The Complete USA Travel Guide: Things to Do and See (2020) Skip to content

United States

Where everything is possible!

The complete USA travel guide

America is a country where you could have an english tea at breakfast, italian pasta at lunch, indian curry at dinner and irish whiskey at night in, all in one day at your fingertips.
 

Where is America?

united states of america global map
North America is located between Canada and Mexico, bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean and to the east by the Atlantic Ocean.
 
It’s the world’s third largest country in size and population. There are 50 states in the country and the District of Columbia and 6 main regions in the US, which are New England, the mid-Atlantic, the South, the Midwest, the Southwest, and the West.
 

In all America, English and Spanish are the most spoken languages.

Travel to the US: Quick History

The natives have been living on this land for centuries, until the settlers from Europe came in the early 17th century. The settlers fought with the natives for establishing the new colonies on their land and won.
 
Then, in the 18th century, settlers fought again, now with Britain and created a new constitution and hence the country formed as the United States. It has become a global power after declaring independence from the Britain as of July 4, 1776.

What is the main religion in the United States?

Christianity is the main religion in the US. And FREEDOM TO HAVE ANY RELIGION is present in the First Amendment in the US Constituency.
 
You can be a Catholic or a Protestant, Hindu or a Muslim, Sikh or Buddist, or any other religion or even if you don’t believe in religion, EVERYONE ARE WELCOME IN THE UNITED STATES.

Visiting the United States of America

grand canyon in america

When is the best time to visit the US?

The north of the US has a fairly similar climate across the country, but the seasons are well defined. In winter, you can be surprised by a large amounts of snow (it’s great if you like it) and lakes are frozen, while spring often begins in May, resulting in a variety of vegetation and wildlife.
 
Summers are hot to but sometimes it can be extremely hot (prepare the suncream and the sunglasses!) – especially in cities, you may feel suffocated, but beaches and forests are cooler. Autumn is known to have different colours and hues throughout nature.
 
The south has mild seasons, but each region has its own characteristics, with a more humid climate to the east. If you visit the south during the winter, you will be glad to be warm, but the further north you go, the lower the temperature will be.
 
However, summer is perfect for relaxing on the beach or climbing some beautiful hills in the national parks (beware as it can be very hot and humid, don’t forget the water). In my opinion as a LA citizen, Spring and fall are the best times to travel to the US. Not to mention, when it’s hot some Hurricanes can appear during August and September.

When to buy my flight ticket to America?

The US is spread widely across the hemisphere, any time of the year is good to travel, as it also depends on which city you want to go to. However the best time to visit the US is Spring and Autumn. As it’s easier to travel different destinations and enjoy the activities when the sun is shining upon you. Usually I book my ticket on momondo.com but you can also find cheap travel tickets with Skiplag.com.

East Coast:
Late Spring, May – August is the best time to visit East Coast. and if you are like ELSA and cold doesn’t bother you then spending Christmas & New Year’s Eve in New York City is one of the best experiences that you can have.

West Coast:
Weather in West Coast is favorable any time of the year. It doesn’t get too cold and the activities to do are all around the year.

The South:
The best time to visit the South is from April to May and September to November.

Mid West:
The best time to visit the South is in Summer from June to August.

South West:
The best time to visit the South West is from March to May and September to November.

Do I need a visa?

do i need a visa to travel to the us
You do not need a visa if you are a citizen of the countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program.
More Details are present in the official website.
 
You need a visa if your country of citizenship does not satisfy in the Visa Waiver Program. Follow the instructions on this website to apply for a travel visitor visa for USA.
 

You must have a passport that is valid for at least 6 months after your planned departure from the United States (unless exempted by country-specific agreements). For families, each member of your family, including infants and children, must have his/her own passport.

Life in the US

What's the currency and cost of living?

The currency in the United States is the one and only the US DOLLAR ($$$).

The travel needs to be budgeted according to accommodation, meals, local transportation, activities and personal expenses.

Cost of living in Big Cities:

The average you could spend in New York City, Boston, LA, San Francisco, Chicago, is a $220 per day.

  1. Accommodation:  $100 per night.
  2. Meals: $40 for one day
  3. Local transportation: $30 per day.
  4. Activities: $50 for one day
  5. Personal Expenses: On your budget.

Cost of living in Small Cities:

In small towns, like South Carolina, Portland, Missouri it can cut down to even one-fourth of that amount.

  1. Accommodation: $30 per night.
  2. Meals: $15-20 for one day
  3. Local transportation: $10-15 per day.
  4. Activities: $30 for one day
  5. Personal Expenses: On your budget.
For cheaper options:
  1. For accommodation, Use Airbnb and hostels for cheap accommodation.
  2. For transportation, Use Bus and Train passes & Uber/Lyft apps instead of taxis.
  3. For meals, Look for an accommodation which serves free breakfast.
    So that you can spend mostly on lunch and a light dinner.
  4. For activities, Look for the group deals on Groupon.

