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10 Must Visit Cities In The United States


The Statue of Liberty and White House, Disney World and Hollywood, Broadway and Wall Street – these images come to mind when thinking of the United States. The third largest country in the world has many amazing cities and plenty of natural attractions to put on must-see list. And this list could stretch on forever. There are a huge number of unique fabulous cities in America that absolutely worth a trip, but just don't get their fair share of the limelight. Have you ever been to Bar Harbor Maine or Savannah Georgia or Portland Oregon? If the answer is No, then you should! But if I have to choose top ten must-visit cities in America, I have to stay with the usual suspects. After all, you haven’t been to America if you haven’t seen cultural icons like the Statue of Liberty and Golden Gate Bridge, or natural features like Grand Canyon and Lake Tahoe. So, here you are 10 Must Visit Cities in the United States.

New York Skyline, Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges

New York Skyline, Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges

New York

I think everybody would agree that New York is one of the most fascinating cities not only in the USA but in the entire world. Therefore it HAS to be on must-see in America list. What makes it so fascinating? First, of course, its architecture – Manhattan skyline is absolutely incredible. Second, its multicultural personality – New York is a true melting pot of ethnicities and cultures. And finally, nowhere else in a world you would find that many best restaurant, best hotels, museums and theaters concentrated in such a small land area of 23 square miles - that’s how small Manhattan is. And whatever your passion in culture, entertainment or food is, you’ll find it here. Don’t forget that besides Manhattan, there are four other boroughs in New York with plenty of things to do and to see.

Well, if New York has everything, then maybe the must-visit cities in America list should has only one city – New York?  Not quite right. There are much more in this incredible country than just New York.

Boston Common

Boston Common


While New York is defined by its skyline, Boston is distinguished by its vibrant neighborhoods. From the fashionable Back Bay to oldest Beacon Hill to colorful Chinatown to historic North End – all neighborhoods of Boston has its own personality and distinct appeal. A stroll around this old city is like reading an American history textbook. Follow the red line marking the Freedom Trail and come across Boston Common, the Old North Church, Paul Revere's house and Bunker Hill. Each stop represents a chapter in American history. Being cultural and commercial hub of New England, Boston absorbed all best from the region, including best food such as Maine lobster and New England clam chowder. Try them when in Boston, they are best you can find in all country.

The Washington Monument and Cherry Trees in bloom

The Washington Monument and Cherry Trees in bloom

Washington DC

The city is particularly glorious in spring, when its many gardens and park are in bloom. While visiting the White House, take the White House Garden tour and view the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden and Rose Garden – they are absolutely splendid. Sightseeing in Washington DC wouldn’t cost much – most of Washington DC museums and memorials are free. Take a ride to the top of the Washington Monument to see spectacular views of the city and surroundings. Stroll cobblestone streets of Georgetown, the city’s most beautiful neighborhood with great restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and shops. Relax at Dumbarton Oaks gardens, one of the loveliest spots in the city. And if you have time, explore surroundings - Maryland has plenty of things to offer to a curious traveler. Of course, to try Maryland Blue Crab is a must, when you are there!

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South Beach Miami

South Beach Miami


America’s Riviera with 10 miles of wide white sandy beaches, delightful art deco architecture, trendy hotels, chic restaurants and hot party scene – this is Miami. Plus, a huge Latin American cultural inheritance – in some Miami neighborhoods you could easily forget that you are in the United States. If you don’t have a chance to go to Cuba, a short trip to Little Havana in Miami could give you a little glimpse of the Caribbean jewel: aroma of Cuban coffee and cigars, pulsating Cuban music, art and craft, very authentic restaurants and colorful storefronts. But, if you are really adventurous, rent a car and go to Key West for a couple of days. Not only because Key West is absolute paradise, but also because the road from Miami to Key West is really stunning.

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Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park

Las Vegas

A gambleville with luxury resorts and five star hotels, outstanding dining and acclaimed shows, exclusive spas and world-class golf courses – you have to party in Vegas at least once in a lifetime. Las Vegas’ proximity to unique treasures of nature such as Red Rock and Grand Canyon, Colorado River and Death Valley makes Sin City attractive travel destination not only for party goers but for nature lovers as well. Take a road trip to Death Valley National Park, just a couple of hours away from Vegas, and enjoy the hottest place in the country. Or drive a little bit further to Grand Canyon, the most famous natural feature not only in the area but in the USA. Or visit Lake Mead, a large man-made lake, one of the largest in the world. And you will see that there are more of Vegas than just parties.

