The USA Travel – Things you should know before your visit

Visiting the United States of America for the first time? Make sure you experience the heart of the US and not just New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles or Miami. Here’s a post that bursts popular myths about the US and explains why the US is such a great nation.

The United States is...

World Power Centre

Innovation Incubator

Cloud piercing Skyscrapers

Star Studded Hollywood

Sparkling city life

Epic Vistas

Art in nature

Wild Wilderness

Spectacular Parks

Iconic wildlife

Idyllic Islands

Vibrant cultures

Supersize food

…and a lot more.

These were some of the responses I got when I asked Americans to describe the United States in one or two words. I admit my initial perception about United States was myopic and I related only few of the adjectives listed above with the most powerful nation in the world. However, I knew the States is much more than glossy unidimensional picture Hollywood, sitcoms or media paints. So, I decided to explore it for myself.

About my trip

I wanted to see the side of the United States, which most of the foreign tourists often miss. So instead of doing the usual New YorkLos AnglesSan Francisco - ChicagoMiami loop, I consulted my blogger friend Mike Shubic of MikesRoadTrip to suggest me places that are unique and can showcase the diversity of this mega nation. He was the driving force behind my visit to the popular and offbeat places of California, Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, Alabama and New York state.

From April to May 2017, I covered the four regions of the United States of America - North East Coast, West Coast, South East and South West. To get the pulse of the great nation, I traveled the way locals do - using all modes of transport – Planes, trains, cars, ships and of course walking. It was mostly a solo trip but at few places my friends joined in.

USA Travel: Regions and States of the United States of America

USA Travel: Regions and States of the United States of America

While one lifetime is not enough to get into the skin of the US, I tried to sample as many things as I could - adventure, nature, wildlife, culture, art, food, history, architecture, technology and shopping among others.

Also, I was lucky to experience different seasons in one season across different regions – cold and rainy Northern California, white snow carpeted New Mexico, hot and humid central Arizona, sandstorm swept North Arizona, melting hot Alabama, spring infused Niagara Falls, grey clouds enveloped wild Adirondacks and sun kissed upbeat New York.

My USA travel experience has been one EPIC trip and I have many stories to share in my upcoming posts. However, I’ll begin with sharing my first impressions about this great nation.

3 things that make the United States of America a great nation

While every state has its unique charm and appeal, three things stood out strongly for me:

  1. Immenseness

    The United States personifies the word BIG. The land is big. Cars are big. People are big. Food is big. Buildings are big. Homes are big. It’s just big! And when Americans travel, they travel with entire paraphernalia. I was on a five day road trip with Mike in Arizona and I felt he carried his entire home in his Truck. With the amount of stuff he was carrying for a 5-day trip I could have very easily opened a grocery store in India. No kidding!

  2. Diversity

    Besides India, if there’s any nation that embodies diversity, it is the US. All fifty States are as different as chalk and cheese. Everything from food to culture to topography to dialect; changes as you move from one state to another.

  3. Opportunity

    The United States is a land of opportunities where immigrants have arrived for centuries (and are still coming) in search of an American Dream. A land that not only gives you the freedom to clinch opportunities without distinction but is also an idea incubator. Freedom to follow your heart is what has made America great.

10 Myths about the US that got shattered during my travel

  1. Myth: The US is a homogenous land with hardly any regional differences

Fact: It is not one state but the United States of America made by fifty states

The US is big -  3.8 million square miles big - divided into 50 states. There are six time zones in the US and it takes same time whether you fly from New York to Los Angeles or London. Regional differences across the US extend to accents, food, drink, architecture, culture, people, laws and politics.

Tip: Try and visit at least two distinct regions to embrace the diversity of the US.

  1. Myth: The US is all about Skyscrapers and bustling city life

Fact: The heart of the US lies in its spectacular 59 National Parks

A land as diverse as the US is bound to offer diversity, therefore, associating just skyscrapers with the US is a crime. The diversity among its 59 National parks covering 84 million acres across every state is astonishing – on one hand you can see the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere (Death Valley California); one the other hand you can also trek to the highest point in North America (Mount McKinley in Denali National Park, Alaska); you can traverse through the longest cave system in the world (Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky); and also marvel the largest gypsum sand dunes in the world (White Sands National Monument, New Mexico). National Parks are the true treasures of the USA, which should not be missed at any cost.

