The United States of America, the land of the free consists of 50 states. Over 328 million people reside in America making it the third most populous country in the world. The US is also the fourth largest country in the world by total area. This vast country is well known across the world and has a cultural imprint that is driven by technological innovation, popular movies, television, and music. Discover all the amazing and interesting things America has to offer with these 20 interesting facts.
1. America Is Home To Many Natural Wonders
America is home to many natural wonders of the world. In fact, the United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) have recognized many heritage sites in America. According to UNESCO, a world heritage site is a place of special cultural or physical significance.
2. The US Has The 4th Longest River System In The World
The Missouri River is the longest river in North America. The river derives from Montana, located at the base of the Rocky Mountains, and flows for approximately 2, 341 miles (3, 767 kilometers) before it empties into the Mississippi River just north of St. Louis, Missouri. The Missouri River and the Mississippi River combine to create the 4th longest river system in the world.
For thousands of years, many people have depended on the Missouri River. From drinking water to transportation, irrigation, flood control, and now even for the generation of hydroelectric power. As you can see this long body of water has played an important role over the years.
3. The US Has The Largest Economy In The World
The United States has maintained its position of being the world’s largest economy since 1871. The economy is so large that the US is often noted as an economic superpower and this is due to the fact that it makes up almost a quarter of the global economy.
The US economy is connected to the country’s enormous population, technological innovation, high consumer spending, high average incomes, as well as a moderate unemployment rate.
4. The American Flag Has Had 27 Versions
The first American flag only displayed 13 stripes as well as 13 stars that were arranged in a circle. The stars and stripes represented the 13 colonies that declared independence from Great Britain. While the origins of the first American Flag are unknown, some do believe that is was designed by a New Jersey Congressman, Francis Hopkinson, and sewn by a Philadelphia seamstress, Betsy Ross.
Since the founding of the United States, there have been 27 versions of the American flag. Each new flag represented the addition of new states. Today, the American flag displays 50 stars that represent the 50 states that make up the US.
5. Home To Some of The Best Musical Artist Of All Time
Not only is America a huge country, but their musical impression has made a big impact on the world too. America dominates the music industry as there are so many talented musicians that call America home.
Some of the best musical artists include Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Jimmy Hendrix, Madonna, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Beyonce, and many many more.
6. Center of Entertainment
America has a huge impact on global culture and a portion of that stems from entertainment. Many romance and action movies we enjoy are filmed and produced in the United States.
Hollywood is globally well-known as the center of entertainment and some would consider that it is one of the most famous places on earth. Hollywood attracts tourists from all over the world with landmarks such as the brass star embedded Walk of Fame and the TCL Chinese Theatre. There are endless things to do in Hollywood surrounding the entertainment industry making it a top destination for film buffs to visit.
7. Washington, DC Wasn’t Always The Capital Of America
Many recognize Washington, DC as the capital of the United States but that wasn’t always the case. Washington didn’t become the capital until 1790.
Believe it or not, from 1785 until 1790, New York City served as the countries capital. While it may not be the capital today, over 8 million people reside in New York City, making it the most populous city in America, and it’s one of the best cities to visit in the USA. While it is one of the best places to visit it is also one of the rudest cities in America, so be sure to choose your words carefully with the locals.
8. Las Vegas Is The Gambling Capital Of The World
Las Vegas, Nevada is the 28th-most populated city in the United States and is the most populous city in Nevada. This famous city is renowned for its nightlife, entertainment, gambling, shopping, and fine dining. Las Vegas has the largest strip of casinos which has earned this city the Gambling Capital of the World title.
The city is also famous for its mega casino-hotels which has also earned Las Vegas the title of Entertainment Capital of the World. Further, Las Vegas is one of the world’s most visited tourist destinations as well as one of the top destinations for business conventions in the United States.
9. There Is More Bourbon Than People In Kentucky
The bourbon industry is growing at a fast pace. This is great news for Kentucky, as they produce 96 percent of the world’s bourbon. Due to the high demand, Kentucky stores about 4.7 million barrels filled with bourbon. Surprisingly the number of barrels outweighs the population of Kentucky as there are 4.3 million residents.
Some speculate that this booming industry has the American drama series, Mad Men, to thank for making bourbon cocktails cool again. Nonetheless, whether you like bourbon because it’s trendy or because you simply enjoy the flavor, we all have the State of Kentucky to thank for this delicious beverage.
10. There Is a City Named Boring And It’s In Oregon
When you hear the word boring, nothing exciting comes to mind. So you might be asking yourself who would ever want to reside in a city name Boring. Believe it or not, tucked away in the state of Oregon about 20 miles from Portland, is a city named Boring with a population of over 7 thousand people.
While this may sound like an obscure name for a city, the name was chosen for a reason. The city was named after its founder, William H Boring, who farmed the land in the 1870s. To make things more exciting, Boring, Oregan partnered with Dull, Scotland, and have even declared August 9 as the annual Dull, Boring Day. This newfound partnership has sparked tourist’s interest and is putting Boring, Oregan back on the map.
11. The US Doesn’t Have An Official Language
While English is predominantly spoken across the United States, on a federal level there are no laws stating that English is the official language. However, even though there are no federal laws, 31 states have declared English the official language.
Further, there are only a few states that are officially bilingual. For example, in New Mexico, the official language is English and Spanish, whereas, in Louisiana, the official language is English and French, and finally, in Hawaii, the official language is English and Hawaiian.
12. Alaska Has The Longest Coastline In The US
In comparison to other states, Alaska has the longest coastline. By definition, the coastline is the length of land bordering the ocean, and Alaska borders both the Pacific Ocean and the Arctic Ocean.
To explain further, if you only measure the coastline, it is 6,640 miles long whereas if you measure all the bays, and inlets, you’ll discover that Alaska stretches across 47,000 miles, which is longer than all the states combined.
13. The US Is Called Many Names
The United States is by far the most famous country in the world. It’s famous for its attractions, such as the Grand Canyon, tech innovation, sports, and it has a large imprint on the global culture thanks to famous movies, television shows, and music.
However, did you know that the United States of America is referred to several different names? Some of these recognizable names are the United States, the U.S., the US, and America. Thankfully, all of these names are considered appropriate.
14. The US Has Many Hotels Featured In Famous Movies
Have you ever wondered what it would be like walking the halls of hotels that are featured in famous films? Well in America you can experience it! Many films use real hotels and resorts to shoot their scenes and this means we can visit and even stay overnight in them too.
Swim in the pool at The Fontainebleau, in Miami, Florida, and relive the scenes of Scarface. Or perhaps you’d enjoy walking the halls of The Plaza hotel, in New York, NY where scenes from The Great Gatsby were shot. The Plaza is also featured in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Sleepless in Seattle as well as several other films too.
15. There Are Many Free Museums In The Country’s Capital
Washington, D.C., America’s capital is the heart of American history and culture. There are many things to see and do in Washington DC including many free museums. The Smithsonian Institute museums are a must-visit and many of them are located on the National Mall.
In fact, 11 of the 20 Smithsonian Institute Museums are located in Washington, including the National Museum of Natural History, National Museum of American History, National Museum of African American History and Culture, as well as several others.
16. Full Of Beautiful Landscapes
While America is famous for the hustle and bustle of its major cities, this beautiful country also offers stunning picturesque landscapes. As mentioned previously, the Grand Canyons is one of the most popular tourist destinations when it comes to picturesque views but there are many others too.
Consider checking out America’s highest mountain, Mount Mckinley located in Alaska. Or perhaps you’d like to head to Utah and take in the view of Zion Canyon at the Zion National Park. For more beautiful landscapes be sure to check out the most picturesque views in the United States.
17. Iconic Food In America
Like other countries, America is famous for a few dishes. To begin, the iconic Twinkies were invented in Illinois in the 1930s by a baker named James Alexander Dewar. Legend has it that the name for this sugary snack was inspired by a billboard that was advertising for “Twinkle Toe Shoes”.
The inventor of corn dogs is uncertain, but it was definitely invented by someone in America in the later 1930s. Since then this popular State Fair food has made its way into the many freezers across North America and beyond. A few other iconic American foods include cheeseburgers, peanut butter, and jelly sandwiches, s’mores, BBQ ribs, and more.
18. The Statue Of Liberty Was A Gift
The Statue of Liberty, formally known as “Liberty Enlightening the World”, was a gift from France. This gift was sent to celebrate 100 years of Franco-American friendship. The statue was sculpted by Frederic Auguste Bartholdi while the framework was designed by a French engineer, Gustave Eiffel, who also designed the Eiffel Tower.
The Statue of Liberty is located on Liberty Island in New York, NY. The torch is a symbol of enlightenment and lights the way to freedom by showing us the path to liberty.
19. The Gateway Arch Is The Tallest Monument In The US
The Gateway Arch, also known as the “Gateway to the West” is a monument in St. Louis, Missouri, and sits along the west bank of the Mississippi River. At 630 feet tall, the Gateway Arch claims the title of the tallest man-made monument in the US.
The monument commemorates the westward expansion of the United States and is officially dedicated to “the American People”. The Arch is internationally recognized as a symbol of St. Louis and because of this, it is a popular tourist destination.
20. The Most Visited Museum Is In Washington
Have you ever been curious about the space shuttle, astronomy, or the Wright Brothers? Well, you can learn about these popular aviation and space topics at the most visited museum in America, the Smithsonian National Air, and Space Museum. Located in Washington, D.C., this museum sees about 9 million visitors annually.
Admission to this museum is FREE and is open daily from 10:00 am to 5:30 pm. The only day the Museum is closed, is on December 25.
When it comes to travel, one of the most important things to consider is safety. Most people would assume safety is something they have to worry about when traveling to other countries where they don’t speak the same language or are unfamiliar with the culture, and while that is true, there is also a risk of danger even closer to home. You might be surprised to learn there are many cities within the United States that aren’t exactly all peaches and cream. You wouldn’t want to walk around alone at night or wander aimlessly as a tourist in any of the following cities on this list because they’re considered to be the most dangerous in America.
This list was created based off information from the FBI’s crime statistics which were gathered from US cities with a population over 100,000 between January 2017 and June 2017. The data looks specifically at the amount of violent crimes in a city which includes rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. It’s important to note that the data used to create this Uniform Crime Report is collected voluntarily by police forces in cities across the country and not every city or state chooses to participate, so this list doesn’t necessarily give the full picture. However, it does give a big picture look at some of the more dangerous cities which can be helpful for people who are planning their next big city vacation in 2019.
In 2017 the poverty rate was 29.5-percent and the unemployment rate sat at about 6.3-percent. Police Chief Mike Yankowski told the Lansing State Journal that their high crime rates were due to domestic violence and mental illness.
24. Minneapolis, Minnesota
Minneapolis is best known for being a very diverse and artsy city, but now it’s also known as one of the most dangerous cities in the U.S. When considering a trip to this city in 2019, just remember that it didn’t fare so well in 2017. Only two years ago the violent crime rates were pretty high in Minneapolis with a rate of about 53.7 per 10,000 residents, according to Business Insider.
