If you’re travelling around or through the United States, there’s certainly no shortage of great places to check out. You’ve got your marquee attractions like Disney World and the Statue of Liberty. You’ve got your incredible cities like Chicago and Los Angeles. And, you’ve even got your tucked-away historical places like the Freedom Trail in Boston or Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia.
But, if you’re really going to get the most out of your travelers through and around the United States, you need to head off the beaten path a little bit. We’re not saying that you should skip the marquee places, but you should save some time for some of the country’s lesser-known spots.
So, what are these places that manage to fly just under the radar? That’s exactly what we’re going to be exploring below. On the list that follows, we’re going to share our 20 picks for under-the-radar places that you just have to check out in the United States. While it’s possible that you may have heard of a couple of these before, we bet most (if not all) will be a surprise… And there are some real gems on this list, too!
1. Pinecrest Lake (California)
California isn’t all about that beach lifestyle! Just check out this wonderful spot about two hours north of Yosemite.
2. Treasure Coast Seaplanes (Vero Beach, Florida)
Once you take off in a seaplane, you’ll be able to get a bird’s eye look at some of Florida’s best-kept secrets.
3. Texas Stonehenge (Ingram, Texas)
When it comes to American roadside attractions, this has to be one of our absolute favorites.
4. Burgdorf Hot Springs (McCall, Idaho)
If you’re looking for a relaxing experience in a natural hot spring, then you’ve got to check out this hidden gem.
5. Petersburg (Alaska)
This small fishing village, which is nothing if not remote, reflects the culture of the Norwegian people who originally settled it.
6. Jeffers Petroglyphs (Comfrey, Minnesota)
There have been people in the Americas for a long time. In fact, some of the rock carvings here predate those of Ancient Egypt!
7. Adelphi Hotel (Saratoga Springs, New York)
Dating back to 1877, this lovingly cared for hotel is one of the coolest boutique hotels in the country.
8. Edgewater Beach Resort (Naples, Florida)
When you really want a secluded beach in Florida, while also enjoying a great resort, you want to check out this hidden gem.
9. Ross Lake Resort Floating Cabins (Washington)
Forget about tropical overwater bungalows! Instead, check out this literally floating cabins that come outfitted with everything, including full kitchens.
10. Hillside Homestead (Suttons Bay, Michigan)
For a real taste of life in America around the turn of the last century, check out this treasure just a ways away from Traverse City.
11. Tough Luck Club (Tucson, Arizona)
The speakeasy is a big thing on the coasts, but many of them can’t hold a candle to this Tucson wonder that’s found beneath a pizza joint.
12. Byxbee Park (Palo Alto, California)
You could visit this play and have a wonderful time, and then have your mind blown later when you find out that it’s atop an old landfill.
13. Daufuskie Island (South Carolina)
Just a ways away from Hilton Head, you’ll find this sleepy little island that’s home to some of the best white-sand beaches in the state.
14. Barnsley Resort (Adairsville, Georgia)
Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, this old-time resort allows you to really get back to nature.
15. Ostrander Ski Hut (California)
Built many decades ago, this ski hot in Yosemite provides a wonderful vantage point for many of the things you’ll want to see in the park.
16. Junebug Retro Resort (Weaverville, North Carolina)
Glamping isn’t just a West Coast thing! This wonderful spot in North Carolina allows you to sleep in luxuriously resorted retro campers.
17. Roper Mountain Science Center (Greenville, South Carolina)
This is a wonderful hidden gem to go hiking, as well as to check out some truly old buildings and schoolhouses.
18. Sand Key Park (Clearwater, Florida)
Instead of dealing with the crowds at the main beach, take a trip of only a few miles and enjoy the peace and serenity you’ll find here.
19. Byrd’s Seafood Co. (Irvington, Virginia)
If you’re looking for authentic and fresh seafood in Virginia, then look no further than this exquisite spot.
20. Homestead Crater (Midway, Utah)
This geothermal spring is absolutely incredible. The waters are always in the nineties and come from nearly two-miles down.