Travel

5 uniquely American travel experiences to add to your bucket list

In partnership with
Simon Shopping Destinations

We’ve rounded up the best and most American experiences you need to have this year, in case you want some inspiration…

If your current travel plans for 2019 only include going to and from work, it’s time to update your travel hit list and shake up your plans. 

The US has one thing that’s guaranteed – variety. Want to switch from the beach to hiking in the mountains in the same week? 

Or be a high roller at the casino, then chill out with your meditation app in the desert? Each state offers the chance for you to fill both your camera roll and your travel desires.

Here are five experiences you can, and should, only do in America…

The unmissable Instagram shot: Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn used to be the lowly little sister to Manhattan, but thanks to cheaper rents, hot new restaurants, and Williamsburg becoming the Hackney of New York, tourists are flocking to the outer boroughs.

And it’s fairly easy to get there thanks to the Brooklyn Bridge. The magic of this (almost 6,000ft long) walk is the bridge itself.  Its Gothic towers look even more breathtaking as the sun sets. 

Wake up on the Brooklyn side at the new waterfront spot 1Hotels on Furman Street – it’s big on sustainability and there are always cool events in the lobby.

Then pick up a slice of pizza for the journey at the famous Grimaldi’s (if it’s before noon, we still support it).

On the Manhattan side, you’ll come out by New York’s City Hall, which is walking distance from Wall Street and Chinatown. You’ll only be a short taxi ride away from the Statue of Liberty, too. 

Finish up your travels with a shopping trip to remember at The Mills at Jersey Gardens, where style meets savings.

The ultimate playground: Disneyland Park

young woman holding cotton candy in front of an amusement park

If you’re anything like us, meeting up with friends has become an Olympic sport in coordinating diaries and then dealing with the ones who bail at the last minute. 

Parties become more about recognising significant birthdays and less about pizza and drunk Twister, and suddenly life feels like it’s all about adulting and paying bills. 

Which is exactly why you should book a trip to Disneyland Park in California ASAP. 

Sure, there’s a Disneyland in Paris, but the happiest place in the world can actually be improved on with Anaheim sunshine and palm trees. 

Nothing says playtime like having breakfast with Minnie Mouse, then scaring yourself silly in The Haunted Mansion. 

And after reconnecting with your inner child, indulge in some shopping at The Outlets at Orange, which is just a 10-minute drive from Disneyland Park. 

You can shop designer labels and even continue the fun at the indoor Vans Skatepark, on site at the outlet shopping mall. 

The definitive Mardi Gras: New Orleans

new orleans french quartier for the new year holiday

The second you land at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, the jazz music that plays through the terminal will set the tone for your holiday – get ready for a dance party.

This is where you come to let go of your worries, sit back and let the party take over. 

The best time to head to New Orleans is during Mardi Gras (which always takes place 47 days before Easter Sunday). 

Don a bright colourful costume, add some sparkly party beads around your neck and recognise that having a good time is mandatory as you parade down Bourbon Street.

Once you’ve finished dancing into the early hours, head over to the water’s edge and watch the sun come up over the Mississippi River. 

The classic road trip: Route 66

Hitting the open road definitely fits the brief of, ‘Pinch-me, I can’t believe I’m here.’

Route 66 runs from Chicago, through the Grand Canyon National Park, all the way over to Los Angeles and gives you the chance to experience a true American highway with the wind in your hair.

The best part about this adventure is seeing how the country changes across state lines as wintry Chicago roads give way to Oklahoma. Then it’s on to New Mexico’s Santa Fe with its foothills and mountain hikes.

The next step in your wild adventure takes you to the bright lights of Las Vegas, where you can pick up some beachwear at The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace for your final destination, Los Angeles.

Look out for the dirt highways, classic architecture and neon-lit motels throughout the route.

Sure, it might take you a little over two weeks to complete the whole trip, but the sense of accomplishment and the Instagram snaps will be worth it. 

The home of the founding fathers: Boston


No trip to the US is complete without a visit to the land of the founding fathers. 

History buffs will enjoy seeking out all the local information about the Boston Tea Party, which set the ball rolling on the end of British rule there.

Once you’ve brushed up on the birth of America and discovered that Hamilton (yes, that musical) is a huge part of the story too, you can start exploring the city.

TV fans will want to make their way to the Cheers bar to pick up some memorabilia. And you can’t leave the city without trying a Samuel Adams locally brewed beer (and taste a sample during the brewery tour while you’re at it). 

You can also look out for the CEOs of tomorrow by attending a student-led public walking tour of Harvard University (hang around by the business school and take notes).

While you’re in the historic district and once you’ve finished touring, head over the cobbled streets to Copley Place shopping mall. 

The complex has everything, including exclusive shopping brands and The Westin Hotel and The Boston Marriott Copley Place, so you can lay your head to rest at the end of a busy day. 

Plan your adventure today and experience the pull of these special places. Make the most of every destination by incorporating a visit to Simon Shopping Destinations as part of your trip. 

Simon Shopping Destinations offer the largest collection of shopping destinations in the US with more than 100 Simon® Malls, Premium Outlets® and The Mills® properties located in and around all major cities. 

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