Destination demand can change in the blink of an eye, but for now it seems potential travelers have their eyes on — well, all parts of the country — from New England to the California coast and everything in between.
Broadry analyzed Google’s latest travel insights to highlight some of the states with the greatest growth in demand:
Vermont is a New England ski center with plenty of outdoor events and winter activities, such as the NE Rando Race Series (in which experienced skiers race up and down the mountain without the aid of chairlifts). It’s not just about the powder. Vermont hosts the Burlesque Festival and visitors can tour breweries and craft distilleries. Metcalfe’s Vermont Maple Cream Liqueur is the first to be produced and sold in the US.
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This landlocked, mountainous state lures winter enthusiasts to explore its 147,000 square miles. The state boasts shorter lift lines at ski and snowboard locations, many of which lead to Glacier and Yellowstone National Park. After a day in the snow, unwind and take a dip in one of the many hot springs.
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Florida’s marketing campaign to attract winter visitors is in full swing. Are you considering a visit? Websites such as Visit Florida and TripAdvisor can provide an overview of seasonal activities. If you’re a beach lover, temperatures in Miami were close to 80. WorldTrips reports that warmer climates, such as Florida’s, are most attractive to international visitors in January. Miami and Orlando are some of the most searched for destinations in the US online, according to Google’s latest travel trends.
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Nevada manages to attract attention all year round. This month, gadget enthusiasts headed to Las Vegas to attend CES, a major event organized by the Consumer Technology Association. Outside of Sin City, there’s plenty of winter action. The annual Fire and Ice Winter Festival in Ely kicks off Friday with festivities around Cave Lake State Park and Nevada Northern Railway, as well as Ward Mountain Recreation Area and downtown Ely.
Search the hashtag #visitcalifornia on Instagram and find 2.3 million posts showcasing the state’s sheer beauty — from waterfalls to wildlife and landmarks. This month, the Golden State’s major theme parks – Disneyland, SeaWorld, Legoland and Universal Studios – opened. Yosemite National Park is also open (just check for road closures due to snow). If you go to Yosemite, you’ll find the tallest waterfall in North America at 2,425 feet high and El Capitan, the largest piece of granite. Prefer the pool? Try Palm Springs and fingers crossed for the 70’s.
With over 79,000 miles of roads and approximately 268,600 square miles, the second-largest U.S. state (Alaska is the largest with a whopping 586,000 square miles of land) offers endless adventures for road trip warriors. Expect temperatures to vary this month as you traverse the state. North Texas will be in the 1940s, while the southern region (San Antonio, Galveston) tends to remain in the mid-60s. There is plenty to do all year round in Texas. Visit Natural Bridge Caverns in New Braunfels, or check out the quirky shops along Route 66 Historic District in Amarillo, or find your favorite new barbecue spot.
Thousands flock to Tennessee at this time of year to watch the magnificent Lights Over Gatlinburg event. The light show will run until January 29. While in town, try to get tickets to Ober Ski Mountain and enjoy a day of family-friendly activities like skiing, snow tubing, and ice skating. Other hot spots include Memphis and Music City, also known as Nashville. Bundle up: Temperatures can be cold.
Are you thinking of Georgia? For many it is certainly this time of year. Weather-wise, temperatures usually stay in the 50s. Snow falls here and there. Licensed to Chill Snow Island near Margaritaville near Lanier Islands near Gainesville offers a variety of snow play areas in the coming weeks. In Albany, head inside to see the stars at the Wetherbee Planetarium, or learn about native fish at Flint RiverQuarium. In Atlanta, Explore Georgia suggests warming up with a Hampton + Hudson bourbon and hot chocolate or stopping at one of the coffee and tea shops in town.