USA Today translates this violent crime rate to 1,101 per 100,000 residents with a grand total of 42 homicides in 2017. The poverty rate was 21.3-percent and the unemployment rate was 3.1-percent.
23. New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans is actually a pretty popular tourist hotspot, mainly because if its vibrant music scene, rich history, and round the clock party atmosphere. However what many people don’t often talk about is the fact that it’s actually quite dangerous, statistically. Business Insider writes that this city had 56.1 violent crimes per 10,000 residents in 2017 and 24/7 Wall St. notes that the city has some of the highest murder rates.
USA Today writes that in 2017 this touristy city had a violent crime rate of 1,121 per 100,000 residents and 157 homicides. The poverty rate here was 26.2-percent with an unemployment rate of 5.1-percent. Luckily mayor LaToya Cantrell has vowed to do something about it with a new program called Cure Violence.
22. Newark, New Jersey
You’d think we’d see New York City on here ahead of one in New Jersey, but surprisingly, Newark is more prone to violence than the big apple (at least when population is factored in). In fact New York City is actually one of the safest big cities in the country. Not too far away is the city of Newark, New Jersey, one of the most dangerous cities in America. Business Insider writes that Newark had 42.8 violent crimes per 10,000 residents in 2017.
In 2016 there were 36 murders per 100,000 Newark residents which was about three times higher than any other city in New Jersey and the fifth highest in the country, at the time. One of the biggest factors in this city is unemployment. Cities with high unemployment rates tend to have more crime and Newark had an unemployment rate of about 8-percent which is about 5-percent higher than the national average. The poverty rate in 2016 was 29.7-percent which is also 15.5-percent higher than the national average. Not surprisingly, most of the crime takes place in the cities poorest areas, writes 24/7 Wall St. A report by the Safer Newark Council found that most of the violent crime occurred in only about 20-percent of the city streets, primarily in the West and South Wards. The report also said most of the homicide in the city is drug and gang related.
21. San Bernardino, California
In addition to being known as the site for the world’s first McDonald’s and the largest outdoor amphitheater in the United States, San Bernardino also has a reputation for being one of the most dangerous cities in the country (according to 2017 statistics) and the largest city to file for protection under Chapter 9 of the U.S. Bankruptcy code. This bankruptcy plays a huge role in the crime rate of this city because there have been major cutbacks to the police force.
In 2017 there were 1,291 violent crimes reported which includes murder, rapes, robberies, and aggravated assaults. This is the 15th highest in the entire country. USA Today reports that in 2017 San Bernardino had a violent crime rate of 1,291 per 100,000 residents, there were 34 homicides, and the city experienced a poverty rate of 32.3-percent with an unemployment rate of 6.3-percent.
20. Indianapolis, Indiana
When planning a trip in 2019, keep in mind that Indianapolis had a violent crime rate of 1,334 per 100,000 residents in 2017 which was one of the worst years this city has ever seen. As Indiana’s capital city, Indianapolis, sometimes referred to as ‘Indy’ is densely populated with an estimated population of about 863,002. On Dec. 28, 2017 Fox 59 reported there were 156 homicides in this city. This goes alongside a poverty rate of 20.9-percent and an unemployment rate of 3.6-percent. According to the FBI Uniform Crime Report, the violent crime rate in Indianapolis in 2017 was about 1,334 crimes per 100,000 residents.
19. Stockton, California
California is an extremely popular vacation spot, but it’s also an extremely big state with lots of cities, some nicer than others. We’re sure Stockton would be a lovely place to visit in 2019, but we think tourists should be wary about the unusually high crime rate here, especially in 2019 considering it wasn’t that long ago that the country claimed bankruptcy and landed on many lists as one of the U.S. cities with the highest crime rates. According to 2017 reports, this city had 68.8 violent crimes per 10,000 residents.
Milwaukee is the largest city in Wisconsin. It’s a beautiful city that has a stunning waterfront along Lake Michigan. To a lot of tourists, this city is known for its cultural events and festivals and for those who live here, it’s a great city that has tons of stuff to do and a booming economy with several universities and Fortune 500 companies, but there is one major thing to be wary about when traveling to this city. It’s has high crime rates. In fact, according to crime reports presented by the FBI for the year 2017, Milwaukee had a violent crime rate of 1,597 per 100,000. This ranks as the seventh highest in the entire country and means that for every 10,000 residents in Milwaukee there were 75.6 violent crimes in 2017.
USA Today takes a deeper look and reports that there were 118 homicides in this city in 2017, along with a poverty rate of 28.4-percent and an unemployment rate of 4.6-percent. Luckily, the amount of homicides is actually going down. In 2016 it was 141 which is slightly higher than 2017. It seems the Milwaukee Police Department are working hard to lower these numbers by focusing their attention on a two-mile section, where most of these crimes occur.
17. Kansas City, Missouri
We’re not in Kansas anymore Toto! Okay, so it’s not the same Kansas as Wizard of Oz, but close enough. Turns out the state of Missouri is much more dangerous than the state of Kansas, specifically Kansas City (and St. Louis, but more on that later on). You might be wondering what this city is doing on this list considering it was just praised for doing such a good job bringing their homicide rate down. Unfortunately, it was short lived and it’s once again on the rise again. Be wary of this when planning a trip in 2019.
USA Today crunched the numbers from 2017 and found that Kansas City had a violent crime rate of 1,724 per 100,000 residents. There were 150 homicides which is up from the 129 in 2016. In addition to that, the unemployment rate was 4.3-percent and the poverty rate sat at about 18.3-percent.
16. Rockford, Illinois
You might not have ever heard of Rockford Illinois, but it’s actually the third largest city in Illinois and surprisingly, one of the most violent. While it’s not nearly as bad as Chicago and the number of homicides was actually quite low in 2017. There were only 18 murders reported that year. Rockford is still no walk in the park in terms of safety because homicide is not their biggest problem. According to data collected from 2017, Rockford had 78 violent crimes per 10,000 residents. There were 1,773 aggravated assault cases reported in 2017 which is a lot more than many other cities with the same population. For example, Naperville, Illinois has an even bigger population than Rockford and it’s reported cases of aggravated assault were only 80.
USA Today reports there was a violent crime rate of 1,588 per 100,000 residents and lists an unemployment rate of 7.5-percent and a poverty rate of 22.7-percent. Luckily, this city isn’t exactly a hot tourist spot, especially considering it’s in the same state of Chicago which is one of the most visited cities in the country, so Rockford often gets overlooked.
15. Birmingham, Alabama
Located in the South, Birmingham is the most populous city in Alabama and is often associated as being part of the “deep south.” Sadly, in addition to its southern roots, this city lands in the top 5 on Business Insider’s list of the most violent cities in the U.S., as well as Forbes top 5. Business Insider writes that Birmingham, Alabama had 86.1 violent crimes per 10,000 residents in 2017 and Forbes writes that there were 1,483 violent crimes per 100,000 residents.
If we wanted to look on the bright side of all this, Birmingham is actually making progress despite the fact that it’s still quite dangerous. The crime here is down 40-percent from what it was in the mid-1990s. Forbes writes that according to the U.S. Census Department, much of the crime in this city is due to the high drug trade and the high poverty rate. The poverty rate in Birmingham is 26-percent. This is quite a lot considering the state average is 17-percent.
14. Nashville, Tennessee
There’s no denying that Nashville is having a bit of a moment in terms of tourism. In the past few years this city has been crawling with tourists between the months of May and September. What most people probably don’t realize is that this city is actually statistically one of the more dangerous cities in the country.
In the year 2017 there were 110 homicides in the Nashville metropolitan area. Also, the crime rate was 1,138 per 100,000 residents and the poverty rate sat at about 18-percent. The murder rate in this city is so bad that the Oasis Center of Nashville which works to help at risk youth in the area called it an epidemic, according to 24/7 Wall St. Outsiders traveling in probably didn’t hear about the high homicide rate in this city because Metro Police spokeswoman Kristin Mumford told Nashville News4 that most of these homicides were between people who knew each other and were engaged in “risky behavior.”
13. Cleveland, Ohio
For the past several years, Cleveland has been considered one of the most dangerous cities in the U.S. based on national crime rankings. Cleveland is the second largest city in Ohio which means it also has a large population. Unfortunately, a good chunk of this population lives in poverty and is unemployed. The city has some of the highest rates of unemployment in the country. In 2017 the unemployment rate sat at 7.4-percent and the poverty rate was 36-percent.
Not surprisingly, these numbers contribute to the higher violent crime rates. In 2017, Cleveland experienced 107 homicides and nearly 6,000 violent crimes were reported. The violent crime rate was calculated to be 69.2 violent crimes per 10,000 residents or 1,557 per 100,000 residents. While it’s still considered to be a great city to visit (I mean, it is the home of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame), but travellers should just be wary of the high crime rate in this city when traveling here in 2019, and practice common sense.
12. Detroit, Michigan
It might not be too surprising to see this city on the list. Detroit has a reputation for being a bit of an urban graveyard with thousands of empty buildings, a massive population decline, and a high poverty rate. In 2017 the city’s poverty rate sat at a whopping 39-percent with an unemployment rate of 9.3-percent. Not surprisingly, these traits all contribute to a high crime rate.
Chicago has a notorious reputation when it comes to crime, but it’s actually not as bad as some smaller cities on this list like New Orleans, Newark, and Detroit. Chicago is the third largest city in the country and while it does have a higher murder rate than the two larger cities, Los Angeles and New York City, it’s still not the most dangerous city in the country. The latest data from 2017 shows that the murder rate in Chicago was 24 per 100,000 residents. That same year 650 people were murdered in this city, down from 771 in 2016, which isn’t hard considering it was the deadliest year the city had seen in decades.
Despite the higher risk of danger in this city, it doesn’t seem to deter tourists at all. In 2017 it was the second most visited city in the United States with 55 million visitors, right behind New York City which had 65 million visitors.
10. Anchorage, Alaska
Tourism is actually a big part of Alaska’s economy, so it does get a lot of visitors throughout the year, but it also has a pretty high crime rate. This is mainly due to the fact that it is such a large state. It is the largest state, the 3rd least populous and the most sparsely populated state in America. This probably plays a big role in why Alaska has higher crime rates because the police are unable to get to a crime scene as quickly as they would in a more densely populated city. This also affects their ability to solve a lot of crimes. In 2017, Anchorage had 57.1 violent crimes per 10,000 residents.
Road Snacks writes that Anchorage ranked as the 16th most dangerous city in terms of violent crimes in 2017 with 1,203 per 100,000 residents and the 25th most dangerous for property crimes with a rate of 5,415 per 100,000 residents. 24/7 Wall St. writes that many experts blame drug and gang violence for these high crime rates and that more drug addiction and mental health treatment centers are needed in the city.
