A bucket list experience for many, a road trip across America brings with it a whole host of excitement. Hiring a car and taking to the open road to travel across states, cruising down the famous Route 66 and visiting iconic landmarks on the way is a popular way to the see the country – all you need is a valid licence and an eager road trip companion.
Both amidst and away from the big cities is where you’ll find some of the USA’s best beaches. Superpower states such as Florida and California are ideal beach holidays in America thanks to their sparkling sunshine and coastal locations that make the sea and sand truly shimmer. Hawaiian beaches are among some of the best in the world, with cerulean waters and powder-white sands that make you feel like you’re immersed in utter paradise.
The melting pot of cultures is undoubtedly reflected in American’s culinary cuisine, blending the contributions of various groups of people from around the world. As well as classic staples such as hot dogs, hamburgers and pancakes, each area of this vast destination has its own signature dish or style of cooking. Think key lime pie in Florida, deep-dish pizza in Chicago, the Philly cheesesteak in Philadelphia, buffalo chicken wings in Buffalo and so much more. Portion sizes in the states are notoriously larger than life so one thing you must pack on a holiday to America is your appetite…
There’s no shortage of sights to see when it comes to a holiday to the USA. The country is full of iconic landmarks that truly can’t be missed out on including the Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, the Statue of Liberty in New York, the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and Mount Rushmore in South Dakota just to name a few.
A city break destination like no other, a holiday to New York is one that you’ll certainly remember forever. Full of neck-craning skyscrapers and instantly-recognisable landmarks, this thriving metropolis provides an endless agenda of entertainment no matter how many times you visit. First-time visitors must see the likes of the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, Central Park, Fifth Avenue and the Empire State Building. The city is split up into five boroughs, all with their unique flavour and attractions; Brooklyn for its edginess and culinary scene, the Bronx for the zoo, Manhattan for a taste of luxury, Queens for its vintage feel and Staten Island for its scenic views.
Undoubtedly the emblem of the United States of America, the White House has been the official residence and workplace of every president since John Adams in 1800. This blinding monument is located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C and spans a floor area of 55,000 square feet. If that wasn’t impressive enough, the building has 132 rooms and 35 bathrooms, 412 doors, 147 windows, 28 fireplaces, a tennis court, a bowling alley, a movie theatre and plenty of staff to keep things up and running. White House tours for international visitors must be requested through contacting your home country’s embassy in Washington, D.C.
If you happen to be on a holiday to America during the last week of November, celebrating Thanksgiving is a must. A national holiday that falls on the fourth Thursday of the month, Thanksgiving is a day of giving thanks and sacrifice for the blessing of the harvest. Feasting, football and family are the main ways Americans rejoice the occasion and it is often a bigger occasion than Christmas. Traditional Thanksgiving meals are centred on a large roasted turkey with trimmings such as green beans, candied yams, pumpkin pie, mashed potatoes, stuffing and cranberry sauce.
If there’s one thing you must experience during the summer months on a holiday to America, it’s an authentic outdoor barbecue. A focus around smoked and grilled meats, ice-cold beverages and vibrant summer fruits are amongst the barbecue staples, and they’re often held by bodies of water such as lakes and beaches, although tailgating – food gatherings held at the back of a vehicle in the car park of a large venue – is a popular American pastime. If you don’t manage to take part in an outdoor event, there are an abundance of incredible barbecue restaurants throughout the country, especially in the south, that will make your mouth water just at a whiff of the smoky, tangy aromas.
The weather in the United States largely varies depending on the state or area you are visiting. In the plains and southern states, such as Florida and California, the summers are hot and humid. In the Pacific Northwest and the East Coast, summers are warm yet winters can be intensely cold.
British passport holders will need a visa or an Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) to enter the USA as a visitor. An ESTA allows approved applicants to travel to the USA for up to 90 days for the purpose of tourism. For more information, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/usa/entry-requirements
The currency in the United States is the United States Dollar (USD)