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There are so many little and big joys that we take for granted. For example, the ability to enjoy our country and all the goodness it has to offer. These liberties that we love and enjoy are only because of the sacrifices made by those who serve to protect us.
If you’re already daydreaming about sandy beaches, breathtaking views, and sipping cocktails with your toes in the sand on Memorial Day, we’re here to make your trip planning easier.
We’ve put together a list of the top five places to vacation over Memorial Weekend. These destinations are sure to provide you with the perfect combination of historic appreciation, relaxation, adventure, and fun.
1. Annapolis, Maryland
Annapolis, Maryland, is a fantastic vacation destination to celebrate those who have served our country.
Located on the Chesapeake Bay, Annapolis is a charming and historic city that offers a wide variety of activities for visitors to enjoy. Annapolis has the highest number of surviving 18th-century buildings among American cities. The district itself showcases these buildings, such as the Hammond-Harwood House, Historic London Town, Garden St. Anne Parish, etc.
Annapolis hosts one of Maryland’s largest Memorial Day parades. Following the march, the Memorial Day ceremony will be held at Susan Campbell Park.
For the Memorial Weekend celebration, we recommend you drop by the United States Naval Academy, where you can take a guided tour of the campus and learn about the second-oldest Naval Academy in the US.
Quiet Waters Park and Sandy Point State Park are top sites for bird watchers. You can also walk along the sandy beaches and just enjoy the wonder that is nature.
For those who love food, there are options for fine dining such as the Lewnes’ Steakhouse and Chart House Prime, etc.
Annapolis is a must-visit destination. From fresh oysters to crab cakes to steamed shrimp, Annapolis is known for its delicious seafood and waterfront restaurants. You can also enjoy a picnic in one of the many parks along the water or take a sunset cruise on the bay.
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2. Washington, D.C.
DC is the perfect place to spend Memorial Day. There are plenty of places to see and things to do to honor our fallen service members. Vacationing in Washington, DC, will make it possible for you to watch the biggest Memorial Day parade in the country.
This parade will march from the National Archives to the Lincoln Memorial with military bands, marching groups, and veterans. Every year on the National Mall in Washington, DC, the National Memorial Day Parade is a long-standing custom.
One event you can’t miss is the Rolling to Remember event. This event honors veterans and raises awareness for those missing in action. It’s a great way to honor those who served our country.
Another event worth attending is the National Memorial Day Concert. If you’re looking to pay your respects to our fallen heroes, you can visit the memorials on the National Mall. Some of the most popular memorials include the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, and the Jefferson Memorial. You can also observe “Flags In” at Arlington National Cemetery, where flags are placed at every headstone in preparation for Memorial Day.
Georgetown is a beautiful historic district with plenty of shops and restaurants to explore. No matter what your interests are, Washington, D.C., has something for everyone during Memorial Day weekend.
3. Savannah, Georgia
Savannah, Georgia, is another great place to spend Memorial Day weekend. The city offers outdoor events, beautiful beaches, and a thriving downtown scene. Plus, there are plenty of ceremonies to honor those who sacrificed for our country.
One of the highlights of Memorial Day weekend is the Memorial Day Commemoration at Fort McAllister State Park. This event pays tribute to soldiers from Fort McAllister and features musket and cannon firings, Civil War reenactments, and living history interpretations. It’s a great way to learn about our country’s history and honor those who have served.
Another must-see event is the War of Jenkins’ Ears at Wormsloe Historic Site. This event reenacts the 1742 battle between the British and Spanish and features musket fire and colonial life demonstrations.
If you’re looking for a more relaxed experience, attend Tea in the Garden at Davenport House. For art lovers, the Tybee Arts Association will be displaying and selling a vibrant array of local art at the Tybee Arts Building.
And if you’re an architecture guru, the Owens-Thomas House is a must-see. This historic home offers a glimpse into luxury living in the early 19th century.
4. Cape May, New Jersey
Cape May, New Jersey is a great coastal destination for Memorial Day weekend. There are plenty of ceremonies to honor those who sacrificed for our country.
In addition to its parade, Cape May offers plenty of outdoor events. You can bike along the beach or rent a paddleboard and explore the water. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can try your hand at fishing. If you’re looking for a relaxed experience, spend the day at the beach. Cape May has several beautiful beaches with soft sand and clear water. You can soak up the sun, read a book, or take a dip in the ocean.
For those interested in history, Cape May has several museums and historic sites. The World War II Lookout Tower is a popular destination, as is the Cape May Lighthouse. Both offer stunning views of the coastline and provide an in-depth perspective on the area’s history.
The city also features shops, restaurants, and bars to explore, all within walking distance of one another. You can spend the day browsing unique boutiques or sampling the local cuisine.
5. Austin, Texas
Spend Memorial Day weekend down south in Austin, Texas, with a variety of outdoor events, ceremonies, and attractions to enjoy. Whether you’re interested in exploring the magnificent outdoors, learning about Texas history, or simply relaxing and soaking up the atmosphere, Austin has something for everyone.
One of the highlights of Memorial Day weekend in Austin is the annual Memorial Day ceremony, which takes place at Texas State Cemetery. This moving tribute to our nation’s fallen heroes features speeches, music, and a wreath-laying ceremony.
If you’re interested in outdoor activities, Austin has plenty of options to choose from. You can hike along the scenic trails of the Barton Creek Greenbelt. You can kayak or paddleboard on Lady Bird Lake, or take a dip in one of the city’s many natural swimming holes, such as Barton Springs.
Of course, no visit to Austin would be complete without exploring the city’s famous music and nightlife scene. From live music venues to trendy bars and restaurants, there’s always something happening in downtown Austin.
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