With so much to see in this large country, it can be tough to know where to start when it comes to organizing a trip in the United States. World-class cities, some recognized for history and others known for fun or luxury, provide tourists with a broad range of destinations to select from. The finest destinations to visit in the United States may simply rely on your unique preferences.
Along the Eastern Seaboard, New York and Washington, D.C. provide two totally different city experiences. Along the West Coast, San Francisco and Los Angeles are both attractive places for travelers. In the Southwest, Las Vegas brings the desert to life, while the Grand Canyon shows off one of nature’s finest wonders. Beyond the mainland lie the beaches of Waikiki and the tropical Hawaiian Islands. These are only a few significant spots, but fantastic attractions for every sort of tourist can be found all around the country.
Discover more of America with our list of the finest locations to visit in the United States.
1. New York
The New York metropolis is like no other city in the world and one that must be experienced to be properly appreciated. For first-time tourists, wandering the streets may seem like walking through a movie set, with renowned attractions at every turn, from the Empire State Building to Rockefeller Plaza, the Chrysler Building, Central Park, The High Line, Times Square, 5th Avenue, Broadway, and, of course, the Statue of Liberty.
Sightsee by day, take in a Broadway musical in the evening, work in time for shopping or a promenade, then relax and reflect over a delicious lunch. This is New York. With too much to see and do in a day or a weekend, this is a city worth coming back to time and time again.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in New York City
More: The Best Tourist Attractions in New York City
2. San Francisco
This lovely and gorgeous West Coast city is the perfect weekend spot for couples, singles, or families. Famous monuments, attractive neighborhoods, breathtaking vistas, and outdoor dining are all part of what makes San Francisco such a terrific location to visit.
Take a cruise on San Francisco Bay, tour Alcatraz, drive over the Golden Gate Bridge, browse around Fisherman’s Wharf or get on a street car to see the downtown landmarks.
Summer or fall is a beautiful time to visit, but the temperature here is warm and any time of year is enjoyable.
Accommodation: Best Areas and Hotels in San Francisco
Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in San Francisco.
3. The Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is one of those must-see, bucket-list sites that have been luring travelers for years. Gazing out over the canyon walls to an unending horizon and an unfathomable depth below is one of the joys of every tour in the United States.
Visiting the Grand Canyon may easily be done on a day trip from Las Vegas or Phoenix, and from several smaller places in the region, including Sedona or Flagstaff. Another option is to integrate a visit into a bigger driving excursion through Arizona and nearby states. A train ride from Williams, AZ is another lovely way to view the canyon.
The south rim of the Grand Canyon, which is the most popular and most frequented area, is accessible all year, and tourists are welcome at any time of year. To avoid the crush of summer vacationers, consider visiting in the spring or fall, when the weather is nice and the crowds lower. The route to the north rim of the Grand Canyon is closed in winter owing to snow.
Houston is the perfect place for a friends’ escape, a couples’ retreat, or a family holiday. With direct flights from locations around the United States and Canada, you can easily fly in to catch a sports game, browse through Museum Houston’s District, sunbathe by a pool at one of the numerous luxury hotels, and spend your nights savoring fantastic cuisine. Houston has turned into a hot destination for dining in the United States and is now widely renowned for excellent food.
If you want a calm but outdoor urban experience, hire a bike and ride your way around the miles of paved routes in the parks or on the city streets. Rent a kayak and paddle around Buffalo Bayou in Buffalo Bayou Park.
In less than an hour, you may be on the surrounding beaches at Galveston, and along the route, you can pay a visit to Space Center Houston.
Accommodation: Best Resorts in Houston.
This shimmering city of lights in the desert possesses a distinct charm and one that has been luring travelers for decades. Huge resort complexes, with all kinds of activities to see and do at any time of year, have created a destination that draws everyone, from want-to-be newlyweds who travel here to say their vows, to families or singles who just want to hang out around a pool.
Entertainment choices are wide, with some of the music industry’s greatest performers calling Las Vegas home and playing to full audiences every night.
Cirque du Soleil offers another unique experience, and, of course, each resort has something to delight tourists, from dancing fountains to an exploding volcano.
When you’ve gotten your fill of the city, there is much to see in the surrounding area, with the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Death Valley National Park, and Valley of Fire State Park all within easy day-tripping distance. If you reside in Los Angeles or Phoenix, Las Vegas is excellent for a long weekend.
