When you’re trying to decide where to go on your next vacation, it can be challenging to narrow down all the fascinating places you’d like to visit. You could check out local theme parks and exotic destinations, but what if you want to step back in time?
The U.S. is a great place to be for anyone who wants to learn a little bit of history on their next vacation. You can stop by plenty of historical sites to tour a place that impacted local or national history.
Not sure where to go? Check out these best historical sites to visit in the USA. No matter which one you choose, you’re guaranteed to have a great time and learn something new about the country’s past.
1. Jamestown Settlement
Some places and events are taught repeatedly in American history courses to kids of all ages, and one of those places is the Jamestown settlement.
Jamestown was the first place where colonists built a thriving community after sailing to the New World. What happened there set the future of America into motion, and it’s kept in the same condition it was built in.
Visit the settlement to see the colony in action, along with three full-size working English sailing ships. Individual tours and family-friendly activities are available to try out, so everyone can find something they’ll enjoy.
2. Washington, D.C.
Washington may be the city that’s filled with the most history, and more history is being made every day. You can visit many different historical sites to while you’re there, from the Lincoln Memorial to the Smithsonian National Museum. Plus, most of the attractions are free.
3. The Alamo
Although the battle at the Alamo was a defeat for Texas in the War for Texan Independence, it was a turning point in the conflict. Now, people can look around the grounds for free or take a guided tour to learn more about the fort’s illustrious history.
4. Gettysburg Battlefield
Gettysburg is known for hosting the bloodiest battle of the Civil War, which led to President Lincoln’s famous Gettysburg Address. See the site for yourself for free, and then buy a ticket to the museum or a guided tour for a more in-depth experience.
5. The Biltmore Estate
As one of the most popular vacation spots in North Carolina, the Biltmore is a beautiful estate with plenty to do. Wine tastings, tours and seasonal events are all enhanced by recent renovations.
6. New Orleans Museum of Art
You can discover plenty of history in New Orleans, but the Museum of Art is a must-see. It’s one of the oldest fine art museums in the world, having opened in 1911. Make sure to schedule plenty of time to see the place, as it has more than 40,000 permanent objects.
7. Plymouth Plantation
Everyone’s heard the tales of the first colonists stepping on the first rock in the New World and hosting the first Thanksgiving at Plymouth Plantation. Stop by and tour it this year to read about the native Wampanoag people and see a full-scale reproduction of the Mayflower.
8. Salem Witch Museum
The Salem witch trials have been a historical fascination since they occurred, which is why the Salem Witch Museum is open to the public. See artifacts from the trials and enjoy after-dark walking tours with local historians to feel like you’re back in time.
9. Ellis Island
In the 1890s, Ellis Island opened as a gateway to the United States for immigrants from all over the world. Now it’s open as a museum for people who want to see where their ancestors first stopped in America. Make sure to stop by the Statue of Liberty, located on the same island.
10. Mount Vernon
George Washington set the tone for the American government for the centuries that followed, and his home at Mount Vernon was the place he treasured most. Anyone can tour the grounds and see the mansion as it was when he lived there, including a museum full of artifacts like his famous dentures.
Map It Out
If you’re still not sure which location to visit first, map out the places you want to see. Many are near each other, so it may be worth planning a road trip to see more than a few in one journey.
The more you learn about American history, the more you’ll want to see and explore. Check out these historical sites and watch where they take you as your historical knowledge grows!