11 Labor Day Weekend Travel Ideas

Labor Day weekend marks the unofficial end of summer. Once it's come and gone, we must say goodbye to bikinis and beach days, sadly say "goodbye" to summer Fridays, and accept the decline of rooftop parties and backyard barbecues. With all of these heartfelt goodbyes, there are only a few very worthwhile and fun things we can do to mark the occasion – like a Labor Day weekend trip – to “go out with a bang” as we reluctantly accept the end of summer.

There’s no doubt why weekend getaways are a popular option to elegantly make the most of summer’s last breath of true freedom. With the long holiday weekend just around the corner, you'll be able to plan a mini getaway to try and pack in everything that's left on your summer bucket list. Finally get behind the wheel and start a road trip, checking out any vineyards, breweries, food trucks, or historical sites you want to visit. Pack your tent and hiking gear for one last hurray in the great outdoors without the need for a sub-zero sleeping bag. Take a short and sweet cross-border trip abroad, or head to a beach resort that's completely within your budget. Keep scrolling for some inspiration to spend your last days in the carefree summer sunshine. No matter what you do this Labor Day weekend, start planning now to ensure you have a smooth summer.

1. Soak up the sun on your last beach vacation

We pulled out the sweaters and enjoyed one last weekend before the weather turned cooler, donning bathing suits and slathering on sunscreen. You'll probably be hitting the beach again in the next few months, but you'll be strolling more slowly while the wind blows through your cardigan than sunbathing on the sand.

2. Explore local vineyards

Head to wine country and taste some of the local wine selections. If you're in the New York area, Long Island is home to a beautiful array of local vineyards. If you live in California, your destination is a no-brainer, but even northern West Coast residents can enjoy the Columbia Valley's culinary delights.

3. Go camping

With no summer Fridays to keep you stuck at your desk, spend the last weekend getting outdoors. Bring your gear and a cooler full of goodies and enjoy all the natural beauty within driving distance. Some national parks are closed during the fall and winter, so summer may be your last chance to enjoy them before next year.

4. Taste and brew delicious food

Satisfy your summer cravings by exploring nearby famous restaurants and breweries on the weekends. You can plan your trip by destination to suit your culinary cravings and maybe even discover more along the way.

5. Enjoy a coastal holiday

Say goodbye to summer and cruise to the coast for some seaside time. Indulge in freshly caught seafood and summer beers. Take a boat out on the water or spend some leisurely time at the dock.

6. Get lost in the big city

Head to a new city for the weekend to explore. Experience the city's restaurants, local attractions and nightlife. Three days is the perfect amount of time for a complete trip full of adventure and to develop a new appreciation for the nearby metropolis.

7. Learn some history

Use your long weekend to visit some of the area's historic sites and learn more about American history. With a little research, you might be surprised by what's so close to you.

8. Get off-season holiday deals

Summer is coming to an end, so do some research on flight deals. You'll most likely be able to find some affordable options for spending your last weekend away.

9. Go international

Go abroad for the weekend and have some international fun. If you live in the far north or deep south, you don't have to travel far to cross the border. There are bus and flight deals to Montreal and Toronto from the New York City area, and if you're on the other side of the country, it's only a relatively short drive from Seattle to Vancouver. If you're in the South, consider a quick trip to Mexico before summer ends for some last-minute fun in the sun.

10. Enjoy the countryside

Escape the heat of the city and breathe in the fresh air of the countryside. Find a scenic route that takes you out of the city and through the suburbs to enjoy some real down time without any distractions. We often head to the countryside in the fall for harvest festivals and pumpkin picking, but try enjoying the countryside in its lush green state too.

11. Vacation in your own town

Who says you have to venture out of town? This Labor Day weekend, keep it all close to home and commit to a staycation to see your usual haunts with new eyes. Visit these attractions as a tourist. Go to the hot spots you usually give up on because the lines are too long. Explore parts of the city you didn’t have time to visit and try new activities that take you out of your comfort zone.

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