A look at AAA's most popular summer travel destinations

American vacationers have plenty of good choices this summer travel season. On the international side, a growing number of low-cost airlines are making transatlantic flights to European cities more affordable. Closer to home, Americans appear split. Some are breaking out the sunscreen and flip-flops for sunny locales like Los Angeles, Orlando, and Hawai‘i, while others are heading to the mountains and fresh air of places like Vancouver, Anchorage, and Seattle. Below are the top 10 international and top 10 domestic destinations, as indicated by AAA hotel and travel bookings, along with key facts for those who might be considering a trip—just another way that AAA travels with you.1

10. Punta Cana, Dominican Rep.

This beach region is home to dozens of high-end resorts that draw millions of tourists each year, all looking to get their share of sun, surf, fishing, high-speed boating, and many other ocean-themed activities. For landlubbers, there is also an array of golf courses and sightseeing tours.

 

DON’T MISS: Isla Saona. Boats bring visitors to this idyllic island off the coast to marvel at its pristine shores and abundant wildlife. Covered in palm trees, the island epitomizes the “desert island” motif so common in film and television.

READY TO EXPLORE PUNTA CANA?

AAA members can book their own custom Dominican tour package, including Punta Cana, with AAA Vacations® amenities such as 24/7 Member Care2 and our Best Price Guarantee.3

Learn more about AAA Vacations' custom Caribbean tours.

9. Honolulu, Hawai‘i

Honolulu, on the island of O‘ahu, is the gateway to the magic of Hawai‘i. Whether it’s learning to surf off Waikiki Beach, digging into kalua pork at an authentic luau, or seeing history firsthand at Pearl Harbor, this city is always worth the trip.

 

DON’T MISS: Diamond Head State Monument. Hikers can climb this volcanic formation for a splendid view of Waikiki and the ocean. Members planning to walk the brief but moderately tough trail should bring water and expect to get sweaty.

READY TO EXPLORE HONOLULU?

AAA members can book tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the eight-day Hawaiian Explorer trip, which begins in Honolulu and includes a visit to Pearl Harbor.

Learn more about the Hawaiian Explorer package | Explore all of AAA's Honolulu vacation packages

8. Anchorage, Alaska

Anchorage isn’t a household name for summer vacations, but thanks to the nearby mountains and ocean, Alaska’s biggest city is balmy enough in summer for a pleasant stay. Visitors can drive the scenic Seward and Glenn highways, hike Denali National Park and Preserve, or kayak on the Matanuska River.

 

DON’T MISS: Earthquake Park. In 1964, the strongest quake ever recorded in North America destroyed a 134-acre section of the city. The land was turned into a park, where today members can learn about the disaster, take in great views of the mountains, and maybe even see a moose.

READY TO EXPLORE ANCHORAGE?

AAA members can book tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the 13-day Alaska and the Yukon trip, which begins and ends in Anchorage and includes a cruise of Prince William Sound.

Learn more about the Alaska and the Yukon package | Explore all of AAA's Anchorage vacation packages

7. Seattle, Washington

Seattle sheds its rainy reputation for most days during the summer, instead featuring clear skies, lots of sun, and low humidity. Visitors can take in the city’s beautiful urban green spaces, enjoy the salmon-flinging antics of Pike Place Market, or sip a latte in the hometown of Starbucks.

 

DON’T MISS: The Ballard Locks. This century-old landmark separates saltwater Puget Sound from freshwater Lake Washington. Visitors can watch migrating salmon ascend the fish ladder in the summer, and see boats coming and going year-round.

READY TO EXPLORE SEATTLE?

Check out the reviews, AAA Diamond Ratings, and AAA savings and benefits of hotels in Seattle.

Browse and book Seattle hotels

6. Paris, France

Perhaps no city stands taller in the travel landscape than the City of Light, home of the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, and Notre Dame. Many dream of traveling to this nexus of culture, and millions do every year, strolling down the Champs-Élysées, taking in galleries at dozens of museums, and cruising along the Seine.

 

DON’T MISS: The Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie. The biggest science museum in all of Europe, it features exhibitions for all ages. That includes the Argonaute, a retired French attack submarine whose interior guests can explore.

READY TO EXPLORE PARIS?

AAA members can book French tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the eight-day Jewels of France trip, which begins and ends in Paris.

Learn more about the Jewels of France package | Explore all of AAA's Paris packages

5. Dublin, Ireland

The Emerald Isle’s largest city is no slouch in the sightseeing department. Members can tour Dublin Castle, whose history stretches back to the Celts, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the largest church in Ireland. The birthplace of writers Oscar Wilde and James Joyce, it’s the center of Irish culture past and present.

 

DON’T MISS: The Book of Kells. Take a trip to beautiful Trinity College Dublin (the campus is worth a visit in itself) to learn about this lavishly decorated Gospel manuscript. The exhibit features enlargements of the vivid illustrations in the book, which is believed to be around 1,200 years old.

