The United States of America is an amazing country with more places to explore than you may ever have enough vacation time to see. Many older cities are historical monuments to the emergence of democracy on this continent while more modern cities are testaments to America’s technological sophistication. Meanwhile, many of the country’s natural wonders are remarkably different from each other. Grand Canyon National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Yosemite National Park, and Bryce Canyon National Park have very different landscapes.
While there is much that is similar from city to city, county to county, and state to state, if you look carefully, you’ll also notice much that is remarkably different. On the surface of it, they all share a celebration of artistic edifices and interconnecting roads, but when you take a closer look, you’ll notice that each major city has its own unique culture. In fact, comparing the difference between San Francisco and New York and Santa Fe is almost like talking about different countries.
The rich diversity of natural, urban, historical and cultural places to visit from coast to coast is so vast that any list of recommended places to visit is always far from complete. With that in mind, here are five interesting places to visit on your next vacation, each offering a slightly different glimpse of the American experience.
1. Why You Should Visit West Hollywood: West Hollywood, affectionately referred to as WeHo by its denizens, is everything fascinating about Los Angeles packed in 1.9 square miles. WeHo became the 84th city in LA county in 1984, and this young city has a creative vibe to it. So what can you do in WeHo? You could attend a conference at the Pacific Design Center; listen to a rock band at the Viper Room, contemplate history at the Schindler House, or enjoy an opulent show at the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. You could stroll down Hollywood Boulevard, which splits off from Sunset Boulevard, and then shop for gourmet foods at Farmer’s Market. And you could try to figure out whether you should visit Madame Tussauds Hollywood or Hollywood Wax Museum; or, if you have the time, see both.
2. Why You Must Visit the Grand Canyon: There is no place on earth like the Grand Canyon in Arizona. This natural formation will take your breath away as you marvel at the layered strata of red rocks that reveal millions of years of geological time and take in the enormous scale of a canyon that’s about 10 miles wide, a mile deep, and 277 miles long. You’ll also stare in awe at the sweeping vistas and the white water rapids of the Colorado River.
3. Why You’ll Love Spending a Day in Santa Fe: If you only had one day to spend in any city in America, where would you go? Perhaps, Santa Fe, New Mexico. It’s about as different from New York as two American cities can be. Santa Fe has no skyscrapers, but plenty of blue sky; zoning laws prohibit buildings with more than three stories. The adobe structures are charming, and the multicolored art you’ll come across everywhere you go will slowly turn you into someone who appreciates the artistic spirit. A day in Santa Fe might include a visit to the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, which has a permanent collection of more than 3,000 works of art, a visit to the Palace of the Governors, which has exhibits that showcase the city, the Museum of International Folk Art, which as exhibits of cultural artifacts, and a visit to Loretto Chapel, with its legendary stairs whose mysterious origins and modes of construction are always a subject of wild speculation.
5. Why You Simply Must Stroll Through The Redwood Natural and National State Park: If you enjoy nature walks, then you’ll love strolling through the temperate rainforest of The Redwood National and State Parks (RNSP) in northern California, which actually comprises of three additional parks– California’s Del Norte Coast, Jedediah Smith, and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Parks. In all, the four parks add up to about 139,000 acres within Del Norte and Humboldt Counties. The old growth forests include coast redwood, Sequoia sempervirens, which are the tallest, most massive trees on Earth.
America is a big, beautiful country and visiting these five places will give you a sense of the nation’s fascinating diversity.