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Festival Season Arrives

Spring is in full bloom across the country, and cities are luring their residents out of hibernation with festivals of every kind, from flowers to food to film. Often geared toward locals, these fests are a great way to experience a destination as if you live there. Here are a few of our favorites, with deals on hotels nearby to rest your head after the festivities:

  • San Francisco: The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival is the second largest in the country after D.C. Taking place in the city’s Japantown neighborhood, most of the events are free and include art exhibits and demonstrations, dance and music performances, and the Grand Parade on April 22. The Holiday Inn Golden Gateway in Nob Hill -- less than a mile from the festivities -- has rooms available for $89 per night.
  • Myrtle Beach: Check out the third annual Coastal Uncorked Food, Wine & Spirits Festival April 22-29 in downtown Myrtle Beach. This weeklong event features tasting tents, a brewery tent, food demos and a chef’s competition on the last day, as well as three-course tasting menus at area restaurants. Store your leftovers in the fridge at the Dayton House Resort, where rooms are $79-$89 per night.
  • Orlando: On display through May 20, the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival features Disney character topiaries, live entertainment and presentations by gardening experts from Epcot and HGTV. Stay at WorldQuest Resort in a two-bedroom suite for $89 per night in May or at CoCo Key Hotel and Water Resort starting at $69 midweek.
  • Holland, Mich.: See more than 6 million tulips in bloom at the Tulip Time Festival in the Dutch-inspired town of Holland, Mich., May 5-12. Chicagoans can hop a bus for $99 on the first day of the fest and check out the craft fair, quilt show, live Dutch dancers and fireworks display.
  • Atlanta: The beginning of each May marks the beginning of the city's beloved Jazz Festival, featuring local, national and international acts performing at venues across the city all month long. Save your travel budget for recordings of your new favorite acts with this $79-per-night offer that puts music lovers close to the action.

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Tips by

Deal Expert, Chicago
Thursday, April 12, 2012
See more Tips from
Erica Wacker