Walt Disney World Top 7 Must Sees


Orlando being home to the largest amusement park in the world has to be on a list of must-visit in America. Walt Disney World is the most visited recreational resort in the world, and don’t be mistaken it is not only for children, adults have plenty of fun in Disney World as well. Besides famous Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, and SeaWorld, Orlando offers plenty of different entertainment, great dining and even museums – the most comprehensive collection of Tiffany art is in Charles Hosmer Morse Museum in Orlando.

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La Jolla, San Diego

La Jolla, San Diego

San Diego

Blue skies and 70 miles of great beaches, Mediterranean climate and Mexican specialties, aquatic parks, aquariums and zoos – the jewel of South California have it all. For beach lovers a visit to La Jolla is a must. The most magnificent beach on the West Coast offers fantastic surfing, excellent snorkeling and diving, amazing sunsets and beautiful sands. San Diego Old Town, the historical heart of the city, is the "birthplace" of California - San Diego is the site of the first permanent Spanish settlement in California. The Spanish and Mexican heritage of the city is celebrated throughout Old Town, including best Mexican food and Margaritas.

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Los Angeles

Los Angeles

Los Angeles

Hollywood and Beverly Hills, Malibu and Sunset Boulevard – these places have to be on must-visit in America list, and all of them are in Los Angeles. Who wouldn’t like to take a ride down Sunset Boulevard in a convertible or watch sunset on Malibu beach with a glass of California Pinot? If you’ve never done it, you should! Besides famous attractions and intensive nightlife, Los Angeles has great surroundings to explore. Just take a road trip to Santa Barbara and you’ll witness a breathtaking beauty of South California.

Seattle Skyline and the Space Needle

Seattle Skyline and the Space Needle


If you think that Seattle is only about rain, you are absolutely wrong. The Emerald City is a real green gem, with a wealth of evergreen trees throughout, and breathtaking views of the Cascade mountains to the east and the Olympic mountains to the west. Mt. Rainier looks down on Seattle from its majestic heights. Driving through Seattle on a clear day has been compared to floating on a cloud in an emerald sky. Go to the top of the Space Needle and enjoy a panoramic view of the city, have a lunch at a sidewalk café in Pike Street Market and embrace best of what Seattle can offer – splendid views and great freshest seafood.

The Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

The Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

San Francisco

The city's famous steep hills and trolley cars, astonishing bay views, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, lively Fisherman's Wharf and Chinatown, numerous beautiful gardens and delicious food make San Francisco very unique and, from my point of view, the most beautiful city in America. When in San Francisco, take a trip to Napa Valley for a glass of wine or two while enjoying breathtaking scenery of a wine country. Or go to Lake Tahoe, to see “the jewel of the Sierras”, one of the most beautiful lakes in the country.

What city in America in YOUR must-visit list? Please, share with us your plans and your travel experiences in the United States.


Alexander James Guckenberger from Maryland, United States of America on January 12, 2018:

I've only been to two of these, but I hope to go to every one someday.

somebody on August 26, 2014:

Los Angeles has some pretty bad p laces

single pringle on April 23, 2014:

Thanks this list was really useful!!

Davronbek on February 23, 2014:

Hello! How are you Jek? I'm cooking now.

robert on July 16, 2013:

hey guys i like new york!!!!!!!!!!!!!! From the Statute of Liberty to Ellis Island to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City never sleeps because its residents have so much to do on a daily basis. Even nature lovers aren't left out of New York City's allure. An afternoon stroll in the 25-acre Central Park should fill their need for trees. Don't leave out visits to Carnegie Deli to eat huge roast beef sandwiches.

Carla on July 01, 2013:

Lists like this are so subjective, and I agree with some of the cities, but not all. If you're coming from outside the United States and want a variety of interesting cities in different parts of the country, here's what my list would be:


Washington, DC

New Orleans

San Francisco


Santa Fe

New York City

Key West



Each of those cities has something wonderful to recommend it, and they don't always show up on the "best" lists people compile.

Michelle on March 24, 2013:

I live in New York and have been to all of these cities, but above them all I would put NEW ORLEANS NEW ORLEANS NEW ORLEANS!

khloekardashian on February 17, 2013:


freecampingaussie from Southern Spain on February 02, 2013:

I had 3 days in New York & 5 days in LA with my daughter & wished when in LA it had been the other way around as I liked New York more .I had 24 hours in San Francisco which I loved . Now I am keen to see places like New Orleans. Little Rock. Seattle, Chicago, Atlanta etc as well as smaller towns .