9. Baltimore, Maryland
Baltimore is no joke when it comes to violent crime. In fact, there’s a reason HBO chose Baltimore, Maryland as the set for the American crime drama series The Wire. This show was supposed to depict a fictionalized version of the real crime issues in this city. So what are the real crime issues in Baltimore? Well for starters, this city has the third highest rate of violent crimes per 100,000 people. In 2017 there were 8,879 robberies reported which means the rate per 100,000 is 959 or 2,027 to 100,000 residents. To give a little perspective, this is nearly 10 times higher than the national robbery rate and the highest in any other major U.S. city. There were also 342 homicides in 2017 and a poverty rate of 23.1-percent. On a smaller scale, Business Insider found that Baltimore had 98.6 violent crimes per 10,000 residents in 2017.
USA Today reiterates this with a look at the violent crime rate per 100,000 residents which is 2,027. It also lists 2017 as having 342 homicides – that is pretty darn close to one every single day. This city also held a poverty rate of 23.1-percent and an unemployment rate of 6.1-percent.
8. Pueblo, Colorado
When we think of Colorado we usually think of Rocky Mountains and a ski vacation getaway, but that’s not what Pueblo is known for. This city saw 48.9 violent crimes per 10,000 residents in 2017. What’s impressive is that this city is actually the smallest city on this list, but yet it still ranks pretty high up. It only just clocks over 100,000 people. While it may be smaller than some of the other cities on this list, it ranks in the eight spot for worst property crime rate with the majority of them being burglaries. Road Snacks reports there being 1,052 violent crimes per 100,000 people and 6,167 property crimes per 100,000 people.
7. Chattanooga, Tennessee
Tennessee is a popular tourist destination because of Nashville, also known as ‘Music City,’ which also landed on this list. In addition to Nashville, the lesser known city of Chattanooga is another dangerous city to visit. It has the same kind of feel as Memphis and Nashville, but just not as touristy, and for good reason. It is one of the worst cities in America for property crime. It lands in the number 10 spot for property crime with 5,985 per 100,000 residents and is the 23rd most dangerous for violent crimes with 1,065 per 100,000 residents.
In 2017, there were 31 homicides. In most American cities the number of crime goes down each year, but for Chattanooga, the number of homicides in 2017 was at a record high. Local police said the major thing that did go down in 2017 was gang violence, writes 24/7 Wall St. In 2016 there were 132 shooting incidents, most of which were a result of a bloody gang war. While gang violence in this city is on the decline, the violent crime rate is on the rise. It was 1,023 per 100,000 in 2016, and in 2017 it rose to 1,066 per 100,000.
6. Oakland, California
Despite the high crime rates in this city, it’s actually become a desirable place to live and that’s because it’s so much cheaper than San Fransisco. Even though Oakland’s property prices are cheaper, there may be a price for safety. San Francisco ranks over 30 spots higher on the list of safe cities over Oakland. Now it’s not all doom and gloom for this city. To be fair their crime rates have actually been improving the past few years. It wasn’t that long ago that Oakland was known for having high rates of homicides, rapes, and aggravated assaults. According to 24.7 Wall St., the crime in this area skyrocketed after the recession, then went down, only to go back up again in 2012. Luckily it’s now on the decline again, but it’s still higher than most would like.
For those who are surprised to see Albuquerque on this list, it’s more due to property crimes than violent crimes, but don’t be fooled by that. This is still one of the most dangerous cities in America. In 2016, Albuquerque had one of the worst crime rates in the country with 1,112 reported incidents of rape, assault, homicide, and robbery per 100,000 residents. Unfortuantely, 2017 didn’t fair much better for this city. In fact, the rates rose by a whopping 23-percent. In 2017 it became the 11th most dangerous city in America with 1,369 violent crimes per 100,000 residents, 70 of these incidents were homicides.
The poverty rate in Albuquerque is 18.9-percent with an unemployment rate of 5.5-percent. What’s even worse than being ranked as the 11th most violent city in the country? It’s ranked as the third most dangerous city for property crimes with 7, 365 per 100,000 residents in 2017. Many of these property crimes are a result of robberies. In 2016 the city reported 2,000 robberies which then rose to 2,930 in 2017.
4. Springfield, Missouri
As the first Springfield in America, this city made history. It’s making history once again, but this time as one of the most dangerous cities in the U.S. Business Insider looked at FBI data from 2017 and found that Springfield had 40.3 violent crimes per 10,000 residents. According to 24/7 Wall St., this number is on the rise. The homicide rate nearly doubled between 2016 and 2017 going from 4.8 to 8.3 per 100,000. The same source writes, “Murder and non-negligent manslaughter represent a relatively small share of overall violent crime, and Springfield’s violent crime rate remained effectively unchanged between 2016 and 2017.”
Road Snacks lists it as the number one most dangerous city in terms of property crimes with 8,853 per 100,000 people and the 12th most dangerous for violent crimes with 1,338 per 100,000 residents. There were 14 homicides in 2017, a poverty rate of 25.9-percent and an unemployment rate of 3.2-percent. Yet another reason to be wary of traveling to this city in 2019, this city sadly has the highest rate of reported incidents of rape in the country with an average of 209 per 100,000 residents. To give some perspective on this, the national average is 42 per 100,000.
3. Little Rock, Arkansas
Little Rock’s crime rate ain’t so little! This city is the capital of Arkansas and the largest city in the state. Not only did it have the highest crime rate in the state, but is also one of the highest in the country! Little Rock had 87.4 violent crimes per 10,000 residents, says Business Insider and according to Road Snacks, it ranks in the top 10 in the country for both property and violent crimes per capita. The same source lists it as the sixth most dangerous in terms of violent crimes with 1,633 per 100,000 people and the fifth most dangerous in terms of property crimes with 6,932 per 100,000 people.
There were 55 homicides in this city in 2017, a poverty rate of 18.5-percent, and an employment rate of 3.3-percent, according to USA Today. The rate of criminal offenses in 2017 rose 1.1-percent from 2016, and 24/7 Wall St. says the police blame it on rival gang activity.
2. Memphis, Tennessee
Violence and crime probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about Memphis, Tennessee. It’s more commonly known for it’s blues on Beale Street, being the home of Elvis, and of course, the site of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. But according to crime data from 2017, it’s currently one of the most dangerous cities in America with one of the highest violent crime rates in the country. In fact, Road Snacks lists it as being the third highest in America.
According to 24/7 Wall St., there were 653,000 violent crimes and 181 homicides committed in this city in 2017 which gives residents about a one in 50 chance at being a victim. We’re guessing the high rate of poverty has something to do with these statistics because Memphis has a poverty rate of about 27.6-percent which is much higher than the national 15.1-percent.
1. St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis is typically known for it’s range of barbecue restaurants and blues music, but it’s also got another trick up it’s sleeve…one that probably isn’t advertised as much to tourists. It lands in the number one spot on several different lists as being the most dangerous city in America. Since this city ranks as the most dangerous city in America, at least based on crime data from 2017, we also consider it to be the most dangerous U.S. city to travel to in 2019.
Business Insider writes that St. Louis, Missouri had 91.5 violent crimes per 10,000 people in 2017. There were 205 homicides reported in St. Louis that same year which isn’t actually the highest number for a U.S. city in 2017, but once it’s adjusted to it’s population, it ends up being the highest murder rate in the country. According to 24/7 Wall St., St. Louis has a murder rate of 67 per 100,000 people which is extremely high, especially when it’s compared to the national average of 5 per 100,000. On top of all the violent crimes, the murder count for St. Louis in 2017 was 6,461 or 2,082 per 100,000 residents. This is the highest violent crime rate of any major U.S. city.
Hotels have played a prominent role in movies throughout the years, from the glamorous places where James Bond stayed to the exotic resorts. Let’s discover the iconic hotels that were featured in famous films where you can stay and be treated like a star!
10. Millennium Biltmore Hotel, Los Angeles, California
Maybe because of the proximity to Hollywood or maybe because it is a beautiful hotel full of grandeur and luxury, either way, the Millennium Biltmore in Los Angeles has been featured in a lot of movies. In fact, the hotel has a list of movies, TV shows and other appearances listed on their web site that is 15 pages long. Some of the more famous movies shot all or in part here include Jersey Boys, The Italian Job, The Dark Knight Rises, Iron Man, Rush Hour 3 and Rocky III. When not starring in movies the Millennium Biltmore has hosted celebrities, presidents, and dignitaries for the last 90 years. The 27 suites range from 900 sq. ft. one-bedroom suites to the 4,600 sq. ft. Presidential Suite that encompasses 2 floors, has 3 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, and an antique elevator. Rounded out by a piano, full kitchen, dining room, and library it is truly majestic.
9. The Fontainebleau, Miami, Florida
Since opening in 1954 the Fontainebleau Hotel has popular with the rich and famous. You might remember the swimming pool from the movies Scarface starring Al Pacino and the James Bond classic Goldfinger. Parts of the movies The Bodyguard as well as Police Academy 5 were shot on location here as well. The hotel occupies 22 acres of prime oceanfront property in the heart of Miami’s Millionaire’s Row and offers luxurious accommodations along with a touch of the glamorous golden era. The hotel offers guest rooms ranging from the standard room at 300 sq. ft. and luxuriously appointed to the six luxury penthouses. For $3,000 a night you can book the La Baie Presidential Suite with its polished marble floors. The hotel has a marina where yachts can dock for the day and enjoy the award winning restaurants at the hotel or the famous pool and beach.
8. Hotel de Paris, Monaco
Long thought of as a playground for the ultra-rich, Monaco is still one of Europe’s premier destinations. No hotel exemplifies the opulence and luxury of Monaco more than the Hotel de Paris. Built in 1864 the hotel is still the standard for others to try and copy. Movies such as Iron Man 2, The Red Shoes from 1948 and the movie Monte Carlo from 2011 were shot here. What would a luxurious European hotel be without James Bond? Two of the famous spy’s movies were shot in part here, Never Say Never Again and Goldeneye. This 5-star hotel has 182 rooms appointed in European style and luxury to include Louis XVI chairs and heated floors in the bathrooms. The hotel has three restaurants where gentlemen must wear jackets and a private wine cellar holding over 400,000 bottles of wine, some dating back to 1850. Free entry into the famed casinos and 24-hour concierge service await you at the Hotel de Paris.
7. The Beverly Wilshire, Beverly Hills, California
Originally opened in 1928 the Beverly Wilshire sits across from Rodeo Drive in the heart of Beverly Hills. The hotel made an appearance in movies like Escape From the Planet of Apes and Sex and the City: The Movie. The world really came to know the hotel when it served as the setting for the blockbuster movie Pretty Woman with Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. With 395 rooms and 137 suites, the hotel has hosted celebrities, political figures, and royalty. The guest rooms are big, 400 sq. ft. and just get bigger from there. The Presidential Suite is 5000 sq. ft. has a media room and a huge walk-in closet in the master bedroom. Enjoy a meal at the Wolfgang Puck restaurant CUT where you can get some of the best steaks in the country including True Japanese 100% Wagyu Beef from Japan.
