I love to read travel articles and daydream of new and exciting places to travel. All of my travel since I was a kid has been landlocked to the United States. But this country holds so many travel treasures that I can always find new things I want to see “at home”.
Some interesting statistics from ustravel.org
$947B Domestic and international traveler expenditures in the U.S. in 2015
8.2M American jobs supported by direct traveler expenditures in 2015
$232B American wages and salaries for workers generated by traveler spending in 2015
$148B Tax revenue from travel spending for federal, state and local governments in 2015
In reading all of the cheesy top ten lists, the vast majority are in agreement on the top ten most traveled to cities in the US (most reference a 2013 statistical review). They are (in no particular order):
- New York, NY
- Boston, MA
- Las Vegas, NV
- San Fran, CA
- Washington, DC
- Orlando, FL
- Miami, FL
- Chicago, IL
- Honolulu, HI
- New Orleans, LA
I feel fairly well-traveled as I have been to all but three of those.
My one regret after living in NYC for a decade is that I did not explore the nooks and crannies more thoroughly. There is not reason I could not have spent more time on foot in the city, seeing the things that are not on the “top places to visit in NYC” lists.
According to Wikipedia: The revolution of air travel between 1945 and 1969 contributed greatly to tourism in the United States. In that quarter century, commercial aviation evolved from 28-passenger airliners flying at less than 200 mph (320 km/h) to 150-passenger jetliners cruising continents at 600 mph (970 km/h). During this time, air travel in the US evolved from a novelty into a routine for business travelers and vacationers alike. Rapid developments in aviation technology, economic prosperity in the United States and the demand for air travel all contributed to the early beginnings of commercial aviation in the US.
According to Business Insider, the most popular state for tourism is California. It notes that attractions like the Golden Gate Bridge, Disneyland and Hollywood make it the most traveled to state in the country. However, all websites agree that the most traveled to city is New York City.
As far as specific attractions, Wiki notes the following (using 2011 data):
Top tourist attractions
In 2011, the most visited tourist attractions in the U.S. were:
|Times Square||New York, New York||41.9|
|Central Park||New York, New York||40|
|Union Station||Washington, D.C.||36.5|
|Las Vegas Strip||Las Vegas, Nevada||29.5|
|Grand Central Terminal||New York, New York||21.6|
|Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World||Orlando, Florida||17.1|
|Disneyland Resort||Anaheim, California||16.1|
|Golden Gate Bridge||San Francisco Bay Area, California||15|
|Faneuil Hall Marketplace||Boston, Massachusetts||15|
|Golden Gate Park||San Francisco, California||13|
|Balboa Park||San Diego, California||13|
|Epcot, Walt Disney World||Orlando, Florida||10.8|
|Pike Place Market||Seattle, Washington||10|
|Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Walt Disney World||Orlando, Florida||9.8|
|Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World||Orlando, Florida||9.7|
|Great Smoky Mountains National Park||North Carolina and Tennessee||9|
|South Street Seaport||New York, New York||9|
|Mackinac Bridge||St. Ignace and Mackinaw City, Michigan||9|
|Navy Pier||Chicago, Illinois||8.7|
|Pier 39, Fisherman’s Wharf||San Francisco, California||8.1|
So, that is my quick little blog as I sit here looking out at the bitter winter landscape and am daydreaming of where I want to go in warmer weather….
Where would YOU like to go? Let me know in the comments below!