Publisher: Southern Living 

By Tara Massouleh McCay

Tara Massouleh McCay, News Writer for Southern Living


Published on October 28, 2022

The holidays are right around the corner, and that means it won't be long before we're ringing in the start of another new year. While you're setting your intentions and making resolutions for 2023, go ahead and add "travel more" to your list of to-dos. Let 2023 be a year of exploration and start right in your own backyard. From snow-capped mountains and rolling pastures to white-sand beaches and winding rivers, the South is filled with postcard-worthy destinations just waiting to be discovered. The best thing about traveling in the South? You don't have to break the bank or stray too far from home to find your version of paradise. Oh, and you'll always be able to order a glass of sweet tea. Our editors are itching to hit the open road and explore the beauty of the South, but the places they're dying to visit might surprise you. Here, we spill the beans on 12 Southern hidden gems at the top of our 2023 travel bucket lists.

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Macon, Georgia

Macon, Georgia Cherry Blossom Festival

Once a sleepy Southern town, this city of more than 150,000 is located smack-dab in the middle of Georgia and is predicted to be the center of attention come 2023. Our staff is particularly interested in visiting during cherry blossom season for the 41st anniversary of the city's Pinkest Party on Earth. D.C. is already famous for their bountiful blushing blooms, but did you know that Macon has more than 350,000 Yoshino cherry trees to D.C.'s 3,800?

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