Lisa on January 29, 2013:

I am looking to travel for my anniversary during June. I was looking at a cruise to new england states or carribean. Also thought about travel to Washington State, San Francisco and Savannah GA. Any thoughts for this time of year.

johnny on September 23, 2012:

SEATTLE = best coffee, freshest seafood , Pike's market, rock music museum, great outdoor activities, food from many countries, Space Needle, beautiful scenery, friendly and educated people..

Cindy A Johnson from Sevierville, TN on September 14, 2012:

What a difficult task to only choose 10! I've only been to 4 of these cities and loved them all. My favorite, however, isn't listed. New Orleans, LA is a unique city full of culture and creativity. A definite must see - if for nothing but the food!!!

San Fran is gorgeous on August 30, 2012:

New Orleans absolutely belongs on the list--especially with its history, culture, music, food, people, weather, events. As for Orlando- I can see why it would appeal to some but not me. Ashland, Oregon is another great town, maybe not an absolute must see but worth a mention.

Graham Lee from Lancashire. England. on August 29, 2012:

Hi Wanderlust.

Thank you for this wonderful hub. I shows the rest of us how it should be done. First class.

Voted up and all.


David Sproull from Toronto on August 16, 2012:

Add Your Comment..

Lot of pretty popular places that didn't make the list!

AKSHARA on August 11, 2012:


Kathleen Cochran from Atlanta, Georgia on August 03, 2012:

Purely for archetecture, Washington D.C. is hands down America's most beautiful city - but you haven't given me the chance to vote for it! Traffic and humidity not withstanding, there is not a city in the country that can rival Atlanta in the Spring when the dogwoods and azaleas are blooming. Otherwise, I think you've selected a wonderful group of cities. Seattle is the most under appreciated city in the U.S. and the only place I'd recommend going in the month of August. I agree that Orlando is only the Disney park. St. Augustine is the city in Florida to put on a most beautiful list. Thanks for recognizing Savannah - one of America's prettiest towns - not really big enough to be a city.

Claudia on July 16, 2012:

Where is Atlanta??

Johny on July 05, 2012:

I just got back from d.c. Loved every second. Lots to visit during the day, great places to eat and really great bars and nightlife.

Classy city.

John on July 04, 2012:

@ Justin: Your opinion about Chicago and the Midwest/Great Plains region says more about you than the place(s) you're maligning. Actually, your opinion is so uneducated and so thoughtless that I am glad you exposed yourself - the entire world can see your "enlightenment."

vbb on July 03, 2012:

Where is Honolulu.? Some people forgot Hawaii is part of USA? And I agree, Chicago should be up there..instead of LA

Ryan on June 17, 2012:

You are missing philadelphia

Angie on June 14, 2012:

Just came back from a 5 day trip from Chicago last night... I miss it already! What an amazing city with awesome food, museums, skyscrapers, theaters, lake front , shopping... I can go on and on. I'm from SF and Chicago in my book one of the greatest cities in the USA and is highly underrated. I'm glad most people here also agree it should be on this list. Add it now! Or your just a hater :)

Lita Chi-Town on June 07, 2012:

ADD Chicago NOW!!!!!!!!!

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Lisas-thoughts101 from Northeast Texas on May 31, 2012:

You chose a number of the same cities I would place on my top 10 list. I absolutely agree with Key West being an awesome place to visit --so unique-- I agree with the person who preferred Tampa Bay to Miami because Clearwater Beach is closer to Tampa and it is so beautiful. Destin is in my top 10. I found it interesting you didn't place any cities in Hawaii on your top 10. Voted up and interesting. and I'm following. great discussion in the comments... Kudos

take care,


EvertonFan on May 20, 2012:

Rob147mz, If Wanderlust had omitted New York City or San Francisco instead of Chicago would you feel the same way? To me, the biggest problem with Wanderlust's list is that it only contains cities on the East or West coasts (Las Vegas excepted). Apparently he thinks the middle of the U.S. is deservedly called "fly over" country.