6. The Plaza, New York, NY
The Plaza Hotel in New York has been featured in several movies. The hotel was featured in the 1974 movie The Great Gatsby, featuring Robert Redford and in the 2013 version as well. The Plaza also appears in the Hitchcock thriller North by Northwest as well as Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Sleepless in Seattle and Scent of a Woman. The Plaza Hotel is the ultimate in New York style and sophistication. The hotel has 282 guest rooms and 102 suites including the Royal Plaza Suite. The three-bedroom suite overlooking 5th Avenue comes with a fitness room, baths with marble mosaic tile complete with 24-carat gold plated fixtures and butler services. The Plaza Food Hall is a culinary dining and shopping venue popular with guests and locals. Chef Todd English prepares award-winning meals in the European style food hall featuring rustic Mediterranean food.
5. Bellagio, Las Vegas, Nevada
The Bellagio in Las Vegas and its iconic fountains have played a prominent role in movies about Las Vegas. The movies Oceans 11, Oceans 13, were shot there. Besides the fountains which attract thousands to the musical dancing waters, the hotel continues to be a favorite destination for Vegas visitors. Cirque du Soleil makes its home at The Bellagio and the conservatory and botanical gardens are a favorite. From the Fiori di Como chandelier containing 2,000 hand-blown glass blossoms that adorns the lobby to the fine art gallery The Bellagio strives to provide the utmost in luxury. The concierge can obtain those hard to get show tickets and the staff goes out of their way to make you feel special. The resort rooms are 510 sq. ft. and have marble floor entries, sitting areas, and mood lighting. The Executive Parlor Suite is 2,500 sq. ft. and features a billiard lounge, theater room, and wet bar. For the most discriminating an 8,000 sq. ft. three bedroom, seven bathroom villa is the ultimate in luxury. Featuring a fitness center, massage room, dry sauna and private hair salon the villa comes with a 24hr butler service.
4. The Fairmont Hotel, San Francisco, California
This 5-star hotel on famed Nob Hill in San Francisco sets the standard for luxury and elegance. The movies Hotel and The Rock use this as a filming location along with the 1958 classic Vertigo, starring Jimmy Stewart. The hotel has 592 guest rooms and suites, three restaurants and bars and a culinary garden where the hotel maintains honey bees that serve up over 800 pounds of honey each year. The Fairmont Hotel has 62 suites with the main building suites containing a parlor, bedroom and marble floors. The Penthouse Suite is 6,000 sq. ft., has three bedrooms and four bathrooms. Complete with a fireplace in the living room, formal dining, library, billiard room and terrace overlooking the city.
3. Waldorf Astoria, New York, NY
The 47 story Waldorf Astoria Hotel has over 1,400 rooms and is one of the largest luxury hotels in the world. The hotel has welcomed presidents, celebrities and royalty throughout the years. Movies have been using the Waldorf since the 1940s because of the grandeur and location on Park Avenue. The 1970 comedy The Out of Towners with Jack Lemmon and Sandy Dennis was filmed at the hotel along with The Great Gatsby. Remember the scene in The Godfather Part III where George Hamilton, who plays the Corleone family lawyer, negotiates with the crooked Arch Bishop? Yep, filmed at the Waldorf. Rooms range from luxury guest rooms in the tower to suites, including two-bedroom apartments where figures such as Winston Churchill, John F. Kennedy, and Marilyn Monroe have all stayed. No word on whether JFK and Marilyn were staying there at the same time.
2. Turtle Bay Resort, Oahu, Hawaii
The movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall was filmed at the beautiful Turtle Bay Resort in Hawaii. What most people don’t know is that Turtle Bay has been the setting for over 150 movies and television shows. The original Hawaii Five-O filmed there as well as Magnum PI, the movie Soul Surfer and a host of others. There is no wonder why. I mean come on you have the beautiful tropical setting, great beach and of course the resorts impeccable attention to detail. Instead of a fussy concierge, you get a staff that is friendly and willing to do whatever is needed for you to have the ultimate resort experience. You might find yourself enjoying a cocktail with a local or a well-known pro athlete or celebrity. The resort is situated so you get an ocean view from every room whether it be one of the suites, beach cottages, villas or rooftop premier rooms with walk-in stone showers and soaking tubs.
1. The Savoy, London
The Savoy in London has long been an iconic Hotel and one known for elegance and style. Located on the Thames River, near the shopping and theater districts, the Savoy has attracted politicians, celebrities, and visitors from around the world seeking luxurious amenities. The movie industry is no exception and has the Savoy for settings in several movies dating back to 1921, including The French Lieutenant’s Woman in 1981, Notting Hill in 1999 and Made of Honor in 2008. The 5-star hotel has 268 rooms decorated in either Edwardian or art deco styles featuring luxurious marble bathrooms. Suites also have the luxury of having a dedicated butler. The Royal Suite covers the entire 5th floor and was recently refurbished at a cost of over $3.7 million.
Las Vegas aka Sin City is known for its collection of over the top attractions, casinos and late-night pool parties. But Las Vegas is also brimming with romance. With luxury hotels, incredible amenities, spa treatments and plenty of memorable moments; Sin City is the perfect place to spend your next romantic destination.
15. Nobu Hotel
This five-star luxury hotel oozes with swank and style, the design is a blend of Japanese and Asian traditions. Although this boutique is situated inside Caesars Palace, it is in its own tower, making guests feel like they are miles away from the hustle and bustle of Vegas. The zen colors of deep purple and gold are accented throughout the hotel making guests feel immediately relaxed when they walk in.
Room amenities are plentiful and include exotic-scented sleep oils and tea, a personal concierge and priority access to the famed Nobu restaurant. If you plan on spending all day and night in bed, there is a special app that lets you order in-room service directly from the restaurant as well as housekeeping from just a push of a button on your phone. Indulge in the spas and pools that make Caesars Palace so famous.
14. The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
It is only five years old but The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is certainly making a name for itself in terms of being a romantic hotel. The terraces of the rooms are a big selling point with romance goers as they provide breathtaking views of the strip, mountains, and desert. The rooms themselves are absolutely lovely, oversized and full of amenities. Luxurious bathrooms come complete with soaker tubs and showers big enough for the both of you, marble floors and luxury linens.
There are a total of thirteen restaurants to choose from here including an excellent steakhouse and a seafood restaurant. Those looking for a little privacy should head over to the Bamboo Pool where pampering and re-energizing are at the forefront of experiences. If you are looking for a couples massage, why not check out the 43,000 square foot spa.
13. Delano Las Vegas
For couples looking to escape the casinos and live shows, Delano Hotel is exactly where they should head for an intimate urban-chic environment. Guests here should expect huge suites, amazingly attentive staff, world-class art adorning the walls and a breathtaking spa. Rivea restaurant, located inside the hotel provides the perfect dining experience for those couples looking to indulge in incredible food, 180-degree views of the city below, and the best seasonal ingredients.
The Beach Club here is a far cry from the overcrowded, loud, party atmosphere like so many others along the strip. Instead, guests here will find personalized service, chaise loungers, crafty cocktails and whimsical elements that make it unique, such as a submerged chess board complete with pieces. And for those looking for a little more relaxation; the bathhouse spa features saunas, steam rooms and 12 treatment rooms where you can enjoy facials, massages and more.
12. The Laurel Collection by Caesars Palace
This beautiful collection of rooms are set inside the Octavuis Tower and seep luxury and class from the moment you enter into the private valet entrance. Guests arriving will find exclusive registration, dedicated staff and an easy to use personalized service through a laptop or iPhone. These penthouse suites include such amenities as a separate dining area, wet bar, Jacuzzi tub, steam shower and roundtrip airport transfer in a limousine.
Marble bathrooms and Anichini linens make these rooms that much better. Couples here can relax in the Roman Baths or dine at the extraordinary Guy Savoy restaurant located in the Augustus Tower. Guests also have access to all the shows, entertainment, casino and pools that are apart of Caesars Palace.
11. Wynn Las Vegas
Boasting one of the best locations in all of Las Vegas, the Wynn delivers with spectacular staff, over-the-top entertainment, and luxurious rooms. This is truly a hotel for the romantic couple that thrives plenty of dining options, excitement and typical Vegas attractions. We recommend staying at the expansion hotel, Encore at Wynn Las Vegas in the tower suites as they have a separate check-in and are removed from the casino floor.
Expect to see many couples here tying the knot as the Wynn offers both indoor and outdoor wedding venues. If you are planning on getting hitched here, the skilled consultants on staff will ensure everything goes to plan. Make sure to check out one of many pools including the European bathing pool or topless pool, adults only of course. Splurge on fine dining, incredible spa treatments, and world-class shopping; all located right inside the hotel.
10. Trump International Hotel Las Vegas
The Trump Hotel boasts some of the stylish rooms near the Vegas strip and as one would expect, delivers incredible personalized service. It is one of the few hotels that is a non-gaming hotel which can be important to many couples looking for more romance and less gambling. Sleek and sophisticated, the Trump Hotel offers floor to ceiling windows in all of its guest rooms and suites, offering visitors incredible views of the strip, city or surrounding mountains.
Romantic guests will love the oversized spa tubs in the marble bathrooms, private foyer entrances, and personal butlers. Take a splash in the sparkling pool with private cabanas, grab a couples massage at the award-winning spa or dine at the world-class restaurant or choose to cook a romantic meal in the suite; whatever it is you are after, you will find it here at this incredible hotel.
9. SkyLofts at MGM Grand
MGM Grand has gone above and beyond with their 51 two-level SkyLofts that are located 21 floors above the strip. If you are looking for the ultimate romantic getaway where everything is taken care of for you, look no further than here. Guests should expect private entryways, sweeping staircases, gallery foyers, butler pantries, sweeping staircases and a billiards room. In-room expect certain amenities such as plunge pools that overlook the strip, infinity spa tubs with butlers delivering color-therapy baths, rainfall showers, big living rooms separate from bedrooms and bi-level patios.
Guests here have preferred access to nightclubs and the incredible dining spots such as Joel Robuchon. 24-hour butler service, loaner iPads and round-trip transport in a limousine from the airport are all included when you stay here. As an added bonus if you plan on tying the knot while here, the wedding chapel downstairs is absolutely beautiful.
8. Sky Suites at Aria
Aria’s main hotel is absolutely massive, with over 4,500 hundred rooms and suites, but the Sky Suites here are in a class of their own. With separate indoor and outdoor entrances to the hotel and casino, there is a sense of exclusiveness that is found here. Guests at the Sky Suites will have exclusive use of the Sky Suites pool, personalized service, a separate lounge with food and cocktails, luxury transport to and from the airport and a slew of other amenities found nowhere else.
Your personal concierge is the key to making this romantic vacation a success as they are well versed in making reservations, suggesting itineraries and decorating your room before you arrive, in fact, no order is too tall for this hotel. Enjoy awesome dining, a private elevator and the ultimate experience at this prestigious Forbes Five Star Award-winning destination.
7. South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa
This off-strip resort offers an incredible experience for couples looking to not break the bank on a romantic getaway to Vegas. The South Point Hotel offers more than 2,100 guestrooms with standard amenities such as LED flatscreen TV’s, Wi-Fi and luxury linens. Couples won’t have to look far to indulge in incredible dining including the ultra-romantic Michael’s Gourmet Room which has won far too many awards to even count.