Where to Stay in Las Vegas: The Best Areas and Hotels
Las Vegas’s Top Tourist Attractions
Waikiki is one of America’s top beach locations, featuring all the conveniences of North America on a gorgeous tropical island in the Pacific Ocean. Located on the Hawaiian island of Oahu, Waikiki is a neighborhood of Honolulu known for the magnificent golden sand beach that spans along the coastline, backed by hotels and shopping enterprises.
Rent a surfboard and test your talents in the waves; hit the shops after you’re done with the beach; and enjoy terrific dining options in the evening. This is a great place for everyone, from families to couples or singles.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Honolulu: Best Areas & Hotels
Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions & Things to Do in Waikiki
7. Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C. It is the US capitol and home to some of the most iconic sites and national treasures in America, from the White House and the Capitol Building to the Smithsonian museums. This city should be on everyone’s itinerary on the East Coast.
In the spring, the Cherry Blossom Festival is a great time to come, when the trees are in full bloom. Summer may be scorching. You may want to go to one of the beaches around Washington for a bit of a cool down. Fall is also a nice time, when the scorching summer temperatures have cooled off enough to make wandering about outside extremely comfortable and the rush of the busy summer season has passed. In winter, the crowds are considerably less, and the city looks lovely after a fresh snowfall.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Washington, D.C.: Best Areas & Hotels.
The hot center of southern Florida, Miami is more than simply a terrific beach destination.
Wonderful beaches may be found all around Florida, but Miami offers an environment like no other city in the state.
The Cuban vibe along Calle Ocho in Little Havana, the Art Deco District in Miami Beach that calls to mind the 1930s era, the endless parade of sports cars cruising along Ocean Drive in the evenings, and the summertime beach scene of South Beach, are just some of the unique aspects that make Miami one of the best cities in the US.
For a unique experience, take a day excursion from Miami to Everglades National Park to view alligators, turtles, and a diversity of birds in this one-of-a-kind wetland environment.
9. Los Angeles
Southern California has a culture all of its own, and Los Angeles is the core of this distinct location. The city has traditionally been linked with glamour, with the suburbs of Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and Bel Air dominating pop culture. Travelers will discover all types of vacation opportunities in the Los Angeles area.
And while Hollywood is a must for movie enthusiasts, families come to see nearby Disneyland, and shoppers will undoubtedly find what they’re searching for in the Los Angeles region. If you are searching for a little sand and surf, head to one of the many beaches near LA. For an intriguing natural history experience, make sure to visit the La Brea Tar Pits to observe fossil remnants of prehistoric species that frequented this region 40,000 years ago.
10. New Orleans
New Orleans is like no other southern metropolis. The combination of cultures, with significant French and Spanish influences, is more evocative of the Caribbean than the United States. Cajun and Creole food, jazz music, and the architecture of the French Quarter make this city unique. Combined with an array of luxury resorts and hotels, New Orleans makes a fantastic place for a long weekend break.
The climax of New Orleans’ calendar year is Mardi Gras, when extravagant costumes and outlandish floats light up the streets, music can be heard everywhere, and the celebrations seem never-ending. However, if crowds are not your thing, you may want to avoid this time of year.
The best time to visit New Orleans is from December to May, although other seasons provide various perks. June through November is hotter and prone to storms and hurricanes, but is a wonderful period to discover discounts.
11. Utah’s National Parks
Southern Utah is home to scenery like no other, with canyons, arches, natural amphitheaters, and weirdly gorgeous rock formations. Fortunately, Utah’s parks allow access to the state’s most beautiful vistas.
Its hiking trails are among the most beautiful in the world. Soaring rock walls, waterfalls, and the river running through the valley make this one of the most visited parks in the United States.
Arches National Park, in the town of Moab, is home to more than 2,000 sandstone arches but is much more than the name suggests. Rock spires, petrified dunes, vistas to distant mountain peaks, and the numerous adventure activities in the vicinity make this a spot you’ll want to spend some time. It’s also a prominent mountain biking destination in the United States.
Nearby, but very different in nature, is Canyonlands National Park. Some portions of this park are as lovely as the Grand Canyon but not nearly as busy. Plan on at least a day to explore two distinct portions of the park, and longer if you want to appreciate the hiking trails.
