10 dream vacations that can save you a surprising amount of money (2023)

The phrase "dream vacation" conjures up images of desert trekking safaris, luxurious Disney accommodations and the obligatory selfies in front of the Eiffel Tower.

All of these adventures are worthwhile endeavors, but none of them come cheap.

If you wantavoid wasting moneyunnecessarily consider venturing off the beaten path. Choosing one of the following alternatives can still provide you with a memorable vacation at a potentially more affordable price.

Earn rewards and travel more while spending lessThe best travel credit cards.

La Fortuna and Quepos, Costa Rica

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You don't have to travel to Iceland or Bali to experience natural hot springs or stunning beaches. Instead, save on airfare and head to Costa Rica.

In this haven of biodiversity, English is widely spoken, and the US dollar goes widely and is accepted almost everywhere.

Consider starting in the Arenal Volcano (La Fortuna) region, which has plenty of affordable accommodation. Then drive down the coast to Quepos, home of Manuel Antonio National Park. There you can walk on the beach and see monkeys, sloths, macaws and more.

St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Florida

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Everyone thinks of Orlando or Miami when they think of a Florida vacation, but miss a more budget-friendly secret: St. Petersburg/Clearwater.

Famous for its white sandy beaches, this area also offers a diverse dining scene and affordable accommodation once you get off the beach.

This is also a great base for day trips, such as a short drive to Tampa's Busch Gardens, up the coast to scenic Tarpon Springs, or just inland to one of Florida's pristine natural springs. Don't forget your kayak.

Budapest, Hungary

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Western Europe may attract the most tourists, but Eastern Europe also has some real gems. This includes Budapest, Hungary, a stunning capital on the banks of the Danube.

Spend hours walking to the Chain Bridge, the famous Parliament building or Heroes' Square.

Not to be missed is the Hospital in the Rock, an underground bunker that is now a museum.


Sean Xu/Adobe 10 dream vacations that can save you a surprising amount of money (4)

Switzerland has arguably the best skiing in the world, but don't sleep on the dream ski vacation you can take in Colorado.

Places like Vail, Beaver Creek, Telluride and Aspen are known for their world class slopes and skiing.

Colorado has more to offer than just skiing, the restaurants and shopping in Denver are amazing. So does the growing recreational cannabis industry. Attractions such as natural hot springs and the Garden of the Gods are not far from Denver.

All of this is much more accessible - and closer - than the Alps.

Cartagena, Colombia

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Cartagena might not be the first destination that springs to mind when planning a Caribbean vacation, but this colorful city has come a long way in recent years.

The accessible venue has plenty of local flair. The walled center of the city is even a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Spend your days island hopping and exploring while enjoying beautiful beaches, sampling local cuisine, and visiting attractions like Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas, a castle that dates back centuries. In the evening, visit the Getsemaní district to explore the famous graffiti art.

From Vegas, Nevada

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As long as you're not bad at gambling, Las Vegas is a real eye-catcher for budget travelers. You can book package deals that save money on accommodation and follow the many tips on how to get free stuff - how to get free alcohol while gambling.

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However, there is much more to it than hedging your casino wagers. Along the avenue you will find many restaurants, shows and activities. If you are flexible, same-day show tickets are sold cheaply at the airport or on the street. And entry to the Pinball Hall of Fame is free.


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A trip to Paris is a worthy bucket list item, but so is Montreal, a city with plenty of French flair.

Those who enjoy exploring places on foot will love it here in the warmer months. Traveling to Quebec will also save you money, thanks to cheaper airfares and accommodation than France.

Of course, the Notre-Dame Basilica is a must-see, with its stunning architecture and expansive rooms. This is the Montreal Tower, the tallest leaning tower in the world. Be sure to grab a bagel here, as the quality rivals New York City for its bang for the buck.

pro tip: Don't forget to pack one of theThe best travel credit cardsfor your next vacation. Use of this card may generate cashback or other perks.

