The Best and Worst Cities for Staycations 2016

The Best and Worst Cities for Staycations 2016

I don’t know about you, but I tend to think a “staycation” can be just as fun, if not even more awesome than an actual trip. Think about it. No airports, no lost luggage and no possibility of bedbugs (unless you have a problem at home, and if that’s the case you should be reading an article how to get rid of bedbugs instead of this one). If you’re among the many Americans considering a staycation this summer, WalletHub’s recent report on 2016’s Best & Worst Cities for Staycations might peak your interest.

The number crunchers at WalletHub compared the country’s 150 largest cities across 28 key metrics, including movie and bowling costs, golf courses, frozen-yogurt shops and spas per capita, and the cost of house-cleaning services to come up with a comprehensive ranking of staycation spots.

Topping the list as some of the best staycations spots are, not surprisingly, also some of the top travel destinations including: Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, Florida and more unexpected spots like Salt Lake City, Utah and Scottsdale, Arizona. Even more surprising are some of the cities ranked worst for staycations including: New York, New York and Los Angeles, California.

Some of the most fun facts from the study include the following:

  • New Orleans has the most museums per 100,000 residents, 23.34, which is 79 times more than in Aurora, Colo., the city with the fewest, 0.29.
  • Seattle has the most coffee shops per 100,000 residents, 109.43, which is nearly 30 times more than in Laredo, Texas, the city with the fewest, 3.67.
  • Orlando, Fla., has the most ice-cream and frozen-yogurt shops per 100,000 residents, 57.15, which is 13 times more than in Detroit, the city with the fewest, 4.31.
  • Buffalo, N.Y., has the lowest bowling costs, $3.09, which is nearly four times less expensive than in New York City, the city with the highest, $12.28.

Check out the lists of the top 10 best and worst cities for staycations below and visit WalletHub for the full ranking, metric used and more fun staycation facts!


Best Cities for Staycations Worst Cities for Staycations
1 Orlando, FL 141 Fremont, CA
2 Fort Lauderdale, FL 142 Chesapeake, VA
3 Tampa, FL 143 Los Angeles, CA
4 Salt Lake City, UT 144 Fresno, CA
5 Scottsdale, AZ 145 Fort Worth, TX
6 Atlanta, GA 146 Yonkers, NY
7 Las Vegas, NV 147 Santa Ana, CA
8 Minneapolis, MN 148 New York, NY
9 St. Petersburg, FL 149 Oxnard, CA
10 Honolulu, HI 150 Chula Vista, CA

 

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5 Hidden Treasures of Central Texas

5 Hidden Treasures of Central TexasI may or may not be totally biased when I say Texas is the greatest gift to this world, but I know with a state of such a large size, visitors have tons of opportunities to discover all of what the state has to offer. But as a born and raised central Texan, I am partial to say that this is where a majority of the awesome places to visit lie. Here are just a few places to add to your to do list if you ever find yourself in the Lone Star State.

Fredericksburg Herb Farm

Fredericksburg is a town in central Texas that is known for its huge German influence. The Herb Farm is a cottage styled house where visitors are welcome to stay as they travel through the culturally rich town. If you’re there in June, be sure to stop by the Stonewall Peach Jamboree and Rodeo and try and buy every kind of peach you can imagine.

 

Enchanted Rock

After you hit Fredericksburg, if you’re feeling adventurous, head up to Enchanted Rock. It is a state park that thousands of people each year choose to experience. Many people report back that the hiking experience is magical and would definitely recommend it to visitors!

 

Jacob’s Well

Not far from Wimberley, TX, is a spring known as Jacob’s Well. The water is clear and beautiful and diving tours are encouraged. Tours of the area and the spring itself are offered even in the winter months. The spring’s history and importance to Native Americans are highlighted during these tours.

 

Bluebonnet Cafe

In Marble Falls there is a cafe that has been standing since 1929. They serve breakfast all day and classic Texan dinners, but the cafe is revered for their pies. The pies are made from scratch every day and Monday through Friday 3-5 pm is pie happy hour! So be sure to stop by and grab a piece of pie and learn about the Bluebonnet Cafe’s long history.

