With 50-states to choose from, there are numerous destinations for couples looking for that perfect minimoon. Minimoons are the modern-day alternative to honeymoons; a short vacation for newlyweds that keeps it close to home. National Parks like Yosemite, Crater Lake, and Yellowstone are great picks for nature-loving couples wanting private time away from it all. New Orleans, Chicago, New York, and San Francisco are ideal places for the couple looking for culture, the arts, and a thriving gastronomic scene. Couples wanting sun, sand, and surf, may find Key West or Miami will fit the bill. These are 25 of the best minimoon destinations in the country. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Some restaurants are currently offering pickup only. Hours/availability may have changed.
Napa Valley, located just north of San Francisco, is home to hillside vineyards that produce varietal wines that are renown around the world. What pairs better than wine and romance? Napa Valley mixes the two perfectly, to help create an unforgettable mini honeymoon. Couples can take a ride on nature’s walk in the sky with a breathtaking hot-air balloon ride. These rides usually start just after dawn to ensure calm winds. This idyllic city is also great for those who love hiking and biking. There are both guided and self-guided vineyard tours by bike, on foot, or by car.
600 Main Street, Napa, CA, Phone: 707-251-5895
2.Yosemite National Park
Housed in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California, Yosemite National Park offers couples an outdoor playground that is ideal for nature loving minimooners. 1890 was the year Yosemite became a National Park, in part because of the ancient, giant sequoia trees that frame the wondrous park. This special place also features breathtaking views of the valley, Half Dome, and El Capitan – cliffs formed from granite. Couples should plan a trip to historic Bridalveil Fall. The fall gets its name from the mist of the water that is said to resemble a veil from a bridal dress.
9035 Village Drive, Yosemite Valley, CA, Phone: 209-372-0200
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Near the Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville, North Carolina, has been dubbed the “Land of the Sky”. This is the place for newlyweds to celebrate at the quintessential romantic cabin in the mountains. Couples who love the outdoors will fall in love with the breathtaking views this city has to offer. There are over 60 jaw-dropping waterfalls in the area that are spectacular and easy to find. The quaint town is filled with museums, galleries, breweries, restaurants, and pubs. Accommodations range from flashy hotels to B&Bs to a cabin in the woods. Asheville is also home to the Polar Express Train Excursion.
36 Montford Avenue, Asheville, NC, Phone: 828-258-6101
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Located on California’s Central Coast, Big Sur is a mountainous and rugged area situated between San Simeon and Carmel Highlands. This idyllic coastal city with panoramic scenery is perfect for couples celebrating their nuptials. Scenic Highway 1 with the iconic Bixby Bridge allows travelers views of the Central Coastline and is called the Golden Gate of Big Sur. Also, along Highway 1, Limekiln State Park is an ideal spot to pitch a tent or pull an RV or car into, and enjoy the beautiful scenery here. Limekiln State Park has majestic hiking trails, swimming holes, and towering coastal redwoods.
47555 California Highway 1, Big Sur CA, Phone: 831-667-2315
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Charlottesville, a town of culture and arts surrounded by breathtaking mountains, making it an ideal destination for couples on a romantic as well as historic mimimoon. Historic Charlottesville is home to Monticello, a house that was owned by the Declaration of Independence author and third President, Thomas Jefferson. This gorgeous and well-preserved estate sits on a mountaintop overlooking acres of land. Asheville also boasts the homes of the fourth and fifth US Presidents – James Madison’s Montpelier and James Monroe’s Highland. Charlottesville is also well known for a legacy of African American History.
610 East Main Street, Charlottesville, VA, Phone: 434-293-6789
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Known to many as the Windy City, Chicago provides a romantic minimoon for couples who crave cultural experiences and a spectacular fine dining scene. Chicago’s restaurants range from glamorous to candle-lit to one-of-a-kind. Sports enthusiasts will appreciate Michael Jordan’s Steak House on North Michigan Avenue. Couples can take in a Broadway show, tuck away into an intimate speakeasy, or stroll indoor gardens. A great way to see this incredible city is to tour on a double-decker bus showcasing Navy Pier, Millennium Park, and Michigan Avenue.
301 East Cermak Road, Chicago, IL, Phone: 312-567-8500
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7.Crater Lake National Park
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Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, home to America’s deepest lake, is a perfect minimoon destination for couples just tying the knot. Outdoor enthusiasts will fall madly in love with this scenic park in a collapsed volcano. The Park itself lies in the belly of an inactive volcano. An eruption over 7,000-years ago caused this 12,000-foot high volcano to collapse, forming an island in the middle of the lake. This wondrous park is open year-round, but the summer is its most popular season. Crater Lake during this time offers swimming, scuba diving, hiking, fishing, and some of the best fly fishing anywhere.
