Some might say that the best holidays come during the summer (the ability to eat potato salad on a blanket in the park is key), and it doesn't get much more festive stateside than during Fourth of July weekend. Come Independence Day, fireworks stands, watermelon slices, and bunting are ubiquitous. Parades blare through the streets, day-drinking is standard, and the hot dogs are plentiful. July 4 events span family-friendly fare (bike parades! fireworks displays!) and good old-fashioned debauchery.
While it's great to spend the holiday in your hometown, there's plenty of reasons to consider a full-fledged July 4 vacation. Washington, D.C., for instance, has a string patriotic celebrations to make our Founding Fathers proud. New York hosts the largest fireworks show in the continental U.S., as well as a hot dog-eating contest on the beach.
Erika Owen is the Audience Engagement Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @erikaraeowen.