Related: Best Places to visit in Utah

Tip: Take the annual pass. It’s cheap (costs only 80$) and is a complete value for money
USA Travel: Your USA trip is incomplete without visiting its epic national parks

USA Travel: Your USA trip is incomplete without visiting its epic national parks

  1. Myth: Americans are arrogant and cocky

Fact: Americans are very friendly and helpful

Before arriving in the US, I was afraid how people will treat me. To my surprise, not only did they treat me well but went out of their way to make me feel at home. How often do you see the head of a Tourism Board receives you at an airport? Not too often. But perhaps, that’s the reason why Santa Fe is called 'the city different.' And it wasn’t just Santa Fe, my experience with other CVBs was equally phenomenal.

The USA Travel: My beautiful Santa Fe host who is an amazing person

People, in general, are very kind in the US. Yes, even to strangers. I had gone to Priceless Rent-A-Car at Lake Placid to return my car and was waiting for my train shuttle to arrive. I was hungry but didn’t want to leave the place in fear of missing my shuttle. The employee at the station got the whiff of it and without me even asking, he got food for me. Now isn’t that a rare kind of generosity seen these days? But that’s how America can surprise you.

Tip: Smile, talk slow and ask something about themselves.
USA Travel: An average American is as humane as anyone else in the world

USA Travel: An average American is as humane as anyone else in the world

  1. Myth: Americans are born with silver spoon

Fact: Americans are relentlessly hard working

Will Smith showed the hard working side of Americans in 'The Pursuit of Happyness'. And not much has changed since then. Most of the people I met were doing multiple jobs at a time – working in a regular 9-5 job during the day and taking up flexible jobs after office hours like driving an Uber/Lyft or serving at restaurants. This is what a young girl from Lake Sarnac had to say,

People outside of the US think we get everything on platter. But we really work very hard. One job is not enough to sustain oneself. During the week I work as a nurse at a hospital and over the weekend I work as a server at a restaurant.

Also, minimum wages in the hospitality industry are too low to sustain a life. Therefore, tipping is almost a mandatory custom whether you dine at a hotel or take a tour or get a car valet service.

Tip: Unofficially 15% to 20% of the bill is the tipping norm.
USA Travel: you cannot escape the United States without being infected by the professionalism of Americans

USA Travel: Behind the beautiful smiles lie lot of hard work

  1. Myth: American engine runs on the Fast-food gas

Fact: Fast-food is complemented by the gourmet soul food

Although fast food still dominates large tracts of the culinary landscape, now the US also excels at wildly innovative, gourmet cuisine. San Francisco and New York regularly show up on the top lists for a number of Michelin stars, and celebrity chefs rival Hollywood royalty, with big names like Mario Batali, Anthony Bourdain and Rachael Ray spawning multi media empires, with dozens of restaurants, books, TV shows, films and more.

On one hand, you can get a large size wrap for a five dollar at a food truck in New York, on the other hand, you can dine at an Award winning FnB restaurant in Scottsdale where gourmet cuisine menu changes every week and where every dish is handcrafted by the chef-turned-entrepreneur couple. I am a vegetarian and I must say the US spoiled me with food options. I didn’t have a bad meal even once.

Tip: Experiment with local cuisines like you cannot not have dishes without chilies in New Mexico
USA Travel: FnB restaurant in Scottsdale is a must visit for any food lover

USA Travel: FnB restaurant in Scottsdale is a must visit for any food lover

  1. Myth: Unhealthy lifestyle is synonymous with American lifestyle

Fact: Being health conscious is no more an option but a way of life

My initial image of an average American was a McCheese Burger eating baseball wearing GOT binge viewing snapchatting bloke. While this kind of stereotype does exist but that isn’t how everyone in the US is. Whether you are walking the streets of New York or driving on Highway 103 on Pacific coast; you’ll come across people indulging in physical and wellness activities. Being outdoors is an important part of Americans lifestyle. City parks are filled with joggers, cyclists and yoga enthusiasts.