Bryce Canyon National Park offers a radically different landscape, with a massive natural amphitheater providing the basisbasis for a forest of multicolored rock pinnacles. The hiking routes in Bryce, which lead you through this mysterious scenery, are usually easy to moderate and worth trying. And lastly, Capitol Reef National Park is a little out of the way but is worth a trip if you can work it into your plan.
Orlando, which for most tourists is identical toto Kissimmee, is all about the theme parks; Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Studios, and SeaWorld are the primary attractions. This is one of the top vacation spots in the US for families. Kids adore it. But adults will also love the parks as well as the shopping, eating, golfing, and sunbathing.
School vacations are the busiest time to visit. Christmas and summer holidays are particularly stressful. Fortunately, Orlando is equipped for travelers, with various sorts of hotels and house rentals accessible in the vicinity. The city is located inland yet within convenient day-tripping distance of both coastlines and the popular Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral on the Atlantic Coast.
Set on the banks of Lake Michigan, Chicago is a terrific summer getaway, with parks and a lovely shoreline. But its artistic and cultural activities, as well as superb shopping, make it a popular year-round visit.
The Magnificent Mile, along Michigan Avenue, is the city’s most recognized neighborhood, containing high-end luxury boutiques and galleries, coupled with notable structures and great architecture. Some of the tourist highlights include Millennium Park, the Art Institute of Chicago, Navy Pier, and the views from the Willis Tower SkyDeck.
In the heart of the Southwestern US, Phoenix is a massive, expansive metropolis that attracts enormous numbers of northerners throughout the winter months, who flock here to escape the chilly weather. Phoenix is a terrific place for golfing, shopping, resting, and generally having a good time.
The greater Phoenix region offers some of the finest resorts in the state. They range from enormous family-friendly complexes with beaches and waterslides to tiny, intimate enterprises where your every desire is gratified.
You may wish to pack your golf clubs. The city and its and its surrounds, which include Scottsdale, Mesa, and numerous other townships, are noted in particular for their world-class golf resorts, some of which are of which are the most prominent sites on the men’s and women’s PGA Tours.
If you have additional place in your bag, maybe fit in your hiking boots, too. Natural sites that display the desert nature may be found inside the city and nearby, allowing convenient access for hiking or mountain riding. Summer temperatures might be exceedingly hot, but October to April is pretty nice, especially if you wish to spend time outside.
Where to Stay in Phoenix: The Best Areas and Hotels Where to Stay in Phoenix: The Best Areas and Hotels
Savannah is the archetypal tiny southern city, with large moss-covered trees in the gorgeous parks, old southern homes, and a charming waterfront area with candy stores and other unusual businesses in ancient buildings. The pace is leisurely, and the people are pleasant.
It’s easy to tell that Savannah is a city where people live and enjoy life, rather than a location just designed for tourism. The city core is small enough that you can walk everywhere. This is a city you can visit in a day, yet the type of location where you will want to remain.
Nearby are several magnificent beaches at Tybee Island and Hilton Head Island, both of which can be accessed by automobile in well under an hour.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Savannah: Best Areas & Hotels
Located along the Eastern Seaboard, Boston is a city of history. The famed Freedom Trail leads past some of the city’s most famous and historic monuments, making sightseeing and traveling across the city relatively easy.
Picturesquely positioned along the coastline, with ferries linking the outer suburbs, Boston has a particular appeal. Modern skyscrapers lie near to centuries-old structures, and open public areas, like Boston Common, give the city a pleasant, small-town vibe. The city also boasts a significant arts and culture scene and is home to the famous Boston Pops Orchestra.
Boston’s winters are notorious. Nor’easters roar ashore every now and again, dropping massive volumes of snow. However, that doesn’t stop these brave residents from enjoying life. The list of things to do in winter is enormous, and this is still a terrific time of year for a visit.
Accommodation: Where to Stay in Boston: Best Areas & Hotels
17. Yosemite National Park
While the Grand Canyon is on most foreign tourists’ itineraries, Yosemite is a national gem that should not be ignored. Yosemite Valley is home to some of America’s most famous and iconic natural landmarks, from the stunning waterfalls to the soaring rock walls of El Capitan and Half Dome.
