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America’s 7 Best Cities for Long Weekends

A three-day weekend is a precious, precious thing. It means you have an entire extra day away from your desk (and your boss) to be used for life’s greatest pleasures, like sleeping in and binge watching Stranger Things. But above all, it’s the perfect excuse to get outta town. So take advantage of that extra day off and visit one of these seven places that are ideal for a 72-hour getaway.

The Finger Lakes, New York

This region in upstate New York is having a moment. Made up of 11 narrow lakes, sprawling vineyards and charming towns, the Finger Lakes isone of America’s most underrated wine appellations. Near Cayuga Lake and Seneca Lake you’ll find a handful of wineries like Cayuga Ridge Estate, Glenora and Fox Run, which specialize in dry Rieslings and Pinot Blancs. For more adventurous activities, the area is home to great hiking trails at Watkins Glen State Park, the Ithaca gorges and Letchworth State Park. And did we mention there’s also a cheese trail? Discuss.

Miami, Florida

One of the few places in the country where summertime never ends, Miami is the perfect weekend escape during the cold winter months. About three days is all you need to soak up the sun on South Beach, check out the vibrant street-art scene in Wynwood, explore the art-deco-lined block of Ocean Drive, eat the best Cuban sandwiches of your life in Little Havana and, of course, indulge in a gluttonous meal at Joe’s Stone Crab.

Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

Looking for a quick West Coast getaway? We’ve got you covered. Carmel-by-the-Sea is a sleepy coastal town just two hours south of San Francisco. The sandy beaches and jagged cliffs are everything we love about California, and there are a million ways to take advantage of the vistas, from hiking Point Lobos State Reserveto driving the 17-mile stretch along scenic Pebble Beach. The town of Carmel itself (populated by cafés, tiny shops, Alpine-style cottages and wine-tasting rooms) feels artsy and free-spirited. As in, street signs are sparse and most buildings have no address.

Santa Fe, New Mexico

This walkable and enchanting city boasts pleasant weather and unique Pueblo-Spanish architecture. Start your day with a New Mexican breakfast of huevos rancheros at The Pantry before exploring the colorful art scene. Don’t miss the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, art fairs and galleries showcasing everything from antiques to Native American turquoise jewelry. While you’re there, be sure to hit one of the many spas around town,like Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs. After all, this desert city is known for its restorative healing treatments.

Seattle, Washington

Turns out, it doesn’t rain in Seattle all year long and there’s more to the Pacific Northwest city than coffee. In the warmer months (July through October) you can go kayaking on Ballard Locks or take the ferry to the cute island of Bainbridge for hiking. Or during the winter (when temps rarely dip below 45 degrees), hit up a few museums, like the Seattle Art Museum and the Henry Art Gallery. And when it comes to the food scene, Pike Place Market is just the beginning. The city boasts some of the best food in the country, like incredible fresh sushi at Maneki and oysters at Walrus + Carpenter.

Traverse City, Michigan

Every season is a new reason to visit this picture-perfect town in northern Michigan. Summertime is the most popular season, when crowds flock to enjoy Traverse City’s cherry festival and bask on the beaches of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Winter is downhill ski season. During spring, the countryside is budding with cherry blossoms. And the autumn drive along Route 37 is one of the most scenic stretches of foliage in the country.

Charleston, South Carolina

Three days in Charleston will be a marathon for your stomach, but then again, you need a few days to take advantage of this hot spot for low-country cuisine. The fried chicken at Husk, shrimp and grits from Hominy Grill and a sticky bun from WildFlour Pastry are three absolute musts on your culinary to-do list. But in addition, you can explore stylish King Street (lined with boutiques and contemporary art galleries), see the colorful historic houses that make up Rainbow Row or even take a half-day beach trip to nearby Kiawah Island, Bowens Island or Beaufort.

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