The USA travel: Central park in New York City is an oasis for nature and health lovers.

The USA travel: Central Park in New York City is an oasis for nature and health lovers.

And healthy living is not limited to physical exercise but even food and lifestyle plays an important role. Aisles of shopping malls are filled with healthy and organic foods. Kale is the new queen of food.

For a spa aficionado who is always on the hunt for the unusual, Phoenix was Nirvana for me. The city is becoming the spa capital of the country. You can find the city’s finest spa treatments, from Sonoran Desert-inspired indulgences to Native American healing traditions.

The US Travel: I thoroughly enjoyed my Sonoron-Desert inspired Spa treatment at Aji Spa, Sheraton. Phoenix

I thoroughly enjoyed my Sonoran-Desert inspired Spa treatment at Aji Spa, Sheraton Grand, Phoenix

Tip: Don’t forget to carry your jogging shoes and adventure spirit
  1. Myth: Traditions have taken a backseat in the American culture

Fact: Diverse ethnicities and cultures are celebrated with aplomb

While America is relatively a toddler when it comes to history, it is very proud of all the ethnicities that made America their home. It is melting pot, where all religions, traditions, and festivals are celebrated with same fervor. So, while San Francisco celebrates the diversity of the city through Annual Carnaval San Francisco; Albuquerque celebrates POW WOW - the world’s largest gathering of the nations. It is a festival of one of its kind. You have to see it to believe its magnanimity.

America is the land of wonderful and weird festivals, from the Chainsaw Carving Festival (Pennsylvania) to the Testicle Festival (Montana). The state fairs are even more fun and weird at times. 

Tip: Before booking a trip do look for local festivals
POW WOW: Gathering of Nations festival, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA

POW WOW festival, Gathering of Nations in Albuquerque, New Mexico is a must visit

  1. Myth: There’s no room for Art and Culture in a technology-first America

Fact: Art and culture thrives as much as technology

There’s a reason why so many artists have the US as their address. Art and culture are a thriving business in the US. Cities like Santa Fe have become a cultural melting pot for artists where art is not a prop but lies at the heart of the city. With over 240 art galleries and 14 museums, Santa Fe is a visual feast for art lovers of all sorts. A place where you won’t be hounded by pesky salesmen to purchase an art piece just because you entered his gallery.

The city of Adobe homes is an art city where artists like Georgia O-Keeffe, George R.R. Martin (author of Game of Thrones) and likes have moved to find inspiration from nature and pursue their creative side. Art is not restricted to galleries here. Sunsets are a show every evening here, and the night sky is just unbelievable. Santa Fe is a place that can change not only one’s external life but also one’s inner, spiritual life.

And New Mexico isn’t the only one supporting the right brain. The rocket city of Huntsville is as passionate about art as it is about rocket science. Lowe Mill has studios of some of the best artists in the country.

Tip: Buy the city pass, which usually covers many renowned city art attractions.
USA Travel: Walking through the Canyon Road in Santa Fe is like taking a walk through an art gallery.

USA Travel: Walking through the Canyon Road in Santa Fe is like walking through an art gallery

  1. Myth: Breaking rules is the middle name of the Americans

Fact: Punctuality and professionalism are the unsaid rules in the United States

In the United States, being punctual is not a courtesy but a norm. Time is money and nobody squanders it. In American culture, the commitment to spend time with someone is more important than anything else that might happen.

Also, being a marketing haven, professionalism is the core of survival in America. It is not acceptable to over promise and under deliver. Therefore, everyone follows rules and delivers on time. There is no aberration when it comes to following rules. Titles don’t matter. Rules do. I was on a press trip to Monterey & Carmel with Tower Tours. Our pickup time was 2:30 pm. I was two minutes late and the bus left without me. Although, after few calls, the driver did come to fetch me. I learned an important lesson that day. Hats off to the company for their professionalism. Their service was top notch.

