!

Spend your Black Friday at Magazine Street, the shopping destination in New Orleans. The street has independent stores and antique shops for you to discover. Want to see some bright lights? You must see the Celebration in the Oaks, which is known for being one of the most spectacular light displays in the country during this holiday period! Be in awe of the lights at New Orleans’ city park, which is one of the oldest urban parks in the country. Finish off your trip by going on the 18 rides, release that inner child!

Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas Nevada High Roller Observation Wheel theater shows

Las Vegas is extravagant and dynamic, so if you want a change of scenery for Thanksgiving, this is definitely the place to be! Enjoy a Big Bus tour around Las Vegas and see the bright lights. Learn more about the city thanks to the informative narration and discover all the landmarks all in one trip. With the next day being Black Friday, you also just have to check out Las Vegas’ shopping malls to get some bargains. Then see the sights from the top of the High Roller Observation Wheel – unwind and look down on the luxurious views of Las Vegas.

Las Vegas is also known for its iconic theaters, so use the opportunity to enjoy one of their shows. Many singers have a residency here. You can also see shows like All Shook Up: Tribute To The King, ideal for anyone who is a big fan of Elvis Presley! There are so many genres, even kid-friendly options, to ensure that everyone loves their Vegas experience. Speaking of your little ones, they will fall in love with the Magical Forest, where they can see some incredible Christmas lights and an enchanted land.

Newport, Rhode Island

Newport Rhode Island Harbor Thanksgiving Boat Show

Rhode Island has so much quintessential charm, and Newport in particular has pristine and gorgeous beaches for you to walk around on Thanksgiving day. Along the harbor, you can see the boats decorated with illuminated holiday-themed decor for the annual Newport Harbor Illuminated Boat Parade. It starts at 6.15pm and the boats travel east around the harbor. Prizes are then given out for the best decorations and best team spirit. It truly is a sight to see! Finish off the evening with a delicious Thanksgiving dinner at one of Newport’s amazing restaurants, or to take home. Enjoy Turkey day as it should be celebrated, without that frantic panic around the kitchen!

Tour around Newport’s famous mansions like the Breakers, the Elms and Marble House. These places are decorated especially for Thanksgiving, and it is truly spellbinding! You’ll love the over-the-top Christmas trees and beautiful wreaths.

Aspen, Colorado

Aspen Colorado Ski Resort Winter Sports Thanksgiving

Take a step away from the kitchen and the pressure of cooking a big Thanksgiving dinner… Just escape! These getaways will be perfect for taking your mind off the year been and almost gone. Let us whisk you away and help you decide where your Thanksgiving weekend will be spent.