25 Best Nightlife Cities in the USA

Last Updated on April 03, 2023 by Nikki Jain

It's party time somewhere! There's no shortage of great party cities in the US. Whether you're looking for a wild nightlife scene or just a place to relax and have a few drinks with friends, there's definitely a party city that's perfect for you.

While the general beat may change from coast to coast, we all dance to the same good vibes and delicious wines and hunt for the best party times.

As a big country full of diverse, unique and different customs and playlists, it can often be challenging to navigate your special brand of fun from the long list of possibilities.

Party cities in the USA are numerous and often showcase many different crowd favorites depending on where you want the night to take you.

So, to help narrow down your next adventure, check out these best nightlife cities in the USA to get you started.

Best Party Cities in the US

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1: Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada

Casinos -- Enjoyment -- Clubs --Best Hotels -- Lights ---Welcome to Las Vegas!

If you’re looking for a place to experience rave till dawn in a whole new (night-)light, Las Vegas is the place for you.

There's every kind of club here, with the crowds and the enthusiasm to back each one up.

Whether you're going for bottle service and that picture-perfect night out or looking to try your odds at the casinos with a tasty drink in hand, Las Vegas has it all.

Even if you're unsure where you're going, closing your eyes and pointing will still do the magic because of the number of options on that well-known strip.

Wedding parties, anniversaries, couples, singles, everybody comes here for a good time.

As one of the biggest nightlife cities in the USA, Las Vegas is an absolute must-visit for anybody who knows how to get the party going.

Address: Las Vegas, NV

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Las Vegas

2: New York City

New York City
Dreamstime/Leo Bruce Hempell

It's all too fitting; the big city sets a big party scene!

As the city with it all, this extends easily into nightlife, including but extending beyond your typical bars or nightclubs.

Every place in NYC is different from the next, and the most exciting part is finding the one that fits you best.

The varied NYC attractions range from exclusive bars where you'll get to live the life of a celebrity for a night to lounge bars where you and that special one can enjoy a night you'll never forget.

There's stand-up, live music, Broadway shows, and late-night TV, and those are just the beginning.

New York City nightlife is as unique, exciting, and happening as the city itself, and it’ll take just one night out to realize why it is considered one of the best US cities for nightlife. And then, of course, a few more nights to be able to try it all.

Address: New York, NY

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in New York State

3: New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana

Color your nights bright! While newcomers may think New Orleans only knows how to party come Mardi Gras season, this Louisiana city keeps the fun and flare going.

All the spectacular, dazzling displays of originality you'd expect from the French quarter become larger than life in Louisiana nightlife.

Masquerade Nightlife, the Dungeon, Beach on Bourbon… the list is massive, and the fun is never-ending.

Time is lost in these hours of the night and there are a million and one stories to tell from these unforgettable evenings.

A unique thing to watch is specialty drinks, as bars here really know how to serve up the most unique and delicious concoctions.

Paired with a beat few can resist and company to share it with, New Orleans is a place to call nightlife home.

Some sites are even open 24 hours, making a real all-day celebration! All this and more is just proof New Orleans is a mighty contender for the best party city in the USA.

Address: New Orleans, LA

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in New Orleans

4: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Experience nightlife come alive in Chicago! As a well-known metropolis of culture and the arts, it should come as no surprise that the fun doesn’t stop at sundown.

And while you may not be eager to check out while it snows, Chicago is one of the best nightlife cities in the USA year-round.

Whether it's Winter or a Monday, both or neither, Chicago comes equipped with a wide array of nightlife options to color any season.

From bars to clubs to exhibits to festivals and back again, Chicago is well equipped for all of your raves till dawn needs.

Many visitors cite places like Stereo Nightclub or Late Bar as some of the best places to party, but it's all about where the music brings you.

Don't be afraid to find yourself in a playlist at any one of the extraordinary Chicago nightclub scenes.

Accommodation: Where to stay in Chicago

Address: Chicago, IL

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Chicago

5: San Francisco, California

San Francisco, California
Dreamstime/Giovanni Gagliardi

The West Coast is the Best Coast never seemed so true!

While San Francisco may already be a household name for arts and independence, it's a truly understated nightlife scene.

With all the thrills of a typical California night out, San Francisco brings its special twist to the mix.

With a thrilling blend of art, taste and your choice of upscale or casual, San Francisco is the perfect place to tailor to yourself.

Check out Madrone Art Bar or Monroe SF for good examples of what makes San Francisco one of America's best nightlife cities, but be sure to push the boundaries of your comfort zone.