The mesmerizing images of Ansel Adams, the climbing community that has flocked here for decades, and the generations of families who have been coming to the park to camp, hike, and soak up the scenery have all contributed to the area’s history. But long before this, the Miwok people occupied the region. You may learn more about this at the Yosemite Museumand the and the Indian Village of the Ahwahnee in the park.
18. Colorado’s Rocky Mountains
The majestic peaks of the Rocky Mountains may be enjoyed in many regions of North America, but in Colorado, the climate and tiny mountain villages make this one of the greatest places to see the Rockies. Waterfalls and snow-capped peaks, more than 50 of which reach a height of 14,000 feet or more, make this a great location for viewing and appreciating mountain life.
In summer, hiking, mountain biking, and rafting are popular hobbies. In winter, the mountains become a playground for skiers and boarders. The ski resorts in Colorado are some of the best in North America.
Some of the greatest spots to visit include the towns of Vail, Aspen, Telluride, and Durango. Scenic routes, such as such as the San Juan Scenic Byway and the Million Dollar Highway, which starts from Durango, will take you past stunning mountain scenery and historic mining towns like Silverton and Ouray. Or, jump aboard the Silverton & Durango Narrow Gauge Railroad for a peaceful day ride across the Rockies.
On the edge of the Rocky Mountains in the southwest part of Colorado, a little over an hour from Durango, is Mesa Verde National Park. This wonderful park is home to spectacular Native American cliff dwellings and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In the northwest corner of the US sits the magnificent seaside city of Seattle. Surrounded by the by the sea and snow-capped mountains, the city is evocative of Vancouver, Canada, with an energetic, outdoor-oriented outdoor-oriented populace and endless things to see and do.
Key sights in the city include the impossible-to-miss Space Needle, the lively Pike Place Market, and the waterfront. Within easy day-tripping distance of the city are beautiful beaches, the Hoh Rain Forest, and alpine scenery, all ready to be explored.
Although the winter months experience more rain than the than the summer, the city has a warm temperature and is a pleasant destination to come to come to at any time of year.
Where to Stay in Seattle: Best Neighborhoods & Hotels Where to Stay in Seattle: Best Neighborhoods & Hotels
20. North Carolina’s Outer Banks
North Carolina’s Outer Banks are all about beaches. Miles and miles of spectacular beaches on tiny sand islands have been luring vacationers from throughout the United States since the 1830s. For years For years, these barrier islands have been the go-to spot for families every summer,, whether at campgrounds or wonderful resorts.
Off the beach, historical cities well worth seeing include Nags Head, Kitty Hawk (home to the Wright Brothers Memorial), Duck, Waves, and the settlements on Hatteras Island. The Outer Banks are also home to some of America’s most famous lighthouses, several of which are available for visits to the top.
Another prominent activity is deep sea fishing. Many records have been broken by fishermen in this offshore hot area.
21. Santa Fe
A melting mix of Spanish, Native American, Mexican, and Anglo-Americans, Santa Fe has a particular aura that, once experienced, seems to lure one back time and time again. This ancient city’s charming alleys, bordered by Spanish colonial churches, adobe residences, and towering trees, just beg to be photographed.
Be sure to visit the Plaza, the pulsating center of all that’s going on in town. Cute cafés, many with terraces, flank the area and offer an ideal place to do a little people-watching people-watching. After you’ve had your fill of that, stroll into any one of the diverse and unusual stores around you around you.
Santa Fe is ideally positioned close to the mountains, where you’ll find some of the best skiing in New Mexico at resorts including Taos, Pajarito, and Siapu.
22. San Antonio
Although Dallas and Houston spring to mind first for many people when they think of Texas, those in the know will always tell you that San Antonio is their favorite. The reasons for this are many: stunning Spanish colonial churches and missions, the spectacular Riverwalk area, and, of course, The Alamo.
The city is rather tiny and easy to travel around. For a city of its size, it also offers a number of excellent resorts and high-end hotels just waiting for you to check-in and be treated. The city isn’t just about history; it’s also the home of the Culinary Institute of America (CIA), and as a result, is a beehive of gourmet pleasures. Be sure to go over to the Pearl area to uncover some of the top spots; your taste buds will thank you!