The United States' most internationally known and metropolitan city, globally nicknamed the "Big Apple", is an absolute must visit! Divided into five boroughs known as Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, the Bronx and Manhattan, New York city is bursting with iconic attractions and plenty of exciting things to see and do. Check out the bright lights of Times Square, the area of New York City that is lit up 365 days of the year and known for being the centre of America's famous Broadway stretch.
Visit New York City's glorious Statue of Liberty located on Staten Island; take a tranquil stroll through Central Park in Manhattan, set your sights on Brooklyn's stunning Bridge or gaze up at jaw-dropping and highly intimidating skyscrapers like the new One World Trade Centre, the Empire State Building, the Bank of America Tower, the Chrysler Building, the New York Times Building among so many others you won't possibly miss. New York City is also the place to be for stylish avenues and fabulous shopping.
Head towards the Black Hills of western South Dakota where you will find the magnificent Mount Rushmore National Memorial. The entire memorial which is approximately 5.2 sq km in size, has one particular highlight known as the Mount Rushmore monument. This outstanding monument consists in a group of colossal carvings on the face of a granite mountain varying between 15 and 21 m high. These sculptures depict the faces of four of the greatest presidents of the United States that marked big changes in American history – George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. This gigantic masterpiece that required the manpower of 400 men and 14 years (1927-1941) to create is simply inspirational and a real portrayal of American pride. Over the years, the site has been depicted in film and popular culture which has boosted its popularity, attracting over 3 million visitors a year.
One of the most overwhelming sites in the United States is the Grand Canyon; an UNESCO World Heritage Site and massive tourist destination based in northern Arizona. It is also home to the Native American Hualapai and Havasupai Tribes which help to preserve and protect the area. Its scale and grandeur are simply astonishing to the eye not to mention the tranquillity you feel as you gaze over its magnitude, colours and superb features. 443 km in length, 8 to 29 km wide and more than 1.6 km deep, the Grand Canyon is a mesmerizing natural creation formed by the eroding action of the Colorado River over 10 million years. The Grand Canyon is divided into different regions with the most famous being the Grand Canyon National Park established in 1919 which itself has two distinct areas - the remote North Rim (accessed by Arizona State Route 67) and the more visited South Rim (accessed by Arizona State Route 64). You can get around the Grand Canyon following roads which have been paved around its rims as well as trek down trails that descend into the canyon itself. During your trek you will encounter variations in climate and plant life as a result of the different elevations of the canyon. Plus, being out in the middle of nature will also get you close to some beautiful wildlife such as deer, antelope, cougar and mountain sheep. For a full-on experience, private canyon helicopter or small airplane tours are provided so you can cover more ground and see the canyon from a different point of view. If you like to get your adrenaline pumping then another highlight of this exquisite landmark is the Grand Canyon Skywalk – a transparent horseshoe-shaped cantilever bridge on the edge of a side canyon in the Grand Canyon West. It's difficult to get to the location but the experience, although daunting at first, is certainly worth it!
Make dreams come true at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Known as the most visited attraction on earth, Disney World is an experience like no other. It doesn't matter what your age is, there is something for anybody here. Take photos alongside Minnie and Mickey Mouse, Cinderella, Peter Pan or any of your favourite Disney characters or ride adrenaline pumping rides again and again and again! Over a full 30,080 acres you'll find 24 disney themed resorts and hotels, four theme parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney's Hollywood Studios, and Disney's Animal Kingdom), two water parks (Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach) and a wonderful selection of entertainment venues and recreational activities including golf courses and catch-and-release fishing. Icons of Disney World include the exquisite Cinderella Castle, Spaceship Earth, the Scorcerer's Hat and the Tree of Life. If you're wondering where to take the family this year then look no further, visit the enchanting Disney World, a true kingdom of fantasy and full-on fun!
California's Yosemite National Park, situated more precisely in the Sierra Nevada range is one of the best national parks to be found in North America. In fact, it has been an UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984. Visualise enchanting valleys, gorges, lakes, streams, rivers, waterfalls with rainbow hues at the bottom, mountains, cedars, pine trees, meadows and wildlife all in one place – you are now imagining Yosemite National Park. Other attractions include towering peaks of the Sierra Nevada, Mount Lyell and the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne River. One of the most visited parts of Yosemite National Park is Yosemite Valley. Filled with hiking trails, rock climbing routes and spectacular waterfalls such Ribbon Falls, Bridalveil Fall and Yosemite Falls, the highest waterfall in North America at 2,423 ft, Yosemite is a fantastic representation of America's natural beauty so make it a must-visit!
