6 Underrated Summer Vacation Spots In The U.S. That'll Give Your Friends Major Instagram Envy
When you think of beautiful places to travel to in the summertime, you're probably hoping you can hit up a beachy spot — complete with a fresh fruit smoothie in-hand — so you can spend the whole season hanging out in your swimsuits and sunnies. That sounds like so much fun, and you should definitely do it at some point, but there are a ton of underrated summer vacation spots in the U.S. that are just as amazing and Instagrammable.
From an awesome ranching experience in Montana, to seeing the herds of wild horses at Assateague Island on Virginia and Maryland's coast, there are so many beautiful places across the country that'll make for a fun — and unexpected — summer vacay. Don't get me wrong: Relaxing by the beach is still at the very top of my to-do list for the summer, but I think that these alternative destinations should also snag some spots.
If you're like me and want to travel as much as you can throughout the summer — and the rest of the year, really — check out these stunning destinations around the country for summer vacay inspo. You just might find your new favorite place on this list, and you'll definitely leave with some epic memories and gorgeous pictures to commemorate the trip.
1. Greenough, Montana
Montana might not be one of the first places that comes to mind when you think of a summer getaway, but Greenough is a picturesque community that's just waiting for you to enjoy it. For accommodations, it doesn't get better than The Resort at Paws Up. The resort offers a luxe ranch experience — complete with mountain #views and horseback riding — in the most peaceful setting. From biking, to rafting, to kayaking, it's safe to say you'll never get bored here.
2. Juneau, Alaska
If you're looking to experience breathtaking scenery this summer, Alaska is definitely the place to do it. As Alaska's capital, Juneau has so much to offer throughout the city, including fun restaurants and a lot of history. The city is also close to some of Alaska's most beautiful natural wonders.
You can take a helicopter ride over Mendenhall Glacier, or sign up for Cycle Alaska's Bike and Brew Tour while you take in the stunning sights. You can also book a helicopter glacier tour over the Juneau Icefield.
3. Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque is a beautiful city filled with a bunch of summer activities to enjoy. You can tour Old Town Albuquerque to get a glimpse of the city's history, then follow that up with a walk around downtown, which has a bustling nightlife scene.
If you love the great outdoors, you can hike Boca Negra Canyon or head to the Petroglyph National Monument. Plus, if you're a major Breaking Bad fan, you can take one of ABQ Trolley's "BaD Tours" and visit all of the recognizable sites of the award-winning show.
4. Cannon Beach, Oregon
According to VisitTheOregonCoast.com, the long stretch of beaches on Oregon's coastline are free to the public. The website also states that in some places, you can even cruise on the beach in your car for a totally unique experience (although some of these places you can only do this certain times of the year).
Even though Cannon Beach is a smaller city, it's bustling with activity, from cute restaurants to breweries. Make sure to visit Haystack Rock to get a glimpse of the incredible marine life in the area.
5. Assateague Island, Virginia/Maryland
You may have heard about the wild horses on Assateague Island, and would love to see the exquisite sight for yourself. There, from a distance, you can see groups of horses making their way through the national park. The island is also home to other animals, including seals and deer.
You can grab a good pair of hiking shoes to go hiking on the trails around the island for more #views. In addition, Liz Davis, the chief of interpretation and education for Assateague Island National Seashore, revealed in a Travel + Leisure article that some areas even offer clamming and crabbing.
6. Boulder, Colorado
Colorado is known for its beautiful places to vacation, and Boulder is definitely at the top of the list. Royal Arch Trail and the Flatirons are just a short drive away from Boulder, so you can experience some of the incredible natural beauty of the area. Plus, the city is a college town, so there's no shortage of fun shops and cool restaurants to keep you busy.
Although it's not technically in Boulder, if you're in the area, you're also close enough to see a concert at the stunning Red Rocks Amphitheater, which is just about a 40-minute drive away. It'll make for a great evening outing in the middle of your Boulder trip.