Traveling is one of my favorite things to do. I love seeing new places and gaining a new perspective outside of my everyday life.
Today I’m sharing with you 20 of the most beautiful travel destinations you need to visit in America that you probably haven’t heard of yet!
1. Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park
Location: Kanab, Utah
The Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park is located in Utah between Kanab and Salt Lake City! You can ride ATVs, hike, go horseback riding, take photos, and camp in this beautiful park. Visit their website for more information.
2. Point Lobos State Natural Reserve
Location: Carmel, California
At Point Lobos State Natural Reserve you can see wildlife such as otters, sea lions, seals, gray whales, and thousands of seabirds. You can also go diving, hike, picnic, or visit an old whaler’s cabin!
3. Horsetooth Reservoir
Location: Fort Collins, Colorado
Of course, I’m a little biased because I went to college in Fort Collins, but Horsetooth Reservoir is one of the most beautiful places I’ve been! There is so much you can do here, such as rent a boat or paddle boards, go hiking (I personally loved going on sunrise hikes here), go swimming, bike, horseback riding, camp, fish, kayak, have a picnic, or just watch the sunset! Definitely check it out on your next trip to Colorado!
4. Thor’s Well
Location: Yachats, Oregon
This beautiful sight is a rock formation that is estimated to be about 20 feet deep, thus making it look like a massive sinkhole on the Oregon coast or like the ocean is being drained.
5. Colchuck Lake
Location: Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington
This lake is seriously a jaw-dropping beautiful sight to end a hike in the Enchantments in Alpine Lakes Wilderness in Oregon. The hike isn’t too bad until the end it gets a little steep, otherwise the hike is pretty accessible for most skill levels! The hike is about 8 miles roundtrip and would be a wonderful way to spend your day. There are also several other trails and lakes you can access in the park!
6. Luray Caverns
Location: Luray, Virginia
The Luray Caverns was first discovered in 1878 and today you can take a guided tour through the caverns and see the beautiful rock formations for yourself!
7. Hamilton Pool Preserve
Location: Dripping Springs, Texas
This gorgeous preserve is surrounded with protected natural areas and the beautiful swimming area is tucked away, which you can see pictured above. In the area, you can hike, go swimming, or have a picnic. Make sure you have a reservation before visiting!
8. Madison Blue Springs State Park
Location: Lee, Florida
Madison Blue Spring State Park is a wonderful place to spend the day! You can picnic, fish, scuba dive, swim, paddleboard and kayak in the aqua blue water! This natural basin merges with the Withlacoochee River and is surrounded by woodlands.
9. The Bisti Badlands
Location: Farmington, New Mexico
The Bisti Badlands is full of unique rock formations of different types of stone and are weathered into their rare shape. You can backpack, hike, or take photos of this beautiful landscape!
10. Glacier National Park
Location: West Glacier, Montana
Not only is the park full of gorgeous views, but you can also go hiking, camping, bike, fish, cross country ski or participate in a guided tour! There are so many things to do in the park and in the area to keep your trip full of activities!
11. Tahquamenon Falls
Location: Paradise, Michigan
Located in Tahquamenon Falls State Park this serene park is the perfect place to clear your mind, take in the view, and relax. You can also backpack, hike, kayak, fish, and camp too!
12. Great Falls National Park
Location: McLean, Virginia
Okay, can you tell I like national parks? And waterfalls? They’re just so gorgeous and this park is one I can check off of my travel bucket list! I’ve been here and it’s just as beautiful in person as it is in photos! This one is located just outside of Washington D.C. and is a great place to spend your day. You can hike, sight-see and take photos, but can’t camp.
13. Cayuga Lake
Location: Ithaca, New York
Cayuga Lake is one of the Finger Lakes (who named these lakes and can I tell them I’m into it?) and is the longest lake out of the Finger Lakes. When visiting this gorgeous lake you can also see the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge which is at the North end of the lake, visit the quaint surrounding towns, or check out the Taughannock Falls!
14. Great Smoky Mountain National Park
Location: Gatlinburg, Tennessee
The Great Smokey Mountain National Park is located on the border of Tennessee and North Carolina. It gets its name from its morning fog and is home to several waterfalls. You can go camping, hiking, biking, fishing, picnicking, horseback riding, visit the burial grounds or historical buildings, or go on a ranger-led tour!
15. Antelope Canyon
Location: Page, Arizona
Antelope Canyon is located in the Navajo Tribal Park on Navajo land East of Page, Arizona! To enter the park you are required to be on a guided tour but the sights are just breathtaking.
16. Garden Of The Gods
Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Oh yes, yes I went there. Literally and figuratively! As a Colorado resident, I must say this might just be my favorite place to visit in Colorado. Based on personal experience, I can tell you it’s absolutely gorgeous in person. I love that it’s also easily accessible for people of all mobility. There is a large paved sidewalk around the park that you can walk, or if you’re wanting to get more into nature, you can go off-road onto a trail for some hiking, do some rock climbing, horseback riding, or join in on a nature walk!
17. Hell’s Gate State Park
Location: Lewiston, Idaho
Hell’s Gate State Park is full of stunning sights located in Idaho. Here you can hike, mountain bike, camp, fish, boat, go horseback riding, or play disc golf!
18. Shawnee National Forest
Location: Jonesboro, Illinois
This beautiful park is full of forests, wetlands, and bluffs for you to discover on your next trip! Here you can visit the beaches in the park and go swimming, hike, bike, camp, hunt, horseback ride, or just take a drive and enjoy the views because there’s plenty!
19. Grand Teton National Park
Location: Jackson Hole, Wyoming
In this gorgeous park, you can go boating, hiking, camping, biking, fishing, or snowmobiling in the winter! The park is close to Yellowstone and your park pass works in both parks if you want to visit two in one trip!
20. Custer State Park
Location: South Dakota
Custer State Park is located in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota and like most state parks mentioned in the article, it’s drop. Dead. Gorgeous! My grandma also used to work here when she was younger! You can go camping, biking, hiking, swimming, fishing, rock climbing, paddleboarding, kayaking, snowshoeing, horseback riding, or boating!
That is 20 of the most beautiful places in America you wouldn’t think of for your next travel destination that is worth visiting! Are you feeling inspired?