Summer vacation destinations that should be on your radar

Duluth, Minnesota.

Chances are pretty good that you weren’t planning to drive there for your summer vacation – but maybe you should consider it.

Duluth was perhaps the most surprising locale that popped up on our survey among more than two dozen great vacation destinations, getting two recommendations from our 10 online sources.

Duluth, Minnesota

That may not sound like much, but it beat out places such as the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee, The Outer Banks of North Carolina, Denali National Park in Alaska, as well as Key West, FL, Aspen, CO, and more than 50 other destinations that earned at least one mention.

OK. OK. We know what you’re thinking, but …

The two recommendations for Duluth equaled the number for (perhaps) more obvious choices such as Cape Cod, MA; Myrtle Beach, SC; Nashville, TN, and San Francisco, CA, though it was surpassed by popular destinations such as Yellowstone and Grand Canyon national parks.


Because there’s no easy cure for the summer driving blues [infographic]

“After experiencing a decline in population, Duluth has rebooted and established itself as a great summertime getaway,” reported Jon Michael Poff at BuzzFeed.

Another recommendation cited “beautiful scenery no matter which way you turn” in Duluth, which is located at the western tip of Lake Superior and closer to the Canadian border and to the Apostle Islands, WI, (another unusual place that rated a mention in our survey) than it is to Minneapolis.

Besides BuzzFeed, our survey sources included,,,,, and



Still, if you’re not entirely convinced Duluth is the place for your summer vacation, there are 29 others on our list, starting with Chicago, IL, which was recommended by six of our sources, Yellowstone Park and New Orleans, LA, with five recommendations each.

Charleston, SC, and Orlando, FL, scored four mentions each, while San Antonio (three recommendations), Austin, New Braunfels and The Hill Country of Texas as a single destination, and Honolulu-Oahu (three mentions) and Maui, Hawaii, (two mentions) as one vacation spot also rate highly.

The remainder of the top 12, all with three mentions, were the Grand Canyon; San Diego, CA; Seattle, WA; Yosemite National Park in California, and Washington, D.C.


The Unisphere in Queens, New York
The Unisphere in Queens, New York

New York City (two mentions) and Queens as one destination, and Portland, OR, (two recommendations) and the Oregon Coast as one locale would stretch the top 12 to 14 places.

The remainder of the list is a pretty interesting mix of travel destinations, comprising Anchorage, Alaska; Big Sur, CA; Glacier National Park in Montana; Las Vegas, NV; Mackinac Island, MI; Jackson Hole, WY; Oklahoma City, OK; Rehoboth Beach, DE; Sedona, AZ; Tybee Island, GA, and Virginia Beach, VA.

So, no matter what your vacation tastes – big city, small city, no city – there are plenty of options. Even if one of them is not Duluth, Minnesota.

Tybee Island, Georgia
Tybee Island, Georgia