If it’s time to take a vacation down south, you may be wondering what destinations are most attractive. It can be challenging deciding which city or town will have enough amenities and places to stay. There are various towns across the southern part of the country with kid-friendly activities. In contrast, others are perfect for couples looking for a romantic getaway.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of eight towns in the southern United States to consider for your next vacation spot.
1. Key West, Florida
Key West is the southernmost point of the United States, as it’s only 90 miles north of Cuba. It’s well-known for its snorkeling and beaches, as well as its pastel, conch-style architecture. One popular street, Duval Street, has an array of shops, cafes, restaurants and bars that bring energy to the island.
Streets in Key West are lined with palm trees, so you always feel like you’re vacationing in paradise. Famous names such as Ernest Hemingway, Jimmy Buffett and Elizabeth Bishop used to call Key West home. There are plenty of ways to get around in Key West, as it has public transportation options like taxis, tour trains and trolleys. You can rent a bike and cruise down the streets as well. Consider Key West for your next trip, as it has something for everyone.
2. St. Simons Island, Georgia
If you’re looking to get the true taste of St. Simons Island, you’ll have to visit some of the island’s impeccable restaurants. There are waterfront eateries that serve fresh-caught seafood. You can also check out Mellow Mushroom, a restaurant with kids’ menus, outdoor dining and live music performances.
St. Simons Island also has charming shops, breathtaking beaches, challenging golf courses and interesting museums. You can kayak, fish, take a tour around the island or bike for some exercise. If you have a four-legged friend with you, there are plenty of pet-friendly activities you can participate in, so invite Fido!
3. Charleston, South Carolina
No matter your vacation style or the size of your group, a trip to Charleston, South Carolina, will have something to suit everyone’s preferences. Charleston has harbor tours, walking tours and multiple museums to choose from to learn about the city’s rich history. You can check out the state’s largest distillery, Firefly Distillery, with tours and tastings.
If you bring kids on your trip, there are plenty of kid-friendly things to do, whether it’s building sandcastles on the beach or visiting the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry. Additionally, take the kids to see all types of marine animals at the South Carolina Aquarium.
4. Lawton, Oklahoma
Lawton-Fort Sill is an area that has shaped the great state of Oklahoma. The city is located near the Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Reserve and has plenty of adult or kid-friendly attractions. Lawton’s new and luxurious destination is the Apache Casino Hotel — you can test your luck at the slots or take a dip in the saltwater hot tub.
Kids will enjoy amusement and water parks in Lawton, and couples can enjoy tasting craft beer, listening to music or testing out local food trucks. Because of the city’s history, several museums and historical sites are worth checking out on a laid-back day.
5. Ridgedale, Missouri
There are plenty of outdoor activities worth trying out in Ridgedale for nature lovers. From the Top of the Rock Ozarks Heritage Preserve to the Lost Canyon Nature Trail and Cave, you’ll be able to see scenic views and learn about the region’s history. Visitors in Ridgedale can also rent fishing charters and boats or tour Camp Long Creek at Big Cedar Lodge.
Some must-visit restaurants include the Buzzard Bar, Osage Restaurant and delicious barbecue at Famous Dave’s. It’ll be enjoyable for all types of people!
6. Sedona, Arizona
Red-rock buttes, pine forests and steep canyon walls are what make Sedona so memorable. Sedona is nestled in a geological wonderland. Visitors can check out the Sedona Secret 7, some of the most secluded spots in the area. It’s clear that Sedona is a great place to visit if you love the outdoors, but there are also plenty of restaurants, desert spas and galleries.
If you’re going to book a trip to Sedona, you have to make sure to set aside one or two days to visit the Grand Canyon. It’s one of the world’s seven wonders, and the trip from Sedona to the canyon’s South Rim is breathtaking. It takes about two hours to travel there, but the views are so worth it.
7. Gulf Shores, Alabama
There are over 32 miles of pristine, sugar-white sand beaches located on the Gulf Coast in Alabama. Whether you’re looking to relax or take an adventure, the Gulf Shores has something special for you. You can spend the day on the beach, doing water activities like kayaking or jet skiing and end your day participating in its active nightlife culture.
The Gulf Shores also has a handful of cigar bars, where you can purchase hand-rolled cigars and spirits to help you relax. Some of the area’s signature experiences include lemur or sloth encounters, zoos and a guided pier walk. You’ll have a hard time choosing which activities you want to do when visiting the Gulf Shores in Alabama.
If you’re searching for a location in the southern region of the U.S., consider one of the cities or towns listed above.
Travel South This Winter
Each place listed above has something to offer, so everyone you vacation with will enjoy their time away from home. From Sedona to Lawton to St. Simons Island, taking a vacation down south will immerse you in culture, history and entertainment.