The U.S. is home to some of the most breathtaking natural wonders, hip cities, rich culture, and famous landmarks in the world. It’s also an extremely large country – about as big as Canada and China combined – which means that there are plenty of places you might not have even considered visiting. And while foreign travelers tend to flock to New York City, Los Angeles, and other well-known destinations, there are countless smaller towns, northeast cities like Boston, and national parks in the South that provide an equally rewarding experience for international travelers looking for something different. Whether you’re seeking a new urban hangout spot or want to see snow-capped peaks in summer (yes, you can do both at once), here are some compelling reasons you should visit the United States this year.
Discover America’s Natural Beauty
The United States is home to some of the world’s most beautiful natural wonders – so many, in fact, that you could spend a lifetime exploring them. You can hike through the redwood forests of Northern California, explore the underground caves of Carlsbad Caverns National Park, or walk along the rocky coast of the Pacific Northwest. Visit the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains, or go to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and see the wild bears and blackberries that grow there. You can also discover America’s unique landscapes, from the red rock canyons of the Southwest to the rolling hills of Virginia’s horse country. Visit the Badlands in South Dakota and see the world’s only dinosaur-shaped fossil beds, or go to the Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado and watch the sand dunes grow and change throughout the year.
Travel Across the U.S. on a Road Trip
One of the quintessential American experiences is taking a road trip across the country. Whether it’s a few hours in the car or a full journey from one coast to the other, a road trip across the U.S. is a must for any traveler. You can stop whenever and wherever you want, discover new places off the beaten path, and spend as much or as little time in each spot as you please. You can drive through the Rocky Mountains, discover the country’s colonial history in New England, visit the natural wonders of the South, or explore the vast deserts of the Southwest. A road trip also gives you the opportunity to experience the country’s vast variety of climates, including places that see snowfall in winter, deserts that reach triple-digit temperatures in summer, and everything in between. You can take a standard road trip across the country, or you can create a custom route that lets you hit the places you really want to see. Wherever you decide to go, make sure to pack plenty of water and snacks, a charged smartphone, and a car charger for long stays on the road. And remember to drive responsibly and follow local driving laws.
Visit Famous American Cities
While you should absolutely explore some of the more remote destinations in the United States, you can’t visit every part of the country, and there are plenty of amazing cities you should visit if you want to experience the best of America. New York City is the most obvious choice; it’s not only one of the world’s most iconic cities, but it’s also home to Wall Street, Broadway, Central Park, and so much more. Boston, meanwhile, is a smaller city that boasts a rich history, a charming downtown area, and a thriving culture. Chicago is another large city with a diverse population, gorgeous architecture, and deep-rooted cultural traditions. Additionally, while Los Angeles is a very popular city, you should visit nearby San Francisco, a smaller city with a picturesque landscape and many unique neighborhoods. Other notable cities include Washington, D.C., Las Vegas, and Miami, where you can enjoy year-round warm weather, learn about the country’s history, and take in some of its most famous landmarks.
Taste America’s Best Food at Its Cultural Festivals
Visiting America isn’t just about seeing the sights and experiencing the culture; it’s also about tasting the food. The United States is home to a huge variety of cuisines; you can find everything from Southern barbecue to New York-style pizza, Californian burritos to New England clam chowder, and more. And while you can find amazing food in most cities, there are also plenty of festivals that let you experience American cuisine at its best. From the pancakes and maple syrup at the Vermont Maple Festival to the lobster and clams of Maine’s Labor Day Weekend Lobster Festival, there are dozens of delicious food festivals to visit across the country.
There are a lot of great reasons to visit the U.S. this year. That said, there are great reasons to visit any year! The U.S. is a huge country with a ton to offer travelers, and while some destinations are obviously better than others depending on the time of year, there are no bad places to visit. If you’re curious about America, this is the year to go! Before you go, though, make sure to do some research on the cities and national parks where you want to visit. Book your flights and hotels as soon as possible, and pack lots of sunblock and water to stay healthy and hydrated all year long.