The United States covers a huge 9.834 million km² and has 52 different states, so if you are planning a trip to the US, one of the hardest choices is to decide on which part (or parts) you will visit.
Whether you are looking for a beach holiday, an outdoors adventure style holiday, or one where you can discover the history and enjoy the cultural aspects of the US, there are plenty of great places to visit. We have compiled a summary of some of the best and most iconic places to visit in the US if you are planning a trip:
The US is covered with great national parks that are a popular choice with hikers, mountain bikers, watersports enthusiasts and anyone who loves spending time surrounded by nature. Many of the parks also have canyons and geysers to add into the mix for the scenery. Zion National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Grand Canyon National Park and Yosemite National Park are all exciting places to explore with lots going on.
In Yellowstone, you can visit the Old Faithful geyser and thermal basins, plus there are hundreds of picturesque trails to walk. You can hire a bike to cycle through the park or even ride a horse. This is the ultimate outdoors adventure holiday and you can stay at one of the many campsites across the park.
If you have any interest in film making, spotting celebrities or visiting art galleries then LA should be top of your list. LA is home to Hollywood, with cinematic fans flocking to the city to see behind-the-scenes at studios like Warner Brothers, Universal and Paramount Pictures.
Many of the A list actors and other celebrities live in and around LA, so there is a good chance you could bump into a star or two if you go to the places where they tend to hang out. Then there is also plenty of beaches like Venice Beach, amusement parks and lots of great shops in and around the famous Rodeo Drive.
New York City
You won’t find many places in the world that can claim to be as iconic as NYC. Broadway is undoubtedly the most highly regarded area of the US for shows and musicals, whilst the long list of tourist attractions such as The Statue of Liberty, Times Square, The Empire State Building and Central Park are not to be missed. Nicknamed ‘the city that never sleeps’, there is so much going on in New York that it is hard to narrow your activities down to fit everything into your trip.
You can admire the famous NYC skyline from Brooklyn Bridge, or look across the city from the breathtaking vantage point at the Top of the Rock. Jump on a boat, ride in a helicopter, use the underground, yellow cabs and many other modes of transport to see the best bits of NYC.
Anyone who appreciates architecture will love to walk around New Orleans City’s French Quarter. This part of the US is very different from the others, given the strong French influence including stylish boutiques, impressive restaurants and artisan markets. The Garden District is a beautiful part of the city, where you can walk past some stunning properties, including some owned by famous celebrities.
A great way to see New Orleans is to take a riverboat along the Mississippi. There are many to choose from but the dinner jazz cruises are a favourite with jazz fans, but you can also try a swamp boat ride to get closer to the wildlife. You can also choose to kayak through a swamp if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous.
Advice for travelling to the US
If you are planning a trip to the US to any of these places, or any other parts of the US, it is important to ensure you have travel authorization. Citizens of countries that are members of the Visa Waiver Program are able to travel to the USA with ESTA instead of a visa so that short visits to see any of these places is much easier than the process of applying for a visa.