11 Budget Memorial Day Destinations

by Christina Garofalo

11 Budget Memorial Day Destinations

by Christina Garofalo

Memorial Day Weekend is a good excuse to get away. What's more, these 11 budget-friendly destinations are all accessible for less than $400 round-trip from LA or NYC — and they're all home to new restaurants, hotels, special events, and nearby attractions.

Memorial Day Weekend is a good excuse to get away. What's more, these 11 budget-friendly destinations are all accessible for less than $400 round-trip from LA or NYC — and they're all home to new restaurants, hotels, special events, and nearby attractions.

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Capitol Building, Washington, D.C. / Joecho-16/iStock
Fort Worth, TX
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Fort Worth, TX

Fort Worth is now more accessible than ever, thanks to the new TEXRail connecting downtown to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport. Hip, new restaurants have since followed, and include everything from Vietnamese to gourmet doughnuts, and even a massive food hall. The National Cowgirl Museum ($4 to $10 admission) recently underwent a massive renovation. Walk or bike along Trinity River before ending the day at the Instagram-worthy Fort Worth Water Gardens for sunset.

Fort Worth is now more accessible than ever, thanks to the new TEXRail connecting downtown to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport. Hip, new restaurants have since followed, and include everything from Vietnamese to gourmet doughnuts, and even a massive food hall. The National Cowgirl Museum ($3.50 to $5 admission) recently underwent a massive renovation. Walk or bike along Trinity River before ending the day at the Instagram-worthy Fort Worth Water Gardens for sunset.

Fort Worth Water Gardens
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights to DWF start at $226 round-trip from NYC, and $189 round-trip from LAX. Accommodations start at $161 per night for Memorial Day weekend at the Aloft Fort Worth. The hotel offers stylish rooms with views of downtown, and is steps away from Sundance Square's shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues. 

Getting There: Flights to DWF start at $226 round-trip from NYC, and $189 round-trip from LAX. Accommodations start at $161 per night for Memorial Day weekend at the Aloft Fort Worth. The hotel offers stylish rooms with views of downtown, and is steps away from Sundance Square's shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues. 

Washington, D.C.
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Washington, D.C.

As Cherry Blossom season ends, hotel rates drop — just in time for Memorial Day weekend. Celebrate the holiday at the National Portrait Gallery and the Arlington National Cemetery ceremonies (free). While you're here, catch a Washington Nationals game and visit the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. Before you go, spend day at The Wharf — a new waterfront strip of bars and restaurants. 

As Cherry Blossom season ends, hotel rates drop — just in time for Memorial Day weekend. Celebrate the holiday at the National Portrait Gallery and the Arlington National Cemetery ceremonies (free). While you're here, catch a Washington Nationals game and visit National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. Before you go, spend day at The Wharf — a new waterfront strip of bars and restaurants. 

Washington, D.C.
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights start at $149 round-trip from New York. Accommodations over Memorial Day weekend are $255 per night at the new Hyatt House at the Wharf, which overlooks the Potomac River and is just three blocks from the National Mall. Alternatively, history buffs will be charmed by the Watergate Hotel — a glamorous homage to the 1960s — with rooms from $297 per night.

Getting There: Flights start at $149 round-trip from New York. Accommodations over Memorial Day weekend are $255 per night at the new Hyatt House at the Wharf, which overlooks the Potomac River and is just three blocks from the National Mall. Alternatively, history buffs will be charmed by the Watergate Hotel — a glamorous homage to the 1960s — with rooms from $297 per night.

Boise, ID
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Boise, ID

Boise is booming. The Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial and Idaho History Museum both recently unveiled renovations. A rising restaurant scene includes doughnuts and fried chicken; tacos and mezcal; and a dessert bar. What's more, The Village at Meridian features food, shops, and workspaces. Sample over 50 types of cider at Meriwether Cider, or indulge in some friendly competition at Base Camp Pong & Axe.

Boise is booming. The Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial and Idaho History Museum both recently unveiled renovations. A rising restaurant scene includes doughnuts and fried chicken; tacos and mezcal; and a dessert bar that pairs cakes with beer and wine. What's more, The Village at Meridian features food, shops, and workspaces. Sample over 50 types of cider at Meriwether Cider, or indulge in some friendly competition at Base Camp Pong & Axe.

