It doesn’t matter where you are, every city has at least a few bars for a solid night out. But, everyone knows the title of a truly great drinking city goes well beyond having a few good cocktail, beer, and wine options. A great drinking city is one that is packed with so many different kinds of drinking experiences (day drinking, booze cruises, tailgating pregaming and many more) all in a space that's easy to navigate and endlessly explorable! From coast to coast, the United States is packed with so many excellent towns for people who like to take their experiences with a grain of salt- so much that we’ve researched and made a list of the biggest party towns ourselves!
Explore our top 10 list below:
The best of the best! Nashville streets are packed both day and night with people from all over that are ready to see what Music City has to offer. From the honky-tonk, to dive bars, saloons, and taverns (there are sooo many of them), it’s not out of the norm to hear music from somebody who could either be the world’s next great country singer, somebody who already rose to that level then fell back to Earth, or somebody in between. Either way, this constantly evolving city will never let you go an hour without having a drink in your hand!
2. New Orleans, Louisiana
NOLA is like a choose-your-own-adventure book for people who love booze. Want to get rowdy? The French Quarter is there for you. Love music? Wander into any number of jazz clubs that grab your attention. Want a more hipster mixology experience? Downtown’s CBD/Warehouse District is the new epicenter of boutique hotels with upscale bars. Luckily, there are no open container laws here, so go right ahead and bring your favorite drink to-go (just make sure the cups are plastic). The only thing to expect here is the unexpected… and a nice gin fizz or 9!
3. New York, New York
This really needs no explanation-- if you haven’t already heard about the bars being open until 4am, the dollar slice joints open ever later, or about ALL the boozy brunch spots, you need to get out more!! New York is crazy (in the best way possible) and home to some of the oldest and most fun bars and Irish Pubs that even Lincoln himself drank at and a world-class speakeasy inside of a phone booth inside of a hot dog joint, that not just anyone can get into. There’s a reason why it’s called the city that never sleeps. Go experience it for yourself!
4. Chicago, Illinois
People go hard here, whether they're hunkered down with their alcohol stash in mid-February trying to self-medicate their way through winter, or trying to cram a nearly impossible combination of street festivals, house parties, and rooftop drinks into a single summer Saturday. It doesn’t matter when you come here, as long as you do! But, there's definitely no denying that having a baseball stadium that has been referred to as "the world's largest outdoor beer garden" is a reflection of a city that likes to have a good time. Plus, there’s a reason St. Patrick's Day celebrations here span an entire week and come with a celebratory aquatic dye job. Do your best to keep up everyone!
5. San Diego, California San Diego is famous for beautiful beaches, great weather year-round, bustling craft brewery scene, and countless outdoor attractions, but its also known for its bars and nightlife. Whether you come for a weekend, or spend a few weeks hanging out, you will fall in love with this place! But unlike any other location, San Diego’s possibly the best city in America to drink outside, all year, whether you’re at a seaside bar or grabbing a fish taco or California burrito en route to your next oasis. It also has some of the best tropical drinks you can come across. Plus, isn’t everything better with an ocean breeze?
6. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
It's easy to think of Milwaukee as the place you go to for cheap beer in corner taverns and at tailgates and that's exactly it. But the amount of drinking pleasures available here is constantly undersold, particularly the fact that you are never more than seven steps from a bar. Milwaukee's always been a city with a deep appreciation for the art of the cocktail, but beer will always be its greatest love!
7. Portland, Oregon
With tons of local breweries and hip bars, Portland is definitely a big drinking town. It’s not just the beer that makes Portland one of America’s best drinking cities, though Portland is arguably the best beer city in America thanks to its wealth of must-visit breweries, it has a massive amount of cocktail bars, restaurants and urban wineries. Hell, most of the city’s iconic strip clubs have beer selections that would give other cities’ best beer bars a run for their money. You can experience every kind of drinking without setting foot in a car, or taking a cab more than 15 minutes to hit up one of the best bars you’ve ever been to, which is right next door to the second best!
8. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
You might think the Steel City is a perfect drinking city because it's cold as shit, everyone is miserable, and there's nothing to do. Well, you're right, it is cold as shit (and depending on how the Steelers played on Sunday, everyone also might be miserable too). Pittsburgh is a recently thriving city (that used to be thriving, too), full of college students, filmmakers, young professionals, blue collar workers, and tech bros -- for the uninformed, that's pretty much a roll call of "people who like to heavily drink." So anywhere you go you’ll be able to find a great drink with an even better atmosphere.
9. Austin, Texas
Austin is especially poppin' these days thanks to a booming food scene and cool cultural events like SXSW. The drinks are on point too with its collection of outstanding breweries and beer bars like Jester King and Craft Pride booming along with the distillery scene (Tito’s, Treaty Oak). You’ll drink, hear live music and eat some BBQ. Then you’ll drink some more and most likely end up meeting a horse. Austin’s fun like that
10. Las Vegas, Nevada
Many would think this place would be number one, but guess what?! They’re wrong. Sin city has proved for generations to be one of the most famous places to go to have lots of drinks and a good time, but the famous saying “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” couldn’t be more untrue because your hangover is definitely coming with you. You can literally find a drink anywhere, weather it be at a casino where they’re feeding you drinks while you’re pumping pennies into the machine, fake circuses, pools, rooftops, bars, theme bars, “da club” all while being tempted to empty your entire bank account. Some say its the best place on Earth, others say its hell, but either way, it’s one of the most ridiculous places on Earth. Embrace it. And make sure to take a couple days off after (you’ll need it)!
Live in a small party town we didn't mention? Give us a heads up!