Growing up, 4th of July wasn’t one of the holidays I got really excited about. Sure, I’m proud to be an American and celebrate America’s independence, but it definitely didn’t top my list as my favorite holiday. Since I’ve started traveling more, I’ve realized that there are some places which have some REALLY cool 4th of July celebrations. If your hometown doesn’t do a whole lot for the 4th of July, or if you just want an excuse to go on another vacation, check out some of the locations my fellow travel bloggers nominated as the best 4th of July destinations in the US!
- Key West, Florida
- Atlanta, Georgia
- Boston, Massachusetts
- Wellfleet, Massachusetts
- Lake Chelan, Washington
- Washington D.C.
Key West, Florida
Jennifer from Roads We Wander
Despite its relaxing nature, Key West still offers visitors an exciting Fourth of July experience. While there, you’ll find that the Fourth of July is all about eating great food, spending time with loved ones, and giving back to the community. Spending the Fourth of July in Key West is something that should be on your bucket list, if it isn’t already. Key West has a spectacular fireworks show over the water. So, grab a beach chair or towel and head out to Higgs Beach. If you want a good seat, you’ll need to arrive early because it’ll be busy! If you don’t show up early, leave the chairs at the hotel because you’ll likely be standing. Still, you’ll have a great view!
However, if you’re not the kind of person who doesn’t like leaving viewing arrangements to chance, you can purchase tickets that promise you a good seat. These tickets will ensure that you get a great seat at the Casa Marina, which is next door to Higgs Beach. The fireworks are shot off the Edward B. Knight Pier, so you’ll have a good view no matter which place you choose to view the show. The Fourth of July a popular time of year to visit Key West and for good reason! There is nothing better than sitting in Margaritaville, sipping on a Margarita before you go view a beautiful fireworks show. It’s a patriot’s paradise.
Halef from The Round The World Guys
Each year on July 4th, something special happens in Atlanta that brings people together from all over the world. Nigerians, Germans, Brits, Ethiopians, Chinese, Canadians, and thousands more gather at the starting line for the Peachtree Road Race – the largest 10k road race on the planet.
For most, it’s a celebration of America’s birthday. People run solo, in groups, dressed in outlandish costumes, and even in full military or firefighter uniforms raising money for charity. Others come for the prize money – $50,000! Along the streets, hundreds of thousands gather in neighborhood groups to cheer them on and provide water and snacks.
The Peachtree Road Race started in 1970 with only 110 runners. Today, over 70,000 brave the heat, hills, and humidity – all to receive the coveted Peachtree Road Race t-shirt. Each year, it has a unique design, and runners wear it as a mark of pride. It is only available to runners who finish the race.
If you’re in Atlanta on July 4th in the early morning, there is an electric feeling in the air – music blares, crowds cheer, flags wave. If you happen to be here, get up early, find a spot along the route, and have a blast!
Kate from Our Escape Clause
There are plenty of cities that put Revolutionary War history front and center on the Fourth of July–after all, it is our independence day.
No one, however, can do it quite like Boston… because no other city was quite so close to the action in the late 18th century.
As one of the oldest cities in the USA and home to countless important Revolutionary War events (Boston Tea Party and Paul Revere’s midnight ride, anyone?), it’s hard to imagine a better place to celebrate the Fourth of July than Boston.
Whether you want to celebrate by enjoying the fireworks show over the Boston Harbor, walking the steps of American patriots like Paul Revere and Benjamin Franklin on the Freedom Trail, or stepping back in time by listening to a reading of of the Declaration of Independence from the Old State House (exactly where future American citizens heard it for the first time in 1776), Boston has you covered.
Brittany from Transformed Thru Travel
Wellfleet, Massachusetts, a small seaside town located in the outer reaches of Cape Cod, is the perfect place to celebrate our nation’s birthday. I suggest you begin the holiday with a traditional parade down Main Street, which includes classic cars, themed floats, and flying candy. The parade wraps up at the Wellfleet Town Pier where you can grab a lunch of fried clams and French fries at Mac’s on the Pier before heading to the beach. Soak up some afternoon rays on one of Wellfleet’s famed beaches along the Atlantic Ocean, like White Crest Beach or Marconi Beach – part of the Cape Cod National Seashore. After a refreshing shower (hopefully in an outdoor shower – a Cape Cod classic), head to the Wellfleet Market to pick up picnic supplies for dinner on the beach. They make great deli sandwiches and macaroni or potato salad to grab on the go. Plus, they sell beer and wine, if you’re into it. Once you’re all stocked up, head to a bayside beach, like Duck Harbor Beach or Corn Hill Beach in Truro, the next town up. Once you’re settled in and the sun starts to set, keep your eyes on the horizon. On a clear night from this vantage point you’ll be able to see 4th of July fireworks displays from towns across the Cape, from Provincetown to Brewster, maybe even Dennis. Wrap up your evening at a beach front bar like the Beachcomber with some drinks and dancing to a live band or DJ.
Lake Chelan, Washington
Angelica from Good Trip Bad Memory
From growing up in the US, I picture boating on a lake with friends and family, eating steaks and burgers fresh off the grill, and going tent or RV camping in the mountains and forests when I think of the quintessential American summer experience. What better way to celebrate the country’s independence day than by combining all three?!
While there are many beautiful lakes throughout the US where you can do this, Lake Chelan in Washington State is one of my favorites. Nestled within a national park, it’s the largest lake in Washington and makes for a perfect escape from the city. If you’re looking for a Fourth of July with fun outdoor activities during the day, and a fireworks display in nature at night, check out Lake Chelan.
Since the lake is so huge, it’s important to know that the fireworks display is actually in the city of Manson, which is right on the lake. Some people watch from their boats, while other people watch in its downtown. You can find more information on their official website.
Pam and Kathrine from Everywhere Forward
Washington, D.C. is not all politics – there are plenty of ways to celebrate the Fourth of July in the nation’s capital! D.C.’s biggest celebration is the National Independence Day Parade, where you can see a variety of floats, bands, and members of the military marching down Constitution Avenue. You can keep yourself busy all day on the National Mall, visiting the local museums, monuments, and memorials where holiday-themed activities may be taking place (check the Smithsonian and National Park Service websites to find out). Highlights are definitely the Star-Spangled Banner in the National Museum of American History and the Founding Documents in the National Archives (be sure to get in line early). There are also plenty of smaller museums in the city, such as those in the Historic House Museum Consortium of Washington, D.C. In the evening, attend A Capitol Fourth, a free concert located on the grounds of the United States Capitol. There are plenty of places to watch the fantastic fireworks show, including a variety of locations on the National Mall and from river cruises on the Potomac. If you love celebrating the Fourth of July, definitely do it in Washington, D.C. at least once!
What do you think of this list of best 4th of July Destinations in the US? Have you been to any of these places for the 4th of July? Are there any places you think should be added to this list? Let me know in the comments below!
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