San Juan Porto Rico

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You don't need a passport to visit this dreamy Caribbean island, which may be small but still offers a lot for less. Start with a stop in Old San Juan, the historic heart of the capital.

When you're done traversing the checkered floors, enjoy window shopping and dinner at the Condado.

If you want to explore more of the island, you can surf in Rincon, hike in El Yunque National Forest and paddle in the famous bioluminescent bay on Vieques Island.

Big Sur, Kalifornian

Maks_Ershov/Adobe 10 dream vacations that can save you a surprising amount of money (9)

It's hard to find a more dreamy camper vacation than Big Sur, California. The views from this small, winding town off Highway 1 are some of the most breathtaking in the world, filled with rugged cliffs, blue ocean water, and even a waterfall or two.

Save money by skipping hotels. There are several parks you can pitch your tent at, including scenic Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. Just make sure you book six months in advance as places fill up quickly.

Pro tip: you haven't lived until you've had dinner at Ambrosia Burger in Nepenthe, high above the moody Pacific Ocean.

In the state of New York

wxs2102/Adobe 10 dream vacations that can save you a surprising amount of money (10)

New York City is truly an iconic travel destination, but it's hard to do on a budget. Luckily, upstate New York has all the amenities of a dream vacation.

Mountain lovers will fall in love with the Catskills and Shawangunk Ridge.

While Woodstock is the main attraction on the map in this area, towns like New Paltz and Phenicia offer rustic charm in the shade of towering hills at a more affordable price. And you don't have to stay at the Mohonk Mountain House to walk through its iconic maze.

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In summary

Chan2545/Adobe 10 dream vacations that can save you a surprising amount of money (11)

Many people dream of going on safari in Africa or visiting Jerusalem at least once. However, these valuable destinations often cost good money.

If you want to give extraIncrease your bank account, are you looking for a dream vacation close to home that is easy on the wallet.

You might not even need to get on a plane to enjoy it as many amazing sights are within driving distance.

More from FinanceBuzz:

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  • 9 Easy Ways to Make Up to $200 Extra/Day

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What is a dream vacation example? ›

My dream vacation would be a tour around the world. I would like to spend time visiting places that have had an impact on history and our way of life today. I'd also like to visit places that have interesting histories, places, etc. For example, I'd like to visit Rome, Egypt and Machu Picchu.

What is the best dream vacation? ›

Dream destinations for your travel wish-list
  • Nepal.
  • Cinque Terre, Italy.
  • Islands of Tahiti, French Polynesia.
  • Patagonia, Chile and Argentina.
  • Georgia (the country)
  • South Island, New Zealand.
  • Iceberg Alley, Newfoundland.
  • Dominica.
Feb 18, 2021

How do you make a dream vacation? ›

The Art of Planning a Wish-List Vacation: 8 Steps to Make Your Dream Trip a Reality
  1. Brainstorm and research. ...
  2. Make a vision board. ...
  3. Prioritize your top trip pick. ...
  4. Create a budget and a timeline. ...
  5. Hunt for travel deals. ...
  6. Find “app-spiration” from mobile apps. ...
  7. Book in advance (when necessary). ...
  8. Be flexible.

What is your dream vacation essay? ›

I would like to spend my dream vacation at a place where I can experience the beauty of the Himalayas and breathe some fresh air free from pollution while traveling along the tracks amidst flora and fauna. For me, an ideal place for vacation is Pelling situated in Sikkim, India.

