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My extensive United States travel has brought me to 47 states and 20 National Parks, which also means that I’ve stayed in 100+ different hotels, Airbnbs, and hostels along the way.
Having this experience, I know how hit-or-miss booking accommodations can be. A property looks great in the photos, but only to discover otherwise when you arrive. Believe me, I’ve had my fair share of misses while crisscrossing America, but I’ve also had a ton of fantastic experiences as well. This is the first of a 4 part breakdown by region of the United States of lodging that I personally recommend.
Keep in mind that I tend to be a budget traveler, so some of these locations might not be a right fit for you. But if you’re anything like me, all you’re really looking for is a place to feel comfortable, safe, and pay a reasonable rate. Below is a list of places that meet this criteria. I only recommend places that I have personally stayed and would stay again.
Here is my list of great lodging options in the Southeast United States!
• Extended Stay America: if you’re planning on visiting Birmingham, consider this property located just 15 minutes from downtown. Unfamiliar with Extended Stay America? These hotels are especially designed for longer stays, with all rooms featuring a fully equipped kitchen. I found this Extended Stay America conveniently located to all of the major attractions of Birmingham.
Charleston, South Carolina
• Days Inn Mount Pleasant: I have stayed at this location for two of my Charleston visits and could not have been more happy. Located just across the Cooper River in Mount Pleasant, this Days Inn is close to all of the popular Charleston landmarks (only 1 mile from the Fort Sumter ferry), has very reasonable rates, and is a short drive to the downtown area.
• Notso Hostel: for a different kind of lodging in Charleston, consider the Notso Hostel. You can choose between dorms, private rooms and camping — all at an extremely affordable rate! This was my first hostel experience and I felt completely at ease in the clean and safe environment. If you’ve been unsure about staying at a hostel, this will be the perfect way to get your feet wet.
• Airbnb – Lexi & Blake: since staying at Lexi’s home during my Say Hello To America 2016 road trip, she and her husband now offer two brand new properties to travelers. Although I haven’t stayed at these particular locations, based on my previous experience, I can say without a doubt that you will have a fantastic stay at either of these locations. Plus, only $75 & $85 a night for the entire home? Come on!
Fayetteville, North Carolina
• Ramada Plaza Bordeaux: you really can’t go wrong with this hotel in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Just a few minutes from the downtown area, had a very friendly staff, and clean rooms. The entire hotel has been remodeled since my stay in 2013 and I was more than pleased then, so I can’t even imagine a stay at the Ramada Plaza Bordeaux now!
• Seralago Hotel & Suites: if you find yourself visiting Central Florida for attractions other than Disney, consider a stay at the Seralago Hotel in nearby Kissimmee. Even if you are in town for Disney World, the hotel is only 5 miles away. I particularly enjoyed the two outdoor heated pools, two hot tubs, and the poolside bar!
• Comfort Suites: technically located in Vidalia, Louisiana, this beautiful hotel and property is just across the Mississippi River from Natchez. I only spent one night here, but will definitely return during my next visit. If you’re visiting Natchez, book yourself a River View room at this comfortable Comfort Suites.
• La Quinta Inn: located on International Drive, this property is conveniently close to Universal Studios and within walking distance to many restaurants. The hotel is newly renovated, so that was a huge plus in my book!
• Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista: I don’t typically go for the ‘higher priced’ hotels, but I decided to treat myself during my first visit to Florida. I was greeted by a very friendly staff, enjoyed the in-hotel restaurant, and even got upgraded to a room that had a view of the fireworks over Epcot!
• Baymont Inn & Suites: great value, clean rooms, and conveniently located less than 15 minutes from the historic district. If you don’t mind being slightly outside the main tourist area, this hotel is for you.
• Motel 6 Midtown: I have stayed at this property twice and had pleasant experiences both times. No frills, but a great price for what tends to be an expensive area. Just a quick 15 minute drive to downtown Savannah.
• Country Inn & Suites: Headed to Colonial Williamsburg or Busch Gardens? I suggest Country Inn & Suites as your hotel of choice. Just over a mile from Busch Gardens and Colonial Williamsburg, this property was centrally located for my Christmas visit a few years ago.
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