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Friday, 9 October 2015

12 Best Cities For A Long Weekend Vacation


12 Best Cities For A Long Weekend Vacation


It's a cruel, cruel fact of life that when you want to get away, you only get two days a week to do it. So for the very few long weekends a year you DO get, you've got to go out and make the most of them!
Here are 12 cities that will let you maximize your holiday fun. 
1. Chicago
The Windy City is a bona fide cultural center, a showcase of some of the best of American culture. Take in a show at the Jazz Showcase (the world's second oldest jazz club), take a walk down Navy Pier, or get your Ferris Bueller on and tour the Art Institute of Chicago. It's also home to more than 200 theaters, so it's an excellent city to take in a show before it hits Broadway. 


2. Toronto
This is one of the most multicultural cities in the world, a wonderful mix of Canadian politeness and legitimate global culture. You could do the standard "CN Tower and a Jays game" visit, or you could take a tour of the Steam Whistle Brewery (built in the old Canadian Pacific Railway steam locomotive repair facility), hit up St. Lawrence Market, or take a historic walk through the Distillery District. It's really a city with endless possibilities that need to be explored. 
And don't forget to stop at one of the city's food trucks, which take radical cuisine to the streets. 



3. Washington, D.C
There is so much to see in Washington you may not even care that the President lives there. With a crazy amount of museums, it's the perfect city for history buffs. And with 155 monuments to visit, you may have to prioritize. It's also home to the nation's elite and elite wannabes, so you can trust the city has incredible food. 
If you're on a budget, here's a list of 100 free (and almost free) things to do in the city.

4. Montreal
Montreal's a city of festivals: there's the International Jazz Festival, the Just For Laughs Comedy Festival,the Montreal Beer Festival, AND the Osheaga Music Festival. Don't forget to consume one of their culinary treasures: the Montreal Smoked Meat Sandwich

5. Austin, Texas
The locals want to "keep Austin weird", which should tell you what kind of scene you'll get in America's third fastest growing city. But there is no shortage of things to do: tour the craft beer scene on the Austin Brew Bus, enjoy music at the Austin City Limits Music Festival or SXSW, or rent an electric bike and see the city for yourself (guided tours are also offered). 
Also, the largest urban bat colony likes to take flight in the evening, so stick around. 

6. Colorado Springs
The perfect spot for those who love nature and culture: Garden of the Gods offers beautiful views of the former, and Old Colorado City will give you a lot of the latter. Pikes Peak, Manitou Springs, North Cheyenne Canon Park, and Red Rock Canyon make Colorado Springs and the surrounding area the perfect destination for hikers and nature lovers. It's also consistently ranked as one of the best cities to live in in the United States. 

7. Niagara Falls (the Canadian side)
Yeah, you can see the falls (can't really avoid it) and gamble at the Fallsview Casino (can't avoid that either), but there's so much more. The Nightmares Fear Factory is the oldest haunted house in North America–you may have seen some picturesThe Butterfly Conservatory and Bird Kingdom will let you see colorful animals you could only dream of. Plus, get the best view of the area atop the Niagara Skywheel. It's very popular, but there's more than just the Falls to make it worth it. 

8. Boston
Only Boston rivals Washington D.C in terms of history: the Freedom Trail, Boston Commons, and America's oldest running restaurant (also Cheers). It's a hub of New England cuisine, with clam chowdah, lobster, and oysters as essential foods to eat there.
Make your own long weekend and go to the St. Patrick's Day Parade

9. Ottawa
It may be the seat of Canada's government, but it's hardly lacking in stuff to do: they've got a year long festival season with music and food attractions, some of Canada's best museums, and the world's largest skating rink. And with places like Occo Kitchen and Atelier, it's got a culinary reputation that can match its cultural one. 

10. New Orleans
It can't be Mardi Gras all year long, so you might not be able to make it down in time. Don't worry, there's still plenty to do. Do some exploring yourself, there's a lot to see: the Garden District gives you a view of the city's most ornate mansions and some of its finest dining, the Riverfront/Warehouse District has great art galleries and boutique shopping, and the French Quarter has Bourbon Street, which, Mardi Gras or not, is still the destination for drinking. If you're in a spooky mood, the Voodoo Bone Lady Haunted Tour will take you through New Orleans' creepiest areas. 

11. Nashville
Music fan or not, Nashville is a perfect long weekend destination. For food, the Pancake Pantry and Rolf and Daughters are Nashville institutions. Antique Archaeology and Shoppes on Fatherland help make the shopping exquisite.
Of course, if you are a music fan, the Country Music Hall of Fame will be a must stop, as will Jack White's Third Man Records–time your visit to when he's got a great act playing. 

12. Las Vegas
Of course. 

Main image source via PARKWHIZ
Collage source via 1. PARKWHIZ 2. CAROLINE Studios 3. NIAGARA FALLS TOURISM

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