What are the three types of vacation? ›

Here is a guide of different types of vacation you can have;
  • Staycation. Do you feel that you need a break but don't have enough coins to pay for a vacation? ...
  • Sports Vacation. ...
  • Volunteer Vacation. ...
  • Beach Vacation. ...
  • Cruise Vacation. ...
  • Camping vacation. ...
  • Road Trip Vacation. ...
  • Sightseeing Type of Vacation.
May 17, 2021

What is the number 1 vacation spot? ›

Share this article
World's Best Places to VisitBest Places to Visit in the USA
1. South Island, New Zealand1. Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
2. Paris2. Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
3. Maui, Hawaii3. Yosemite National Park, California
4. Bora Bora, French Polynesia4. Maui, Hawaii
15 more rows
May 24, 2022

How do you save money on dream vacation? ›

Your dream vacation shouldn't remain a fantasy.
Here's how to save money to fund your next holiday and turn your bucket-list adventure into reality down the road.
  1. Set Goals. ...
  2. Pay Yourself First. ...
  3. Use Your Smartphone. ...
  4. Resist Impulsive Buys. ...
  5. Ask For Discounts. ...
  6. Plan A Housing Swap. ...
  7. Put Your Skills To Use. ...
  8. Sign Up For a Newsletter.

What is your ideal vacation and why? ›

Answer: As per studies an 8-day vacation is said to be an ideal vacation. It gives the person a complete break and helps in refreshing their mind. But it also depends on person to person for how many days a person wants to take a break from his/her daily activities.

How do you save on dream vacation? ›

8 Ways to Bank Extra Money for Your Trip
  1. Pick Up a Side Job. ...
  2. Sell Your Stuff. ...
  3. Make Your Credit Card Work for You. ...
  4. Cut Back on Your Monthly Food Budget. ...
  5. Use Your Car to Make a Little Cash on the Side. ...
  6. Make Money With Your Home. ...
  7. Spend Less on Your Workout. ...
  8. Find Deals on Outdoor Equipment.
Feb 21, 2023

How do you spend your vacation 10 lines? ›

Holidays are best to give our mind and body some rest from everyday life. I spent my holidays by attending dancing, painting and karate classes. During the holidays I also get to travel with my family and friends. Every student feels very happy throughout the holidays.

How can a vacation change your life? ›

You'll learn about their daily struggles, the things that bring them joy and the value they place on family and friends. Your interactions and heightened understanding will give you a greater appreciation of the life you have, a new sense of wonder, and empathy for other people and cultures.

How will I use my vacation essay 100 words? ›

I spent most of the time reading books and practicing dance and karate. My uncle's family gave us a surprise visit, and I felt very happy by meeting with my little cousin. We went to a movie and a nearby park. My mother organized a kid's party on my terrace; we all enjoyed it a lot.

How do you spend a good vacation? ›

Handy Ideas To Spend Your Summer Vacation At Home
  1. Take advantage of online entertainment: You can do a lot online these days. ...
  2. Be a tourist in your own city: Every city has its own charm. ...
  3. Take up a craft: ...
  4. Volunteer with a charity: ...
  5. Start that project: ...
  6. Spend time with your friends: ...
  7. Get into a sport: ...
  8. Learn a new skill:

How can I surprise my vacation? ›

13 Ways to Surprise Someone with a Trip
  1. Puzzle.
  2. Treasure hunt.
  3. Daily riddle.
  4. QR code.
  5. Box in a box in a box.
  6. Hide the ticket in another gift.
  7. Write a message on a cake.
  8. Ask a friend or family member for help.

What is a great vacation? ›

Some of the top tourist destinations in the U.S. include Maui, New York City, San Francisco, Washington DC, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, New Orleans, Miami and Scottsdale. If you have time and money for a longer vacation, travel to Waikiki and surf at sunset at the famous Waikiki Beach or explore scenic national parks.

What is a mini vacation? ›

A short or minor vacation.

How do I plan a simple vacation? ›

How to Plan a Trip on a Budget
  1. Plan your trip budget. This is the most important step and will affect the rest of your vacation planning process. ...
  2. Choose the top places you'd like to go. ...
  3. Research flights and dates. ...
  4. Look for deals. ...
  5. Start saving up. ...
  6. Create your itinerary. ...
  7. Go and enjoy your trip!
Oct 31, 2022

What is the safest vacation spot in us? ›

Hawaii is considered a safe destination for U.S. citizens and one of the best places to travel in the country during COVID. Why travel to Hawaii – There are a number of reasons why you should travel to Hawaii.