Tip: When in Rome be like Romans. Refer to general rules and follow them strictly.
  1. Myth: The United States is extremely racist

Fact: America is a lot of things; racist isn’t one of them.

Before landing in States, I was warned about an increase in racist attacks. However, statistics paint a different picture. But rather than trusting stats we believe on “proof by example,” where we take one event as an evidence of a trend — a dog attacked my friend, therefore all dogs are vicious and should be put down. Proof by example is a logical illusion. But logic is officially an endangered species in today’s hyper-partisan political environment.

The truth is 99 percent of the 300-plus million Americans peacefully coexist with members of all races day in and day out. Rotten eggs are found everywhere. It's up to us what we want to absorb. Here’s what I experienced:

I was on a Press Trip to Birmingham in Alabama, a place where civil rights movement started. Leaving the past behind, Birmingham has moved on. It doesn’t matter whether you are a black or white, everyone is treated equally. During my trip, I experienced something worth sharing - my Afro-American tour guide historian and teacher Barry McNealy complimented my extremely humble white host Pamela McDonald on her charm bracelet and told her how his wife wanted a similar one. Without blinking an eyelid, Pamela gifted her bracelet to Barry as a gift for his wife.

That didn’t look racist to me. That was unadulterated love and care for each other. But media never picks up on the positive stories as it’s easier to sell negativity than positivity. And that's where we need to do our job. Spread positivity to make this world a better place to live and grow together.

Tip: Don’t believe everything media says. Make your own opinion. Talk to people.
That doesn't look racism to me. Will few bad incidents block your USA travel?

USA Travel: Happiness is multi races dining together in Birmingham, Alabama

So, these were some of the experiences I had during my US travel. Your experience will be determined greatly by where you go. Just to reiterate: No two people in different locales in the US will have the same — or maybe even similar – experiences. So, before you go anywhere, do yourself a favor and choose more than one spot. It’s the only way to get a better, more accurate, detailed, genuine experience out of this large, diverse country that has so much to offer.

Have you ever traveled to the US? How was your experience? I would love to hear your thoughts or feedback on this article. Please remember your one comment could be the reason for a writer to keep going.

Related: Do read How to plan a trip to the US step by step

And, if you are looking at food ideas in Birmingham then do check out this awesome article by Family Focus Blog

If you liked the story, please don’t forget to share it on your social media. Happiness grows when shared.


What's Next?

In my upcoming posts, I’ll be sharing more detailed and in-depth stories about the individual experiences I had at each place I visited. Do stay tuned for some unheard of stories.

Disclaimer:

  1. I was hosted by San Francisco, Scottsdale, Phoenix, Flagstaff, Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Huntsville, Birmingham, Adirondacks, Niagara Falls and New York City in the United States but all the views expressed above and pictures shared are solely mines.
  2. Please don’t copy or republish anything without my written permission.

82 Comments

  • Sudipto De says:

    This is one of the most comprehensive posts I have seen about U.S.A. I love how you have incorporated bits and pieces from different regions in your myth buster.

    • Hey Sudipto,

      Thanks a lot for such wonderful words of encouragement. The US is so huge and full of so many stories that one lifetime would be less to share everything I experienced. I am glad I could at least put something together.

  • What an amazing wrap-up article. So well done and some stunning photos! Thank you so much for the shout-out, we had such an amazing time. Can’t wait for you to show me around India around Jan/Feb. of next year.

    • Thanks a lot Mike for the kind words. I was totally overwhelmed by the immenseness of the US. It definitely needs many more trips. And I am so glad I had a great advisor to suggest the right kind of places 🙂

  • I have a slew of suggestions for your next trip. But first, we need to make my India trip happen. 😉

  • Anete says:

    Oh wow! What a great and informative post. US has so much to offer that it’d take more than a lifetime to experience it all. I’m now very excited about those 59 National parks in US and would love to visit them all.