Rob147mz on May 19, 2012:

Shut up about Chicago. We get the point. It's a great city. Enough!!! Everyone have thier own opinions. For me, I really want to visit the planet Mars. Great mountains, red desert, and two moons. ,:-J

A person on May 17, 2012:

awesome but idk to much for boston ewww

timmy on May 05, 2012:

nyc is the best city in the world

Peter on May 04, 2012:

Boston has a unique nobility which can not compare with diferent city. Has something!!!!

Melanie Chisnall from Cape Town, South Africa on May 01, 2012:

Beautiful hub! I've always wanted to travel to the States, now I know where to go!

Tommyg on April 23, 2012:

Traveling to the US soon and I'm really looking forward to it, California (excluding LA) looks gorgeous. I'm not really fussed about seeing any cities, most modern cities these days are populated by foreigners, so they're not exactly unique.

Justin on April 19, 2012:

Funny to read of the Chicago homers getting all upset because their city was dissed on this list. Newflash: Chicago is in flyover country. Boring culture and people make it unattractive to most people. Chicago might be the capital of the Midwest, but the the rest of the country, it's the red headed stepchild among the major cities.

Ted on April 04, 2012:

Where the heck is Chicago? Birthplace of the skyscraper, food mecca, host of two world's fairs, historic industrial and agricultural hub of the U.S... Beautiful lakefront, world class museums, extremely walkable and clean... Seriously?

Lisas-thoughts101 from Northeast Texas on March 22, 2012:

Wanderlust, I couldn't begin to pick 10. New Orleans and Austin and several in Hawaii and a couple on the East Coast..... I admire your decisiveness. You are a great writer. I've been to most you've named and agree they are awesome. Still haven't made New York. You made me yearn.


Reve from Dhaka on March 21, 2012:

I do have a wish of visiting USA someday, but I am not sure when it is going to be possible. In New York, one of my best friends live. In Pennsylvania, another friend of mine lives, and she is a psychiatrist. I have heard hell lot of things about two cities.

Thanks for your amazing hub. Looking forward to read out more :)

Jim USA on March 18, 2012:

This list is pretty good. I would take Orlando off the list and include Chicago. From an American perspective, Boston is the most historic (founded in 1630) and the most interesting architecturally. It is definitely the most European of the American cities. It is a big metro area, over 4 million souls. Lots of university students, rich culture, and gorgeous neighborhoods. Winters are brutal; go May thru Oct. New York is world class, San Francisco has the most beautiful natural surroundings, but the city proper is a haven for homeless. Great hilly streets to work out those calves! Charleston, SC should be on the list too.

louromano on March 14, 2012:

I greatly enjoyed reading this guide.

FY on March 08, 2012:

Great list!! NY definitely is number one. Went there for the first time and it was amazing. Endless things to do, see, places to eat. Such a different vibe. The rest of the list is awesome as well...I just think people need to take things a little less personally. Why must everything turn into contro or hate. Just because your city didn't make the list doesn't mean it's not a good place. Top 10 means 10 cities, every city can't make the list ;)

Mario on March 07, 2012:

What about Chicago????

Joe on February 28, 2012:

I live in Honolulu and love it!! It's scooter friendly (no big gas bills for me), shops are beautiful, and every way you turn, you have breath taking views.

Jay on February 26, 2012:

Most beautiful cities: San Francisco (probably best city overall,) Seattle (on a sunny day it is exceptionally beautiful.)

Most exciting and generally interesting cities: New York and Los Angeles.

I like Chicago for the architecture. Too bad they destroyed the worlds fair buildings.

Miami south beach is very unique and worth the visit. Service industry there is horrible however, lots of incompetent people.

RMW on February 23, 2012:

Edmonton Alberta is the nicest city in North America.Garbage strewn streets and abandoned buildings with a nice blend of unpaved dirty parking lots...Its sooo beautiful.

jitterbug on February 22, 2012:

San Diego lol, there is nothing like Miami.

kim on February 22, 2012:

thanx 4 information......

Rod on February 16, 2012:

Vladimir, I've never been to Miami myself, but most of what I've heard is negative. Apparently the natives aren't too friendly to out-of-towners, and the young people seem entirely preoccupied with looking great. And if you're not super fit and good-looking, they tend to look down on you. But maybe those experiences are the exception and not the rule.