Where do the richest vacation? ›

Popular Vacation Spots For The Rich And Famous
  • Los Cabos, Mexico. Craig Melville/Shutterstock. ...
  • Turtle Island, Fiji. Ekaterina Kuzmenkova/Shutterstock. ...
  • St. Barthelemy, French West Indies. ...
  • Dominican Republic, Caribbean Islands. ...
  • Dubai, United Arab Emirates. ...
  • Lake Como, Italy. ...
  • Aspen, United States. ...
  • Bora Bora, French Polynesia.
Nov 29, 2022

What is the funnest place on earth? ›

  • Spain. #1 in Fun. #16 in Best Countries Overall. ...
  • Brazil. #2 in Fun. #27 in Best Countries Overall. ...
  • Italy. #3 in Fun. #14 in Best Countries Overall. ...
  • Mexico. #4 in Fun. #33 in Best Countries Overall. ...
  • Thailand. #5 in Fun. #28 in Best Countries Overall. ...
  • Greece. #6 in Fun. ...
  • Australia. #7 in Fun. ...
  • Costa Rica. #8 in Fun.

Where is the nicest place in America? ›

Nicest Places in America 2022
  • 2021 Winner: The Quality Inn.
  • 2022 Winner: Coulterville, California. Courtesy Ahmed Alwan.
  • 2021 Winner: The Quality Inn.
  • 2022 Winner: Coulterville, California. Courtesy Ahmed Alwan.

What is the hardest place to travel to? ›

We are talking about Tristan da Cunha, a part of the British overseas territory Saint Helena and a true sub-tropical heaven. The island sits in between South Africa and South America, 1,491 miles (2,400 kilometres) from the former and 2,088 miles (3,360 km) from the latter.

What is the most relaxing town in America? ›

1. Alexandria, Virginia. Next door to the nation's capital, Alexandria wears the crown as the most relaxing place to visit in the United States.

Where can I go to clear my mind? ›

Places To Be Alone With Your Thoughts
  • Library.
  • Café or Coffee Shop.
  • Movie Theater.
  • Hotel.
  • Museum.
Mar 15, 2022

Can a vacation save your life? ›

Improved physical health

Stress can contribute to heart disease and high blood pressure. For both men and women, the New York Times reported, taking a vacation every two years compared to every six will lessen the risk of coronary heart disease or heart attacks.

How much money you save for your vacation? ›

Some people are really focused on vacations. That's where they want to spend their money and that's great. However, a general good guideline to look at is 7% of your take-home income. So let's just say that you're taking home $4,000/month⏤that would mean your annual vacation budget would be around $3,300.

Where should I put money to save for vacation? ›

You might also want to look for an account that limits your ATM withdrawals so you're not tempted to touch the money before vacation time. A high-yield savings account is a great place for vacation savings because it pays a higher yield than a standard savings account.

What is your dream place to travel? ›

Andaman Island in the Bay of Bengal always tops the list of dream places to visit in India, given that it is fabled among travellers for its stunning beaches, underwater marvel and primeval location.

What is your dream destination for a trip vacation and why? ›

My dream travel destination is to go to Hawaii because of its beautiful paradise and its other amazing features. Hawaii has many wonderful places to visit and it is a place where lots of people like to go to. First of all, I really would love to go swimming or even surfing at one of Hawaii's beaches.

When you dream about going on a trip? ›

You're experiencing some kind of movement in your life.

Along with a craving for freedom, travel dreams can also suggest there's some sort of movement or momentum happening in your life. "Traveling usually represents forward movement—progress in some area," notes professional dream interpreter Lauri Loewenberg.

What are some popular dreams? ›

5 Common Dreams and Their Interpretations
  • Falling. Falling is the most common recurring dream people have, according to a 2022 survey of 2,007 Americans conducted by mattress and sleep product company, Amerisleep. ...
  • Being Chased. ...
  • Losing Teeth. ...
  • Cheating. ...
  • Naked in Public.
Dec 5, 2022


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