    • Thanks a lot for your kind words. I am so glad you liked the story. The 59 National parks are the best thing about US. Hope both of us can see all of them soon. All the best to us 🙂

  • BHARATHRAM PATTABIRAMAN says:

    Most engaging read this long I have read in a while. Probably, the variations in subject and the depth of interest in the writing was catchy, which Speaks of the country that you just described!
    This must help many first time tourists to the United States of America, who might actually enjoy more at offbeat locations than the standard fare.
    Thanks, TSW!

    • Hi Bharathram,

      You have no idea how happy I was to read your comment. Trust me there is no better feeling than being praised for your hard work. The US trip has been one of my most special trips and I am little nervous if I can do justice with my observations about this great nation. This article was just the start. Lot of interesting stories to be shared soon. I’ll try my best to share the experiences in the best possible manner.

      Hope you’ll be around to share your feedback about them as well.

      Cheers!

  • Wow two months solo would scare me to death, you were so brave, as it can be such a challenging experience! I love that you decided to go for a lesser known path, avoiding the places that have become (unfortunately) tourist traps. Thanks for clarifying so many things: I can’t stand false myths, and it’s about time that someone started to address them!

    • Hi Dany,

      Thanks for sharing your feedback and I am so glad you liked the story. As a travel writer, I always feel it is our responsibility to clear misconceptions surrounding places. As Chris McCandles said,”Happiness Only Real When Shared”. No better feeling than sharing happy facts. This world really needs a bit more of positivity 🙂

  • Jamie says:

    This article was interesting to read as one who was born, raised and lives in the US. I wasn’t aware of some of these ‘myths’ about my country and fellow Americans. I’m glad you included the 59 National Parks – add to that the numerous national monuments and state parks you can visit as well. And yes, I was not born with a silver spoon 🙂

    • Hi Jamie,

      Thanks a lot for sharing your feedback. Really appreciate the effort. And you are right, sometimes staying in a country we don’t realise how the world looks at us. Unfortunately these days media plays a huge role in creating those myths. I am glad I could find the reality for myself.

      And I loved the 59 national parks, state parks nad national monuments. There is so much to explore in US. I am surely returning back 🙂

  • USA is a such a huuuuge country! We do end up having an idea only about the tourist destinations there! But with such a vast geographical area, it must be so varied! I have a couple of friends in Santa Fe! Very friendly people indeed! I’m yet to visit USA! Let’s see if I get a chance in future!

    • You are absolutely right, the USA is huge and you really need to travel slow to absorb its beauty. I was lucky to have time in hand. Can’t wait to go back.

      And I hope you get to visit the US soon too 🙂

  • Jennifer says:

    I agree that there is so much more to the States than the big cities. It’s a vast country with some beautiful national parks and cuisine beyond fast food. You covered a lot of ground on your trip and gave a great overview!

    • Thanks a lot Jennifer for your feedback. I am glad you liked my article. I can’t wait to share my experiences. Hope you’ll be around to read them too 🙂

      Best,
      Archana

  • Clare C says:

    Love this post! It is so true that we, especially in Europe, have a lot of preconceptions about America and most people I know have only been to the big places you mention. Love the myth section, it really hits home. Planning on visiting America soon so this will really help with the planning.

    • Hey Clare,

      I am so glad you liked the post. I have realised there are so many misconceptions about places we have never traveled to. And that’s why I love travel so much. It dispels so many myths.

      And hope you have a great trip to US. I’ll be writing many posts on my trip. Do let me know if you need any help.

      Best,
      Archana

  • The points you covered in this post resonated so well with me. My experience of travels within the U.S. has absolutely been one of diversity and generosity. It is indeed a beautiful and vast land with many differing components, elements and sub cultures. This is what I think makes this country so interesting to spend time and I have made many friends there. It certainly is true that the external perceptions of the U.S. is not what you will find when you are there and your tip to ensure visitors visit more than one state or region is very valid.