Vladimir on February 15, 2012:

I've been to NYC, Miami, LA and Las Vegas and i must say that nothing beats Miami in winter, autumn and spring. It's in a league of it's own, LA is a 50% ghetto city, Las Vegas is only impressive on the main road - LV Boulevard, NY is dirty and run-down, while Miami is a glamourous city, the playground of the rich and famous.

midwesterner on February 12, 2012:

If you're going to Chicago, expect to do a lot of walking so please go in the summer. Great place. However, winters are brutal(accept this year). Other cities that are kind of below the radar but are pretty cool are Minneapolis, nice parks and lakes, Mall of America, clean downtown. Pittsburgh, river city, beautiful views. Indianapolis is pretty cool, everything is centrally located downtown, great place for sporting events, ie SuperBowl, Final 4.

Abby on February 05, 2012:

Great information, I would agree with most of this except for Orlando. The parks in Orlando are good,but the city itself is not special. Chicago is my favorite city in America because it is big, nice, clean, beautifull, and should defenitley be at the top of this list

msware0104 on February 03, 2012:

The Grand Canyon is in Arizona, not Las Vegas.

aliceciangpumvung on January 28, 2012:

This is fantastic !

I can't wait to go!

dstaley531 on January 20, 2012:

CHICAGO is a must!

birdslover from New Delhi, India on January 19, 2012:

I don't know about top 10, but Chicago is also a beautiful place, I have been to there many times.

jmurph on January 17, 2012:

Orlando and Vegas(downtown not including LakeMead,etc..), two plastic cities that are absolutely boring unless you like overweight american tourist who are stupid..and you choose these 2 places over Chicago...with all the museums and the lake, how can anybody believe anything you say..

wonderingwoolley from Madison, WI on January 16, 2012:

I haven't visited most of these cities, so it was great for me to learn a little bit more about these cities. You really brought them to life. Thanks for sharing!

Traveler1976 on January 14, 2012:

Having read the other comments, I wanted to offer a few more observations:

1. Saying that Chicago is too similar to NY and therefore Orlando is more deserving of a top 10 spot is like saying that Paris is too similar to London and therefore Euro Disney is a more interesting destination for a visitor to Europe.

2. Chicago is not really all that similar to NY. It has its own unique Midwestern flavor, is on a lake, and is hugely significant architecturally and culturally. Wanderlust, do you realize for example that Chicago has the best symphony orchestra in the US and some of the best art museums? Do you really think that a city that has virtually nothing to offer but a large amusement park is a more interesting tourist destination even for one who has already been to NY ? Think about it.

3. By omitting both Chicago and New Orleans the author did not deem a single city in the middle 2600 miles of the country to be interesting enough to be included in the top 10.

4. I am a New Yorker.

Traveler1976 on January 14, 2012:

Orlando in the top 10 but not Chicago? I am all for including cities for their uniqueness but how can you include a city that has a big theme park and not much else while excluding the second city of the nation, the birthplace of the skyscraper and a cultural force like Chicago. Chicago has some of the most beautiful skyscrapers in the world and is probably the second most important cultural center in the nation. It should appear in any top 5, let alone top 10.

And what about Philadelphia, the birthplace of the nation that has the greatest concentration of colonial architecture in the country, and New Orleans, often referred to as the most unique city in the US?

So I would take out Orlando, San Diego (which is just a smaller and prettier version of LA) and Seattle (a nice town but lacking in historical pedigree and world class cultural attractions) and replace them with Chicago, Philadelphia and New Orleans.

Expat from OZ on January 12, 2012:

USA is beautiful. I have come here to work for 6 months and I wanted to make sure I visited some of the most popular cities, so I went to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York and Washington DC. Ask me which city was the best? All of them!! New York is top when you want to see a real city, but trust me, all the above mentioned cities wont fail to impress you.

Vacationist123 on January 11, 2012:

My Top Places To Visit In The World




4.Los Angeles,California






10.Tahiti,French Plynesia

VACATIONISTA 123 on January 11, 2012:

My Top Ten List In the United States

1.New York City,New York


3.Los Angeles,California




7.Las Vegas,Nevada



10.Phoenix, Arizona

Senorita Bance on January 11, 2012:

definately philly should be included it has great tourist attractions and roaring skyscrapers also itz where the declaration of independence was written and founded

CRITIC 12345 on January 11, 2012:

I think this website was helpful but i think PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA should have been included as one of the top ten places to visit becasue it has the most history of our country and it's the 5 state in population

Lesley on January 07, 2012:

Thank you EvertonFan for the advice! The sights you mentioned sound very interesting and I will definitely pay them a visit while I am in Vienna! thank you again you were very helpful. :)

EvertonFan on January 07, 2012:

Lesley, I've visited Virginia a number of times, but didn't recall hearing of Vienna until you mentioned it here. Checking out a map, I see that Vienna's near Tyson's Corner, which is an upscale suburb with good shopping.