Places like Smuggler's Cove and Alchemist Bar and Lounge are great examples of the kind of entertainment you can't get from anywhere but the original.

SF is a great place to explore all things fun and to find your newest favorite spot.

Address: San Francisco, CA

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in San Francisco, CA

6: Miami, Florida

Miami, Florida
Flickr/Wyn Van Devanter

While it may be the Sunshine State, that's just a recommendation in Miami. The party doesn't stop when it starts to get dark; it just morphs!

Go from salt and sun days on the beach straight to the glitz and glamor of one of the best places to party in the US.

Miami is known as an all-hours paradise, with a list of clubs longer than the gorgeous coastline and a big enough crowd to keep each place exciting in its own unique way.

Whether it’s celebrities or recommendations from a friend, you’re sure to have heard the Miami party scene name; now come see it for yourself.

High roll the weekend by visiting some of the upscale places in town with skyline views of the ocean, or find the place with a beat you just can't resist. Miami has it all!

Address: Miami, FL

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Miami, Florida

7: Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles, California
Dreamstime/Sean Pavone

As one of the biggest cities in the US, Los Angeles makes a name for itself in oh so many ways.

As the home of Hollywood, L.A. is chock full of that big city mentality and bright lights perfect for nightlife.

You never know who you'll run into in the downtown scene here, and that's just the guest list; the real showstopper is you!

Drinks are always specials and the food is always delicious; Los Angeles is just a hard place to beat when it comes to a little taste of everything.

With so many people to cater to, Los Angeles is one of the best destinations to party in the USA for the sheer number and diversity of options.

Take your pick like the world's most interesting menu! Los Angeles is the perfect place to party, from glamorous upscale joints with cocktail names you've never heard of straight to live music bars that will have you dancing till the sun rises.

Address: Los Angeles, CA

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Los Angeles

8: Seattle, Washington

Seattle, Washington

Get weird in Washington! As one of the most eccentric and invitingly beautiful cities in the US, the bars are just the same.

From breweries with only the best vibes straight to dance clubs that will have you feeling the beat with every step, Seattle is a nightlife oasis.

What's especially lovely about Seattle after dark is whatever way you want to rock, they're here to roll.

From bars set explicitly for reading all the way to clubs set in the scene of an art gallery, Seattle takes expressionist art to the dancefloor.

Taste a wine you've never heard the name of before, try some finger-licking good bar food, or dance the night away with the stunning views of Seattle all around you; there's no wrong way to do this party city.

Accommodation: Where to stay in Seattle

Address: Seattle, WA

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Seattle

9: Austin, Texas

Austin, Texas

Music lovers rejoice and most importantly: unite in Austin, Texas!

The nightlife here features every kind of beat you can imagine, with some of the best DJs in the country.

From pop to rock to hip-hop and right back around to blends of all genres, Austin is one of the best US cities for nightlife, particularly for the music scene.

This city is all things urban, hip and upcoming, and you get a starring role in it all.

Whether you enjoy dancing the night away to your favorite jams or swaying along to live artists, Austin has you covered in hundreds of ways.

Check out 6th street for a walkable deep dive into all things Austin nightlife, and find an endless list of lyrical reasons never to leave.

Address: Austin, TX

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Austin

10: Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia
Dreamstime/Sean Pavone

Already lauded as one of the great art, culture and music hubs of the country, it should come as no shock Atlanta is the place to be for nightlife in the US.

From cool sleek lounges where the neon lights inspire the kind of boldness that only comes from the night to chill, homey, Southern-style bars, Atlanta has everything within city limits.

Music takes a new name here, truly inspired by the vast diversity of voices and artists from place to place.

Whether you’re looking for a new college town or an all-ages night in the town, Atlanta has you covered.

If there's one recommendation that can't come highly enough: go where the DJs are. Atlanta knows how to party; all that's left is to join them!

Accommodation: Where to stay in Atlanta

Address: Atlanta, GA

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Atlanta

11: Key West, Florida

Key West, Florida
Dreamstime/Daniel Korzeniewski

All the best of Florida, without a bedtime!

Key West is an unforgettable tropical getaway, but many visitors may not know of the scene that starts when the sun begins to dip into the horizon.

While the island may be small, the adventures are larger than life, and Key West is one of the best nightlife cities in the USA that keeps the party going.

Some restaurants and attractions here are playing music all night (and all day) long, and just because the sun is out doesn't mean the sandy party has to end.

What's especially welcoming about nightlife in Key West is the come one come all of it, where no matter how fun your day in the sun might have been, there's always room for more.

