Never mind the typical vacations to beach resorts and amusement parks -- whether you've got a weekend or a week to spend, there are good times and great memories to be had in any major city.
Step 1: Find a good home base Find a good home base by searching online for affordable hotels that are not necessarily in the trendiest neighborhoods, but give you easy access to them via public transportation.
Step 2: Ask a local Get away from overpriced and underwhelming tourist traps by asking a friendly local resident where they like to go for good food and entertainment.
Step 3: Find events Browse online or request information from official visitor sites to find out what events are taking place during your visit.
TIP: Make reservations or buy tickets ahead of time if possible, or consider traveling in the off-season when popular attractions won't be so packed.
Step 4: Seek out new things Seek out new places and cultures you don't have in your hometown. Visit a museum, try an ethnic restaurant, enjoy the performing arts, go to a major league ball game, or take your picture by a historic marker.
Step 5: Talk with the locals Walking around the city and talking with the local residents can be the best way to learn all you can about the city's culture.
FACT: Eugene Fodor, the founder of Fodor's travel guidebooks, began publishing books for Europe in 1936; Fodor's guidebooks are now available for over 300 destinations worldwide.