10 Best Places to Visit in USA during Thanksgiving

Did you know that the tradition of Thanksgiving is believed to date back to 1621? It is an important American tradition that marks the beginning of the holiday season in the country. This is also the season when a large number of tourists visit the country. About 49.29 million people visited the US over the Thanksgiving holiday period in 2016 alone, according to the figures released by Statista.

If you too wish to visit America during this festive time, here are 10 places where you will have amazing experiences of Thanksgiving.

New York

Want to celebrate Thanksgiving in a city? Go to the Big Apple and participate in the famous Thanksgiving parade. It is famous for its marching bands, Broadway shows, massive balloons, clowns and, who knows, you might just rub shoulders with some celebrities! With a plethora of restaurants, historical sites and holiday sales, New York is an ideal destination for a family trip.

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Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is known for hosting one of the largest parades in the country. Participating in the Thanksgiving parade, full of marching bands, dance groups and celebrities, will be an amazing experience. The Windy City is famous for its Christmas market, with traditional German food, and Millennium Park, for ice-skating.


It definitely is a worthy experience to celebrate Thanksgiving in the merriest place on the Earth! You can enjoy live shows, football matches and traditional Thanksgiving turkey in Disneyland. You can choose to go for water slides or the Disney Cruise. The cruises are usually for 3 to 7 nights and include delicious meals and a visit to Disney’s private island, Castaway Bay.


Kick- start the festive by attending one of the oldest Thanksgiving parades in the country. This remarkable parade takes place across 1.4 miles of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Don’t forget to go for the Christmas Light Show at Macy’s, Longwood Gardens and Blue Cross RiverRink Winterfest, says an article on Visit Philadelphia.


After summer and before Christmas is usually an off-peak season in Hawaii. This means less crowded and more peaceful shores. You can enjoy your holiday surfing, sun bathing and having delicious meals with the amazing seaside views in the backdrop. Imagine what fun it will be to get tanned while your friends are dealing with snow back home.

Keystone, Colorado

If you want to spend your Thanksgiving skiing, visiting Keystone is an ideal option. It offers various winter sports, such as ice-skating, snow-biking, tubing and many more. You will find wide slopes and open runs here, which is impossible to find anywhere else during this time.

Phoenix, Arizona

Phoenix is a great choice for those looking for a beautiful getaway amidst a multicultural desert. You can go hiking and camping in Echo Canyon or simply spend the night star gazing. Don’t miss the Arizona International Auto Show, which is held on Thanksgiving Day.

Charleston, South Carolina

Want to celebrate Thanksgiving the old-fashioned way? Go for the Turkey Day Run and enjoy free beer and live music. You will feel almost as though you are back in the colonial times, riding horse-driven carriages and exploring the city and its historical homes. You can also go for dolphin sightings and visit the gorgeous Sullivan’s Island.

Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara is an ideal family destination with its mild Mediterranean climate. It is famous for its fantastic restaurants and amazing local wines. This is one of the best locations for wine enthusiasts, since you can drive to Los Olivos or Solvang and visit various wine tasting rooms, says an article in TripsToDiscover.

Santa Fe, New Mexico

If you want to learn about Native American culture this Thanksgiving, Santa Fe is the best place to visit. With world famous museums and art galleries that feature more than 150 artists and native dance groups, it will be an informative getaway for your entire family. You can also attend the annual 3-day Winter Indian Market here.

I would suggest that you book your travel tickets and hotels well in advance. This is the peak festive season and leaving things too late might mean disappointment in the end.

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Mani Karthik

About the Author

Mani Karthik

Ex “NRI” and Founder of the “Back to India” movement. I share my experience about immigrating to USA here.