Where Do You Celebrate Thanksgiving? A New Survey Says Atlanta Is the Best City to Visit for the Holiday

Find out more top cities to celebrate Thanksgiving in, the most popular holiday foods, and how many Americans plan to host their own festivities this year.

Thanksgiving is just days away, and that means the countdown is on to the big meal and family gatherings. While you can enjoy this day of gratitude anywhere, per The New York Times, WalletHub shared the 10 best and worst places in the United States to celebrate based on five categories. "Celebrations and traditions" was based on the amount of community celebrations, holiday stores, and internet-related searches, "cost and affordability" included the local price of turkey, trimmings, and the amount of affordable restaurants and hotels, "safety and accessibility" featured the vaccination rates, crime, pedestrian and auto safety, flight delays, and traffic, "giving thanks" included volunteer opportunities and charitable organizations and contributions, and "weather" was factored by the temperature and conditions on Thanksgiving in comparison to the national average. Atlanta, Georgia, topped the list as the best location for Thanksgiving festivities, as it ranks first in celebrations, traditions, and giving thanks. Orlando, Florida, came in second based on its third place ranking in celebrations and traditions and 11th place ranking in weather.

Other top cities to visit during the Thanksgiving holiday? Scottsdale, Arizona, which came in fourth in celebrations and traditions and ninth in affordability; Miami, Florida, which came in second in celebrations and traditions and 29th in weather; and Raleigh, North Carolina, which came in third in affordability and sixth in safety and accessibility. As for where you might not want to go this Thanksgiving? Albuquerque, New Mexico, topped the list for worst places to spend Thanksgiving since it ranked 99th in safety and accessibility and 91st in giving thanks. Toledo, Ohio, came in second based off of its 95th ranking in weather and 94th ranking in celebrations and traditions. Other worst cities included Lubbock, Texas, which came in 97th in safety and accessibility and 89th affordability; Kansas City, Missouri, which came in 88th in celebrations and traditions and 87th in safety and accessibility; and Stockton, California, which came in 98th in giving thanks and 96th affordability.

man placing thanksgiving turkey on table surrounded by family
skynesher / Getty Images

This year also marks a record-breaking year in terms of hosting. According to the study of 2,045 consumers conducted by LendingTree, 47 percent of people are planning on welcoming guests for the holiday, which is up from 41 percent in 2020 and 33 percent in 2019. Prep work is a big factor for hosts who plan to put on the festivities, as the average American is spending $392 and nearly 10 hours preparing for the feast this year. The survey found that Millennials will pay the most ($461.20 on average) and baby boomers will expect to spend the least ($232.40 on average).

When it comes down to the meal, there are also some preferences people have for their dinners. In a survey conducted The Vacationer, which polled 1,092 adults across the United States, 29.92 percent of people disliked cranberry sauce. It may be surprising to some, but the food that ranked second for worst Thanksgiving food was actually turkey, as 28.09 percent of respondents noted that they don't enjoy this common holiday poultry. To follow: green bean casserole (24.61 percent), sweet potatoes and yams (24.25 percent), stuffing and dressing (23.42 percent), coleslaw (21.68 percent), ham (21.23 percent), pumpkin pie (20.77 percent), mashed potatoes (17.57 percent), macaroni and cheese (14.73 percent), corn (13.82 percent), and carrots (12.08 percent).

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