The Best Winter Destinations in the U.S.

Gearing up for some winter road trips? Here are some of our favorite U.S. winter destinations, for the people who love the snow and the people looking to escape it.

Boulder, Colorado, courtesy Facebook.com/visitboulder

Winter Travel Destinations

If you love a winter wonderland, these winter vacation ideas are for you:

  • Boulder, Colorado: A skier’s paradise and home to gorgeous snowy mountain views. Try some winter sports or curl up with a hot drink and enjoy the peaceful nature! Boulder is one of the classic winter holiday destinations that never disappoints.
Boulder, ylenia_vimercatimolano on Instagram
  • Leavenworth, Washington: A charming Bavarian town that gets even more magical around Christmas time. One of the best places to visit in December, Leavenworth glows with more than half a million lights each year! Find your holiday entertainment in this quaint and memorable town.
Leavenworth, Washington, courtesy Facebook.com/leavenworthwa
  • Joshua Tree National Park, California: If you’re on the fence about hot or cold weather, take a trip to explore Joshua Tree! Daytime temperatures are on the mild side, but you’re still likely to see some snow and catch that winter feeling.
Milky Way over Joshua Tree, photo by Jenna Crovo
  • Lake Tahoe, Nevada: A scenic lakeside town full of winter charm. Hit the slopes or the spas—or both! Get your thrills with adventure sports or at the casino, then relax and enjoy the incredible forest views.
Winter at Lake Tahoe, courtesy Scenic Nevada
  • New York City, New York: Is any list of places to visit in winter complete without NYC? Head here for urban charm, dazzling cityscapes, and endless winter fun!
Rockefeller Plaza, New York City, courtesy David Mark from Pixabay

Warm Winter Vacations in the USA

Looking for some sun? We’ve got you covered, too! Here are some warm places to visit in December, or any time of the year!

  • Walton County, Florida: Head south for the winter and soak up the sun in enchanting Walton County. Rosemary Beach and the surrounding historic sights, white sand, and turquoise waters will have you forgetting you’re in winter at all.
Sypmosium banner
Grayton Beach, Walton County, Florida
  • Kauai, Hawaii: One of the most scenic places in the U.S. in any season, Kauai is a warm and inviting winter getaway. Enjoy the sun, sand, and sea for one of the best winter vacations.
Napali Coast, Kauai, courtesy Kathy VanDeventer from Pixabay
  • Southern California: Kick back in always-sunny San Diego, or catch all the star-studded sights in Los Angeles! You’ll avoid the winter snow and get to see beautiful tourist spots in the off-season. Win-win!

LA Skyline by Anthony Quintano

Here at Scenic America, we value our country’s scenic beauty—blue space, green space, and all—and want to see it persist. We work to preserve and promote our scenic byways, landscapes, and towns that define our nation’s visual character. Read about our principles of conservation, see what we accomplished in 2021, or sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date on our work and how you can help.

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