570 Rim Village Drive, Crater Lake, OR, Phone: 541-594-3000
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8.Death Valley National Park
With a yearly average temperature of 93 degrees and an average temperature of 110 degrees during the months of May through September, Death Valley National Park is an ideal location for a minimoon any time of the year. Boasting the Western hemisphere’s lowest point at 282-feet under sea level and averaging less than 2-inches of rain a year, Death Valley is also one if the earths driest places. There is an oasis in this desolate area, every decade or so, Death Valley experiences a Superbloom. This occurs when just enough rain helps the dormant seeds sprout, causing a valley of colorful flowers.
California Highway 190, Furnace Creek, CA, Phone: 760-786-3200
Located in Northwest Illinois, Galena is an idyllic minimoon destination. This quaint, Norman Rockwell inspired town has garnered multiple awards for its wholesomeness, cleanliness, and overall hometown feeling. The Daily Mail and MSN voted this city Prettiest Town in Illinois in 2017. Galena provides a wide array of outdoor activities, like hot air ballooning where up to 14 people join this breathtaking adventure that takes roughly an hour to traverse the trees and sites of the Mississippi River. Honeymooners during the winter months will find winter wonderland at the Chestnut Mountain Resort.
123 North Commerce Street, Galena, IL, Phone: 815-776-9200
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, Michigan beaches
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Encompassing an area of roughly 5,400 acres, Geneva Lake, in Wisconsin, offers minimooners the opportunity to get in touch with nature at its finest. This pristine, freshwater lake in Southeastern Wisconsin, has a plethora of breathtaking sights and adventures for outdoor enthusiasts all year round. Wilmot Mountain offers winter minimooners the chance to ski and snow tube atop this wondrous mountain. The ski area is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. with sessions lasting three hours. Hikers will love the single-track, Geneva Lake Shore Path. This trail is over 21 miles long, and is built for intimate walks that meander through modern and historic estates.
210 Wrigley Drive, Lake Geneva, WI, Phone: 800-345-1020
11.Glacier National Park
Glacier National Park in Montana’s “Big Sky” country offers couples jaw dropping scenery with its raw and majestic beauty. Couples who love hiking need look no further. The park showcases more than 700 miles of trails, leading through both rugged and paved terrain. This historic park offers an array of options to choose from depending on the time of year. During the spring and summer months, the park is alive with tourists fishing and canoeing on the massive lake or touring aboard an iconic Red Bus. The winter months are beautiful with snowcapped mountains and frozen waterfalls.
64 Grinnell Drive, West Glacier, MT, Phone: 406-888-7800
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A Florida Keys archipelago, Key West, is one of the world’s most visited tourist spots and is home to famed author, Ernest Hemingway. With Cuba just 90 miles away, Key West exhibits an air of Latin heritage on this iconic island with conch-style houses and bright, pastel colors. This scenic city offers minimooners a wide variety of outdoor places to see and explore. Key West Boat Tours provides guided boat tours that can include snorkeling, which is done at Florida Keys Reef. Journalist and literary icon, Ernest Hemingway’s home is located in Old Town and is also available for tours.
1601 North Roosevelt Boulevard, Key West, FL, Phone: 305-296-8881
With an average temperature of 84 degrees, it’s easy to see why the city of Miami is a highly sought-after minimoon destination for newlyweds. On the Southeastern tip of Florida, this vibrant and colorful city is greatly influenced by its Cuban neighbor. The city has many cigar shops, cafés, and tiendas in Little Havana on Calle Ocho. The hidden gem in Miami is said to be Miami Beach Botanical Garden. This 2.6-acre oasis is ideal for couples who love nature. It features palms, blooming flowers, and subtropical plants brought in from around the world. Of course, there are the magical turquoise waters and sandy beaches.
103 North East 1st Street, Miami, FL, Phone: 305-303-2333
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Couples seeking a fun, romantic destination for a short honeymoon stay need look no further than the Crescent City; the Big Easy; New Orleans. The city known as the birthplace of jazz offers an array of fun-filled and exciting activities, as well as extraordinary dining. Touring the French Quarter takes couples to the streets where Old World architecture meets new world charm. The Quarter features Jasmine scented trees, Bourbon Street Cafés, and jazzy blues. For those wanting an iconic New Orleans River Boat experience, this majestic city offers just that on the S.S. Natchez Steamboat.
