See America’s Most Historic Cities

Boston Freedom Trail
Courtesy of: The New England Travel and Vacation Guide

Wondering where to go for your next vacation? Wanting the family to learn a little something along the way? Consider a visit to one of the more historic destinations the United States has to offer.

Whether you walk the historic Boston’s Freedom Trail or take a trolley around Savannah’s historic squares, America is full of national treasures that make for the perfect family vacation!

New York, NY
It’s easy to forget that before Times Square and Central Park, the Dutch originally settled the Big Apple in 1625 and the British then conquered it in 1664. New York City has since played an important role in American history including becoming the financial capital of the world and a major center of academia, fashion and culture. I like NYC in the summer because there is so much that you can do for free (including tours and museums).

St. Augustine, FL
Visit the oldest city in the U.S. and get your dose of warm Florida sun and fascinating history. St. Augustine is known for its gorgeous sandy beaches, breathtaking architecture, and Spanish fortifications. There are some terrific local museums including The Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse and Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth National Archaeological Park.

Savannah, GA
I briefly called Savannah, GA home and all I can say is that you should definitely spend some time in this sultry southern city. Magnolia trees draped in Spanish moss line the avenues, framing exquisite Southern homes and accentuating the warmth and beauty of Georgia’s very first city. One of few to be spared from the ravages of the Civil War, legend has it that General Sherman declared the city of Savannah too beautiful to be destroyed. The food is delectable, too. After all, Paula Deen hails from this southern sanctuary.

Boston, MA
History really comes to life in Boston; a city that blends modern day advancements and a rich legacy of America’s formative years. You will definitely want to take your walking shoes because you don’t want to miss The Freedom Trail or Boston’s Walk to the Sea (both free activities). And don’t worry, there are accessible tours and tours that accommodate little feet. Boston is hip and historic and filled with an array of activities to keep you going from morning ‘til night.

Santa Fe, NM
Santa Fe is the oldest capital city in what is the modern United States. The area has a very high concentration of artists with an abundance of galleries, sculptures and displays for you to peruse. The preservation of its historic Spanish-Pueblo style of architecture is also remarkable and truly breathtaking.

Remember to Keep it Interesting for the Whole Family

History intrigues us because we gain a little insight and perspective as to how and why things have come to be (or not come to be) for a place. We can appreciate the places we are visiting when we know more about them and what significance they hold. San Antonio is a great example of that. On it’s own it has the famed River Walk which is a treasure to stroll along with its beauty, art, and music but you are also steps from The Alamo, where the famous battle of the Texas Revolution took place.

We just need to remember the ages of those we are traveling with and help them understand and appreciate what they are seeing on their level, so the historic vacation can be fun for everyone. For younger family members, pick out the historic facts that they can understand or would find most interesting and perhaps save some of the more sedentary tours for the return visit when they’re older.

More Tips for Visiting Historic Destinations:

Talk to local people. They can tell you all kinds of things – and what better way to connect with a place than through human connections?

Take detours – planned and spontaneous – off the main highway. See what you can discover.

Visit the little museums. Most towns have one. Whether it’s funky or sophisticated, it can give you a glimpse into the town. And be sure to talk with the person at the desk! (It’s usually a volunteer who has lived there a long time.)

Stay local. Get to know more about an area by choosing a bed and breakfast or historic hotel during your visit.

Author: Nicole Hockin


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