READY TO EXPLORE DUBLIN?

AAA members can book Irish tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the six-day Treasures of Ireland trip, which begins with a visit to Dublin.

Learn more about the Treasures of Ireland package | Explore all of AAA's Dublin packages

4. Vancouver, Canada

One of Canada’s most diverse cities, this metropolis by the sea is unique for its urban core surrounded by pristine mountains and forests. Visitors come for the many parks and gardens, as well as to experience the cultures of Canada’s indigenous First Nations peoples and the city’s many generations of immigrants.

 

DON’T MISS: Stanley Park. This 1,000-acre public space features dense forest surrounded by a walkable and bikeable seawall. Popular with tourists and locals alike, it includes an aquarium, a lighthouse, and a miniature railroad.

READY TO EXPLORE VANCOUVER?

AAA members can book Canadian tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the 12-day Panoramic Canadian Rockies trip, which concludes with a visit to Vancouver.

Learn more about the Panoramic Canadian Rockies package | Explore all of AAA's Vancouver packages

3. Rome, Italy

Visions of the Colosseum rightly accompany any mention of this year’s top international summer destination, but there’s plenty else to do there, from visiting massive St. Peter’s Square and its Basilica in Vatican City, to marveling at Michelangelo’s Renaissance masterpiece on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

 

DON’T MISS: The Fontana dell'Acqua Paola. There are many beautiful fountains celebrating the aqueducts that made ancient Rome possible, but this one’s location on the Janiculum Hill provides sweeping views of the city.

READY TO EXPLORE ROME?

AAA members can book Italian tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the seven-day Jewels of Italy trip, which begins with two days in Rome.

Learn more about the Jewels of Italy package | Explore all of AAA's Rome vacation packages

2. London, England

The home of Big Ben and iconic red double-decker buses, London is currently AAA’s third most popular European destination, down a bit from first in 2015 and runner-up in 2016. But between the convenience of English, the ease of movement on the city’s famous Tube, and a wealth of things to do, there may be no easier destination to visit in Europe.

 

DON’T MISS: Shakespeare’s Globe. At this reproduction of the original Globe Theatre, which burned down in 1613, members can experience how Shakespeare’s plays originally used only natural acoustics and sunlight to captivate an audience.

READY TO EXPLORE LONDON?

AAA members can book U.K. tour packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the six-day Spotlight on London trip, which includes visits to Westminster Abbey and the University of Oxford.

Learn more about the Spotlight on London package | Explore all of AAA's London packages

1. Orlando, Florida

The home of Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Studios Florida, SeaWorld Orlando, and a slew of other attractions tops our list. Anything members can imagine doing is here somewhere, from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, to Cirque du Soleil, to a dizzying array of shopping and dining options.

 

DON’T MISS: Lake Eola Park. Take a breather from the theme parks and other attractions with a stroll around this downtown oasis. Visit at night to see the lake’s fountain lit up in dazzling colors.

READY TO EXPLORE ORLANDO?

AAA members can book Universal Orlando Resort vacation packages with exclusive AAA benefits, such as the AAA Splash Stay and Play Vacation Package, which includes admission to all three parks at Universal Orlando.

Learn more about the AAA Splash Stay and Play package | Explore all of AAA's Universal Orlando Resort vacation packages

Make your dream vacation a reality

It's not too late to make your summer getaway! Whether you’ve been dreaming of relaxing on a sunny beach or touring a culture-rich European capital, AAA is your go-to resource for planning.

START DREAMING

1"Summer Travelers Seek Fun in the Sun,” May 1, 2018. Top destinations based on AAA bookings for travel June 1 through August 15, 2018.

 

224/7 Member Care is provided by Allianz Global Assistance, AAA’s preferred travel insurance provider. 24/7 Member Care is not travel insurance.

 

3If you make a booking with us for a qualifying cruise or tour vacation designated as a AAA Vacations® (a “Qualifying AAA Vacations”), and you find a Valid Better Rate for the exact same itinerary within 24 hours of your booking, AAA Vacations will match the lower rate and send you a $50 AAA Vacations Future Travel Credit Certificate (limit one certificate per booking). For complete terms and conditions for the AAA Vacations Best Price Guarantee, contact your local AAA branch or visit AAA.com/Bestprice. A Valid Better Rate is a lower rate offered by a North American IATA/ARC registered business that satisfies the requirements of the Terms and Conditions as determined by AAA Vacations in its sole discretion.

 

Information provided by 2016 Hawai‘i AAA TourBook guide; 2016 Nevada AAA TourBook guide; 2016 Southern California AAA TourBook guide; 2016 Washington AAA TourBook guide; 2016 Western Canada & Alaska TourBook guide; Fairbanks, Alaska AAA Travel Guide; Boston, Massachusetts AAA Travel Guide; and Salt Lake City, Utah AAA Travel Guide.

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