Tuesday, July 31, 2012

10 places every American should see

No1: Yellowstone National Park, Wyo.

American Best Places

Unprotected space is a unique bequest for every American, and Yellowstone is the most thespian example of what "wide-open space" really means. In 1872, two-million-acre Yellowstone debuted as America's first national park, and visitors began flocking to soak in its hot springs, see elk and bison roam its grasslands, gawk at its geyser known as Old Faithful, and hear gray wolves sound chill-inducing howls at dawn.

No 2: French Quarter, New Orleans

American Best Places

No other American area provides as much eye candy as the cobblestone streets of New Orleans' French Quarter—known as "the Quarters" to locals—and we're not referring to the annual Mardi Gras parades, with their thousands of taffeta-draped harlequins strutting to funk, R&B, and Dixie. No, it's the structural design that's intriguing.

No 3: Highway 1, California

American Best Places

Bearing in mind that the United States has more miles of paved roads (over 2.5 million) than any other country on earth, is it any doubt that road trips are nearly a rite of passage here? One of the most pensive—and celebrated—drives you can take in the States is the 135-mile draw out of California's Pacific Highway 1 between San Luis Obispo and Monterey.

No 4: Times Square, New York City

American Best Places

Convinced, the crowds can be pushy, but Times Square—the make longer of Broadway between Manhattan's 42nd and 47th streets—delivers the most forceful straight-up celebration of round-the-clock visual stimulus in the free world.

No 5: Grand Canyon, Ariz.

American Best Places

Many American landmarks encourage people to think big, but none can match the monster scale of the Grand Canyon. As with no matter which worthwhile, a mind-melting view of the fire-hued, half-mile-long rock faces at the Grand Canyon must be earned.

No 6: Taos Pueblo, N.M

American Best Places

At the northern edge of the artist colony of Taos and a couple hours' drive north of Santa Fe, Taos Pueblo is a set of adobe dwellings, ranging from two to five stories tall, whose walls gleam in the sun of the high desert.

No 7: South Beach, Miami, Fla

American Best Places

Even in typically vulgar Miami terms, no place in the country captures Latin-tropical chic like South Beach, with its 23 pastel-hued blocks of hotels, shops, restaurants, and cocktail bars south of Dade Boulevard.

No 8: Gettysburg National Military Park, Gettysburg

American Best Places

Convincing battleground tours are difficult to pull off, as there's often slight to see. But Gettysburg, the most visited of Civil War battlefields, manages the trick.

No 9: Pearl Harbor, O'ahu, Hawaii

American Best Places

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the USS Arizona Memorial, which honors the men who died on the celebrated battleship sunk in 1941's Pearl Harbor air raid..

No 10: National Mall, Washington

American Best Places

There's no place in America where you get more chronological bang for your buck than the National Mall—fitting, since two of its most famous memorials (to Lincoln and Jefferson) are stamped on our least coinage.


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