South Point also happens to be the home of the world-class Costa Del Sur Spa and Salon, a favorite for those looking for a romantic escape as it features a private couples retreat area. For those romantic couples that are looking to add in a little fun, check out the 64-lane bowling center, 16-screen movie theatre or take in a live act at the Showroom. Catch some rays together at the paradise pool, get your competitive spirit going to the arcade or soak your stress away in the hot tub.
6. Palms Place
This luxury resort has everything you are looking for in terms of romance. With recently updated rooms, an incredible spa, expanded casino and some of the best views of the Strip in all of Vegas, it is easy to feel the love. The 600 room tower that adjoins the Palms Casino Resort by skytube is perhaps the best place to find romance, away from the crazy pool parties and over the top Fantasy Suites.
The spa features a private outdoor garden lounge and true Turkish Steam Rooms; perfect for relaxing after a long day of people watching. The 50,000 square foot pool surrounded by lush gardens and cabanas has plenty of nooks and crannies to call your own. Make sure to book one of the rooms that include a whirlpool tub and working fireplace to get the ultimate experience. Check out the romance packages they offer even more amenities.
This was just one of the hotels in Las Vegas that was built with love in mind and couples heading here should prepare themselves for the ultimate romantic getaway. Spread over 24 acres this hotel features almost 3,000 rooms, all of which feature luxurious European touches such as rich fabrics and fine furnishings. Guests here will enjoy replicas of famous French landmarks including a 50-story Eiffel Tower.
Head up to the 11th floor and dine at the Eiffel Tower restaurant which features one of the most romantic tables in the city. The observation deck on the 46th floor provides sweeping views of the city. If you are up for some fun make sure to take in Anthony Cools R-rated Hypnotist Show which will leave you feeling frisky and have you heading back up to your incredible room sooner than you thought.
4. JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa
For couples that are looking to travel to Vegas but want to avoid the bright lights, neon signs, and casinos, the JW Marriott is the perfect alternative. Besides the beautiful guest rooms that are set across 54 acres of lush gardens, this hotel is also home to one of the best spas for couples in the city. Spa Aquae offers experiences for couples including a co-ed area outside where couples are invited to enjoy the hydrotherapy pool, steam rooms, whirlpool, and sauna.
Choose from one of ten renowned restaurants on site to dine at, play a round of golf on Southern Nevada’s most prestigious golf courses or relax around the pool or waterfalls on the property. If you do want to play at the casino, there is one conveniently located next door for your convenience. Whatever it is you desire, you can find it here at the spectacular JW Marriott.
It is home to one of the most romantic attractions in the world, the famous Fountains of Bellagio and therefore it should be no surprise to anyone that this hotel is known for its romantic retreat packages. With almost 4,000 guestrooms including over 500 suites, couples here will enjoy world-class service, luxury amenities and a slew of activities. Enjoy the elaborate courtyard with its choice of five swimming pools and numerous elaborate sculptures and fountains.
Some of the best restaurants on the Strip are located here and guests always have preferred access. Watching the dancing fountains is a must on any romantic trip here. Chocolate covered strawberries, champagne in your room, exclusive check-in and couples massages are just a few things you will enjoy when staying at the Bellagio on your romantic retreat.
2. Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas
Compared to a lot of the hotels in Vegas the Mandarin Oriental is relatively small, giving it the advantage of being calm, quiet and mature. While other hotels are swarming with guests and clanging slot machines, this hotel is an oasis of peace and tranquility. Count on staff being attentive and treating you as if you are royalty.
The Ultimate Romance package that this hotel offers includes such amenities as complimentary champagne, your own personal romance concierge, a couples treatment at the spa, a night-flight experience over the city and much more. For those who want to build their own itinerary make sure to head up to the 23rd floor where the Mandarin Bar gives incredible views with floor to ceiling windows on three sides.
1. The Venetian
It is undoubtedly the most romantic hotel in Vegas and is truly the next best thing to taking your partner to the real Venice, Italy. Step into another world as you take a romantic gondola ride down the replica Grand Canal, sip impressive Italian wines and relax in one of the luxurious rooms. The Canyon Ranch Spa Club provides a co-ed area for couples to enjoy as well as incredible couples massages that will leave you relaxed for days.
There are over 10 pools to enjoy throughout the property although we suggest booking one of the private cabanas at the Azure Luxury Pool, where you can enjoy bottle service, a fridge stocked with water and fresh fruit on arrival. Take advantage of their romance packages which include wine pairings, in-suite dining, a luxury suite and much more.
Narrowing down the greatest bars in the world is a tough feat, considering so many of them have managed to fly under the radar, guarding their locations and managing to keep them a secret. From hidden doors with doormen who usher you in quickly to dive bars that have retained their 1930’s charm to some of the most talented barkeeps and mixologists, these nine bars are considered some of the very best. Whether you dabble in cocktails, drool over in-house-made infusions or simply want a place to meet with friends, make sure to check out some of the greatest bars in the world.
9. Milk Tiger Lounge, Calgary
While many don’t associate amazing cocktails bars with the city of Calgary, there is one hidden gem here called the Milk Tiger Lounge. This classic cocktail bar employs mixologists and bartenders with levels of expertise and dedication to the craft you won’t find anywhere else in the province. It’s a throwback to the days when people would slide into a seat at the bar, take off their fedora and chat with the bartender.
The drink list is littered with cocktails you only have heard of in black and white movies and even features the first cocktail to ever be invented in America- the Sazerac. A well-chosen wine menu, delicious appetizers and a passion for cocktails set this bar among the best in the world.
8. The California Clipper, Chicago
The Clipper is an old bar from the 1930’s, complete with red leather, lots of wood and cash only. The old-school jukebox is heavy on Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline which patrons are free to control. It can sometimes be referred to as a dive bar, but the best of dive bars featuring a craft cocktail list that shares menu space with cheap beer in bottles and cans.
Expect to shimmy up on one of the leather bar stools, order a famous Brandy Crusta and watch the live band. Or order a refreshing Amaro Shaved Ice, a drink hard to find anywhere else. Come for one drink and stay for many as the lights are dim enough in here to make you stay all night.
7. Arnaud’s French 75, New Orleans
It is a world-renowned cocktails bar in New Orleans and is not to be missed on any trip here. Interestingly enough it was originally a gentleman only bar during the days of the Cazenave family but today anyone is welcome here. There is an emphasis here on premium spirits, classic cocktails, and fine cigars.
The furnishings in here alone are incredible, both the bar and bar back were custom built in the late 1800’s. The staff is decked out in white tuxedos with black bow ties and the best barkeep in New Orleans, Chris Hannah calls this place home. We recommend going there and ordering an Old Fashioned, trust us.
6. Eastern Standard Kitchen and Bar, Boston
The beautiful lounge is enough to make one want to visit this incredible bar, as it boasts the longest marble bar in the city, where exceptional bartenders make top-notch cocktails. One of the best reasons to visit this bar is their cocktail selection, as the bar team seems to view the drinking process as a conversation.
They craft their beverage selection carefully, and their specialty is creating classic cocktails that utilize in-house made vermouth, infusions, and bitters from around the world. The drink list won’t be the same here if you come in different seasons as it changes at least 4 times a year. As an added bonus the menu happens to be incredible and features such things as seared salmon and delicious burgers.
5. Angel’s Share, New York City
It is one of the classiest joints in the East Village, easily reached by an unmarked side door at the front of the Japanese Restaurant Village Yokocho. Many do not know about this bar and perhaps that is one reason why it is so incredible.
You are not allowed to stand around in this bar, nor bring any more than three of your closest friends, this is indeed one of the best places to bring a date. With a stellar view of Stuyvesant Square, bartenders in tuxedos and arguably the city’s best grasshoppers; this is the place to be. Go now, before everyone else finds out about it.
4. Green Russell, Denver
An amazing cocktail experience awaits visitors to the Green Russell in Denver, located in the underbelly of the most historic block in Denver. Visitors reach this bar by entering through a pie shop and through a swinging door. The bar is actually named for an 1850’s Colorado gold miner William Green Russell.
Inside the bar is styled as a Prohibition-era cocktail joint, featuring exposed brick, opulent chandeliers, plush armchairs and one playful telephone booth. Hand-crafted cocktails are the specialty here using a variety of house bitters, infusions, freshly squeezed juices and small-batch spirits. Appetizers and fresh pie are available to order daily and this is the ultimate bar for quiet conversation and a damn good cocktail.
3. Hop Sing Laundromat, Philadelphia
Located in Philly’s Chinatown, one has to know where to look to find this incredible bar, (hint-look for the metal gated doorway on Race Street) and one has to be dressed to impress in order to gain access. Visitors get taken inside by a doorman to a vestibule where the floor is coated in pennies and sat down in a church pew where you must hand over your identification for inspection.
Once passing that test, you head inside where you will sample some of the city’s best cocktails and hopefully meet the owner who boasts very firm rules: no sneakers, no shorts, and no photos. Le, the owner claims to be from North Korea, although he is, in fact, Vietnamese by birth. Think about stepping into Hogwarts, pulling up a chair and sipping on one of the best cocktails you’ve ever had. Don’t believe us? Try it yourself, just make sure you don’t wear running shoes.
2. Canon, Seattle
It is the pinnacle of Seattle cocktail culture and Jamie Boudreau has made this cocktail bar into something so over the top, it is absolutely incredible. Walking in, the dark upholstery and antique cash register will immediately catch your eye and whether you are in a suit and tie or plaid shirt and jeans, you immediately feel welcomed.
The bar is stained with Angostura bitters, the barrel-aged cocktails served in glass flasks and the drink menu features over 100 different concoctions. The bartenders are superb, managing to balance the hard job of crafting each cocktail to perfection while doing so in a timely manner to serve so many patrons rapidly. There is a beautiful and extensive, almost drool-worthy collection of liquor and if you are a whiskey fan, this bar does not disappoint.
1. 365 Tokyo, Las Vegas
Good luck getting into this member only bar in Las Vegas, a Japanese-inspired bar located on the second floor of Inspire. This bar seats just eight patrons in a tiny room that is walled in on three sides by limo-tinted glass. Guests here are greeted with a bow from the lead barmen and his assistant, along with a warm scented towel, glass of cucumber water and cocktail menu. Much of the experience here is up to the guests, as they can choose which ice they want, the base spirit and even mixing technique.
