12 Best U.S. Cities to Visit in July: Your Summer Travel Guide (+Photos)

July brings warm weather and the spirit of adventure to the United States, making it a prime time for you to explore and soak in the diverse experiences that the country has to offer. Whether you’re into sunny beaches, vibrant city streets, or outdoor festivals, there’s a place that fits the bill for your perfect summer getaway.

You might be looking to indulge in delicious seasonal seafood, catch a spectacular fireworks show, or simply enjoy the great outdoors. July’s long days and balmy nights create an ideal backdrop for making lasting memories. From coast to coast, the U.S. is dotted with destinations that come alive during this month, waiting for you to discover their unique charms.

1. Austin

If you’re plotting a July getaway, scoop up a spot in Austin, Texas. You’ll step into a city that thrives on live music, sitting at the heart of its summer buzz. Picture yourself on the Long Center lawn, soaking up free tunes from Austin’s top-tier and up-and-coming bands at the Drop-In Summer Concert Series.

Swing by Mohawk Austin to show some love for local venues. Mark your calendar for a fun family treat with Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” staged live for a magical evening. Don’t miss out on blending classic films and live music at the Do512 summer series—catch “Galaxy Quest” and “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” on select dates.

With food trucks aplenty, those hunger pangs while you explore won’t stand a chance. Every summer event here echoes Austin’s signature laid-back yet vibrant vibe, making it a stellar pick for your July jaunt.

2. Nashville


In July, Nashville’s music scene is buzzing. You can catch Beyonce at Nissan Stadium on the 15th and tap into the local emo and hardcore vibes at Sad Summer Fest. Baseball fans, you’re in luck—The Nashville Sounds have several home games that month. Looking for family fun? ‘The SpongeBob Musical’ is on till July 17, and after dark, the Night Visions event at the Nashville Zoo promises an adventure. For a milder outing, watch ‘The Wizard of Oz’ at Premiere 6 in Murfreesboro. Now, if you’re hunting for a laid-back evening, Pinewood Social offers dinner, drinks, and bowling away from the downtown rush.

3. Chicago

Chicago Riverwalk

If you’re hitting up the US in July, Chicago‘s the spot for some serious summer fun. Think outdoor festivals, live music, and foodie heaven with a side of art. Early in the month, swing by the Chicago Craft Beer Fest to taste what’s brewing in the Windy City. Art lovers, you won’t want to miss grabbing a unique piece at the Southport Art Fest.

Craving some tunes and BBQ? Get over to the Windy City Smokeout, where the smell of smoked meats fills the air and country jams get your boots tapping. And there’s no shortage of sports either—catch a Chicago Sky game or indulge in a classic Chicago hot dog while watching baseball. After the sun sets, mellow out at a Candlelight concert for a chill end to your busy days.

4. New York City

New York City

In July, New York City is alive with outdoor activities and events. You can catch movies like “The Sandlot” during the city’s summer film series. Enjoy the fresh scent of lavender at a farm on Long Island for a quick escape from the city bustle. If you’re into live music, you won’t want to miss free jazz concerts at Hell’s Kitchen, right by the Hudson River. The Thunderbird Annual Powwow in Queens offers a cultural experience with over 40 Native American nations sharing their traditions through dance and song. Plus, big names in music often have concerts in July – from rock to pop, there’s a show for every taste.

5. San Francisco

Learn a Bit of History

In July, San Francisco is a vibrant city to explore. You can catch live jazz at the Fillmore Jazz Festival or enjoy the Mosswood Meltdown, a festival known for its energetic atmosphere. Art and theater lovers should check out the Stanford Live Arts Festival or enjoy independent films at the San Francisco Frozen Film Festival. If you’re into nature and scenic views, consider a cruise around SF Bay or a visit to Alcatraz Island. San Francisco is also great for those who love to walk, with plenty of guided tours available. Plus, you shouldn’t miss the stunning fireworks display on the Fourth of July at the waterfront.

