Last updated: 04:55 PM ET, Fri July 03 2015

The Top Under-the-Radar Fourth of July Destinations

Destination & Tourism | Patrick Clarke | July 03, 2015

The Top Under-the-Radar Fourth of July Destinations

Millions of Americans will take to the road and sky this Fourth of July weekend, and while many will head for beloved U.S. cities like Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, and New York where the nation's birthday will be celebrated with a world-class fireworks display, there's no shortage of destinations that promise to deliver a one-of-a-kind July 4 experience. 

Here we'll highlight five of the most underrated Fourth of July destinations. 

Flagstaff, Arizona

Just over an hour's drive south of the Grand Canyon, Flagstaff is the ideal place to make a Fourth of July pitstop. 

Every year the city hosts a parade through downtown that's accompanied by an impressive fireworks display. But the celebration doesn't end there. There's also a performance by the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra and an arts and crafts show. 

Let's just say that there's a reason Flagstaff won Travel + Leisure's Independence Day medal of honor last year. 

Nearby Attractions: Walnut Canyon National Monument, Lowell Observatory, Museum of Northern Arizona

Boulder, Colorado

A few hundred miles northeast of Flagstaff sits Boulder, Colorado, a city nestled in the Rocky Mountains and practically overflowing with Fourth of July activities.

Like Flagstaff, Boulder hosts a fun run each year, in addition to boasting a bike rodeo and beer garden for adults. If you're looking for fireworks, head to the University of Colorado's Folsom Field for an epic display. 

After all, the unparalleled scenery is sure to make for a special backdrop. 

Nearby Attractions: Flatirons, Eldorado Canyon, Boulder Creek Path

Sonoma, California

Sonoma, California, is renowned for its wine, but if you're visiting for the Fourth of July, you'll quickly learn that the city has much more to offer.

Like other cities across the U.S., Sonoma plays host to a parade and fireworks every July 4. But there's also a carnival that pops up each summer featuring local food and beverages in addition to games for the entire family.

This year, visitors can help Sonoma celebrate the 100th anniversary of its beloved Grammar School. 

Nearby Attractions: Sonoma Valley, Simraceway Performance Driving Center, Sonoma Plaza 

Oakland, Maryland

Situated just a few miles away from popular tourist spot Deep Creek Lake and the Maryland-West Virginia border, Oakland is the No. 1 town in America for fall colors and one of the country's most underrated Fourth of July destinations.

The celebration starts early in this small town, with a concert and fireworks display kicking off on July 3 at Broadford Park along the shore of Broadford Lake. 

You can also head over to Deep Creek Lake on July 3 for the Lion's Boat Parade. Plus, July 4 is a free fishing day across the state of Maryland so travelers won't have to worry about acquiring a license. 

Nearby Attractions: Deep Creek Lake, Swallow Falls State Park, Garrett County Historical Museum

Southbury, Connecticut

There's a good chance you'll be able to see fireworks in any city across the U.S. on July 4, but 3-D fireworks? 

You'll find them over Lake Quassapaug near Southbury, Connecticut, where you can purchase a pair of 3-D glasses for just $1. Beyond the unique firework display, the nearly 230-year-old town has history dating back to the Revolutionary War.

The King's Land area and Main Street's Linconln Tree date back to the 18th and 19th century respectively.

Nearby Attractions: Kettletown State Park, Quassy Amusement Park and Waterpark

For more information on United States

For more Destination & Tourism News


You may use your Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook information, including your name, photo & any other personal data you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on Click here to learn more.

Live Aqua Cancun: All-Inclusive Luxury in Paradise

Hotels & Resorts