 

Gruene Hall

Gruene Hall is in is located in Gruene, Texas, which is a part of New Braunfels. Like Fredericksburg, New Braunfels has a huge German-influenced history. The big draw of New Braunfels to most visitors is Schlitterbahn, which is a giant three part waterpark. However, if you’re looking to avoid long lines, head over to Gruene Hall, a dance hall that was built in 1878. You can catch a local country performer or maybe even a big name and dance the night away.

 

As the second largest state in the US, Texas has a lot to see. But if you’re looking to do something different than visit the beach or an amusement park, this list is here to help you discover places that not even all Texans have visited or heard of. Also, we Texans are known for our hospitality, so be sure to talk to the locals as you travel and learn more about our great state!

Escape the Room and Other Indoor NYC Experiences

(Image Credit: Escape the Room)

(Image Credit: Escape the Room)

If you find yourself in New York and searching for a unique adventure, all you have to do is buy a ticket to one of these four unique indoor experiences! The following list is of interactive indoor activities that you can join in on. They all involve some kind of mystery or puzzle. From zombies to Shakespeare, there is a room for everyone, so check it out. Continue reading

(Image Credit: Tony Fischer)

5 Hidden Treasures of… Oregon

(Image Credit: Tony Fischer)

(Image Credit: Tony Fischer)

While my home state may be best known from popular TV shows such as The Simpsons and Portlandia, there is much more to Oregon than hipsters, breweries, and Voodoo Doughnuts. Though Oregon wouldn’t necessarily come to most people’s minds when searching for a perfect vacation spot, there are a countless number of reasons why it should. While I could write a very lengthy article on how we “Keep Portland Weird,” I’m going to showcase some of the state’s best highlights both in and outside of the big city so you can really get a feel for everything Oregon has to offer. Continue reading

LIGHTHOUSE (Image Credit: Jeff Pearce)

5 Hidden Treasures of… Long Island

LIGHTHOUSE (Image Credit: Jeff Pearce)

LIGHTHOUSE (Image Credit: Jeff Pearce)

Long island – known as the little fish-looking thing coming out of New York. The island is comprised of four different counties: Brooklyn, Queens, but mostly Nassau and Suffolk. Although it gets overshadowed by the big city there are many hidden gems of Long Island that you should definitely go and see. Long Island is known for its amazing pizza, bagels, diners, terrible car accidents and the medium herself, Theresa Caputo, yes; but it has a lot more to offer than all of that. Continue reading

Columbus Skyline (Image Credit: Cody Ellis)

5 Hidden Treasures of… Ohio

Columbus Skyline (Image Credit: Cody Ellis)

Columbus Skyline (Image Credit: Cody Ellis)

I asked a few of my friends from other states what they thought of when Ohio comes to mind. Their answer was something along the lines of: “Uhm, you?” The fact of the matter is, not a lot of people think much about the mid-west treasure that is Ohio, especially when it’s not an election year. Born and raised in Southern Ohio, I know better than to skip passed this amazing state of food, adventure and beauty. Though there are many more than five, here are my favorite parts about Ohio that most people don’t know exist.  Continue reading

Franconia Notch State Park (Image Credit: Sakeeb Sabakka)

5 Hidden Treasures of… New Hampshire

Franconia Notch State Park (Image Credit: Sakeeb Sabakka)

Franconia Notch State Park (Image Credit: Sakeeb Sabakka)

Being a born and bred New Hampshirite, I feel that it is entirely fair for me to say that the best things do indeed come in small packages. Most people outside of the country don’t realize the seventh smallest state exists and I’m pretty sure that there’s a large percentage of Americans who couldn’t describe where we were if they didn’t have a map as reference. But that’s okay! We may be a small state, but we’re a great one. Not many states can boast that visitors can see mountains and the ocean all in one day. Or that they’re the birth place of Tupperware, snowmobiles, Adam Sandler, Seth Meyers and Robert Frost. While there are so many wonderful things to see and do in my home state, here are five of my favorite hidden treasures. Continue reading

Seattle Skyline (Image Credit: Dave Sizer)

5 Hidden Treasures of… Seattle, Washington

Seattle Skyline (Image Credit: Dave Sizer)