    • Hi Nicole,

      I am so glad to know that there are people like you whose thoughts resonate with me. Like you, I too made many good friends in the US. People are generally good everywhere. We just need to believe ourselves than believing on what rumour mills deliver. The US is a beautiful countryworthy of many visits. I can’t wait to go back.

  • Claire Summers says:

    I couldn’t agree with this post more. I think you choose some fantastic places to go. My Mum lives in New York and I love getting the train to upstate to go hiking. I’ve been to quite a few states now and it’s so diverse. I would love to do a trip like this one day.

    • WOW Claire! Your mum lives in upsate New York. That is so beautiful. I lost my heart in Adirondacks. It is my kinda place – people are so nice, food is great and there is so much outdoors to explore.

      The US is a country that deserves a loooooooooooong road trip.

      I can’t wait to go back.

  • Joella says:

    I loved this post. So happy to see some positivity and kind words being said about the USA. With so much negativity in the news it is a breath of fresh air to read this. I love how you dispelled s many myths that I think are common. We don’t all eat McDonalds and live unhealthy lives. We are not all born with money. We work very hard at more than one job usually get paid to little and have substandard time off. Thank you for reminding the world that there is beauty and kindness and that the USA is still a place that should be visited.

    • HI Joella,

      I am so happy to know that there are people like you who believe in the positivity. I feel I am blessed to have taken this beautiful journey through the US. It’s an incredible country and has given so much to the world. The least we can do is spread positivity about it. And people are generally nice everywhere. But it’s easier to spread fake news than real news so all we see around is negativity. But I am sure good things always find a way to reach people.

      Once again thanks for your comment. Really appreciate it.

  • Marcie says:

    I’m a US-native and this was such an interesting read! It made me realize that while I’ve been able to explore the world a bit, I have barely scratched the surface when it comes to the USA. It was such a smart idea to visit multiple regions. I’ve lived in Seattle my whole life and I forget that we don’t represent all Americans.

    • Hi Marcie,

      We are in the same boat. I too have barely seen 10% of my beautiful country but I am on it. And hopefully I’ll see more of it soon.

      And yes, the US is an amazing country. I had such incredible experiences, which are hard to express in words or through pictures. I can’t wait to share all my stories and revisit this beautiful country again.

  • Raghav says:

    Brilliant post and I love how much information there is and the variety of it all – photos, graphs, the written word. I remember traveling to USA for the first time as an adult and I was a little anxious at the time. It really has a lot to do and going unplanned can be daunting. Love how you have covered so many different aspects with tips. Bookmarking it to share with others.

    • Hi Raghav,

      Thanks a lot for your feedback. I am so glad you liked what I shared. I agree the US is a huge country and going unplanned can be daunting but I usually keep my plans a bit flexible. I had planned the states but the day-to-day activities and things I was gonna do were not planned. A bit of planning and a lot of non-planning actually worked in my favour 😛

  • Ajay Sood says:

    Hey, lovely round-up! And those myths truly take the cake! Great observation!

  • Partha says:

    A great read, Archana. Solid stuff, thanks! A small ‘Q’, how could you manage sponsorship from so many of them, or was it your expenses?

  • We’ve recently embarked on a US road trip to explore the beautiful sights that this country has to offer. I love your post and how it is such an eye-opener for those who might have had misconceptions about the US. The national parks are definitely worth the visit and is just one of many things to see!

  • Wonderful. Absolutely wonderful. USA is all that, none of that, and so much more. Not only are there 50 distinct US states—plus D.C., Puerto Rico, and other territories—there are distinct differences within states. There is a great article written by Dave Barry about all the different Floridas. My state of Virginia is distinctly Northern Virginia and Southern Virginia (but also coastal Virginia, Shenandoah, and much more).

    Love the myths you busted and I wish all USA residents would read it. Because a huge percentage of USA residents do believe and perpetuate those myths.

    I have lived in USA for most of my life and even spent 16 months road tripping around. However, I still feel like I did not see much of this great country and know there is much more to explore. Just like the rest of the world.

    Keep on travelling on being happy! My travel happy friend!