We aren’t just talking about shaken or stirred here though, these advanced techniques include frozen with liquid nitrogen, siphon-infused with botanicals or even smoked with your choice of wood. Luckily for those who don’t know this much as cocktails, you can leave it up to the bartender to choose for you. Memberships are hard to come by, but we suggest jumping if you ever have the chance to visit this bar
Traveling is about discovering new people, places, culture, and—of course—food, glorious food. From the saucy jambalaya of New Orleans to the super fresh seafood and produce of coastal California, the U.S. is chock full of cities that appeal to travelers’ foodie sensibilities. For the true foodie, though, where you check-in in a new city is just as important as which city you decide to check out. If you’re hankering for a gourmet experience without ever having to live the comfort of your hotel, check out these eight U.S. hotels that offer up some prime dining experiences:
8. The Dogfish Inn -Lewes, DE
Created by the folks behind the perennially tasty Dogfish Head beer, the Dogfish Inn in Lewes, Del., is a retro stylish roadside inn whose handsome rooms are stocked with locally sourced snacks and handy barware. Even the room décor has a beer-centric vibe; prints of Dogfish Head’s groovy beer labels hang in each room. Start your day at the Dogfish Inn with a steaming cup of locally roasted Dogfish Chicory Coffee, then check out the Dogfish Head production brewery, which is just a few-minutes drive away. Another fun outing? Grab a six pack of your favorite brew and head to the Delaware Bay and while away the day at the beach. For more heart-pumping activities, go explore the trails at nearby Cape Henlopen State Park or paddle down the Broadkill River (there’s a kayak launch super close the inn).
7. The Hotel Modern -New Orleans, LA
The Hotel Modern in New Orleans boasts eclectic décor in a hip neighborhood—and a margarita that’s been named one of Travel + Leisure’s “America’s Best.” The fun starts before you even unpack your bags at this hotel; as soon as you arrive, you’ll be offered complimentary drinks. Once you’re settled in to your bright and funky hotel room (think neon pink accent walls and punchy accessories), go check out the hotel’s lounge, the Bellocq. Here, hip bartenders serve up incredible custom-crafted cocktails—get there before 7 pm to take advantage of some awesome happy hour specials! Getting hungry? Head to the hotel’s in-house restaurant, Tivoli & Lee, where innovative chefs turn out modern takes on classic southern comfort foods. You might be tempted to spend all your waking and sleeping hours in this hotel, but make sure you take some time to explore the French Quarter right outside the hotel’s door—more delicious New Orleans specialties await you!
6. Blackberry Farm -Walland, TN
Pack your bags (and your gardening gloves) and head to Blackberry Farm in the Great Smokey Mountains for a luxurious foodie getaway. The intimate hotel is situated on over 9,000 breathtaking acres, which includes a working farm that produces heirloom tomatoes, honey, and even fresh cheese from Friesian sheep. Enjoy the results of Blackberry Farm’s bounty at the hotel’s restaurant, where chefs whip up cuisine that incorporates ingredients that were just harvested hours earlier. The food isn’t the only thing that shines here, either. Expert sommeliers can suggest the perfect bottle to accompany a guest’s meal from Blackberry Farm’s impressive wine cellar, and tours of the on-site brewery are another popular activity. Guests can also take part in culinary demonstrations, wine and whiskey tastings, or even a “Day in the Life of a Chef” experience, where guests can tag along with the farm’s expert culinary masters.
5. The NoMad Hotel -New York City, NY
You might think that in a culinary-rich destination like New York City, staying at a foodie-themed hotel isn’t necessary. And maybe it isn’t … but a few nights at The NoMad Hotel in NYC sure sounds like fun. Guests can nibble on innovative cuisine and cocktails inspired by the chef’s time spent in New York, California, and Switzerland while exploring the hotel’s expansive dining areas. Sip a gin and tonic on the roof top for incredible views of the Manhattan skyline, or stay cozy with your cocktail inside next to the incredible fireplace. Graze on finger foods in the library before heading to the sumptuous parlor or light-filled atrium for your main meal. End your evening of gustatory delights with a nightcap at one of the hotel’s two bars: the elegant, sumptuous Elephant Bar or the more relaxed and convivial NoMad Bar. With all the dining options at this hotel, you might never make it outside to explore the rest of the city!
4. Post Ranch Inn -Big Sur, CA
Discerning diners are often faced with a tough dilemma: do you dine at the restaurant with the great view, or the restaurant with the great food? Your dilemma is solved at the Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur, California. The Inn’s restaurant, Sierra Mar, sits high above Big Sur’s famously dramatic cliffs, so guests can take in the amazing ocean views while dining on innovative cuisine that highlights coastal California’s fresh foodie vibe. For the ultimate foodie experience, opt for Sierra Mar’s “Taste of Big Sur” tasting menu—but only if you think you can make it through all nine courses. Luckily, the abundance of breathtaking hikes in the area will give you ample opportunities to work off your meal.
3. The Peninsula Chicago -Chicago, IL
Yes, this luxurious hotel is located in the Windy City, but you won’t find any of Chicago’s famous deep-dish pizza here. Instead, The Peninsula Chicago has three outstanding restaurants for you to choose from. Indulge in afternoon high tea in the Lobby, and be sure to check out the decadent Chocolate Bar that’s set up on Friday and Saturday evenings. Head upstairs to the Shanghai Terrace for crafty cocktails and yummy dim sum served alongside spectacular views of the Chicago skyline. Escape to the cobblestone streets of Europe (at least for an hour or two), at Pierrot Gourmet, a European-inspired bistro, sidewalk café, and wine bar. Sip on some after-dinner drinks at the hotel bar, where cocktails with fun names like “White Whiskey Fizz” and “Elderberry Smash” are sure to whet your whistle. Trust us, with all of these options, you won’t even miss the deep dish!
2. The Cosmopolitan -Las Vegas, NV
Skip the gambling and go for all things gourmet at this landmark Vegas hotel. When dining at The Cosmopolitan, you get to choose between not one, not two, not three, but 14 different restaurants! From scrumptious red velvet waffles for breakfast at the Overlook Grill to the sophisticated Italian dishes served up for dinner at Scarpetta, you’ll find something your taste buds will love at this hotel. Plus, this is a great option if you’re travelling with a bunch of your foodie friends; the Cosmopolitan makes it easy to reserve private dining rooms or tables for big groups (think 13 or more). Another plus? A good number of the hotel’s restaurants offer solid happy hour specials, so dining well doesn’t mean you’ll have to blow your entire paycheck.
1. The Willows Inn -Lummi Island, WA
At The Willows Inn on Lummi Island in Washington state, Chef Blaine Wetzel whips hyper local ingredients into provocative dishes during tasting menus that often last three hours. The guest experience at this inn revolves around the dinner table; inn guests get first dibs on hard-to-get dinner reservations, and the tasting menu starts promptly at 6:30 p.m. There’s plenty else to do in this picturesque part of the Pacific Northwest, including hiking, whale watching, island hopping, and more. Hardcore foodies may want to consider continuing their culinary adventures away from the table with a wild foraging tour via kayak.
While it is very easy to spend a lot of money when staying at a nice hotel there are some places around the world that have world class service and rooms that easily fit into any budget. With a little searching you can find hotels that offer luxury accommodations, great facilities and locations. Next time you are looking to get away for a weekend getaway, head out on a business trip or even once in a lifetime family trip, you don’t have to settle for a small room in a substandard hotel because you are afraid it might break your budget. Take some of these suggestions for amazing hotels that you can book for under $100 a night.
15. Chatrium Hotel Riverside -Bangkok, Thailand
The Chatrium Hotel Riverside is a multiple award winning hotel located adjacent to the Chao Phraya River, just 30 km from the International Airport in Bangkok, Thailand. A Grand Room with a city view is under $80 and comes with a private balcony. At 60 sq. meters the room comes complete with a kitchenette and dining area, coffee and tea making facilities, bathrobe and slippers. The hotel offers a business center that includes everything necessary if you just can’t leave work behind. A 35 meter infinity pool overlooking the river with an outdoor Jacuzzi awaits along with a fully equipped fitness center. Head to the Nemita spa on the ground floor and get a relaxing massage or do pick up some items in the shops. Also on the premises is a Starbucks Coffee Shop and the Saizen Japanese Restaurant. The hotel also has facilities for meetings and weddings.
14. Sri Bungalows -Ubud, Bali
For under $100 you can book a suite at the Sri Bungalows. The bungalows located in Ubud Bali comes with handsomely appointed suites with a private balcony overlooking the rice terraces. The rooms are stylishly appointed and other facilities include two swimming pools, restaurant and full service spa so you can enjoy a Balinese massage. The bungalows cover two floors and are surrounded by gardens and terraces. The hotel is only a short walk to the Ubud Market and the Monkey Forest. For a relaxing stay in a tropical paradise the price is hard to beat.
13. Radisson Blu Hotel -Cebu, Philippines
Located in the second largest city in the Philippines, Cebu is a popular destination because of the proximity to beautiful beaches and laid back lifestyle. The number one rated hotel in Cebu can also be had for under $100. The Radisson Blu, located 11 kilometers from the International Airport is conveniently located near all the popular tourist sights. With rooms offering goose feather pillows and duvets the Radisson will surely please. The hotel’s restaurant, Feria, offers both à la carte options and a buffet and with five master chefs the food runs the gamut of Filipino, Chinese, Japanese, Mediterranean and International cuisines. The hotel has a large tropical pool outside along with a fully equipped state of the art fitness center and spa. For those staying in a business class room or suite the business class lounge is open daily. The hotel also has a 180 seat lobby bar a pool bar and a tea bar serving 21 different teas from Sri Lanka, China, Japan and South Africa.
12. Riad Viva -Marrakech, Morocco
Located in the city center, 15 minutes from the airport, the Riad Viva Hotel offers visitors a relaxing stay in beautifully appointed rooms. The hotel offers guests a wide range of amenities including free WiFi, 24 hr. room service and airport transfers. With a combination of Moroccan style and luxurious amenities guests can be assured of a royal stay. The hotel has a pool along with a steam room and restaurant. The friendly staff can also help in arranging tours to the Ourika Valley, a Berber village, the magical city of Essaouira or point you to the best shopping in town. You can also check out the cooking classes offered by the hotel so you can learn how to use all those aromatic spices and flavors to impress your friends when you return home.
11. Hilton Anatole -Dallas, Texas
You don’t have to travel half way around the world to get a good hotel deal. The Hilton Anatole in Dallas offers the business traveler or visitor to the city comfortable rooms with all the amenities. A room with a King Size bed can be had for under $90 and has just about everything you need as a traveler. The hotel has a full business center and conference facilities and also offers an ATM, currency exchange, clothing store, onsite convenience store and concierge serve. Feel like getting a little exercise? Head to the Verandah Club with fully equipped fitness center, 25 meter lap pool, cross training and boxing gym or enjoy racquet ball the jogging track or basketball courts. The V Spa is the perfect place to get a relaxing massage or spa treatment. In addition to room service there are 5 dining establishments at the hotel including SĒR Steak + Spirits serving up tender steaks and fresh seafood on the 27th floor.
10. Hotel Paseo Del Arte -Madrid, Spain
Located just a 100 meters from the Atoche Train Station, the Hotel Paseo Del Arte is a 4 star hotel in the heart of Madrid. Comfortably appointed rooms are tastefully furnished and offer a panoramic view of the interior garden or the city. Complete with desk, free WiFi, flat screen TV with international channels, and marble bathroom guests are in the perfect spot to explore the city. The hotel has a fitness facility, shops, coffee shop and bar. The restaurant serves a breakfast buffet and along with regional and international cuisine. With 260 rooms the hotel is less than 15 km to the airport making it easily accessible. The hotel is located in the area known as the Arts Triangle and within walking distance to several museums, parks, shopping, restaurants and the famous Madrid nightlife.
