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American Summer Destinations: From New York City to the Grand Canyon

Jul/28/2022 / by Syna Mehra
Image credits: Shutterstock

Bluegrass and beaches, snow-covered peaks and redwood forests, restaurant-loving city spaces and open sky are all part of the wonderful American experience.

It is home to big cities such as Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, and New York City, whose names alone conjure up a plethora of cultural, culinary, and entertainment associations. Looking closer reveals the American patchwork in all its startling variety: the laid-back charm of the deep South, the breath-taking fall colors that transform New England into a paradise, San Francisco’s spectacular waterfront, and New Orleans’ intriguing French Quarter.

This is also a land of vast sky and road excursions, with four million miles of highways winding past red-rock deserts, beneath towering mountain peaks, and through rich wheat fields that stretch off into the distance. This is America.

Here are a list of my top places to visit in the United States this and every summer:

New York City, New York

New York City, home to aspiring artists, hedge-fund moguls, and immigrants from all over the world, is continually reinventing itself. It is still a major hub for fashion, theater, cuisine, music, publishing, advertising, and banking. The five boroughs are home to an incredible amount of museums, parks, and ethnic districts.

Take to the streets, like every New Yorker does. Every street in this dizzying kaleidoscope reflects its character and history, and even a short walk may take you across continents.

San Francisco, California

Revolution is underway in the boom-and-bust city of San Francisco, which is now experiencing a high-profile rise. San Francisco’s various districts, amidst the mist and the noise of vintage trams, entice lengthy days of roaming, with fantastic independent shops, fabulous restaurants, and bohemian nightlife.

Exploring Alcatraz, wandering the Golden Gate, taking day trips to the adjacent redwoods, Pacific coast, wine country, and riding the cable car at least once are all highlights. San Francisco is a cool city. You’ll be captivated as you reach the top of the hill and see your first breath-taking waterfront vista.

Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park

What makes Yellowstone National Park, the first national park in the world, so special? For starters, there are geysers and neon hot springs, as well as hydrothermal vents and sizzling mud pits. Then there’s the wildlife, which includes grizzlies, black bears, wolves, elk, bison, and moose that wander across 3500 square miles of wildness.

Set your camp in Yellowstone’s Grand Canyon, observe the Upper and Lower Falls, wait for Old Faithful Geyser to erupt, and stroll through the prehistoric, seething environment for a true experience of the Wild West.

California’s Yosemite National Park

Wander through fields strewn with wildflowers amid valleys formed by rivers and glaciers, whose hard, never-ending labor makes everything appear huge. Hikers walk beneath ancient groves of giant sequoias, the planet’s largest trees, in Yosemite National Park, where thunderous waterfalls cascade over rocky cliffs, insect larva climbers scale the massive granite canopies of El Cap and Half Dome.

Tuolumne’s subalpine meadows are equally stunning. Perch at Glacier Point on a full moon night  in the summer for the most exquisite sights.

Highway of the Pacific

A journey down America’s gorgeous western coastline is the epitome of road-tripping. Highway 1 (also known as the Coastal Highway), Highway 101, and Interstate 5 traverses across California, passing by breath-taking sea cliffs, quirky coastal villages, and a few large cities, like laid-back San Diego, always-up Los Angeles, and start up -frenzy San Francisco.

Highway 101 glides into Oregon north of the redwoods, passing through windy capes, rocky tide pools, and Ecola State Park, which serves as a stand-in for werewolf sanctuary La Push, Washington, for “Twilight” aficionados.

The City of New Orleans

The city of New Orleans is one of the most entertaining cities in the US. The Big Easy’s charm is enhanced by Caribbean-colonial architecture, Creole food, and a wild aura of celebration. The city’s wild yearly events (Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest) are famed the world over, and nights are spent enjoying Dixieland jazz, blues, and rock in bouncing live-music establishments.

Arizona’s Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon’s sheer size is what first strikes you – a two-billion-year-old tear through the terrain that makes us respect the earth’s geologic secrets. Mother Nature’s creative flourishes, from sun-dappled ridges and scarlet buttes to lush oasis and a ribbon-like river, capture your attention and make you want to come back.

These are the places on my wishlist. I think they’re absolutely stunning and I don’t want to miss out on them! Have a nice holiday and a great summer.

To help with your travels, check out 6 Apps to Help Plan Your Travel


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