The key to a good party in Key West is you!

Address: Key West, FL

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Key West

12: Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee

Few other party streets in the USA can quite live up to the legacy Nashville has created.

Broadway isn't just a place, it's a lifestyle, and for some, it's often a start.

Live music just barely scrapes the surface of what you're getting here: performance after performance, visitors can see all the best in the country, alternative, and all kinds of music as the tunes fill that Tennessee night sky.

Many bachelor/bachelorette parties book in Nashville for a reason, and all those high reviews of Broadway street and beyond are telling the truth: Nashville is the place to be to party!

Address: Nashville, TN

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Nashville

13: Atlantic City, New Jersey

Atlantic City, New Jersey

Take a gamble on one of the most exciting American cities with the best nightlife aka Atlantic City.

Hotels here are so much more than just a place to sleep. They're bars, restaurants, casinos and of course: clubs!

Nighttime is when Atlantic City truly comes alive, and there's so much to do, see, dance, gamble, and toast to.

Atlantic City is an excellent choice for partiers who like to stay up all night in search of the next best thing.

And the minute you tired of one activity, there are twenty more lined up to keep you up and at 'em for a weekend of adventures.

You're sure to be recommending to the next person that needs a healthy dose of Atlantic City living.

Address: Atlantic City, NJ

14: Memphis, Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee
Dreamstime/Anthony Aneese Totah Jr

Food, drinks and music that speaks to the soul, what could be better? Memphis, Tennessee, is a great choice for those who want a night in the town without feeling overwhelmed by the crowds.

That's not to say these spots aren't happening; not only are they well-known, but they are well-loved.

Here in Memphis, you can deep dive into the wide world of blues, have some of the best Southern food ever to grace a plate and find your new favorite brew all within walking distance of one another.

Address: Memphis, TN

15: San Diego, California

San Diego, California
Dreamstime/Elena Koulik

A golden city in the golden state that just shines brighter at night! San Diego is a charming, welcoming, bustling city center for all your nightlife needs.

One of the best things to do here is to check out some of those state-of-the-art beach sidebars, where you can go from a dip in the ocean during the day straight to making new friends in a Cali bar at night.

Many of these places are multi-level clubs that double as restaurants, bars, and concert halls; you name it: they've got it.

Clubs here are always jam-packed and exciting. When it comes to summertime fun, San Diego is in a league of its own!

Address: San Diego, CA

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in San Diego

16: Tampa, Florida

Tampa, Florida

Florida fun doesn't stop at the beach! Tampa is an exciting, artsy, vibrant city with so many different possibilities for your next late-night adventure.

The options are endless, from rooftop bars with wide dance floors to mesmerizing views of the skyline from those smaller, more intimate get-togethers in Ybor, Tampa's artistic district.

Tampa is a great stop if you love EDM and house music, and if you're always on the lookout for new DJs, or even if you're not sure what you're looking for: Tampa's found it for you.

There are so many options within downtown Tampa that the party doesn't stop until you're ready.

Address: Tampa, FL

Also Read: Top Tampa Attractions & Things To Do

17: Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts

You haven't truly experienced nightlife until you've seen the sunset in Boston.

Boston, Massachusetts is one of the most incredible nightlife cities in the USA, with hundreds flocking to these bars every night: be it a weekday, weeknight, game day, and everything in between.

While there may be numerous colleges around this metropolis, and those bars alone are enough to write home about, there's plenty to explore and enjoy for all ages adults here.

Check out blood-pumping EDM nights at some of the best-loved local bars, try your hand at trivia night with all your best friends, or find something new in North End to call your own.

Boston is built for everyone!

Address: Boston, MA

18: Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon

Party in a city as eccentric as you are! Portland is a well-known, well-loved city where everything is worth partying about.

From nationally recognized karaoke bars to shockingly great open mics to alcohol-free fun, Portland is easily one of the most unique cities with the best nightlife in the US.

Outfits here are a true artistic expression and partying is just another way to embrace the night for all that it is.

A stop to Portland's nighttime scene is best complemented with a tasting of any number of home-grown drinks, be it brews, wines or even kombucha.

Here, it’s a real choose your own adventure in Portland!

Address: Portland, OR

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Portland, OR

19: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Dreamstime/Jon Bilous

Pittsburgh is the land of nightlife plenty! As one of the cities with the most bars per population, catering to the individual never came so easy.

Go from a local bar where you can watch the game on high-definition TVs straight to nightclubs playing only the newest soon-to-be hits.

