Optimos Travel has named the Outer Banks of North Carolina as the most affordable vacation destination in the United States. In an analysis of more than 100 well-known locales, the travel company assessed each location on daily meal expenses, public transportation costs, accommodation rates, and attraction fees.

Optimos concluded that a single traveler can spend an entire day in the Outer Banks for around $177, making a seven-day family or small group vacation possible for about $3,248.

The Outer Banks is a string of islands off North Carolina’s coast. According to the Official Tourism Authority for Dare County’s Outer Banks, the islands offer a “welcome relief from crowded cities and overrun vacation spots. In fact, you won’t find any cities on the Outer Banks, just 100-plus miles of wide-open shoreline, charming seaside villages, and a mix of towns brimming with personality and fascinating connections to our nation’s history.”

With a sense of serene remoteness, the Outer Banks is an ideal location relaxing on the beach, communing with nature, or sightseeing.

Closely following the Outer Banks is Charleston, West Virginia, falling behind only slightly due to higher accommodation costs. Ranking third and fourth, respectively, are Helen and Tybee Island in Georgia. Gatlinburg, Tennessee, claims the fifth ranking.

Rounding out the top 10 most affordable vacation spots are Sedona, Arizona; Cape Cod, Massachusetts; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Bend, Oregon; and Monument Valley, Utah.

By Madeline Fuerstenberg

Main Image: Outer Banks, North Carolina; Credit: Adobe/oldmn