The Best Places to Visit in the USA in July

The 15 Best Places to Visit in the US in July (2024)

July can be a tricky month to travel in the USA. Most students throughout the country are on summer break, which means it might just be their only chance to travel during the year. For that reason, many of the top family-friendly travel destinations in the country are filling up fast.

Even if they’re no longer in school, many others are heading out for a summer getaway, wanting to embrace the warm weather while it lasts. While traveling in July may mean dealing with some higher crowd levels, it also means beach weather and many events celebrating summer.

Planning a trip in July and wondering where to go? We’ve compiled a list of the best places to visit in July in the USA for you, from beach retreats to fun festival hotspots. Pick your favorite July vacation from this list, and you’re bound to have an amazing summer getaway!

The 15 Best Places to Visit in the US in July

1. San Diego, California

Best Cities to Visit in USA in July: San Diego Comic Con

Pop culture lover? Then, San Diego is one of the best places to vacation in July for you! July brings about the return of San Diego Comic-Con, where you can step inside your favorite shows and movies with interactive experiences, meet your favorite creators, listen to panels about the pop culture you love, and get your hands on exclusive merch you won’t find anywhere else.

Beyond Comic-Con, San Diego in July also means the perfect beach weather, concert series, tons of festivals, and summer events at San Diego staples like the San Diego Zoo.


2. Seattle, Washington

Best Places to Visit in USA in July: Seattle

Seattle may be famous for its rainy days, but July is the month with the least rain, which is why Seattle is one of the best vacation destinations in July. If you want to see all the famous highlights of this Pacific Northwest city, like the Space Needle and Pike Place Market, without the threat of being rained on, scheduling your trip in July is a must!


3. Traverse City, Michigan

What Places to Visit in USA in July: Traverse City, Michigan

If you want to be near water on your summer vacation, you might imagine that you need to venture to the East or West Coast. But Traverse City is surrounded by many bodies of water – just without the salt. One of the biggest highlights of the area is the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

But another reason Traverse City is one of the best places to visit in the USA in July is its National Cherry Festival, honoring Traverse City’s nickname as the “Cherry Capital of the World.” During this July festival, you’ll catch parades, art competitions, live music, and many more cherry-themed delights.

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4. Milwaukee, Wisconsin

What Places Have Shoulder Season in USA in July: Milwaukee

July is filled with festivals around the US, and one of the best can be found in Milwaukee. Taking place over the course of three weekends from late June through early July, Summerfest boasts more than 1,000 performances from over 800 acts across 12 stages.

It’s one of the biggest music festivals in the world, and with performances from acts all across the different musical genres, Summerfest makes Milwaukee one of the best vacation destinations in July for music lovers.


5. Chicago, Illinois

Where to Vacation in USA in July: Chicago

Speaking of festivals, you can’t talk about the summer festival scene in the US without mentioning Chicago. From music festivals like Pitchfork Music Festival and Wicker Park Fest to cultural festivals like the Chinatown Summer Fair and Fiesta Del Sol, you can always guarantee there’s something happening in Chicago whenever you visit throughout July.

Add in even more events, like free movies and concert series at Millennium Park, celebrations of Chicago cuisine, and art showcases, and it’s no wonder why Chicago is one of the best places to visit in July in the USA.


6. Newport, Rhode Island

Must Visit Places in USA in July: Newport

From its beautiful beaches to its historic architecture, Newport is one of the best places to visit in the US in summer, but July is a particularly ideal time for a trip. July in Newport brings about events like the Newport Classical Music Festival, which runs throughout the month and presents more than 20 outdoor events and concerts at many of the city’s famous landmarks.

If classical music isn’t your scene, check out the Newport Folk Festival. Over at Fort Adams State Park, you’ll catch four stages filled with beloved musicians and up-and-comers. Although the focus is on folk, you’ll find that the acts come from all different musical backgrounds.

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7. Aspen, Colorado

Best Cities to Visit in USA in July: Aspen Gondola

When you think of the best time to visit Aspen, you likely picture ski season. But there are many reasons why Aspen offers one of the best July vacations. 

Are you looking to get active? There are hiking and biking trails galore. Or hop on the Silver Queen Gondola, which will take you to the top of Aspen Mountain to find tons more summer activities, like disc golf, yoga, and outdoor bluegrass concerts.

July also means you have plenty of entertainment options, like the Aspen Music Festival and School, a classical music showcase running from late June to late August, and the Downtown Aspen Art Festival, an art fair with over 100 national and local artists showcasing their work.