I've spent a bit of time in that area, and to be honest, other than Arlington National Cemetery, I can't think of any major sight to see in Vienna's immediate vicinity. The Cemetery itself makes for a nice visit provided the weather's good. If you go there you'll want to be sure to catch the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

If you're into museums its certainly worthwhile to take a short trip over to Washington, DC. Of course Washington also offers many worthwhile sights besides its outstanding museums, and some of the must-see highlights are the Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, and the Capitol.

If you head away from Washington DC, there're a number of Civil War sites that are very interesting. In particular, I found Fredericksburg to be quite fascinating. And if you have a free day, Colonial Williamsburg is well worth visiting.

Lesley on January 06, 2012:

Need a little advice from some fellow Americans here who may be able to help me out...Can anyone tell me what Vienna, Virginia is like? Is it a modern city with attractions? Is it a big city? Is it more country as you can see I have no idea! Bt am planning to visit there for some business and just want to get an idea what to expect.. Also will be visiting the cities listed above including Chicago can't wait!! Thank you for the informative information!!

villasandhomes on January 04, 2012:

The places in United states was beautiful.. Hub mentioned places are attractive and beautiful... Thanks for sharing this..

Chris on December 30, 2011:

Where's philly on this list! It's a city with history and most of all a special kind of heart. It has

Way more life in it's streets than any of those cities except maybe boston! Show some love for philly

CJ on December 28, 2011:

Moved to Chicago about 3 years ago. Absolutely love it. So much to do, bustling metropolis, breath taking skyline, wonderful museums, great food, diverse people and neighborhoods and of course Lake Michigan(Sea)-which warms up to 80 degrees in the summer and has no lurking sharks, baracudas, jellyfish, octopus, etc. Just friendly fish. It does have a bathtub feel to it in the summer, because it's warm, has fresh not salty water and the state of Michigan is on the other side, although we can't see it. It's truly ours (USA). For all you ocean loving city dwellers that put down our city and Great Lake(Sea), what's on the other side of your ocean? Couldn't go out for a swim without thinking about your leg stuck in Shamus's mouth, could you?. All your ocean has is bigger waves, but we have that too in the fall and winter. If it wasn't for the cold weather and if Chicago was further south it would have 3 times the population. It would be the top city and resort destination in the world.

I also like NYC, LA, Philly, DC, Boston and SF

Detroit-Please do the world a favor and start over

texasgirlfw on December 27, 2011:

Basically good list. Orlando, not so sure, other than Disney.

oscar707 on December 23, 2011:


Why are New Yorkers like yourself so provincial when it comes to discussing the merits of other cities? You can't even bring yourself to list Chicago as one of the best places to visit in the U.S. because, "it's too much like New York"? Is that a serious comment from someone who writes about travel for a living?

Chicago is not "similar" to New York at all. What a dumb thing to write. That was a lame reason because you knew you looked like a "homer" for New york and couldn't think of a better excuse. New Yorkers can't stand it when Chicago is brought up as the epitome of American cities because that would mean their own beloved home is not talked about 1st, 2nd, 3rd, -go as high as you'd like to count.

New york is a great place to visit, but the people who live there like you are the real the hicks as your type always refers to those of us peons who live between the coasts.

You have zero credibility as a travel writer after this article's ommission of Chicago.

EvertonFan on December 18, 2011:

Both "Travel & Leisure" magazine and "Conde Nast Traveler" magazine conduct annual surveys to see which cities their readers like best.

The results:

Conde Nast Traveler's Top 10:

1. Charleston, SC

2. San Francisco

3. Santa Fe, NM

4. Chicago

5. Honolulu

6. Savannah, GA

7. New York City

8. Carmel, CA

9. Seattle

10. Boston

Travel & Leisure's Top 10 (U.S. and Canada):

1. New York City

2. Charleston, SC

3. Chicago

4. San Francisco

5. Santa Fe, NM

6. New Orleans

7. Savannah, GA

8. Vancouver, BC

9. Victoria, BC

10. Quebec City

EvertonFan on December 18, 2011:

Wanderlust, you claim Chicago is too similar to New York City to make it onto your list. But why then do you put both San Diego and LA on your list when they're MUCH more similar than Chicago and New York. And the same goes for the similar cities of San Francisco and Seattle.

