Everyone goes to Florida or somewhere along the country’s coastline to celebrate the sunny days of summer, but you don’t have to go to Pensacola or Miami to have a great summer vacation.  There are several underrated spots to explore around the U.S. that will keep you and the family busy this summer.

Traveling away from the beaten path of the rest of the nation’s summer travelers may offer a new perspective on your idea of vacation.  Check out a quick description of a few of the less popular (but not less awesome) spots for summer fun, and start planning an adventure your family will never forget.  

Princeton, New Jersey

The well-known college town has more to offer than a beautiful, Ivy League, campus.  There is an art museum, a theatre, and more than one state park to enjoy as well. This local Princeton law firm’s website describes the city in the most eloquent of ways.  

Visit the Terhune Orchards and Winery, and pick up some of the local flavor of Princeton during your visit.  The orchard allows visitors to pick their own apples and pumpkins, and pet farm animals. If you’re traveling with the whole family, they’ll be no disappointment on this stop.

Assateague, Maryland & Virginia

Dreams of wild horses running along a shoreline of crashing, white waves no longer have to be a dream when you visit the coast of Assateague Island.  Located on a barrier reef between Virginia and Maryland, Assateague offers endless opportunity to marvel at the beauty of the local wildlife.

There are kayaking adventures, cruise tours, and many other activities to keep you and the whole family stimulated for the length of your visit.  The local folklore of the island suggests that an old colonial shipwreck brought the wild horses to the coast many years ago.  

Devil’s Tower, Wyoming

Devise your own personal “close encounter” at the site of this alien-looking rock formation.  Used in the famed film “Close Encounter of the Third Kind,” Devil’s Tower provides an excellent stop-off on the way to Mount Rushmore.  The site also offers nightly screenings of the movie, so don’t miss out on one of the best pit-stops ever.

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Albuquerque is probably not the first destination that hits your mind when you think of summer vacation, but there are several surprising aspects to learn about this sizzling stop on the map.  

For the beer connoisseur, Albuquerque offers a variety of fine breweries and excellent local eateries.  Enjoy sunsets like you’ve never seen them before, and come back in the fall when the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is in full swing.  There’s nothing like a sky full of more than 500 brilliantly colored hot air balloons.