Seattle Skyline (Image Credit: Dave Sizer)

Seattle is my beloved city and I am consistently being asked for recommendations on where people should go for food, drinks, fun, etc. So I thought, why not put this general knowledge to good use and share it with all the TDQ readers. Here are five Seattle spots that do not include the usual tourist fare (Pike Place Market, Gum Wall, Wheel, Troll, etc.) rather the good stuff usually only natives know about: Continue reading

Snowman (Image Credit: Jesse Courtemanche)

5 Ways to Have Fun This Winter

Snowman (Image Credit: Jesse Courtemanche)

Snowman (Image Credit: Jesse Courtemanche)

When the weather outside gets frightful, don’t fret! Although there might be an icy chill or a freezing blizzard outside, it doesn’t mean you are limited to your house this winter. Here are some things to do this winter that might even make you fall in love with the cold, wintry weather. Continue reading

North Carolina (Image Credit: Chris Hau)

5 Hidden Treasures of… North Carolina

North Carolina (Image Credit: Chris Hau)

North Carolina (Image Credit: Chris Hau)

When you hear North Carolina, what do you think? Many know the state for it’s fabulous barbecue and the basketball powerhouse rivalry of Duke University and University of North Carolina. Other than that, most people come up short, unless of course you live there. Tucked away about two hours from the Virginia state line is the city of Greensboro, NC, which is filled with hidden gems that are well worth the visit. On your next visit to North Carolina, find time to stop off in Greensboro and visit five of the best treasures the city has to offer. Continue reading

Toronto Skyline (Image Credit: Andy Burgess)

5 Hidden Treasures of… Toronto, Ontario

Toronto Skyline (Image Credit: Andy Burgess)

Toronto Skyline (Image Credit: Andy Burgess)

A lot of people think of Toronto as that ‘ehh’ kind of city—you know, part of that huge, empty country north of the US with lots of polar bears, maple syrup and snow. In fact, this past summer, upon telling a fellow plane passenger that I was from Toronto, she then asked me, “What is it like to live in an igloo?” But Toronto has come a long way from creeping in the shadow of cities like New York and Paris. Distinctive from other world capitals, you’ll find that Toronto is a huge mosaic of diverse cultures and backgrounds. Even having grown up here, I’m still continually discovering the nooks and crannies of TDot that make my city, well, just awesome. Continue reading

Copper Falls State Park (Image Credit: Flickr User The Cut)

5 Hidden Treasures of… Wisconsin

Copper Falls State Park (Image Credit: Flickr User The Cut)

Copper Falls State Park (Image Credit: Flickr User The Cut)

When most people think of Wisconsin, they think of cows, people wearing hats shaped like wedges of cheese or the Green Bay Packers football team. What most people don’t know is that Wisconsin has so much more to offer than just dairy-based kitsch. With its beautiful scenery and wonderful (albeit sometimes odd) history, Wisconsin is a state that has something for everyone. Continue reading

5 Hidden Treasures of… Newport, Rhode Island

The Inn at Castle Hill (Image Credit: www.castlehillinn.com)

The Inn at Castle Hill (Image Credit: http://www.castlehillinn.com)

Newport, Rhode Island is an indescribable place. JFK and Jackie Kennedy were married, Gatsby was filmed and the Vanderbilt’s ‘summered’ all in this wonderful little city by the sea. With its incredible nightlife and gorgeous ocean views, Newport seems to have it all. In the summer, you can do anything from dine on a yacht to tour the many mansions. It all sounds glamorous, but even in the dead of winter you can find magic in the city’s nooks and crannies. Continue reading

5 Hidden Treasures of Mississippi

Mississippi Governor's Mansion (Image Credit: J R Gordon)

Mississippi Governor’s Mansion (Image Credit: J R Gordon)

When you hear the word Mississippi, I’m going to assume you’re envisioning the Old South; a scene painted from Gone With The Wind or an unforgettable image inside a history textbook about the integration of whites and blacks; a place so hot it makes no difference whether houses have air conditioning or not. And truthfully, that assumption isn’t all that wrong. While summers are almost unbearably hot, it’s Mississippi’s history that makes it such a fascinating state.

  Continue reading