9. Century Plaza Hotel and Spa -Vancouver, B.C.
The Century Plaza Hotel and Spa is a family owned and operated located in the center of downtown Vancouver. The hotel prides itself on providing the best service possible. With a business center, conference facilities and indoor pool, the Century Plaza is the perfect place for business travelers and families visiting the city. Since opening the Absolute Spa at Century Plaza Hotel 12 years ago, the Spa has received over 50 awards and is the favorite of celebrities like Zac Effron, Elle McPherson and Gwyneth Paltrow when in town. With an ozonated swimming pool, eucalyptus steam room and relaxation lounge the Spa is the perfect place to get pampered. The hotel also features the C Prime Italian Steak and Wine Restaurant. Using locally sourced meats, vegetables and seafood Chef Bruce Woods has made the restaurant one of the hottest destinations in Vancouver. A coffee shop, salon and Vancouver’s iconic comedy club The Comedy Mix are also available to guests.
8. Sana Hotel -Berlin, Germany
The Sana Hotel is a 4 star Superior Class hotel located on the west side of Berlin. With 203 rooms including suites and apartments the Sana offers a wide choice of accommodations. A double room can be booked for less than $100 and prices go up from there. Facilities include a breakfast room, restaurant serving Portuguese cuisine, two bars, terrace garden, fitness center and massage services. The F8/eight Bar & Lounge seats 50 and guests can relax with fine wines and spirits while listening to live jazz. A smoking bar also exists for those that enjoy a fine cigar. In addition to massage services the wellness area on the 7th floor offers an indoor swimming pool, sauna and Turkish bath. The Sana Hotel is also centrally located for sightseeing with the Brandenburg Gate less than 5 km. away, as well as the zoo, museums and cultural facilities being nearby.
7. The Signature at MGM Grand -Las Vegas, Nevada
Located just off the famed Las Vegas Strip, The Signature at MGM Grand offers an elevated level of personalized service. Luxuriously appointed suites start at just under $100 and have all the amenities you might expect in luxury hotels costing much more. With a private pool complete with personal cabana and in suite spa services to the spacious suites with granite and marble bathrooms and kitchenettes the hotel does everything possible to pamper the guests. The hotel concierge will ensure you get tickets to the best shows and hard to get restaurant reservations and has a gourmet delicatessen on the premises. Whether you are hitting the Las Vegas Strip, spending the day golfing or seeing the sights you can relax and unwind in your private suite at night and get the rock star treatment from a dedicated staff that does everything the ensure you have the ultimate Las Vegas experience.
6. Golden Tulip Amsterdam West -Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amsterdam is known for offering cheap backpacker accommodations with over 180 hostels in the city. For those not wanting budget sleeping arrangements with noisy neighbors there is an alternative. Conveniently located to Schiphol Airport and the city center the Golden Tulip Amsterdam West makes exploring the city easy. With rates under $100 you can have the comfort of a spacious room with heated floors, a rain shower and free internet access. Comfortably appointed rooms have been designed to be soundproof so guests can get a good night’s sleep uninterrupted by the wild Amsterdam nightlife. The buffet restaurant seats 300 and is open for breakfast and dinner and the modern bar is a great place to relax and have a cocktail, cup of coffee or a slice of homemade pie. The tram stop is a mere 50 meters from the hotel for easy commute to the famous sights such as the Anne Frank House and Van Gogh Museum.
5. Relais Spa Chessy Residence -Paris, France
Visitors to Paris know hotels and pretty much everything else can be pricey. With a little searching you can find gems such as the Relais Spa Chessy Residence near Disneyland Paris. A premium room with free WiFi, unlimited spa access and shuttle to Disney Land can be scooped up for under $100. The rooms have a small office area and a discreet kitchen with hot plate. Hotel amenities include pool, steam room, sauna, gym and spa treatments. The Franklin Bar makes for a cozy place to relax with friends for a drink while the Brasserie Flo restaurant serves up sophisticated French cuisine. The hotel staff strives to ensure each guest gets the VIP treatment.
4. Chateau Victoria -Victoria, B.C.
Sitting on the location of a former mansion the Chateau Victoria is a boutique hotel offering a touch of opulence to guests. The hotel has a colorful past due to a parrot that inherited the old mansion that previously stood there and some swear they have seen the well-dressed ghost of Victoria Jane, the previous mansion owner, roaming the halls. Whether you see a ghost or not one thing you can be assured of. The hotel goes out of the way to make to feel comfortable and the rooms complete with free WiFi and big comfortable beds await the tired traveler. The hotel’s Vista 18 restaurant offers regional cuisine and has an extensive wine list. The hotel bar, Clive’s Classic Lounge, has been listed as one of the top hotel bars by several publications. The hotel offers in room spa treatments and massages and the hotel has a lap pool, hot tub and fitness center.
3. Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba -Tokyo, Japan
While Tokyo has its share of pod hotels, where you get to sleep in what resembles a submarine torpedo tube, there are other options. One such option is the Grand Nikko Tokyo Diaba Hotel, a 5 star resort located just 20 minutes from Haneda International airport on 15 minutes from downtown Tokyo. A superior Double room can be booked for under $100 during the week and the hotel comes with such amenities as an outdoor terraced swimming pool with fantastic views of Tokyo, a wellness salon, acupuncture center and has a medical clinic on the premises. The hotel fitness center is fully equipped and has trainers on staff and the hotel has several shops on site. There are eight restaurants at the resort including sushi, Chinese and Italian and the Ruy Lopez Bar stocks liquor from around the world along with fine cigars.
2. Lancaster House -Bogota, Colombia
Lancaster House in Bogota Colombia is a boutique hotel designed in the art deco style. The 4 star hotel has two bars, restaurant, gym and sauna. Gatsby Restaurant serves traditional Colombian and International food while the more relaxed Bistro 106 is a great place to relax and get a lighter meal or dessert. Relax in the piano bar with a game of billiards or a cocktail before heading up to your luxurious room. The Junior Suite comes equipped with a living and dining area, work space and kitchen. The hotel also offers a mobile spa service so guests can book a massage or just relax in the sauna. Located in an upscale neighborhood close to embassies and near the major shopping areas the Lancaster is centrally located for easy access to all the city has to offer.
1. Kaani Village and Spa -Maldives
The Kaani Village and Spa located in the beautiful Maldives offers guests a pampered option to staying at a discounted beach hotel. With a Double Deluxe room overlooking the pool that comes with a breakfast included the hotel makes a perfect base to enjoy the island. The Sampa Spa at the hotel offers tradition Thai massage as well as aroma massages performed by two masseuses at once. The hotel has a pool and restaurant and the hotel staff can arrange activities such as fishing, dolphin watching, scuba diving, snorkeling or an island tour complete with picnic. Rated number 3 out of 40 small boutique hotels by TripAdvisor the Kaani Village and Spa does everything possible to pamper guests and make your stay memorable.
There’s nothing more useful in your life then a really, really good friend- especially when you need one. With work and family commitments, that relationship with your BFF is often sacrificed for the sake of time (and sanity) management. But really, what contributes more to your work/life balance than a good gossip, some great food and a whole lot of laughter? Here are some awesome spots in the U.S. to consider when planning your next girls weekend getaway. The fun factor is high -no matter what your idea of vacation is.
1. Savannah, GA
With its fragrant azaleas, rich history and pedestrian-friendly layout, this southern belle is a great spot to gather your girls and hang out. Dating back to the early 1700s, Savannah’s City Market was the place of commerce in the city for farmers and traders to peddle their wares. Now it is a super collection of boutique shops, eateries and character cafes. Grab an ice cream (a requisite on girl’s weekend) and do some serious shopping in this open air marketplace. Savannah is sometimes referred to as “Hollywood of the South” and has been the site for many movies. Go on a movie tour and see where movies like Forrest Gump and Cape Fear (1962) were shot, among dozens of others.
2. Palm Beach, FL
With dozens of beaches in the area, Palm Beach makes for a great girlfriend getaway. Delray Beach has the sun and the surf, but is also lined with bistros and pubs- and emits a fun, party vibe. If your girl’s weekend includes a trip to the spa, the Eau Spa at Eau Palm Beach Resort and Spa is a great choice. This full service spa expands out over 42,000 sq. ft. In addition to all of the spa services, this facility offers a “Self- Centered Garden”, located in the heart of the spa. It’s the ultimate chill-out spot, with hanging chairs, fountains, lots of greenery and an elegantly laid back vibe.
3. Clyde Park, MT
Do you and your gal pals want to connect with your inner cowgirls? Consider a retreat to Big Sky Yoga retreat in Big Sky country. Take your yoga practice to some pretty serene surroundings (like mountain backdrop, against the wide open sky). What is really cool about this yoga retreat is that it’s part yoga and part horseback riding- and gives you a chance to really connect with nature in a way that is uniquely suitable to the surroundings. The tagline is appropriately- Namaste and Yeehaw!
4. Las Vegas, NV
When you think about Las Vegas, you probably think about the casinos and the nightlife that doesn’t close. That’s fun too, but there are a lot of spa experiences to be had in Las Vegas as well- perfect for a tranquil girls getaway. Spend the afternoon at the contemporary chic Bathhouse Spa at Delano, using their steam rooms and saunas, completed with spa treatments. For another spa experience, check out Canyon Ranch at the Venetian. This spa is an “aqua thermal oasis” and uses alternating hot and cold water experiences to relax the muscles and rejuvenate the skin. One highlight is the experiential rain shower- which is a cooling shower. Guests can choose from various streams and intensities: Caribbean Storm, Tropical Rain or Cool Fog.
5. Finger Lakes Region, NY
With 120 wineries to choose from in this region, a wine tour through the Finger Lakes region in New York State is perfect for wine-loving ladies on a getaway. So that you can really savor the wines, consider joining an organized wine tour, or hiring transportation for the day. Some wineries do tours by appointments only, but there are some good ones that allow drop-ins too: Fulkerson Winery, Swedish Hill Winery, and Glenora Wine Cellar.
6. San Antonio, TX
San Antonio’s Riverwalk is the largest urban ecosystem in the U.S. and has 15 miles of sidewalks and paths that wind alongside the San Antonio River. You can explore the river on a boat, or use their bicycle share program with your friends and go for a scenic ride shaded by Cypress trees. You literally can do whatever appeals to you along the way- shop, dine or tour museums. The Riverwalk grants access to King William Historic District and, 300-year-old Spanish missions as well. It’s a great city to wander and let your mood be your guide. A trip to San Antonio wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Alamo, located nearby.