8. San Francisco, California

Best Places to Visit in USA in July: San Francisco, California

Unlike many other popular July destinations in the US, San Francisco isn’t all that hot, which means you won’t be dripping sweat when you party at one of the city’s many summer festivals. 

From the Fillmore Jazz Festival, a weekend-long event with three stages of continuous jazz performances, to the Stern Grove Festival, the city’s oldest music festival with performances all throughout the summer, San Francisco is one of the best places to travel in the USA in July if you want tons of options for your summer entertainment. 


9. Cheyenne, Wyoming

What Places to Visit in USA in July: Cheyenne

Cheyenne in July means the return of Cheyenne Frontier Days, a 10-day-long celebration of the Old West. See champions compete at the rodeo, make memories you and your little ones will never forget at the carnival, rock out to live music, and so much more. 

While you’re visiting Cheyenne, be sure to check out their historic buildings, local ranches, and scenic hiking trails for even more July fun.

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10. Bar Harbor, Maine

What Places Have Shoulder Season in USA in July: Bar Harbor, Maine

Bar Harbor is the gateway to Acadia National Park and one of the best places to visit in the USA in July. This quaint and colorful town boasts one-of-a-kind shops, spas, and dining, while Acadia National Park is easily accessible for a day of exploration.

Acadia will likely be quite busy in July, but it’s worth dealing with some high crowd levels to get to enjoy the ideal hiking and biking conditions. 


11. Outer Banks, North Carolina

Where to Vacation in USA in July: Outer Banks, North Carolina

If you’re looking for ideal beach weather, head over to the Outer Banks. This chain of islands in North Carolina offers one of the best vacation destinations in July, as the month is perfect for taking a dip in the Atlantic. 

Throughout some of the year, the attractions, restaurants, and other destinations close down in the Outer Banks as they await the return of visitors. But everything is back up and running by July. Although you will have to contend with high crowd levels, it’s worth it to have everything open during your trip.


12. Cape May, New Jersey

Must Visit Places in USA in July: Cape May, New Jersey

For another beach getaway in July, head to Cape May. Cape May’s beaches are among the best on the East Coast, and July weather means that you’re experiencing some of the best conditions to get out in the water. Just keep in mind that these ideal conditions also mean high crowd levels.

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13. Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Best Cities to Visit in USA in July: Cape Cod, Massachusetts

For another cape that’s one of the best places to visit in the USA in July, venture over to Cape Cod. In addition to beach-going, there’s also hiking and biking at the Cape Cod National Seashore, whale watching during peak whale-watching season, and catching a double feature at the beloved Wellfleet Drive-In Theatre.


14. Fairbanks, Alaska

Over in Fairbanks, the city takes advantage of the constant sunshine with a litany of summer events, making it one of the best vacation destinations in July. July marks the return of Golden Days, a series of events that honor the discovery of gold by Italian immigrant Felix Pedro and the founding of Fairbanks. 

These family-friendly activities include the biggest parade in Alaska, a street fair, a rubber ducky race, and much more. More fun things to do in Fairbanks in July include taking a ride aboard the Riverboat Discovery, seeing the short growing season at the Georgeson Botanical Garden, and seeing the unique games at the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics.


15. Block Island, Rhode Island

Best Places to Visit in USA in July: Block Island, Rhode, Island

Block Island has several scenic beaches that are perfect to spend your July at. And there’s a beach for every type of vacationer, as some are good for swimming, snorkeling, surfing, fishing, or hiking. July on Block Island also means art showcases, movies on the beach, and the Great Salt Pond Swim!

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There you have it! The 15 best places to visit in the USA in July. What’s your favorite summer vacation destination?


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About the Author:

  • Jacqueline Gualtieri

    Jacqueline is a writer and editor pursuing the freelance life to explore the world. Born and raised in New Jersey, she spent her college years in Boston before settling down with her partner and puppy in Monterey, California.

    When she’s not writing, you can often find her planning her next trip. Road trips are her favorite, whether it’s driving across the country or simply exploring a new city in her own backyard. She loves uncovering the history of every new place she goes.

    Jacqueline has a restless passion for learning and makes it a goal to pick up a new skill every year. She’s picked up embroidery, crocheting, knitting, and cross-stitching, but she’s hoping to master more languages to help her in her travels. She’s also a published author, with short stories and poetry appearing in several anthologies.

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