2020 Saint Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA, Phone: 504-566-5011
15.New York City
New York City, the city that never sleeps, owns up to its famous moniker with its all-night diners, clubs, and shows, making this the ideal minimoon destination for couples on the move. This exciting and tireless city offers a myriad of activities to do and see. One of the most thrilling ways to get an overview of the city is by air. New York offers a multitude of helicopter tours that showcase the iconic Manhattan skyline and breathtaking harbors and bridges. Times Square, One World Observatory, the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, Broadway, plus dozens of other NYC attractions await.
6th Avenue & 33rd Street, Manhattan, NY, Phone: 212-465-0500
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Located on the southern coast of Maine, Ogunquit is an ideal destination for honeymooners who truly want to bask in the tranquil splendor of the outdoors. This romantic city lies on a sandy peninsula between Ogunquit River and Atlantic Ocean featuring grassy dunes, Ogunquit Beach (rated the best beach in Maine) and beautiful, shoreline views. This idyllic minimoon spot is perfect for lovers wanting to take a stroll on the Marginal Way. The Way, a walking path that covers 1.25 miles, showcases scenic views of the countryside and ocean with a number of access points for pedestrians.
23 School Street, Ogunquit, ME, Phone: 207-646-5139
17.Olympic National Park
With its home in the panoramic Pacific Northwest, Olympic National Park offers minimooners a distinctly beautiful, serene, and secluded vacation venue. This expansive park provides views of some of nature’s most idyllic scenery. Couples can hike Olympic Peninsula Waterfall Trail, a trail that offers year-round hiking on a circuitous route that ventures to other falls, big and small. There’s also a trip to Hurricane Ridge. At more than a mile high, this ridge provides panoramic views of wildflowers, meadows, and mountains, plus a chance to see wildlife in its habitat. The Quinault Rain Forest in the park is home to the world’s largest Sitka Spruce tree.
3002 Mount Angeles Road, Port Angeles, WA, Phone: 360-565-3130
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Framed by the illustrious Wasatch Mountains, Park City, just east of famed Salt Lake City, provides an ideal destination for honeymooners wanting a local winter wonderland minimoon. With an elevation of 7,000 feet above sea level, Park City is an obvious choice for skiers, snowboarders, and snow tubers. For those who love the snow, but not the exercise, Park City offers romantic sleigh rides. The sleigh rides provide a slower paced tour of this wondrous city. This fabulous way of seeing the city offers riders a chance to ride and dine at one of the many fine restaurants here.
1850 Sidewinder Drive #320, Park City, UT, Phone: 435-649-6100
Showcasing a strong colonial heritage, San Antonio is situated in the southcentral part of Texas. It offers minimooners near perfect weather with an average daily temperature of 69 degrees, making this an ideal year-round destination. The historic city offers a multitude of attractions for couples like the HemisFair Park’s Tower of America. The tower is 750-feet-tall, located in downtown San Antonio, and provides guests with 360-degree views. The famed River Walk is a 15-mile urban waterway lined with restaurants and shops. This iconic Walk is below street level and mere steps from the Alamo. It is the nation’s largest urban ecosystem, featuring stores to shop in and food kiosks.
317 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX, Phone: 800-447-3372
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Heralded as one of the most romantic and iconic cities in the world, San Francisco is on the wish list of many couples wanting a memorable minimoon. San Francisco offers a plethora of historical sites to see and visit. None is more photogenic than the Golden Gate Bridge with its year-round fog and splendid architectural design. No trip to the city is complete without riding on one of its fabled cable cars. These cable cars have been in operation since 1873 and are perfect for traversing the hilly streets here. Located on Pier 39, Fisherman’s Wharf is perhaps the most famous tourist attraction in town.
749 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA, Phone: 415-391-2000
Honeymooners seeking a historical, yet tranquil destination, need look no further than New Mexico’s capital, Santa Fe. This former Spanish colony has quickly become a haven for artists and authors from around the world. Known for its Pueblo-style housing and Native American arts and crafts. Another point of interest for couples is the Palace of the Governors, a National Historic Landmark offering daily tours that provide a look back to life in the 17th century in Santa Fe. The Loretto Chapel has one of Santa Fe’s biggest mysteries, a staircase whose creator and the materials used to build it are unknown.
