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Home Tourist Attraction Best Tourist Attractions in US, From Woman Who’s Been to All 50 States

Best Tourist Attractions in US, From Woman Who’s Been to All 50 States

by Staff

I (not pictured) love driving across the Golden Gate Bridge.
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  • I’ve visited all 50 states and have seen some incredible natural wonders and powerful monuments.
  • Hawaii’s Na Pali Coast and Alaska’s Inside Passage showcase America’s stunning natural diversity.
  • The Statue of Liberty and the National Mall are moving tributes to America’s past.

I’ve visited all 50 states in my career as a travel writer, and truly believe each has something unique to offer visitors.

There are certain attractions that stand out, however, as particularly breathtaking, or symbolic of America’s history and natural diversity.

From the dunes of Michigan to the swamps of Florida, here are the 10 best tourist attractions in the US.

Yellowstone embodies the vast, wild spirit of the American West.

Yellowstone National Park is located in Wyoming.
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America’s very first national park is one I always find myself returning to year after year, and I discover new vistas and hiking trails on each visit.

Located in Wyoming, Yellowstone is open in all four seasons, and guests can learn about its Native American history in the park’s lodges and visitor centers.

If you have time, drive south of Yellowstone to Grand Teton National Park for magnificent views of the jagged Teton mountain range, the teenagers of the American Rockies.

The Statue of Liberty is an inspiring symbol of America’s history.

The Statue of Liberty inspires me.
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As a New Yorker, I find it easy to brush past some of Manhattan’s iconic landmarks, but the Statue of Liberty always inspires my latent patriotism and nostalgia for some of America’s founding ideals.

A sunset sail on the Hudson River is the perfect opportunity to catch the statue bathed in a fiery pastel light.

Sleeping Bear Dunes is a highlight of the Midwest.

Michigan’s Sleeping Bear Dunes are beautiful.
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Some dismiss the Midwest as monotonous, but I’ve learned to expect the unexpected. It’s actually home to one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever visited: Michigan’s Sleeping Bear Dunes.

The dunes are a sprawling landscape of golden sand and turquoise water in America’s heartland — I truly could not believe my eyes when I visited.

This national park is one of many reasons to explore the Great Lakes.

Hawaii’s Na Pali Coast is a pristine paradise.

The Na Pali Coast took my breath away.
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Few places on earth have truly taken my breath away, and the Na Pali Coast, on the island of Kauai, is one of them.

Reader, I cried when I saw the overwhelmingly gorgeous 17-mile stretch in Hawaii for the first time.

Although travelers can visit the coast via road trip, helicopter, or hiking trail, I suggest approaching by catamaran for the most transcendent perspective of the green cliffs from the water.

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is a powerful chronicle of our nation’s past.

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is a powerful place to learn about history.
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I was 11 years old when I first visited the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, and I still remember the awakened feeling of horror and injustice I felt learning about dark parts of America’s past.

This Alabama institute depicts civil-rights developments and movements throughout the 1950s and 1960s. It’s a must-visit for all Americans to gain a greater understanding of our country’s all-too-recent history.

And, if you have time, road trip to The Legacy Museum in Montgomery, Alabama, to continue your education on the history of American life and racial injustice in the Deep South.

Head to Washington, DC, for a monumental visit to The National Mall.

Washington, DC, is especially pretty in the spring.
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This list is incomplete without the National Mallthe stretch of landscaped lawn that goes from the US Capitol Building to the Washington Monument.

The DC spot is home to iconic monuments and memorials in Washington, DC, and I especially recommend stopping at the ones dedicated to Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial, which includes a list of over 50,000 people who lost their lives in the Vietnam War, is also not to be missed.

I’ve visited the nation’s capital in all four seasons, but my favorite is spring, when the cherry blossoms (a 1912 gift from Japan) are in full bloom.

The unspoiled scenery of Alaska’s Inside Passage is incredible.

Alaska’s Inside Passage is perhaps best traveled by boat.
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There’s nothing like venturing into the wild with a journey through Alaska’s Inside Passage, a 500-mile stretch along the Pacific.

It’s home to uninhabited islands packed with evergreen trees, glaciers, and incredible wildlife, like bald eagles and humpback whales.

I last experienced the Last Frontier during a salmon fishing trip in the summertime, and I can’t wait to return for a snow-capped sojourn in the winter.

The Golden Gate Bridge is an eternal tribute to the Sunshine State.

There’s nothing like driving across the Golden Gate Bridge in a car with the top down.
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It’s easy to see why Golden Gate is often considered one of the most beautiful bridges in the world.

This imposing testament to American industrialism connects Marin County, one of the most idyllic regions of Northern California, to San Francisco.

I’ve found true bliss and freedom driving across the Golden Gate Bridge in a convertible with the top down and music up.

The Everglades is a wonderland in the American South.

The Everglades are a great place to see wildlife.
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The Everglades are a massive national park and UNESCO World Heritage site.

Located in Southern Florida, the sub-tropical wetlands of south-central Florida offer endless curiosities for lovers of the outdoors.

I’ve witnessed the most spectacular sunsets driving west along the country roads of the Everglades, heading out to the Gulf.

The Everglades are also an incredible spot to see wildlife and greenery — they’re home to a variety of tropical birds, alligators, and mangrove forests.

The Grand Canyon embodies the otherworldly beauty of the Southwest.

The view over the South and North Rim of the Grand Canyon.
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The Grand Canyon is an epic natural landmark in Arizona that’s definitely worth visiting more than once.

I first experienced the national park on cross-country road trips with my parents and am soon returning for a trek along the North Rim. I know the red rocks and incredible formations will still inspire that same childlike wonder within me.

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