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Travel News 10 best places to visit in the USA

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10 best places to visit in the USA

With 50 unique states and almost four million square miles of mainland, it’s hard to narrow down the very best places to visit in the USA. The United States has so much to offer in terms of bustling cities, cultural landmarks, innovative cuisine, and breathtaking countryside. From craggy coastlines and lush forests to red rock deserts and snow-capped mountains, you can see the wide variety of landscapes all in one country.

Whether you decide to take a short weekend trip or take a full cross-country road trip, you could spend years visiting new places in the USA and still not see everything. Where do you start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Keep reading for our curated list of the 10 best places to visit in the USA.

Sun shining through clouds over the Grand Canyon, a few hours from Sedona, Arizona

What are the top 10 places to travel in the USA?

  1. Sedona, Arizona
  2. Moab, Utah
  3. Fredricksburg, Texas
  4. Breckenridge, Colorado
  5. Yosemite National Park, California
  6. Columbia River Gorge, Oregon
  7. Gatlinburg, Tennessee
  8. Outer Banks, North Carolina
  9. Cape Cod, Massachusetts
  10. Key West, Florida
Red rocks with brush and cactus in Sedona, Arizona

1. Sedona, Arizona

The stark contrast between the deep orange ‘red rocks’ and the evergreen brush makes the landscape of Sedona truly unique. Whether you prefer adventure sports or taking a walk along the 400+ trails, you’ll be able to get up close to the stunning topographical features. Clamber to the top of Cathedral Rock for sunset or have a picnic at the Sedona Airport Overlook to appreciate some of the best scenery in America from above. These two spots are also regarded as vortex sites, areas that have uplifting and healing energies.

If you want to make your visit to Sedona part of a longer trip, drive through Arizona starting in Phoenix and ending at Grand Canyon National Park (the South Rim is only 2.5 hours from Sedona!).

We recommend booking Sedona Pines Resort if you plan on staying overnight.

Zion National Park near Moab Utah, one of the best places to visit in USA

2. Moab, Utah

It’s easy deciding to visit Moab, Utah when you find out its central location to five incredible national parks: Zion National Park, Canyonlands, Arches, Bryce Canyon, and Capitol Reef. Known as the ‘Mighty 5,’ the national parks in Utah are some of the best places to visit in the USA for their outdoor activities. Visitors can go hiking, biking, river rafting, ATVing, canyoneering, horseback riding, stargazing, and so much more. To fully experience the parks, their respective landmarks, and the city of Moab, visit anywhere from three days to a week. Follow this Utah road trip guide to make sure you hit all five parks!

We recommend booking Homewood Suites by Hilton Moab if you plan on staying overnight.

Couple enjoying wine country

3. Fredericksburg, Texas

Dubbed as one of ‘6 of America’s most romantic small towns‘ by CNN Travel, Fredericksburg is about an hour and a half drive from both San Antonio and Austin. This charming US town is best known for its German heritage. The first immigrants settled in Central Texas in 1846 and much of their legacy remains. You can eat a bratwurst at Friedhelm’s Bavarian Inn, stroll through historic buildings on Main Street, and end the evening with a stein at Artdolf Biergarten. However, beer isn’t the only drink of choice here. Fredericksburg is home to over 50 wineries, 10 of which have tasting rooms along Main Street that you can enjoy with your loved one.

We recommend booking Hoffman Haus if you plan on staying overnight.

Road leading to the Rocky Mountains, Colorado

4. Breckenridge, Colorado

Although most commonly associated with skiing and snowboarding, Breckenridge has so much more to offer. Spring brings colorful pops of purple lupines, marsh marigolds, and scarlet gilia across the meadows and hills. The fall turns the trees golden and the air crisp. Whether you prefer hiking through the Rocky Mountains, cooling off at Higgles Ice Cream from the summer heat, or getting cozy in the historic downtown, Breckenridge is one of the best places to visit in the USA year-round. If you want to see more breathtaking views, you can extend your stay by taking a road trip through Colorado.

We recommend booking Mountain Thunder Lodge if you plan on staying overnight in Breckenridge.

Yosemite National Park, one of the best places to visit in USA

5. Yosemite National Park, California

Another must-see place in the USA is Yosemite National Park in California. With over 760,000 acres to roam, this park is brimming with natural landmarks — take in the view of Yosemite Valley from Glacier Point, feel small under the towering sequoias of Mariposa Grove, and, if you’re really adventurous, climb Half Dome. The 17-mile trek isn’t for the faint of heart though, with 5,000 feet of elevation gain and just cables to keep you from falling for the last 400 feet of the trail.

Book a place to stay from our list of best hotels near Yosemite. Or, if you want to stay in the middle of the national park, we recommend booking Yosemite Lodge at the Falls.

