Americans travel all over the world looking for a piece of paradise. One of the most popular places to travel are tropical climates and I am here to tell you NOT to do that. If you have never been to a tropical island, go. I’m not telling you by any means to never see the tropics because there is so much beauty and culture that you would miss. However, if you only visit the tropics and you never venture elsewhere, you are missing out on so much of what makes the world what it is. The United States is huge and there are beautiful sites to see and roads to travel right here in the good ole U S of A. Here are 5 beautiful places you need to see before you die.
The Grand Canyon
Experience one of the grandest and most beautiful places on the entire planet in America’s great south west. Take in the desert and enjoy the picture perfect 360 degree views. There are probably thousands of things to do and see at this location. You can fly above it in a small plane, white water raft through the canyon, take a donkey ride, hike the rim to rim trail, camp, see the planetarium, and more. The walls tell a billion year old story of how the Earth was made and there is nothing like seeing the colorful layers surrounding you when you are paddling through the canyon.
Route 70 in Colorado near Vail
One of the most jaw dropping scenery I have ever witnessed in my entire life is on Route 70 driving from Denver to Las Vegas. My family and I stumbled upon this beautiful canyon on our cross country trip when we were diverted due to an insane snow storm. I was so bummed that we couldn’t see Yellowstone, Yosemite, and the Redwood forest. In the end though I got to discover something we were not expecting in the least. In my quick thinking I snapped a photograph which does not do it any justice. If you ever find yourself in this area, look for it. I have no clue what mile marker this is at, so if you happen to know please comment below.
One of the coolest places to visit in the United States is Cabbage Key. You can only get there by boat or private plane and they have been known to host very important people including Jimmy Buffet and former presidents of the United States. One rumor (true or untrue) is that Jimmy Buffet actually wrote “Cheeseburger in Paradise” after the restaurant on the island. Located in the Gulf of Mexico about 30 miles off the coast of southwest Florida sits a small island with only a handful of residents. The restaurant is covered in signed dollar bills and their cheeseburgers and seafood is amazing. You can even take a small hike around this miniature island, take the small trail just behind the restaurant it leads you to the landing strip for the planes and their water tower.
Haleakala National Park (Maui)
Hawaii is generally just a very beautiful place to see and explore, but this specific park is one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen before. There are 2 locations in this park which are awe inducing. The first is sunrise at Haleakala Crater, but make sure you dress warm since temperatures can drop to below twenty degrees. I continuously talk about this one because it was so ridiculously beautiful that I hardly believe I witnessed it. The second is the Kuloa Point trail which is a half mile loop with a beautiful overlook. The beautiful waterfalls meet the ocean and black rock cliffs. My husband and I sat at this location for almost an hour enjoying the amazing views.
The Biltmore Estate is the home of the Vanderbilt family and is open to the public to view year-round. One of the most popular times to visit this location is during the holiday season. The employees start to put decorations up at the beginning of October and it takes about a month to complete the look. The estate has also turned the stables into a restaurant with amazing food. This place has a swimming pool in the basement and a garden inside. There is even an office that was used to hide some of the world’s most expensive and well known pieces of art during World War II when most of Europe was in turmoil. Plus, the views of the mountains from the balcony are absolutely stunning. This is one spot you definitely need to add to your travel list.