The United States of America – Country of Freedom. Every year, millions of national and international tourists are traveling in this unique country. But have you ever wondered which are the most popular places that you should add to your United States Bucket List?
In another post, we have recently introduced you to the most underrated travel destinations in the US. That’s why here, we’d like to talk about the most popular and most beautiful cities in the US. Below, you will find the most popular places in the US.
What to find out in this post
Top 10 Most Popular Cities in the US
10. San Francisco, California
This city, located on the Pacific Ocean, is the focal point of many famous movies and series. Named after St Francis, this popular US city is not only famous worldwide for its Golden Gate Bridge but also the former prison island of Alcatraz, on which Al Capone was once imprisoned, attracts thousands of visitors each year.
Another top attraction in San Francisco is the Fisherman’s Wharf. Here you can not only enjoy delicious seafood but also observe free-living sea lions. Not to forget San Francisco’s Chinatown, which is considered one of the largest Chinese communities outside of China. If you have more time at hand, make sure to plan a weekend trip to Lake Tahoe from there.
09. San Diego, California
While San Francisco and Los Angeles are the two most popular destinations in California with international tourists, San Diego is more likely to be visited by local tourists, often as part of a California Roadtrip. Funny actually, because San Diego has so much to offer as well. San Diego is especially popular for its wonderful weather – no wonder with more than 300 sunny days a year.
Even in winter, temperatures seldom drop below 10 degrees °C (50°F), making San Diego a unique beach destination. Unsurprisingly, it is here that the Spaniards founded their first settlement in California, which is why San Diego is still sometimes called the birthplace of California. So if you want to enjoy a wonderful beach or surf vacation in the US, San Diego is just the place to go to.
08. Washington, D.C.
Of course, the capital of the United States can’t be missing from this list. Anyone interested in the architecture or history of this country should visit Washington D.C. (Not to be confused with the state of Washington). The White House, which is home to the current President of America, has its seat here.
On my first visit to Washington D.C., I was surprised at how many exciting and interesting museums you can discover here and that you can explore most of the main attractions of the city walking. Also the Capitol, the Lincoln Memorial (which you probably know by Martin Luther King or the famous movie Forrest Gump), as well as the Washington Monument are simply worth a visit when traveling to Washington DC.
07. Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas – Sin City. Even those who are not interested in casinos will definitely not get bored in Las Vegas. Located in the middle of the Mojave Desert, this unique city offers entertainment of all kinds. Especially the nightlife is outstanding and part of many Hollywood movies. Although European citizens can’t celebrate spontaneous weddings here, you will certainly find other ways to amuse yourself.
Alongside the 6.5 km long so-called strip you will find many theme hotels, restaurants, and bars as well as many other entertainment venues, such as comedy, musicals, and theatrical performances. You can also discover replicas of many famous sights in Las Vegas such as the Statue of Liberty, the Eiffel Tower, the Egyptian Pyramids, and even the Grand Canal of Venice.
06. Los Angeles, California
And again, a city in California – You can already see which US state is ahead in terms of visitor numbers (Spoiler alert: this was not the last city in California on this list). Los Angeles – The center of the American film industry and the home of the famous Hollywood Sign.
In addition to guided tours through some of your favorite movie scenes, you can marvel at Hollywood Boulevard with its handprints of famous Hollywood stars such as the Walk of Fame. But even those who aren’t huge movie fans will love Los Angeles. The Getty Center, which contains a large selection of international art, is also a popular destination within the city. In addition, the Griffith Observatory offers a unique planetarium and wonderful panoramic views of the city.
05. Orlando, Florida
Even though Orlando is not the capital of Florida, as many think, but is sometimes referred to as the theme park capital of the States. No wonder – because here you will find dozens of them. So if you are a theme park fan, a Florida road trip should definitely be on your Bucket list. First and foremost, of course, DisneyWorld, which houses the famous castle that you know from your favorite childhood movies.
Also located here is Universal Orlando, which features both Universal Studios and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. If you are not tired of theme parks yet, you can also visit SeaWorld and the Wet‘n Wild water park. If this is still not enough, you can visit Legoland, Gatorland Zoo, or the Christian theme park Holy Land Experience.
04. Anaheim, California
More theme parks? Who would have thought that Anaheim is the most popular place in California? If you’ve never heard of this city in Orange County, do not be surprised. Most visitors actually come here for the city’s most famous attraction rather than the city itself: The Disneyland Resort.
This popular theme park consists of two parks: Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park. The famous park was developed by Walt Disney itself more than 60 years ago and is still considered one of the most visited theme parks in the world today. Unsurprisingly as the park offers attractions for big and small Disney fans. The city itself is not far from Los Angeles, so a visit to the two popular cities can be perfectly combined.
03. Atlanta, Georgia
Atlanta is not only the capital of the US state of Georgia but also played a significant role in the history of the United States. This may be one of the reasons why so many, especially local tourists, are visiting this city. The two most popular attractions here regarding the history of the city are the Atlanta History Center as well as the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site.
But also Olympic Park, built for the 1996 Olympics, is still a popular attraction in Atlanta today, as it is home to the Georgia Aquarium. Another tourist attraction in the city is the World of Coca-Cola Museum. Moreover, the skyscrapers of the city are definitely worth a look.
02. Chicago, Illinois
Chicago is not only the second most popular city in the US but also one of the largest in the country. Unsurprisingly, Chicago is famous for its skyscrapers. But besides the impressive skyscrapers, you can also visit some of the most important museums in the country there.
One of the most important is the Art Institute of Chicago, in which one can have a look at many impressionistic and post-impressionistic works. But also the Museum of Natural History Field Museum should not be missed on any visit.
01. New York, New York
You’ve probably already guessed so – New York City is the most popular city in the USA. Almost 63 million visitors made it to this impressive city on the east coast in 2017. New York has a lot to offer: from the world-famous Statue of Liberty to the famous skyscrapers, such as The Rockefeller Center and the Empire State Building to major museums and cultural exhibitions.
For musical and theatrical fans, Broadway offers countless performances every day, so there is something for every taste. Of course, Times Square is also a must-do when visiting NYC.
If you want to explore all the major attractions with travel tips from locals, have a look at our comprehensive New York Itinerary.
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