Top 10 Thanksgiving Destinations in 2013
NEW YORK ( MainStreet) Whether the motivation is to visit family and friends or just see the country, Americans have a long tradition of traveling far and wide for Thanksgiving. Of course, some cities attract more tourists than others during Turkey Day and the weeks leading up to the holiday. MainStreet has obtained data from online travel agency CheapOair.com that reveals the top 10 most popular U.S. Thanksgiving destinations this year based on booking data for air travel between Nov. 4, 2013, and Nov. 30, 2013. In addition to sharing the top 10 list, we'll also tell you the average roundtrip airfare for each city plus fun activities to enjoy in each locale during Thanksgiving weekend.
Average roundtrip airfare: $375
This famed coastal metropolis is the 10th most popular U.S. city for Thanksgiving travel. To truly enjoy the magnificent views of Seattle, we suggest enjoying Thanksgiving dinner aboard a 2.5-hour cruise on Lake Union and Lake Washington offered by Waterways Cruises. The Thanksgiving Day Dinner Cruises depart at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 28, from South Lake Union Park and Kirkland Marina Park, with boarding starting at 2 p.m. ($66 for adults; $59 for seniors and military personnel; $36 for kids 5-12; free for kids 4 and younger).
On Friday, November 29, check out the annual My Macy's Holiday Parade in downtown Seattle, beginning at 9 a.m. The parade will feature 25 inflatable floats, local middle and high school marching bands, sports teams, costumed characters and community floats.
#9: San Francisco
Average roundtrip airfare: $402
The City by the Bay snagged the #9 spot on our top 10 list. If you're looking for a great place to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner, you'll find no shortage of tempting options in San Fran, including 1300 on Fillmore , a restaurant and lounge known for its live music and "soulful American" cuisine. The prix fixe Thanksgiving dinner includes three courses with choices such as barbecue shrimp with creamy grits, maple syrup slow-braised beef short rib and spiced pumpkin cheesecake ($59 per person; $28 for children 12 and under).
On Friday, Nov. 29, check out the Macy's 24th Annual Tree Lighting ceremony , located on Union Square Park between Sutter and Post and Geary and Stockton Streets, right across from the front of Macy's. The ceremony is expected to begin at 6 p.m. and the tree is scheduled to be lit at 6:40 p.m.
Average roundtrip airfare: $332
The Windy City is the 8th most popular destination for Thanksgiving, and we can assure visitors that there's plenty to do during your visitwhether you're traveling with friends, a significant other or the whole family.
On November 28, check out the McDonald's Thanksgiving Parade , a free event from 8 a.m. through 11 a.m. Led by Ronald McDonald as the grand marshal, the colorful procession makes its way up State Street from Congress Parkway to Randolph Street and features a 50-foot helium turkey balloon, decorative floats, equestrian performers, fire twirlers, ballerinas and more.