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Hotel Deals for Anchorage
Best Western Golden Lion Hotel
Jul 16 - Jul 16, 2019
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$ 169.15
$ 67.15

Big city vacations are great for their culture-packed itineraries and sleek—albeit expensive—hotels. But if you’re looking for something a little more relaxing, considering visiting these small American towns for a retro, charming vacation vibe that will make you slooooow down and enjoy the small stuff in life.

RELATED: 7 fun, interactive family apps for the modern road trip

Nittany Lion Inn in Pennsylvania

Photo courtesy of Nittany Lion Inn

State College, PA

State College might not feel like a super small town when Penn State is in session. But arrive during the summer months (a must), and you’ll have sights like the Boal Mansion Museum to yourself: Check out many of Christopher Columbus’ personal items, including his desk, and snap a few shots of US presidential artifacts. And while every classic small town boasts an ice-cream shoppe, this one has the Penn State Berkey Creamery, where the cream is fresh from Penn’s cows. Add in a few hiking trails, a free arboretum and a farm-to-table cocktail bar, and this is our dream small town.
Charming place to stay: Centrally located and walking distance to everything, the Nittany Lion Inn is a quaint inn where your room is deadly silent (that’s a good thing—we took the best nap ever here), plus there’s free coffee and apples.

Harbor at Homer, Alaska

Harbor at Homer, Alaska

Homer, AK

This is such a true Alaskan town, that you may find yourself repeating, “When in Alaska,” again and again. That’s why you should skip the massive Alaskan cruise ships and go directly to Homer, where you can spend a day halibut fishing (there are tons of inexpensive fishing charters available); take a bear viewing tour (get up close and personal with those adorable grizzlies); check out the Salty Dawg Saloon for a true dive bar (built in 1897 and even open in winter); and wander through the Homer Farmer’s Market (you may not find an almond milk latte here, but you will be able to snag locally caught halibut tacos).
Charming place to stay: The Homer Inn and Spa is right on the beach, and they’ll provide a grill for all those fish you may catch (when in Alaska, right?).

 Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs, AR

No stop lights? Check. All streets cross at odd angles? Yup. Downtown is listed on the National Register of Historic Places? Check! In this super cool small town, you can visit the nation’s largest rescue facility for big cats at Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge and marvel at Thorncrown Chapel, a glass church built in the woods. Eureka Springs attracts outdoor types, as Lake Leatherwood City Park sits on more than 1,600 acres and is one of the biggest parks in the country. It has an 85-acre lake for fishing and boating, along with hiking and biking trails.
Charming place to stay: The Crescent Hotel is charming for some, scary for others. It’s supposedly haunted. Very haunted. So much so, that they offer ghost tours. The hotel originally opened in 1886, and apparently, some guests still haven’t checked out. This hotel has been featured on Ghost Hunters and My Ghost Story.

ALSO: Small towns, big rewards—join Orbitz Rewards to earn travel dollars on all these hotels and more!

Leavenworth, Washington

Leavenworth, Washington

Leavenworth, WA

Visit this tiny town enveloped by the Cascade Mountains in Washington (pop. 2,000), and you may be confused: It looks exactly like Germany. There are Alpine-style buildings, a Nutcracker Museum (way cooler than it sounds) featuring modern and Roman nutcrackers), wineries and one of the biggest Oktoberfest celebrations in the US.
Charming place to stay: The beautiful Abendblume B&B resembles an Alpine chalet with its flower-adorned balcony. It also serves incredible European-style breakfasts (think cheese, fruit, meats, etc). Each room overlooks hills and pretty landscaping, which make it a very romantic spot to visit.

El Monte Sagrado Living Resort and Spa

Photo courtesy of El Monte Sagrado Living Resort and Spa

Taos, NM

Deep within the Sangre de Cristo Mountains sits this tiny desert town, which serves as a magnet for artists and writers. It manages to squish more than 80 art galleries within its architecturally-rich boundaries. During the winter months, skiing is a big deal, while the music and art scene is on point at any time of year. Taos’ days are slow and filled with artists attempting to capture the light and the beauty of its natural surroundings.
Charming place to stay: At El Monte Sagrado Living Resort & Spa, it’s all about the apres-ski. They have ski storage, a spa tub and a totally relaxing resort bar. Translation: This feels like a sanctuary, albeit a very New Mexico one. Look out the window, and you’ll see the desert, the waterfalls and the mountains. BYO dog.

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Tagged: Alaska, New Mexico

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Danielle Braff

Danielle Braff

Danielle lives in Chicago with her family, two cats and a dog, but she's constantly researching her next vacation. Check out her other articles at

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