Multnomah Falls at Columbia River Gorge

6. Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

About half an hour from Portland, Oregon is an incredibly scenic area known as the Columbia River Gorge. Approximately 90 miles long, the gorge creates a natural border between Oregon and Washington states. On either side of the river are lush landscapes of Douglas fir and overflowing waterfalls. The most notable one, Multnomah Falls, is the tallest waterfall in Oregon towering at 620 feet. Its two tiers are marked, not by a natural landmark, but by a man-made one: Benson Bridge. The view of the bridge and Multnomah Falls is iconic, and a place that needs to be visited at least once during your lifetime!

We recommend booking Columbia Gorge Hotel and Spa if you plan on staying overnight.

Sunset over the Great Smoky Mountains, one of the best places to visit in USA

7. Gatlinburg, Tennessee

If you’re looking for a relaxing staycation in the mountains, Gatlinburg, Tennessee is the top contender. A little over three hours from Nashville–and known as the gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains–Gatlinburg is full of striking landscapes. You can see the mountains in every direction from the Gatlinburg Space Needle, a ride on the SkyLift, or the SkyBridge. You can also explore the historic side of the mountain town, with preserved cabins from the 1800s, an old mill, and a one-room schoolhouse. Otherwise, spend your time on countless hiking trails, with bubbling streams, waterfalls, and wildlife (like black bears!). However, you can also escape the need to see and do anything — stay at your own cabin, cozying up inside next to the fire, or sitting in your hot tub under the night sky on your deck. Take a deep breath in, smell the mountain air, and feel yourself relax.

Explore the best hotels in Gatlinburg for your getaway. We recommend booking The Lodge at Buckberry Creek for the best value if you plan on staying overnight.

Wild horses on the beach at Outer Banks, North Carolina

8. Outer Banks, North Carolina

The Outer Banks (OBX) in North Carolina is one of the best beach destinations in the USA, not just for friends or couples, but also for families. These barrier islands have over 100 miles of pristine beaches, not yet overdeveloped for tourism. So much so, that you can even see wild horses in Corolla. You can take an official 4WD tour to find these untamed beauties, or enjoy the other family-friendly activities such as surfing, camping, swimming, watching for dolphins, visiting historic lighthouses, and seeing the Wright Brothers Memorial. This is where the Wright brothers had their first 12 seconds of flight!

We recommend booking The Inn at Corolla Lighthouse if you plan on staying overnight.

Lone lighthouse standing on the beach on Cape Cod

9. Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Cape Cod is a narrow 70-mile peninsula in Massachusetts that’s dotted with beach towns. Each one has its own charms, gorgeous beaches, and some of the freshest seafood in the US, making it a must-visit destination for foodies. It’ll be hard to find a restaurant without at least one seafood item on the menu, so prepare to have your fill of fried clams, tender lobster tail, and fresh fish prepared in any way imaginable. Indulge in outdoor eateries with views of the water, explore the beautiful architecture of New England homes, and kayak or boat through sparkling Cape Cod Bay.

We recommend booking Cape Colony Inn in Provincetown if you plan on staying overnight.

Sun shining through palm tree in Florida

10. Key West, Florida

Celebrities, authors, and visitors alike are drawn to this sunny paradise. With its indescribable sunset, laid back attitude, and turquoise waters, it’s no surprise Key West is one of the best places to visit in the USA. You can visit Ernest Hemingway’s home which has been turned into a museum, stand at the southernmost tip of mainland USA, and spend endless days at the best golden sand beaches. Plus, to get to Key West, you have to drive through the rest of the Florida Keys, allowing you to satiate your desire for tropical weather, good food, and crystal clear waters all along the way.

We recommend booking The Laureate Key West if you plan on staying overnight.

What are the best states in the USA to visit?

Every state has something special and unique to offer, however, based on our list of best places to visit in the USA, the states of Arizona, Utah, California, Colorado, Oregon, Tennessee, North Carolina, Massachusetts, and Florida stand out.

Which city is a top destination for outdoor activities?

Conveniently situated between the ‘Mighty 5,’ Moab, Utah is the best hub for outdoor adventures such as hiking, ATVing, canyoneering, river rafting, biking, rock climbing, and so much more.

What is the best place in the USA for a romantic getaway?

With a beautiful countryside, historic downtown, and over 50 wineries, Fredericksburg has been noted as one of the most romantic small towns in America.

Where is the most southern point of USA’s mainland?

Not only can you enjoy crystal clear waters and soft beaches, but Key West, Florida is also known as the southernmost point of the USA. It’s just 90 miles from Cuba!

Where is the tallest waterfall in the US?

The tallest waterfall in the USA is Pu’uka’oku Falls in Hawaii, but Yosemite Falls in California is the tallest on the mainland (2,425 feet). Columbia River Gorge also has over 90 magnificent waterfalls, with Multnomah Falls being the tallest one in Oregon at 620 feet.

What is the best destination for spiritual healing?

There are several strong healing places around the world, but in the USA, Sedona, Arizona is especially known for its energy vortexes.