Things to do when you visit America!

New York City is the most populous city in the United States. New York City has five boroughs: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and The Bronx. There are endless things to do in New York City.

Few things to do in New York

manhattan with central park

York City

The hustle of big crowds walking on the streets, dance of the Broadway show, music from a street performer, hot dog from the cart. If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. Everyone that walks on the streets becomes a part of the story of New York city.

One World Trade Centre Observatory + 9/11 Memorial

One WTC is the tallest building in the United States. The top of the One World Centre gives you the unobstructed view of Manhattan, Brooklyn, New Jersey and the Hudson river. Also go visit the 9/11Memorial. You can do anything if you put your mind to it. Similar to this, New York City also has Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center and many tall skyscrapers.

Central Park, New York City

Central Park is one of the most visited urban parks in the United States. It is located in the Manhattan borough and spread between Upper West Side and Upper East Side (XOXO)!

Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge is one of the famous bridges in the United States. It’s a suspension bridge between Manhattan and Brooklyn on the East Hudson River. It is one of the most favorite tourist spot in New York.

Niagara Falls, Buffalo

Niagara Falls is the most powerful waterfall in North America. It is a group of three waterfalls bordering between state of New York and province Ontario in Canada.

Things to do in California

lake tahoe in california

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the famous bridges in US. It connects San Francisco Bay and Marin County. It has been declared one of the modern wonders of the world.

Hollywood, LA

Los Angeles is the home to the best cinema of the world. You can visit the star studded Hollywood walk of fame and watch a movie at the biggest IMAX screen at the Chinese Theatre.

Wine tasting in Napa Valley

Enjoy a classic tour of castles and vineyards with some of the best wine and cheese you can get in US. You can visit Robert Mondavi winery for the best wine. You can visit the castle – Castillo di Amorosa for amazing views and you can take the Napa Valley Wine Train train and trolly tours in Napa Valley.

Swim and Water Sports in Lake Tahoe

If you are a waterbody, then you will have nothing but love for Lake Tahoe. Stay in a cabin in the woods, swim in the freshwater, eat healthy food, drink the heavenly wine. Enjoy quality time with your family, or make friends on your solo trip.

Take a long drive in Big Sur

Imagine this, you are sitting in a convertible, your favorite music is on the radio, the soft wind is blowing in your hair, you look to the left and you can see the ocean waves hitting the ground and on your right, the view of the mountains and the birds giving you a reminder that the world is wonderful, that is what’s called California Dreaming.

Things to do in Florida

disney world in florida

Disney World, Universal Studios in Orlando

Orlando, Florida or the most happiest place on earth. The place where Mickey and Minnie Mouse parades in front of a big castle like it’s no big deal. This place is famous for theme parks and good beaches.

Miami Beach, Miami

Miami is all about beautiful beaches, extravagant nightlife and cars. Places to visit is Miami Beach, South Beach and Downtown Miami. There are plenty of restaurants and nightclubs available. You can basically swim and lay down at the beach in the daytime and party all night.

Key West Beach, Key West

Key West is famous for Key Lime Pie, old town feel and snorkeling.  You can start your day by visiting Ernest Hemingway’s House, which has now become a historic landmark, do snorkeling at the West Seaport and watch live music and bar hopping on Duval Street at night.

Hollywood Beach, Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale has amazing beaches if you want to avoid large crowds at the beach. It has a Hollywood beach which is beautiful and lots of restaurants at the boardwalk including Margaritta Ville where you can eat and drink and relax at the beach.

Clearwater Beach, Clearwater

As the name suggests, Clearwater marks up to it’s glory. It has beautiful Clearwater beach which is full of white sand and shallow waters – The picture perfect moment. It has the famous ClearWater Marine Aquarium where you can see different kind of sea animals. It has a Capitol Theatre, which shows musical acts and classic films.

Packing for the US

What to bring in your suitcase?

If you are planning a trip to America, you will need several essential things, regardless of the regions you have decided to visit.

  • Small water bottle
  • Portable Battery Charger for phones
  • Camera or your smartphone
  • Hat, Sunglasses, Sunscreen to protect yourself from the heat if you are traveling in the summer.
  • Towel
  • A jacket according to the weather of the place that you are visiting.
  • House slippers (to get comfy at your airbnb)
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Skin care in travel size packs
  • Portable Converter

Dear Alyne Super Tips

  1. Travel smartly and safely. Stay at hotels and accommodations which have good reviews.

  2. Be aware of your belongings. Stay away from the areas which seems less crowded.

  3. Keep your passport or an Identification card handy.
    If you need to leave the passport at the accommodation, then keep it in a locked storage.

  4. Americans are very friendly, so this is a good chance to meet new people and learn about their culture.

  5. Last but not least, have fun while you’re in America.