Here are some great ideas for a quick weekend in some of America’s southern cities.

Tuscaloosa, AL

People may argue that America’s Deep South is the heart of the country, and Alabama is a great state to start exploring when one needs a break from the wintery north. Tuscaloosa is a great city to start with due to its inexpensive hotels and relatively low tourist count. Football enthusiasts can easily enjoy the Paul W. Bryant Museum during the year and tour the University of Alabama campus as well as the Bama Theatre. Hotels that meet the budget and location include the Ambassador Inn and Suites Tuscaloosa and the Masters Inn Tuscaloosa.

Irving, TX

If one is looking for an authentic and not so touristy Texan city, Irving is the perfect destination. Because it’s not as famous as Dallas yet still nearby, costs are relatively low and travelers can enjoy quick access to Irving and the surrounding attractions. Aside from AT&T stadium, travelers can easily check out the Mustang Museum and the Dallas World Aquarium. Hotels such as Budget Host Inn Arlington, Hotel Las Colinas, and Embassy Suites Dallas are close to the action. Make sure to visit in the football off-season when costs will be lower than in the peak sport months.

Little Rock, AR

A fun almost-southern city that often gets overlooked by travelers, Little Rock is a gem in the Midwest and an entertaining yet inexpensive town. Historians and bookish travelers will enjoy a visit to one of the country’s best presidential libraries, the William J. Clinton Presidential Center and Park, as well as a tour of the state capitol. Hotels will stay relatively cheap due to fewer tourists, and accommodations can be found close to local attractions quite easily. Such hotels include the Comfort Inn West and the Courtyard Inn Little Rock West.

Ocean City, MD

Ocean City is a long strip on the east coast of Maryland that would be a fantastic place to live during the summer but not during the winter’s harsh blizzards. While not too popular for sightseeing as it is for vacation-goers trying to maintain their little secret while everyone else goes to Florida, prices will skyrocket during the warmer months as visitors enjoy the beaches. A popular accommodation is the Atlantic Hotel while other options include the Holiday Inn Ocean City and Coastal Palms Inn and Suites. Attractions include Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Odditorium and one of the best boardwalks in the country.

Memphis, TN

For the musically-appreciative tourist, there aren’t too many cities in the south better for a visit thanMemphis. Home to Rock and Roll as well as the Blues, visitors can take a tour of Sun Studio where many greats birthed legendary music and explore the bars, restaurants, and shops of Beale Street. While it’s not as huge a tourist destination as New York, Memphis offers year round festivals and activities so prices will still be on the higher side. Specific recommend hotels to keep pricing down include the Motel 6 West Memphis, Journey Inn, and Econo Lodge.

This post originally appeared on Samantha En Route’s “5 Great Hipmunk Hotels in the South” on January 26, 2016. 

Photo by J. Bo from