491 Old Santa Fe Trail, Santa Fe, NM, Phone: 505-827-7336
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Part of Georgia’s Golden Isles, Sea Island is an unincorporated, privately-owned area offering a romantic getaway that is truly unrivaled. This breathtaking island offers minimooners an array of exciting outdoor activities. Romantic walks on grassy dunes with the sound of the surf lapping against the shore is an ideal way to start or end the day. Couples wanting to mix a little bit of fishing into their visit will love fishing on the Gulf Stream in a 39-foot boat, equipped for catching marlin, tuna, and more. Guests can learn and witness the art of falconry at Sea Island, featuring raptors skilled in hunting.
100 Cloister Drive, sea Island, GA, Phone: 800-723-4752
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Located south of Flagstaff, Arizona, Sedona offers couples a destination to remember. Known for a mild climate, this spiritually uplifting town offers spiritual experiences through energy vortexes. These vortexes are best felt at Bell Rock, Airport Mesa, Boynton Canyon, and Cathedral Rock. The city is also a haven to people who love arts and crafts. Sedona offers a multitude of shops featuring art galleries, Native American jewelry, and paintings. The city, encompassing more than a million acres, provides hiking, biking, and riding excursions that showcase jaw dropping red rock scenery. Witness rocky cliffs, a multi-terraced skyline, and quiet streams.
331 Forest Road, Sedona, AZ, Phone: 800-288-7336
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Located in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, Telluride is an ideal honeymoon venue for couples wanting to experience the ultimate white wedding, during the winter months. This historic town, set in a canyon buttressed by a forest and mountain peaks, offers some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world. As a world renown ski resort, Telluride features a plethora of snow activities, like fat tire biking, Nordic skiing, and snowmobiling. This winter wonderland also has some of the world’s best restaurants, while offering spectacular mountain views. Sitting at over 10,000-feet, Allred’s Restaurant provides panoramic vistas of the town and mountains.
236 West Colorado avenue, Telluride, CO, Phone: 970-369-2100
25.Yellowstone National Park
Spanning three states, Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana, Yellowstone National Park, encompasses more than 3,400 square miles. It provides park entrants once in a lifetime scenery, wild animals, and natural wonders. The iconic park sits atop of a volcanic hot spot, which causes its most famous attraction, Old Faithful, to gush high into the air. The dramatic scenery of lush pines, deep canyons, hot springs, and alpine rivers is a reason visitors flock here. If the natural scenery isn’t enough, to keep one’s interest, the hundreds of species of animals, like wolves, bears, elk, antelope, and bison more than make up for any second guessing.
Grand Loop Road, Yellowstone National Park, WY, Phone: 307-344-7381
25 Best Minimoon Destinations in the United States
- Napa Valley, Photo: auremar/stock.adobe.com
- Yosemite National Park, Photo: paul/stock.adobe.com
- Asheville, Photo: bonniemarie/stock.adobe.com
- Big Sur, Photo: ryszard filipowicz/stock.adobe.com
- Charlottesville, Photo: malkovkosta/stock.adobe.com
- Chicago, Photo: Christian Hinkle/stock.adobe.com
- Crater Lake National Park, Photo: Joshua Rainey/stock.adobe.com
- Death Valley National Park, Photo: Vadim/stock.adobe.com
- Galena, Photo: noomhh/stock.adobe.com
- Geneva Lake, Photo: Maksym Protsenko/stock.adobe.com
- Glacier National Park, Photo: shoenberg3/stock.adobe.com
- Key West, Photo: aiisha/stock.adobe.com
- Miami, Photo: Fokke/stock.adobe.com
- New Orleans, Photo: Fotoluminate LLC/stock.adobe.com
- New York City, Photo: jakartatravel/stock.adobe.com
- Ogunquit, Photo: jiawangkun/stock.adobe.com
- Olympic National Park, Photo: Irina/stock.adobe.com
- Park City, Photo: Ritu Jethani/stock.adobe.com
- San Antonio, Photo: SeanPavonePhoto/stock.adobe.com
- San Francisco, Photo: Margaret/stock.adobe.com
- Santa Fe, Photo: qingwa/stock.adobe.com
- Sea Island, Photo: Sirko Wolfram/stock.adobe.com
- Sedona, Photo: mtkitchn/stock.adobe.com
- Telluride, Photo: Calin Tatu/stock.adobe.com
- Yellowstone National Park, Photo: f11photo/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: Maridav/stock.adobe.com
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