    • Hi Charles,

      Thanks a bunch for such a straight-from-the-heart feedback. I know what you feel. As travel writers I always believe that we should spread happiness and do our bit to remove negativity.

      The US is such a huge country that one lifetime is not enough to explore it. I can’t wait to come more. And yes, this time Virginia will be on my map too 🙂

  • Natasha says:

    This is a great and interesting article. The us really is immense and totally diverse too. I have friends from all over who are all so totally different

  • yukti says:

    Your post is great in terms of clearing all doubts in mind. All myths regarding in healthy food, lifestyle and rude people were stopping me to visit US. Thanks to you my mind is now positive to visit there. Also road trip in US is so adventurous and must to be explored for travel lovers.

    • Hey Yukti,

      You have no idea the kind of happiness i get reading comments like yours.

      I am so glad I could dispel myths surrounding the US. In fact when I sat down to write about my US experience, that’s what first came to my mind. Like so many people, I too came here with lot of doubts. But I am so glad the US happened to be my one of the best trips.

  • Kristine says:

    Thanks for sharing such an informative post with facts about the US and thanks for breaking down those myths! I’ve visited 12 different states and was surprised to see how diverse the culture and architecture is, from state to state. I was also surprised with how friendly people are. Friendliest nation I’ve ever met! 🙂

    • Hey Kristine,

      Many thanks for your kind words. I am glad you found the article good enough to comment here. I agree the diversity and friendliness of the people is what makes the US so special.

  • Only By Land says:

    Wow, you learnt a lot on your trip around the states. I did a similar road trip a few years ago, I didn’t quite visit as much as you but learnt a lot about America too. They are very friendly and educated people which I really appreciated, if I needed help or advice they would be very helpful. I found the best way to travel was in a hire car, although I never tried train travel. I really want to go back and make another road trip, it was one of the best trips of my life. I too bought the annual national park pass and it was amazing value.

  • You get the United States…thank you for sharing your insight, enthusiasm and inspiration!

  • I have been to over 40 countries…but havent been to USA as yet…main reason…the myth that you have Americans are arrogant and cocky. I have come across a few Americans who are nice…but sometimes I have had terrible experiences with none of them understanding third world issues. I am so glad to know that mostly people are nice in USA …and even more so helpful.
    Its really great to know that people work hard and do double shift as well…we really thought everyone in USA is born with a silver spoon. Loved your post….it cleared so many things in my head. Hope to get to USA soon!

    • I too felt like you and that was the reason I kept delaying my trip to the US. I always felt people are not welcoming here. But trust me that’s the biggest myth. People are genuinely nice and the kind of beauty you’ll see here – that will blow your mind.

      You should definitely plan your trip here.

  • Maggie says:

    Love this post! So many people have these awful views of our country but never actually visit. The best way to squash any stereotype is to visit the place and see for yourself what life is really like there instead of listening to media hype. Sounds like you had an amazing trip!

  • Ada says:

    Wow traveling solo through America seems brace. I remember when I did my road trip when I drove the whole country, there were creepy places I would not wanna be on my own. But I do agree with everything you said here! It’s a wonderful and beautiful country !

    • Hey Ada,

      Thanks a lot for your comment. I have been traveling solo around the world for a long time, so it doesn’t scare me any more. All in all it was a wonderful experience.

  • maegan says:

    I am from the USA and really enjoyed your experience. I am from Mobile, AL but currently reside in FL. I loved your facts/myth sections! Thank you for seeing the diversity here!

    • Hi Maegan,

      I am so glad you liked the article. Mobile, Alabama is such a nice place. I was in Alabama but couldn’t visit your place. Maybe next time I will 🙂

  • harshad says:

    the pictures looks amazing.. are you traveller and photographer too.. thanks for the share

    • Hi Harshad,

      Thanks a lot. I am an explorer in the search of untold human stories. Travel is just a device to uncover them. Always learning to write and click better pictures for better storytelling 🙂

  • USA are the place I love more for traveling. I spent 1 month in november and I miss that place every second. The most I love are the big spaces, the people always so nice, the typical things around like the vintage shops. I totally agree!