Boise, ID
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights to Boise start at $180 round-trip from LAX. At the boutique Inn at 500, you'll find discounted accommodations. The property is currently offering one deal: Cozy up in one of their suites and enjoy $75 off the best available rate. Alternatively, stay at Hotel 43 and receive 15% off the Boutique Room along with a $15 credit to Metro Cafe. 

Getting There: Flights to Boise start at $180 round-trip from LAX. At the boutique Inn at 500, you'll find discounted accommodations. The property is currently offering one deal: Cozy up in one of their suites and enjoy $75 off the best available rate. Alternatively, stay at Hotel 43 and receive 15% off the Boutique Room along with a $15 credit to Metro Cafe. 

New York City, NY
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New York, NY

As New Yorkers hit the beach, those who choose to stay in the city will enjoy quiet streets and countless free events. In honor of Fleet Week (May 22 through May 27), visitors can explore Navy ships docked in town; the Intrepid offers free tours; and the New York Philharmonic hosts a free concert at St. John the Divine. Additionally, Washington Square features work by local artists, and Theater for the New City presents free performances — from comedy to dance, and everything in between.

As New Yorkers hit the beach, those who choose to stay in the city will enjoy quiet streets and countless free events. In honor of Fleet Week (May 22 through May 27), visitors can explore Navy ships docked in town; the Intrepid offers free tours; and the New York Philharmonic hosts a free concert at St. John the Divine. Additionally, Washington Square features work by local artists, and Theater for the New City presents free performances — from comedy to dance, and everything in between.

New York City, NY
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What to Budget

Getting There: Accommodations at the recently refurbished, vintage-glam Lexington Hotel are as low as $152 per night for Memorial Day weekend. Alternatively, head across the East River to stay in one of several new hip Brooklyn properties. The Tillary Hotel in downtown Brooklyn has rates from $200 per night for the holiday weekend.

Getting There: Accommodations at the recently refurbished, vintage-glam Lexington Hotel are as low as $152 per night for Memorial Day weekend. Alternatively, head across the East River to stay in one of several new hip Brooklyn properties. The Tillary Hotel in downtown Brooklyn has rates from $200 per night for the holiday weekend.

Minneapolis, MN
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Minneapolis, MN

Minneapolis offers fresh ways to celebrate the start of outdoor dining season. Betty Danger’s serves tacos aboard a Ferris wheel, and Brit’s Pub hosts outdoor bowling with bangers and mash. Barhop at 612BrewBauhaus, and Indeed. Other must-visit attractions include Minnehaha Falls, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and Prince’s Paisley Park

Minneapolis offers fresh ways to celebrate the start of dining season. Betty Danger’s serves tacos aboard a Ferris wheel, and Brit’s Pub hosts outdoor bowling with bangers and mash. Barhop at 612BrewBauhaus, and Indeed. Other must-visit attractions include Minnehaha Falls, the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and Prince’s Paisley Park

Minneapolis skyline
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights to Minneapolis are as low as $213 round-trip from New York, and $155 round-trip from Los Angeles. Accommodations at the brand-new Emery come with easy access to downtown. This Marriott Autograph Collection hotel features stylish interiors, as well as a trendy new Italian eatery, Giulia. We found rooms here as low as $135 per night over Memorial Day weekend.

Getting There: Flights to Minneapolis are as low as $237 round-trip from New York, and $279 round-trip from Los Angeles. Accommodations at the brand-new Emery come with easy access to downtown. This Marriott Autograph Collection hotel features stylish interiors, as well as a trendy new Italian eatery, Giulia. We found rooms here as low as $135 per night over Memorial Day weekend.

French Quarter in New Orleans
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New Orleans, LA

Celebrate the holiday weekend in New Orleans with three awesome festivals: New Orleans Wine and Food Experience, Wine Bacchanal, and the Greek Festival (think lots of Greek food and dancing). Walk along the Mississippi River, pick up signature po’ boys (try Domilise's or Parkway), and picnic in one of the city’s many parks and green spaces.

Celebrate the holiday weekend in New Orleans with three awesome festivals: New Orleans Wine and Food Experience, Wine Bacchanal and the Greek Festival (think lots of Greek food and dancing). Walk along the Mississippi River, pick up signature po’ boys (try Domilise's or Parkway), and picnic in one of the city’s many parks and green spaces.