Here's a Top 10 with a bit of variety:

1) New York

2) Washington, DC

3) San Francisco

4) Chicago

5) Boston

6) New Orleans

7) Charleston, SC

8) Santa Fe, NM

9) Honolulu, HI -- not that great of a city, but Hawaii is definitely a "must visit"

10) Las Vegas + Grand Canyon

george on December 17, 2011:

I've traveled to every major city in North America and here is my list:

1. Chicago- by far the best use of waterfront land and best architecture.

2. San Francisco

3. Vancouver

4. New York- least friendly people (even waitstaff are rude here!) and garbage all over sidewalks in Manhattan two days per week, but there is an exciting energy here and central park is incredible in the middle of the canyons of skyscrapers

5. Montreal- nice blend of north american and european culture

6. Seattle

7. Boston

8. Toronto- the cleanest of the big cities

9. New Orleans

10. Pittsburgh/Milwaukee/Baltimore- everything looks old in these towns, but i like that. it's like travelling back in time when you're there.

overrated: Los Angeles (giant suburb- no cultural core), Atlanta (see Los Angeles), Miami, San Diego. Washington DC

pitiful places: Houston, Detroit (an embarrassment to the US), Las Vegas

Jon on December 11, 2011:

Boston wins

SATX on December 01, 2011:

San Antonio???

jdwpalaw on November 27, 2011:

Pittsburgh is one of the most beautiful cities in the country. Worth the visit. You'll be very pleasantly surprised.

Wanderlust (author) from New York City on November 26, 2011:

Peter, if you only have 5 days, I wouldn't suggest to spread it too thin. You can do 3 days in New York and 2 days in another city, either Boston or Washington or Philly. Or 3 days in New York, 1 day in Washington and 1 day in Philly, as long as Washington and Philadelphia are not far from each other. Have a great trip!

PETER NICHOLSON on November 24, 2011:

I have never been to USA and I am planning to fly to NYC for 5 days next year in Spring. Do you think the best things for me to see the real USA would be spending 3 days in NYC, one day in Boston, half day in Washington and half day in Philadelpia ???

Peter Nicholson (United Kingdom)

Angie on November 22, 2011:

Yea they should have put New Orleans and Chicago on the list. :/

Im from Miami and I love it here. The beaches are fun and clean and so so blue. And we have that Latin flare not that Mexican shit in Texas. We may have some construction going on but that doesn't mean it all went to hell. Either way if you visit Miami you'll never get bored :)

jade and kelly on November 21, 2011:

we both think that the mst beatiful citie is miami. the reason why we think this is becase the beach and the trees go with the beach. and the way the sun hits the water and the sky is mre clear then new york

jonathan on November 05, 2011:

california is the best state to visit it nice with major cities very nice state to be

Amina on November 02, 2011:

Well then I see a LOT of pople seem to like Chicaho ive never been there before but it sounds very similar to ny I dont know why very many people dont seem to like boston all that much but I think it is the best out of this list it has spectacular views, great restaurants, different cultures and its so historical! I would have to say its enjoyable for every type of person. In my oppinion it is nixest in the fall

Fredrik on October 27, 2011:

I'm probably not the one who am able to pick the best US cities as I'm not even American. But of course, after a great trip this summer, I've made my list. I must admit that two or three Canadian cities would make it to my list (Vancouver, Toronto and perhaps Niagara Falls). I've included some keywords on those I know best:

1. San Francisco (The cable cars, location, hills and so on)

2. Seattle (climate, Mount Rainier, Space Needle)

3. Washington, D.C. (parks, monuments, White House)

4. New York (Central Park, view from Rockefeller, so much to see)

5. San Diego

6. Boston

7. Chicago (View from Willis Tower, mix of old and new skyscrapers, Millennium Park)

8. Miami

And when it comes to experience of a lifetime:

1. Las Vegas (Las Vegas is Las Vegas...)

2. Memphis (A taste of the south)

2. Los Angeles (Movie city #1)

Kag on October 25, 2011:

1. Chicago

2. Portland (oregon)

3. Seattle

4. Philadelphia

5. NYC

6. Buffalo/Niagra Falls

No other city makes it on here that I have been to. LA is a big dump. People only live there because of the warm climate. Move to Chicago of Boston or Denver or SOMETHING

Steve on October 25, 2011:

Where is Chicago on this list???? It should be on here!

chazze on October 19, 2011:

I nominate Chicago.

buddygem on October 19, 2011:

I think LA is the most awful disappointing place to visit.... Vegas is fantastic, including a trip to the Grand Canyon. San Francisco is wonderful. Orlando has no soul. Do not go there unless you want theme parks!

