Meet the Nominees for Best U.S. Destination for the 2011 NewNowNext Travel Awards

We all love to splash out with a big overseas vacation, right? Paris! Tokyo! Antarctica! Globetrotting to far-off destinations is important. And we all dream of those kind of worlds-away experiences of enlightenment or solace that can be found via far-flung travel-based self-exploration.

But as Americans (as most of here at TripOut are) we also love to play in our own backyard. And you have to admit, it’s a pretty fantastic backyard worth exploring… And that’s why we want to know what’s your favorite getaway location in the good ol’ U. S. of A.? It may be a glitzy desert hotspot, a warm and hip Texas town, or the city that never sleeps.

Have a look below at this year’s picks for the U.S. cities that rock our traveling world!



Alaska? Yes, Alaska. “Because sophisticated city boys and girls need to get over themselves and stand in awe of Mother Nature every once in a while,” explains ShermansTravel’s Darren Frei. “Forget all the Palin associations… Most Alaskans could give a hoot what you do in the bedroom, and it’s not about the people anyway. Cue bears!” (Vote via Twitter using #NNNTA_Alaska.)
The capital of Texas seduces any lucky soul who visits. And Darren Frei is one such admirer. Why? “Because it’s soooooo laid back, with some of this country’s best regional cuisine, coolest music venues, and quirkiest art galleries.” (Vote via Twitter using #NNNTA_Austin.)
“American excess personified,” says TripOut’s John Polly. “Vegas still mystifies with its license for thrills, and wins big with luxe hotels, stunning chef-powered restaurants, and a brazen, shameless charm. You might leave hungover, but at least you’ll have indulged.” (Vote via Twitter using #NNNTA_Vegas.)
Plum TV’s Mark Ellwood can’t get enough of this Midwest gem. “I love Minneapolis. It’s as Midwestern and All-American as Chicago but without the doughy niceness. And the art scene is truly amazing. Not just regional amazing, but top caliber.” (Vote via Twitter using #NNNTA_Minneapolis.)
The news has been spread. This consummate award-winner has still got it. “If it’s not in New York, it ain’t happenin’,” says travel writer Duane Wells. “It’s been true and it remains so. New York may not be quintessential America, but even a lot of Americans would like to think it is.” (Vote via Twitter using #NNNTA_NYC.)
Yes, we all love San Francisco. And for good reason. “ It’s still one of the most cultured cities in America,” offers Duane Wells. “A gorgeous foodie paradise where socialites, leather queens, political activists and internet nerds can all feel at home. That’s a stew you can’t help but savor.” (Vote via Twitter using #NNNTA_SanFran.)


John Polly is a former editor at NewNowNext. He now makes the magic happen at World of Wonder.