Best States To Vacation In Summer 2023

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Best States To Vacation In Summer 2023

As families across the country draw up their summer agenda, many will try to include some sort of vacation in their plans. When it comes to timing, America's favorite month to do some traveling is June, followed closely by May and July, respectively. 

Given that these are generally the hottest months across the nation — it's safe to assume that anyone heading on vacation would like some typical summer weather to go with it! And despite the temptation to go abroad, there are a variety of exciting trips that people can take all over the country. From heading away to catch a Major League Baseball game or a preseason NFL game, to deciding to explore a new patch of natural beauty — the possibilities are endless.

With this in mind, the data research team at decided to work out which states are the best to vacation in this summer. They did this by analyzing five different data points to create a final vacation score for each state. These data points are: accommodation availability, accommodation affordability, crime rate (lower is obviously better!), levels of sunlight and number of attractions (national historical monuments and state parks) in relation to each state’s size. 

What Are The Best States For A Summer Break?


When all the different factors are considered, Virginia is the best state to vacation in this summer

While not being the nationwide pinnacle in any of the categories analyzed, it performed well across all five — particularly in terms of crime rate, accommodation availability and number of attractions. This all culminated in a Summer Vacation Score of 68.6 out of 100.

Vacation In Virginia For A Great Summer Stay


Florida isn’t too far behind in the runner-up spot (No. 2), with a final score of 66.9. The Sunshine state lives up to its nickname, with one of the best sunlight scores in the nation. It also tops the rankings in terms of accommodation availability, with over 11,000 different accommodation options available for the analyzed week period in the peak June season. 

At No. 3 is Illinois. Like the leader, Illinois doesn’t top any of the measured metrics, but still ranks in at least the top half for all of them. The five graded sections resulted in a final Summer Vacation Score of 66.5 out of a possible 100, with the home of Chicago performing best in the accommodation affordability category.

Georgia (66.1) and Ohio (63.6) are in No. 4 and No. 5, respectively. Georgia was towards the top of the rankings in terms of accommodation availability, and Ohio has some of the most affordable summer accommodations available this summer.

Which States Have The Most Budget-Friendly Bedrooms?


One crucial part of any summer trip away is accommodations (unless you own a camper van or are a real camping enthusiast!). Although some states have more rooms and properties to rent than others, one thing that’s even more important for most families is the affordability of that accommodation

North Dakota leads the country in terms of affordable summer vacation accommodation. Over one week in the middle of June, 93.7% of the available lettings on popular site were priced at $200 per night or less — meaning it could be the best destination for families primarily focused on a budget-friendly break away (100/100 Accommodation Affordability Score).

The second most affordable state for summer vacation lodging is Kansas. Traveling to Kansas shouldn’t cost too much this high season, with almost 90% of its 455 available accommodation options costing $200 or less a day. 

Iowa is third in the affordability states. With a similar number of available options to Kansas, Iowa’s places are slightly pricier in comparison, with 84.7% below the $200 per night threshold. 


  • decided to rank the Best States To Vacation In This Summer by ranking these five points:
    • Accommodation Availability: The number of two-room accommodation options on for two adults and two children (ages 10 and 12 years old), from 06/11/23 - 06/18/23.
    • Accommodation Affordability: The percentage of the above search results that are $200 per night or less.
    • Crime Rate: The crime rate per 100,000 residents from World Population Review - with the states with the lowest crime rates having the highest scores (inverted).
    • Average Sunlight: The annual sunlight per state, measured in (kJ/m^2) from Stacker.
    • Landmarks and State Parks: The number of National Historical Landmarks and State Parks in each state - taken from National Park Service and State Parks.
  • All five data points were measured out of 100 using the PERCENTRANK formula, and an average was found to create a ‘Final/ Summer Vacation Joker Score’. States were ranked from highest to lowest final score.
    • All data was collected and corrected on 04/26/2023.

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Peter Welch

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