St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights start from $182 round-trip from NYC, and $246 from LAX. Accommodations at the hip Ace Hotel start at $172 per night for the holiday weekend. 

 

Getting There: Flights start from $182 round-trip from NYC, and $246 from LAX. Accommodations at the hip Ace Hotel start at $172 per night for the holiday weekend. 

 

Bristol, VA
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Bristol, VA

For a mountain getaway, consider Bristol: It’s home to 40 hiking trails, caverns, and an underground river  plus access to the Appalachian Trail. Another fun fact: Bristol is also the birthplace of country music. To learn more, visit the museum dedicated to its history. Afterwards, scour the shops downtown for records, comic books, and antiques. End the day with a drink at Bloom Café & Listening Room, a coffee shop and music venue all in one. 

For a mountain getaway, consider Bristol: It’s home to 40 hiking trails, caverns, and an underground river  plus access to the Appalachian Trail. Another fun fact: Bristol is also the birthplace of country music. To learn more, visit the museum dedicated to its history. Afterwards, scour the shops downtown for records, comic books, and antiques. End the day with a drink at Bloom Café & Listening Room, a coffee shop and music venue all in one. 

Bristol Hotel, Bristol, VA
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights to Bristol start at $315 round-trip from New York. Alternatively, those who drive (it's five-and-a-half-hours from D.C., and under three-and-a-half hours from Charlotte) can take the 330-mile Crooked Road, which connects over 50 towns with rich musical history. Accommodations at the stylish Bristol Hotel start at $225 per night for the weekend. What's more, the property's rooftop bar hosts live bluegrass along with sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Getting There: Flights to Bristol start at $315 round-trip from New York. Alternatively, those who drive (it's five-and-a-half-hours from D.C., and under three-and-a-half hours from Charlotte) can take the 330-mile Crooked Road, which connects over 50 towns with rich musical history. Accommodations at the stylish Bristol Hotel start at $225 per night for the weekend. What's more, the property's rooftop bar hosts live bluegrass along with sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Chicago, IL
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Chicago, IL

Kick off beach season on Lake Michigan with a stroll along the lakefront trail and fireworks at Navy Pier. Festivals include Mole de Mayo, Randolph Street Market, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival. Catch a game at the renovated Wrigley Field (Cubs vs. Reds), then dine in Wrigleyville, where several new bars and eateries — including popular BBQ restaurant Smoke Daddy — recently opened.

 

Kick off beach season on Lake Michigan with a stroll along the lakefront trail and fireworks at Navy Pier. Festivals include Mole de Mayo, Randolph Street Market, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival. Catch a game at the renovated Wrigley Field (Cubs vs. Reds), then dine in Wrigleyville, where several new bars and eateries — including popular BBQ restaurant Smoke Daddy — recently opened.

 

Chicago, IL
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights start at $172 round-trip from NYC. Accommodations at the Hotel Lincoln across from Lincoln Park start at $144 per night for the holiday weekend. With a ground-floor restaurant, plus a diner-style coffee shop, and a swanky rooftop bar and lounge, Hotel Lincoln is about so much more than the rooms. Alternatively, the 175-room Hotel Zachary (which is located across the street from Wrigley Field) has rooms from $390 per night.

Getting There: Flights start at $172 round-trip from NYC. Accommodations at the Hotel Lincoln across from Lincoln Park start at $144 per night for the holiday weekend. With a ground-floor restaurant, plus a diner-style coffee shop, and a swanky rooftop bar and lounge, Hotel Lincoln is about so much more than the rooms. Alternatively, the 175-room Hotel Zachary (which is located across the street from Wrigley Field) has rooms from $390 per night.

Birmingham, AL
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Birmingham, AL

The weather in Birmingham is pleasant, and a growing food scene counts the much-loved Automatic Seafood, as well as an outpost of Brooklyn’s Mile End Deli among its latest additions. Walk the Civil Rights Trail to important sights from the 1960s (free), visit the oldest surviving pro baseball park in the U.S., and tour the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, which is dedicated to local-born greats like Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald.