6. Seattle

Pioneer Square

In July, Seattle is buzzing with activities. You can enjoy free events like dance parties and outdoor movies. Check out the fireworks on the Fourth of July for some celebration. If music’s your thing, don’t miss the local music festivals happening around the city. For a chill evening, there’s Poliça at Neptune Theatre early in the month. Or, catch the timeless appeal of Shakespeare in the Park, happening at various outdoor spots. With long summer days, exploring Seattle’s cool neighborhoods and soaking up the lively atmosphere is a must.

7. Washington, D.C.

In July, Washington, D.C., shines with warm weather and lots of things to do. You can explore the iconic Lincoln Memorial or take a leisurely stroll around the Tidal Basin. This large pond is a great spot to unwind and is surrounded by a path just over 2 miles long. If you’re looking to escape the city bustle, the United States Botanic Garden offers a tranquil retreat full of greenery right on the National Mall. Also, sports fans may appreciate the Mubadala Citi DC Open, a pro tennis tournament held at the Rock Creek Park Tennis Center. Washington, D.C. packs plenty of history, culture, and recreation into your visit.

8. Boston


If you’re planning a trip in July, Boston is a spot you can’t skip. The city is buzzing with patriotic spirit, especially with the Fourth of July around the corner. Imagine walking the Freedom Trail, a path through historic sites that tell the story of America’s beginnings.

July in Boston also means beach days are in full swing. You’ve got places like Menemsha Beach, where you can relax on the white sands. And let’s not forget the grand Summer Pops Concerts. Picture enjoying live music as you kick back on a warm summer evening.

Finish the day with some fireworks over the River Charles. It’s a view that’s hard to beat, reflecting off the water while the city skyline lights up. Boston in July is a blend of history, relaxation, and entertainment, all set against the backdrop of a classic American summer.

9. Miami

Miami Beach

When you visit Miami in July, you’re stepping into a vibrant city buzzing with energy. Expect the weather to be on the warmer side, with average high temperatures around 89°F. It’s also the wet season, so don’t be surprised by frequent rain showers—they might just be the cool-down you need.

If you’re a fan of ‘The Office,’ you’re in luck. A fan event with some of the actors is scheduled to take place at the Miami Airport Convention Center from July 12-14. On top of that, Miami’s packed with summer events including music and food festivals. Even with the possibility of rain, Miami’s lure with its beaches and lively nightlife doesn’t wane. Remember to pack light clothes for the heat, and maybe an umbrella, just to be safe.

10. Portland


In July, Portland, Oregon, is alive with outdoor activities and cultural events that are perfect for your summer travels. You can walk through the Portland Japanese Garden, which spans 12 acres and showcases traditional Japanese landscaping. It’s a serene escape right in the city.

Hit the streets of downtown Portland where you might find unique sidewalk fairs. If you’re into a bit of rodeo action, Baker City isn’t far and offers bull riding and bronc riding experiences mid-July. Look out for festivals, including local music and activities for kids.

Don’t miss out on the outdoor shopping experience at Behind the Shoji, where you can get Japanese and Japanese-inspired items. If you’re around on July 2, join in Tanabata, the Star Festival, to get a taste of another culture’s celebration under the open sky.

11. Philadelphia


July is a prime time for you to experience Philly’s vibrant scene. Kick off the month with the Philadelphia Latino Arts & Film Festival. Immerse yourself in Latino culture through films and workshops, available until July 7. If you’re around mid-week, don’t miss Center City SIPS, where bars and restaurants offer great deals on drinks and appetizers every Wednesday. And while you’re in town, make sure to stop by the famed Reading Terminal Market for a taste of local flavors and fresh produce. Philadelphia’s blend of cultural events and culinary delights makes it a great city for your July travels.

12. San Diego

San Diego

When you visit San Diego in July, you’re in for great weather and a lot of fun. You can start with the Little Italy Summer Film Festival; they show movies outdoors and you can catch one for a small donation. If you love a good party, check out the Del Mar Racetrack Afterparty, it’s a real blast. Plus, San Diego Pride is in full swing this month, with events across the city for everyone to enjoy.

Want to feel the sand between your toes? La Jolla’s beaches are perfect this time of year. And if you’re into skating, the Hotel del Coronado sets up a roller rink that’s open through most of summer. Get ready to make some memories!

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