  • Christine says:

    Its my desire to visit the US of A one day and from there visit the rest of the world… but first I am touring Africa one country after the other… Great comprehensive article you have there girl! Keep up the good work

    • Hey Christine,

      Thanks for your kind words. Africa is one continent that is untouched by me. I so wanna visit that country. Hopefully it should happen next year. Will ping you whenever I am planning to visit.

  • These tips help as I am planning a trip to US next year. Since I have an aunt who lives in in US since past 30 years, I knew most of these facts without visiting. As you mentioned I would love to try the gourmet food when I visit US.

  • Swati Jain says:

    That’s a well thought out blog. A lot of things are said about US and I am happy that you highlighted some of those stereotypes in your post. You should never form an opinion of a place unless visited. Kudos

  • Arnav Mathur says:

    Loved going through your post, specially the Myth Bursting section. I would love to explore the states some day, and that too on the road, as I feel that’s the best way to explore the vast nation with an abundance of natural wonders.

  • Zinara says:

    USA is such a huge country with so much diversity so it’s not fair to say the entire population is arrogant. It’s such a common myth we all have. Oregon and Cali are two places I sure want to visit as well. Amazing that you got to experience different season while you traveled.

  • Jen Cris says:

    Your trip sounds amazing, being able to experience different seasons in one vacation. If we could spend a lot of time at US, I would love to visit the national parks. Interesting list of myths debunked during your trip. I hope all travelers will have the positive experiences just as you did! 🙂

  • jitaditya says:

    While we all know a bit about the US, it always comes across to me as a bit too developed and too urbanised to be attractive. That is why I loved some of the smaller details in this post, such as the view of the vast national parks and traditional Native American festivals. Those are some things I would love to visit.

  • Jean says:

    Wow what an epic adventure across the states you had.Great to see you debunking some very well known myths. I think people confuse Americans with American middle age white travellers. We’ve had our fair share of these kind of Americans lecture us on our travels. A poor representation of the country.

  • Indrani says:

    So, those opinions I had about US are myth after all!
    Very well presented facts about the mega nation. Definitely worth experiencing. But then one life time may not suffice for this.

  • Sounds like you had a fantastic adventure in the States! Great you could bust all those myths and assumptions too. I think the National Parks alone would be worth spending many weeks in the US for. It’s so easy for people to judge Americans and box them into typical stereotypes but really, it’s an incredible place to visit and I know many people would love to move there.

  • Lisa says:

    This is a great myth-busting post about travelling to the US for the first time. For me, I love to visit and see all the beauty of the national parks and landscape, but I also enjoy the food, hospitality and the beaches! There are some real hidden gems there if you look hard enough!

  • Aditi Shukla says:

    I’m heading to the US by the end of the year, most likely. I love the fact that it has 59 national parks, and is not all about the city-life and skyscrapers. I need to check out the dates of local festivals in advance. Thanks for busting the myths around US. Cheers!!

  • David says:

    Ive only been to America once when I was younger but can’t really remember it! This article just makes me want go back. I had also heard and was under the impression that americans were arrogant until I worked with a few last year and they were the complete opposite! Really nice and genuine people! Your photos are very impressive, especially the national park!

  • Anna Schlaht says:

    This was a really fun post to read about the USA, especially from a non-American perspective. As someone who was born in the US and has lived here all my life, it’s hard to tell what people from different countries think of us, as there seems to be a lot of discontent on all sides. So thank you for diving into the myths and giving your thoughts on them. 🙂 I will say, a lot of us do like to binge watch GOT, so that picture was correct (says the person who will be watching the newest episode tonight). But otherwise, being able to see the kindness, generosity, hard-working attitudes, and healthiness of the 50 states is really great! Hope you come back for another visit someday. 😀

  • Michelle Joy says:

    It was so fun to read this perspective of my country. I’m glad you got to experience a range of cultures within the U.S. and have such a positive experience.

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