The weather in Birmingham is pleasant, and a growing food scene counts the much-loved Automatic Seafood, as well as an outpost of Brooklyn’s Mile End Deli among its latest additions. Walk the Civil Rights Trail to important sights from the 1960s (free), visit the oldest surviving pro baseball park in the U.S., and tour the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, which is dedicated to local-born greats like Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald.

Birmingham, AL
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights start at $255 round-trip from NYC, and $400 round-trip from LAX. Accommodations at The Redmont, which is part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, start at $205 per night. The 120-room property is newly renovated, occupies a historic landmark building, and is the oldest operating hotel in the city. Alternatively, the artsy Grand Bohemian Hotel in Mountain Brook — which is in wandering distance from parks, museums, and dining — has rooms from $315 per night for the holiday weekend.

Getting There: Flights start at $255 round-trip from NYC, and $400 round-trip from LAX. Accommodations at The Redmont, which is part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, start at $205 per night. The 120-room property is newly renovated, occupies a historic landmark building, and is the oldest operating hotel in the city. Alternatively, the artsy Grand Bohemian Hotel in Mountain Brook — which is in wandering distance from parks, museums, and dining — has rooms from $315 per night for the holiday weekend.

Miami, FL
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Miami, FL

Memorial Day Weekend in Miami offers plenty of fun and activities — and much of it is free. Check out the Air and Sea Show, which honors veterans. Be sure to visit Museum of Art + Design, the Bass Museum of Art, and the Institute of Contemporary Art (all free). Wynwood Walls’ Instagram-famous graffiti galleries, the Design District Performance Series, and guided art tours of the Design District are all also free of charge. 

Memorial Day Weekend in Miami offers plenty of fun and activities — and much of it is free. Check out the Air and Sea Show, which honors veterans. Be sure to visit Museum of Art + Design, the Bass Museum of Art, and the Institute of Contemporary Art (all free). Wynwood Walls’ Instagram-famous graffiti galleries, the Design District Performance Series, and guided art tours of the Design District are all also free of charge. 

Miami Beach, FL
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What to Budget

Getting There: Flights start at $113 round-trip from New York. Accommodations at the Generator Miami — which is the chain's first U.S. location — start at $56 per night in a shared dorm, and $187 per night for a private room. Located in South Beach (and just a two-minute walk from the water), this hostel features a swimming pool (and a poolside bar), as well as a stylish lounge and restaurant. 

 

Getting There: Flights start at $113 round-trip from New York. Accommodations at the Generator Miami — which is the chain's first U.S. location — start at $56 per night in a shared dorm, and $187 per night for a private room. Located in South Beach (and just a two-minute walk from the water), this hostel features a swimming pool (and a poolside bar), as well as a stylish lounge and restaurant. 

 

Los Angeles, CA
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Los Angeles, CA

Perfect weather — along with fun, cheap events  make Los Angeles the perfect destination for a long weekend getaway. Tour the USS Iowa for Military Appreciation Day (free) or see a movie at the Rooftop Cinema Club. Watch the Dodgers play the Cubs, then explore nearby bars and restaurants in Echo Park.

Perfect weather — along with fun, cheap events  make Los Angeles the perfect destination for a weekend getaway. In honor of the holiday, tour the USS Iowa for Military Appreciation Day (free) or see a movie at the Rooftop Cinema Club. Watch the Dodgers play the Cubs, then explore nearby bars and restaurants in Echo Park.

Los Angeles, CA
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What to Budget

Getting There: Accommodations at Kimpton’s Hotel Palomar in Beverly Hills start at $203 per night. If you’d rather be by the beach, consider a stay at Hotel Hermosa, which has rooms from $201 per night. Here, you'll love the sundeck, which is complete with pool tables, fire pits, and a bar. The Dixie Hollywood Hotel, a no-frills 70-room property near the Walk of Fame, offers the cheapest stay at $113 per night.

Getting There: Accommodations at Kimpton’s Hotel Palomar in Beverly Hills start at $203 per night. If you’d rather be by the beach, consider a stay at Hotel Hermosa, which has rooms from $201 per night. Here, you'll love the sundeck, which is complete with pool tables, fire pits, and a bar. The Dixie Hollywood Hotel, a no-frills 70-room property near the Walk of Fame, offers the cheapest stay at $113 per night.

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