While the delta variant has negatively impacted upcoming travel plans for one in four Americans, many are still plotting an August escape.
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Put it this way: Las Vegas gets an A+ for effort. The “entertainment capital of the world,” as they say, is doing all it can to make a fun comeback – thanks to new resorts, attractions and a resurgence of concerts from A-list performers like Bruno Mars, Gwen Stefani and Barry Manilow. Allegiant Stadium has also welcomed fans back for events and the iHeart Radio Music Festival is set for Sept. 17-18.
New York City
Note: New York City will soon require proof of vaccination for many indoor activities, Broadway shows, indoor performances and indoor dining.
New York City is slowly clawing its way back onto tourists’ radar. Broadway shows are about to reopen following an extended shut down ("Hamilton" tickets, please?) and the hosts of NBC’s "Today Show" are back mingling with fans on Rockefeller Center’s outdoor plaza and hosting in-person concerts. And, if you want to eat your way around the city, Restaurant Week continues until Aug. 22.
► Bring your vaccination card: New York to become first major US city to require vaccination proof
Now, while hotel bookings have dipped, due in part to concerns over COVID and also kids heading back to school, it’s worth noting that visitors may indeed find cheaper hotel rates. So far this month, the average daily rate for a hotel in the city is a little over $200 (about $40 lower than it was two years ago), according to STR, a global hospitality data and analytics company.
California recently launched a massive marketing campaign to get tourists to come back to the state. Los Angeles is keeping its fingers crossed. Discover Los Angeles has even done the heavy lifting, rolling out a series of pre-made itineraries to help rebound visitors explore all the city has to offer. Maybe take a morning hike in Bronson Canyon, a yoga class, or get that adrenaline pumping with “body flying” at the iFly wind tunnel at CityWalk?
Up for a day trip? San Diego, about a 2½ hour drive from L.A., also made the list.
Chicago also made the list. . And, there’s plenty to do here in August. Visitors can take a stroll around the Navy Pier, on the shoreline of Lake Michigan, where there’s a wide range of shops, restaurants and family attractions. Or, visit the Art Institute or Museum of Science and Industry. Baseball lovers can also watch the Cubs at Wrigley Field and get a slice at Dimo’s on the way back to the hotel.
Tip: Travel bargain hunters can also check Brad’s Deals for several Chicago deals running this month.
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Myrtle Beach offers 60 miles of Atlantic coastline and plenty to do. A budget-friendly destination for families, there’s a long list of free activities to enjoy, like listening to live music at the Pier at Garden City Beach, touring local museums and watching the fireworks at Broadway At The Beach.
Orlando never quite seems to leave the wishlist, does it? Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and Legoland continue to welcome guests and local restaurants are open at full capacity.
For deals, check Visit Orlando. The tourism website has expanded its promotions for area attractions and accommodations, including special discounts for first responders. Also, the Four Seasons Resort Orlando is also offering guests staying three consecutive nights or more an opportunity to score a complimentary night.
Nashville, the capital of Tennessee and country music, ranks for both high demand and top growth. The city has recently been praised for its warm and friendly atmosphere and status as a Safe Travels destination by the World Travel & Tourism Council.
While the Country Music Hall of Fame and Grand Ole Opry (both now open) lure music lovers, it’s not all about the tunes. There's plenty for sports fans, too. NASCAR comes to to Nashville Superspeedway in June. And soccer fans, take note: the U.S. Men's National Team will play Canada in a FIFA World Cup qualifier match Sept. 5 at Nissan Stadium.
While hotel bookings are starting to rebound, it’s also resonating with road trippers. RVshare.com reported an uptick this month for camper rentals in the area.
Atlantic City, New Jersey
August is one of the busiest months for this New Jersey seaside gaming and resort hub. The famed Steel Pier has a jam-packed activity schedule for visitors of all ages. Enjoy live music and all-you-can-eat seafood fest every Wednesday at The Ocean Reef Bar. You can also take in panoramic views of the Atlantic and the world-famous boardwalk from a seat on the Wheel, a 227-foot-tall Ferris wheel.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: In-demand destinations for August 2021: Las Vegas, NYC, LA, Chicago