The US is a vast landscape, consisting of bustling metropolises, sun-bleached countryside and breathtaking natural wonders. Spanning an unthinkable 3.8 million square miles, you could travel around America for a year and still not see everything worth seeing!
If you want a beginner’s guide to the States, look no further. We’re exploring five classic US destinations to get the ball rolling for your next city break.
More than 50 million people visit New York City every year, and with good reason. But with so much to see and do – and eat – it can be overwhelming figuring out where to begin.
We recommend starting with the classics: The Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building and Times Square are all worth the hype, not to mention the 9/11 Memorial, American Museum of Natural History and Central Park.
When it comes to lesser known sites, we recommend a trip to the Tenement Museum, where you can learn more about America’s history of immigration, before grabbing a bite to eat in Katz’s Delicatessen; famous for their pastrami sandwiches.
Top tip: For a memorable afternoon out, head to Prospect Park in Brooklyn and eat to your heart’s content at Smorgasberg, a food truck festival that takes place every Sunday.
As the US capital, Washington D.C. is the place to learn about American history. Whole days can be spent exploring the city’s many monuments and museums, including the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument and the Smithsonian Institution – and of course no trip to Washington is complete without seeing the White House itself and Capitol itself.
We also recommend taking a stroll through Georgetown. The historic waterfront town boasts a wide array of restaurants, bars and shops.
Top tip: Visit Washington in the springtime, where you can see the cherry blossoms blooming around the Tidal Basin.
Famous for its bright lights and casinos, Las Vegas is billed as the entertainment capital of the world.
From world-class mega casinos to spectacular shows and concerts featuring the world’s top entertainers, Vegas has something for everyone.
Every hotel along the Strip is famous in some way, whether it’s the Bellagio’s mesmerising fountains, The Venetian’s canal or New York New York’s Big Apple roller coaster. Whichever hotel you decide to stay in, you’ll still be able to enjoy everything else the other hotels have to offer, so don’t worry about missing out.
Top tip: Whilst the Strip is the main reason people visit Las Vegas, don’t be afraid to wander off the beaten track and check out the surrounding area; a kayak tour on Lake Mead is especially memorable.
Perched on the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago is celebrated for its vibrant arts scene, numerous cultural attractions and interesting architecture. It’s also the perfect place for sports fans, with the Chicago Bears, White Sox, Cubs and Chicago Bulls all hailing from the Windy City.
Whether you’re taking in a game or enjoying a relaxed afternoon in Millennium Park, there’s plenty to keep you occupied in this vibrant city.
And of course no trip to Chicago is complete without sampling the city’s famous deep dish pizza. With a much thicker crust, Chicago pizza leaves plenty of room for extra sauce, cheese and toppings – it’s a must try experience.
Top tip: Laugh til you split at the seams with an evening at one of Chicago’s comedy clubs. Some of the greatest talent has emerged from Chicago, from Tina Fey to Stephen Colbert.
From the Golden Gate Bridge to the faithful cable car, San Francisco is an iconic city that warrants hours of exploration.
One of the most memorable experiences San Francisco has to offer is a trip to Alcatraz Island. Visit the now-defunct federal prison, where the likes of Al Capone were once incarcerated, and get a feel for what it was like to be a prisoner here.
Top tip: San Francisco’s Chinatown is a great place for cheap and authentic Chinese food. There’s even a fortune cookie factory you can visit!