Aspen... is beautiful! I love America and want to return and explore more.

deepti ahuja on October 17, 2011:

Wonderful write up! Thanks for sharing! I must say America is such a gorgeous country. I am planning to visit it soon via as my experience with has always been great. Each trip with it has been memorable :)

Hvladis on October 16, 2011:

Of course San Francisco is the highest in this poll... Ive been to alot of places in the is by far the most beautiful city in America.

Hvladis on October 16, 2011:

Of course San Francisco is the highest in this poll... Ive been to alot of places in the is by far the most beautiful city in America.

John on October 15, 2011:

For the posters that said Chicago isn't unique or offers a lot but others do it better I would like list of those "better" offerings. It seems either those who said it have never been to Chicago or visited for a month or two. Try actually living in the city without a work permit and fully immerse yourself with the North, West, and South Sides aka the ENTIRE Chicago, not just the tourist spots.

Some of these comments may be opinions, but they're opinions that embarrass those that hold them. What a shame, really.

Figlia Di Ali on October 12, 2011:

Thank you for this post. I have been planning our trip in the US for next year. This page really helped a lot. It's confusing though for the many comments and reactions but I do believe that USA is a great country and I'm looking forward to seeing all the great cities in it. I've already visited San Francisco, LA and Vegas. I love SanFo, it's really beautiful.

I'm excited to visit the other cities especially New York.

OLIVER on October 12, 2011:

I'm from NYC and I must agree there is no city like my hometown.

These are my top favorite American Cities.

1. New York (The center of the universe, everything happens here!! A truly exciting place to live or visit)

2.Miami (Beautiful warm water, Art Deco, exciting city with a great skyline)

3. New Orleans (For me New Orleans is the most haunted place in the world, the city is filled with so much history and culture, I felt like I was back in time while visiting the French Quarter)

4. San Francisco ( Beautiful city filled with culture and class)

5. Los Angeles ( I love the vibe in LA just a care-free and great party scene)

Karla Ulloa on October 06, 2011:

Boston is the best!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

eddy on October 03, 2011:

New York is the greatest city in the world, so I am glad that was a common thread with all these comments. New York is the World's city. Everything after NYC in comparing American cities will be of strong opinion (yes, I get it, that NYC as 1 is an opinion as well). Don't forget too that New York City isn't just Manhattan...its all five boroughs which really exemplifies the melting part that anyone across the globe should appreciate.

After NYC, I personally would have San Francisco in the mix for American Cities. No city has a more beautiful backdrop then SF with great complementing architecture.

Las Vegas is the second most unique city in the WORLD, and I loved it there but can see where people may not LOVE it.

Boston is a great American city. It's not a WORLD city like New York or probably LA, but is a great American city with rich tradition.

I am not a large fan of Washington, DC but it obviously has to go on the top 10 list.

Not sure if you can put Orlando in that mix...but I guess when it is "must visit cities" you can make a case for it in the top ten.

I see some people complaining about Chicago not getting on the list. Very Fair Argument. Great city but not sure where it stands in uniqueness factor and if I only had 10 visits to America, not sure if the second city makes it. Skyline, amazing (all together, if NYC didn't separate their downtown and midtown skylines, then I think NYC would trump it)- food, sports,business- great...Just don't where the uniqueness factor snatches Chi-Town away from a NY, Miami, SF, Vegas, etc...

JC on October 03, 2011:

Minneapolis belongs on this list, but Orlando?

michelle on September 24, 2011:

what about chicago...?

howser on September 21, 2011:

I have lived in the miami -fort lauderdale area far too long,and believe me,it has no reason being on this list.Very rude nasty populace and a plethura of crime along with very ugly terrain and intolerable heat and humididity more than three quarters of the year.That,my friends is the true reality of miami and southeastern florida.

David Sproull from Toronto on September 20, 2011:

Nice list, but think a list of 'hidden gems' might be cool and appreciated. i mean, I don't think NYC need advertising. ;-)

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