Pittsburgh is a great place to follow the music, as many places here either offer live music or unique DJs that can spin the night in the right direction.

For walkable nightlife areas, be sure to check out Bloomfield, North Side and, of course, downtown so that every move you make is always in the right direction.

Address: Pittsburgh, PA

20: Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado, is known for memorable nights! If you're the kind of partier, who likes to keep the party going, check out Blake Street, where bars, clubs, and breweries line the street and the crowds that follow.

Here you can go from an arcade bar straight to a beer pong tournament and still be back in time for 90's night at one of the many themed bars in the area.

Or, for the more artsy side of things, check out Larimer square, where there are restaurants and bars so good you’ll be dreaming of them in your sleep and shows and comedy routines you’ll have to see to believe.

What’s so nice about Denver nightlife is the personality that shines through in just about every avenue, so find what suits you best and get to exploring.

Address: Denver, CO

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Denver

21: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Dreamstime/Paul Brady

The best bars and the best brews are a true sight to see! While Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is considered one of the best small party towns in the USA, you'll feel larger than life here.

Homegrown, locally loved, and never-ending spirits (both the personality and the drink) are in high supply here.

Feel a little bit of that home away from home charm as your night out feels chock full of adventure in a city that brings the fun.

You just haven't partied hard enough if you've never partied West of Lake Michigan, and with so many places to choose from, the only thing left to decide is where to first.

Address: Milwaukee, WI

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Milwaukee

22: Columbus, Ohio

Columbus, Ohio
Dreamstime/Donna Nonemountry

Columbus is the place to go for all smiles! And not just in the typical 'enjoy your stay' way, but in a laugh, till you can't breathe kind of way.

When we're talking Columbus nightlife, we're not just talking bars and dancing, no matter how great that may be in this city.

We're also talking spectacular shows, for when nightlife means a little something different to every person.

One of the absolute musts when visiting this city is checking out a comedy club and laughing till it hurts kind of late night.

Columbus is an excellent choice for those looking to shake up their nights with something different every day and with every day being just as great as the last.

Address: Columbus, OH

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Columbus

23: Charlotte, North Carolina

Charlotte, North Carolina
Dreamstime/Sean Pavone

Get social in Charlotte! As one of the biggest cities with a recent urban pop, Charlotte has become an oasis of young adult nightlife in ways that stand out from the rest.

Charlotte is known for every weekend being a little different, with the same friendly, welcoming aurora of locals remaining constant.

Check out music festivals that only start on the cusp of night, raging well past when the clock strikes midnight.

Check out breweries, arcade bars, dance clubs, themed eateries and even shows that make the nightlife scene so immersive and exciting it just can't be replicated elsewhere.

While Charlotte has been known to charm its visitors, there's simply not enough positivity that can be said about Charlotte: after dark!

Address: Charlotte, NC

24: Houston, Texas

Houston, Texas

Urban and oh so exciting, Houston is the new place to be. From nightclubs that feel out of this world to the grounded sort of places you'd want to find a home in for the night, Houston is the land of good feelings.

Take a ride in the countryside by going to a Whiskey bar or a line dancing saloon to truly understand why we don’t mess with Texas.

Or, take a step into the newer side of Houston with neon displays of wonder and all the EDM one night can handle.

Texas is an ideal spot for people who like to shake things up from night to night and maybe even explore some things you can really only enjoy authentically.

All in all, Houston is always a good time.

Address: Houston, TX

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Houston

25: Washington, DC

Washington, DC
Dreamstime/Joe Sohm

While your first thought of Washington D.C. may not be of an after-hours look, there's no denying this is one of the best places to party in the US.

Whether you're going downtown, U Street or bar crawling D.C. knows how to pack a party.

House music, rock bands, EDM and themed nights are just the start of these crazy capital city parties.

D.C. is a nice place to go if you enjoy hopping around from cool bar to cool bar, with a wide array of options within partying distance of one another and enough distinction between each to rightfully claim your favorite.

Bring the whole group for a night on the town, or make new friends; Washington D.C. is all about living in the moment.

Address: Washington, DC

Also Read: Top Tourist Attractions in Washington, DC

Plan your trip to these best nightlife cities in the US soon!

Whether your dream night out is confidently declaring a winner in the race for the best party cities in the US, or you're just looking for a change of pace, these American cities will have you coming back for more.

Nightlife in the US is as diverse as the country and as exciting as you're craving. The hardest part is just choosing what best fits you. With these 25 best cities to party in the US, the fun is never-ending.

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