Washington D.C., not only is it the capital of America, it's the centre of national and international politics. This important city is home to US symbols of power and pride such as the president's residence at the White House, the seat of US Congress known as the Capitol plus the Washington Monument which was erected to honour the memory of America's first president after which the city was named, George Washington. Washington is a perfect destination if you're seeking a historical and cultural holiday. In fact the country's capital is a leading American cultural centre and offers wonderful museums to keep visitors entertained such as the National Air and Space Museum; the National Gallery of Art, the Museum of American History, the National Museum of Natural History, the National Museum of American Art, the Museum of African Art, the National Portrait Gallery and the Textile Museum. Major theatres of drama, opera, film and music include the John F. Kennedy Center, the Lisner Auditorium, Constitution Hall, the National Theater, Warner Theater and Ford's Theatre.
We've all heard the phrase "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas". This is because Las Vegas is the top destination among Americans for bachelor parties or short getaways among friends looking for some harmless fun. Las Vegas is a huge tourist resort and convention centre jam-packed with so many attractions not to be missed. One of the most popular areas is the Las Vegas Strip located in Paradise and not the city of Las Vegas as is commonly believed. Situated on Las Vegas Boulevard South, the 4.2 mile Vegas Strip includes some of the world's top luxury hotels, glitzy casinos as well as other huge entertainment venues and theme parks with gigantic rollercoasters. Some things you must see during your time here include the various themed hotels which are just a wonder to your eyes. Check out the Luxor Las Vegas Hotel - a 30-storey pyramid shaped hotel made of black glass welcoming its guests with a gigantic Sphinx at its entrance. There is also the Caesars Palace hotel with its elegant Roman theme, The Bellagio hotel and its opulent Tuscan lakeside village theme filled with crystals, mosaics, fountains and glass flowers. The Vegas Strip is also known for its many replicas of famous landmarks which include a replica of New York's Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building the Chrysler Building, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and Venice's Venetian Canal where you can actually experience a Gondola ride! If you're looking to head to Vegas Strip but are only passing through, then do so at night when millions of neon lights brighten up the entire area!
Where do you start when heading to Hollywood? Well, you can start with Hollywood's most iconic attraction; the Hollywood Sign, that has been perched upon Mount Lee in the Santa Monica Mountains overlooking beautiful Los Angeles since 1923. One of Hollywood's most acclaimed and oldest must-visit attractions is the one and only read more...
Lying on the Arctic Circle and situated in the northwest of the American continent, Alaska is a captivating and picturesque US state. Packed with immense national parks including Denali National Park, Gates of the Arctic National Park, Glacier Bay National Park, Katmai National Park, Kenai Fjords National Park, Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve as well as Yukon – Charley Rivers National Preserve, this enormous state is internationally known for a number of reasons. Firstly it is popular for possessing some of the tallest and finest snow-capped mountains in all America making it an absolute haven for ski fanatics! Mount McKinley in south-central Alaska is the tallest mountain in North America and third tallest in the world after Mount Everest and Aconcagua. Secondly, it's famous for containing some of the world most dangerous yet beautiful wildlife. Within the unspoiled natural habitat of Alaska you can find grizzly bears, polar bears, bald eagles, wolves, lynx, moose and the colossal humpbacked whale. Certainly something you won't see every day! Furthermore, Alaska is a top destination for activities of all kinds ranging from adventurous, backcountry and hiking, cruises on lakes, wildlife watching, fishing and of course sightseeing. You may also have heard of the Aurora Borealis, otherwise known as the northern lights which can be witnessed in various parts of the world and Alaska is one of them. Best viewed towards the most northern parts of the country, this beautiful natural phenomenon that animates the night sky with twirling purple, pink, red, blue, green, and yellow lights occurs all year round, however can only be witnessed during autumn, winter and very early.
Always imagined what it would be like to cruise along American routes and highways without knowing what awaits you tomorrow, or passing through different states, stopping only to take in breathtaking views and attractions you've always dreamed of seeing? Following in the footsteps of the first American roadtrippers (Nelson Jackson, Sewall K Crocker and their dog Bud,) that drove from San Francisco, California to New York City in 63 days, more and more eager tourists along with Americans themselves now take to the most famous routes in America during their holidays. Going on an American Roadtrip is not cheap though, so a big budget is necessary as you will need to find a place to stay every night, food and of course petrol or gas as they say in America. There is an array of famous routes you may choose to take and planning is key! The most famous route is the 2000 mile-long Route 66 which will see you travel through major locations such as California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Illinois. Famously lined with cafés, diners and motels, this long-stretch road will have you encountering various American landscapes and soul-pleasing scenes. Route 66 is a historic road and a journey through time as you will pass through America's most remote and dusty roads to roads lined with skyscrapers and concrete. Some other famous routes you might want to check out are The Sunset Route, The Road to Nowhere, Historic Route 1, The Great River Road, Loneliest Road, Appalachian Trail, Pacific Coast Highway, Southern Pacific, Atlantic Coast and Border to Border.