Traveling on a budget is so rewarding. Who needs 5-star hotels, elegant restaurants and expensive extras? I have discovered that my favorite vacation spots are those close to home, right on American soil. Since I had such positive experiences, I wanted to share some of my favorite points with you. Even though I didn't have to clean up my savings account or go for these "on a budget" one of a kind destinations, they were well worth every penny I spent. Here are 5 of my top places to travel, whether you are on a budget or not.
This American hot spot is a fantastic place to go whenever you can get there. We all know the power of trying the Grand Canyon but there's so much more, Whether it's Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter, Arizona gets an A plus from me from the wonderful climate to the variety of affordable things to see and done. It can get really hot, so pack some casual clothes. because if you're like me, the best place to be is outside. The state has done a wonderful job of creating hiking trails, botanical gardens, camps, nature tours and other nature-loving excursions. The state is full of big cities and small towns, full of art, culture and history and delicious food. Tucson, Arizona, for example, is full of Southwestern and Mexican heritage. There is little to no admission fee to see spots like Sabino Canyon and Saguaro National Park and then head to Sedona, Arizona for an opportunity to see 100 plus art galleries and events happening all the time. They are amazing sites to see if you are an art enthusiast or not.
2. Baltimore, MD
I have visited Baltimore many times and it is by far one of my favorite places to see. Seafood is as fresh and delicious as all the crap in town, and for those of us on a budget, a dollar goes a long way. Steam crabs are like no other in the world. The National Aquarium is beautifully located in the Port of Baltimore and one day has a well spent day. Beautiful, family-friendly sights, scents and sounds are one of a kind! The Harborplace and Gallery are close to the port and offer a great shopping and dining appetizer where you can choose one that is suitable for your wallet and taste. Depending on the time of year (remember Baltimore is cold in the winter) there is also free entertainment. The American Museum of Visionary Art is well worth the short trip from the Port. They charge a fee to get inside but the buildings themselves and the property are full of sculptures and art for free viewing. And there are so many other museums to visit during your time in this family-friendly city.
3. Hershey, PA
Hershey, Pennsylvania has become one of the most famous destination points in our country, and it offers so many free and inexpensive things to do. There is a world-class amusement park, a notorious day spa that can be priced but has many memorable affordable things to do. Hershey Chocolate World, is a trip that is on the Hershey Park grounds but is completely free. It is a wonderful historical journey that is both fun and educational. If you are traveling with children, they will receive a free candy sample at the end of the trip, where you will be immediately taken to the gift shop. There is also a Hershey carriage that will transport you to the full city with kiss-shaped lights lining the streets. It was started by Milton Hershey while he was planning the city and continues to this day … well worth your time. If you have the time (and I would suggest making time) visit ZooAmerica, Hershey gardens, the Milton Hershey school and other fantastic museums all located in Hershey, PA.
4. Dallas, TX
In a city known for all the greats, the cost to visit is not that bad. We had an adventurous spirit, so we booked a PASS city that offered discounted prices on some of the city’s most popular attractions. We couldn't hit them all, but we did see the George W. Bush Library and Museum (he was the president) and the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. Very nice view to add some culture to your vacation. My travel partners enjoyed visiting the zoo, so we went to the gorgeous Dallas Zoo and met two beautiful African Elephants and fed a giraffe. There are so many family run events and presentations at this zoo, you may have to stay more than a day. Dallas Market Farmers is a must market. The food, the vendors and the extremely memorable experience is like no other market I've visited. If you go, catch a street taco in La Ventana or a pork chop in El Mero Mero. I have to mention the Trinity River Audience Center for all of you hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. This timbered urban forest is an escape from the city to the distinctive Texas terrain.
5. Nashville, TN
Nashville, home to country music, American history and so on, so much to see and do. First, the necessity of all viewers is the Country Music Hall of Fame and the infamous Grand Ole Opry. Only the exterior of these famous buildings is a must-see. When you're filled with country music, head out and walk the beautiful campuses of Vanderbilt University and Belmont University or go to the Adventure Science Center or Belmont Residence and spend the afternoon learning something new. The campuses are full of history and tradition and a perfect place to enjoy the outdoors. And we haven't even mentioned Nashville food. Nashville must be is a kitchen melting pot. There are all kinds of fees to satisfy every palate. My favorites were found in food trucks that offered fast, delicious and budget-friendly snacks on the go. If you have room for pie, I recommend peaches or pecan.