7. New York, NY
In many ways, New York is perhaps the ultimate destination for a girl’s getaway; it’s hard to beat the shopping, the shows and the dining. While a little priciest, you’re going to want to stay right in Manhattan, so that you can really experience the energy of the city. Hit all of the tourists spots- like the Empire State Building and Central Park. Get your shopaholic fix on Fifth Ave and visit Saks and Bergdorf Goodman. Don’t forget FAO Schwartz, which is appealing for kids of all ages. In homage to the role of friendship with your ladies, take a Sex and the City tour- and experience memorable moments from the series. Take in a Broadway show. Don your dancing shoes and tour the clubs in the city that never sleeps.
Parenthood is awesome and rewarding in the way that no other experience is. On a more pragmatic note, it’s also exhausting (especially in those early days, filled with sleepless nights). You’re also transitioning from a party of two to a party of three. All of these are great reasons to take advantage of this special (and time-limited) window before you become parents with a babymoon vacation. Here are some spots and thoughts to help you plan:
7. Practical Stuff
Before you go anywhere, double check on travel policies for pregnant women. Most airlines will allow women to fly up to 32-36 weeks, but there may be conditions surrounding that (i.e. pregnancy and other health complications). Cruise ships also place some restrictions around travel for pregnant women too. It’s also worth checking out the fine print on your travel and/or health insurance and any limitations on coverage depending on what stage your pregnancy is at.
6. Couples Resort -Whitney, ON
On the shores of super clean, super clear Galeairy Lake, the posh Couples Resort is an excellent spot to spend some quality time with your significant other (it’s in the name!). This four-season resort has activities aplenty, including swimming, boating, biking and hiking in nearby Algonquin Park in the summer and skating and cross-country skiing in the winter. The themed rooms at this hotel are huge, and many of them feature jacuzzis, stone fireplaces and private terraces overlooking the lake. Meals are included at their five-star restaurant, where guests can expect gourmet dining and excellent service. Treat yourself to a prenatal massage at the full-service spa on site.
5. Rocky Mountaineer Train, Western Canada
If sitting still (which will be a rare experience once baby arrives) and having breathtaking scenery of the Canadian Rockies unfold before you sounds like a great way to connect with your partner, then consider a trip on the Rocky Mountaineer train, that winds its way through the Canadian Rockies, making stops (some overnight) in notable Canadian destinations. Journeys are of differing lengths and cover different terrain, but they all offer gourmet dining and glass top observatories to really absorb the mountain views in all of their natural glory.
4. Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa, Maui
Is there anything more relaxing then the gentle lilt of a ukulele floating on the breeze through the palm trees, while you gaze out at the ocean? This sets the scene for the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa, located in Lahaina. The views are spectacular. Moms-to-be will appreciate the complimentary yoga classes to help stretch out that aching lower back. In addition to the usual beach vacation fare, guests can take snorkeling lessons, hula lessons and lei making- all included with the resort fee. The hotel also runs a shuttle into nearby Kaanapali Village, where boutique shopping and restaurants await.
3. Parrot Cay, Turks and Caicos
This luxury resort on a 1,000 acres with a mile-long white sand beach, provides a perfect, secluded getaway for couples seeking rest and relaxation before they embark on their journey into parenthood. This hotel offers packages, including a romantic package that features couples spa treatments and candlelit dinners in the privacy of the guest’s cottage.
2. Vdara Hotel and Spa, Las Vegas
While Las Vegas has a number of family-friendly attractions, it’s decidedly adult overtones provide the perfect backdrop for that last hurrah before baby comes. Located just off the strip, the Vdara Hotel and Spa has a number of features that will catch the eye of the expectant mother, including luxurious suites in which to unwind. Their on site spa, ESPA, has a smoothie bar (gotta get those vitamins!) and special prenatal massage that includes a back exfoliation, and a tailored back and scalp massage. Their lounge offers a long list of interesting ‘mocktails’ to complete the experience.
1. Bayfront Westcott House Bed and Breakfast -St. Augustine, FL
Combine the favorable climate of Florida with the historic ambiance of St. Augustine and you have the perfect setting for a romantic, meaningful getaway. The Bayfront Westcott House Bed and Breakfast specializes in packages- and has a Babymoon package with a long list of inclusions: a stocked mini-fridge for late night (or anytime really) ice cream cravings, in-room prenatal massage, breakfast in bed with non-alcoholic mimosas and a mini-beer basket for the dad-to-be.
Ever since Bugsy Siegel opened the Flamingo Hotel and Casino in 1947, Las Vegas has attracted people from all over for the gambling, nightlife and entertainment. What once was a mob dominated destination with little more than casinos filled with smoke, dice and cards has evolved into what is billed as the “Entertainment Capitol of the World”. Today Las Vegas is one of the best bachelor party destinations but is also popular for weddings, family vacations and conferences. With over 1700 licensed places to gamble in Las Vegas, you’ll have no problem finding a place for betting. Las Vegas offers more than gambling though. With all the conferences and families making Vegas their destination of choice, there’s a lot of activities that have been built to attract the non-gambler or just those wanting to take a break from the tables and slots. The following is our list of things to do and see in Las Vegas besides just the Casinos.
15. Area 51 Tour
Did you ever wonder if the little green men really exist? Take a tour to the most secretive Military base in world. Adventure Photo Tours of Las Vegas will take you on a 10 hour road trip so you can decide for yourself. The tour starts at the Airport where you will see “Janet Airlines”, the airlines that don’t exist, used to transport workers to Area 51. You will travel through the desert and make a stop at the famous A’ Le’ Inn for lunch, Then, you’ll journey to the perimeter of Area 51 where men in black watch your every move. Who knows, you might even spot a UFO.
14. Colorado River Rafting
Expensive but still probably cheaper than spending a day at the blackjack table, Look Tours will take you white water rafting on the Colorado River. At close to $600 this is an all day trip starting with a 4 am hotel pick-up. Your trip includes a 40 mile white water rafting trip through the Grand Canyon with an experienced tour guide. The water part of the trip lasts about 5.5 hours and culminates with a six minute helicopter flight to the top of the rim. You will experience class three to class six rapids and arrive back at your hotel around 8 pm.
13. Drive a Race Car
There are several venues that put you in the driver seat but the Richard Petty Driving Experience gives you the best variety. You can choose anything from ride along experiences to getting behind the wheel. With different programs, you can take a NASCAR or IndyCar through a three lap race to a four hour, 50 lap run complete with an in car video you can keep. Conducted at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, there is no better way to have your moment in the spotlight behind a race car.
12. Las Vegas Mob Museum
Located in a former Federal building, the Las Vegas Mob Museum bills itself as “The National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement”. The Museum’s Board of Directors include the former FBI Special Agent in charge of Las Vegas and a former Las Vegas Mayor who represented mobsters Meyer Lansky, Frank “Lefty” Rosenthal and Anthony Spilotro. The Museum has high tech theater presentations that show both sides of the conflict between the mobsters and law enforcement. From artifacts reflecting the notorious history of the mob such as the barber chair where Albert Anastasia was murdered to a look at how Las Vegas attracted the attention of the mob, the museum gives you a look at the real truth about what happened.
11. Shoot a Machine Gun
After checking out the Mob Museum you might be daydreaming of what is what like in the era of gangsters and mobsters. What better way to get this experience than to grab a Thompson Submachine gun and blast away! Machine Guns Vegas offers everything from Thompson Machine Guns, Military .30 caliber machine guns and much more. You can even grab hold of a six barreled mini-gun. A Gatling style gun with rotating barrels, the mini gun can fire anywhere from 2,000 to 6,000 rounds per minute. Other weapons from pistols, shotguns and a variety of automatic weapons are available for you to choose from.
10. Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition
When the Titanic sunk in 1912 it made headlines around the world. We are still fascinated today with the Titanic and its story. Located at the Luxor Hotel and casino the Titanic exhibition has been viewed by over 25 million people. Included in the 25,000 sq. ft. exhibition are artifacts recovered from the wreckage. A full scale replication of the grand staircase and a recreation of the promenade deck complete with frigid temperatures piped in, give you a glimpse of what it was like on the fateful ship.
Besides gambling, Las Vegas is known as a world class shopping destination. Everything from bargains to ultra-expensive items can be found. One of the best places to shop or just walk around and look is the Grand Canal Shoppes at the Venetian Hotel and Casino. This upscale shopping mall located inside the hotel comes complete with an indoor canal and gondola rides. Here you can shop at over 160 stores for anything from high end jewelry and fashion to toys. When your feet get tired of all the walking you can take a relaxing gondola ride.
8. Fremont Street
Located away from the strip in downtown Las Vegas Fremont Street is a pedestrian mall spanning five blocks. Cordoned off for safety you can walk down the street and experience the light show under the barrel vault canopy. While the lights on the strip never go off at night, the laser light show starts with all the lights on the buildings turned off so you can witness the spectacular light show. Concerts are held on three separate stages on the mall. The Slotzilla and Zoomline zip lines are popular attractions. The Zoomline will take you from 110 stories up and whisk you 1,750 feet down the street over the crowds landing at the Golden Gate Casino. Slotzilla is a 12 story zip line that will take you half way down Fremont Street under the canopy past the casinos and overhead the pedestrians walking below.
7. Hoover Dam Tour
Taking five years to build, the Hoover Dam opened in 1936 during the Depression era. Involving thousands of workers and costing the lives of over 100, the Dam is considered a modern marvel of construction. Visitors can take a guided one hour tour of the Dam including the passageways of the Dam itself and also see the power plant and a stop in the visitor center. The tours begin at 9:30 am and runs every 30 minutes throughout the day until 3:30 pm. Several tour agencies run tours or you can buy tickets at the Dam.
6. Helicopter Tour
Many companies offer helicopter tours of Las Vegas and the surrounding areas. From tours to see the Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam and the Vegas Strip at night you can get an unprecedented aerial tour of the various sights around Vegas without having to walk or fight the traffic. The Grand Canyon tours take you over Lake Mead, the Hoover Dam and The Grand Canyon for the views of a lifetime. Arrangements can be made to pick you up at your Hotel and return you after the flights.
5. Grand Canyon and Sky Walk
Take a guidedtour of the Grand Canyon in a comfortable tour bus. Witness the beauty of the Grand Canyon where artifacts dating back 12,000 years have been found. Historic old structures, ancient dwellings and petroglyphs are located in the park. You can experience a mule ride in the canyon lasting anywhere from four hours to full blown overnight trips. If you want to get a truly unique view of the canyon visit the Skywalk where you step out onto a glass walkway 4,000 feet above the canyon floor. The Skywalk is located at Grand Canyon West and managed by the Hualapai Tribe on tribal lands.
4. The Stratosphere Tower
Visit the Stratosphere Tower. Labeled as the tallest freestanding observation tower in the United States, you can check out the views from the observation deck or the more adventurous can partake in more extreme activities. The Insanity Ride straps you into the seat of a mechanical arm that will swing you 64 feet out over the edge, 900 feet above the crowds. The X-Scream is a roller coaster type ride that propels you head first 27 feet out over the edge of the tower. For the brave souls in your party take a leap of faith on the Sky Jump, a controlled free fall from the 108th floor.
3. National Atomic Testing Museum
In the 1950’s atomic bomb testing was a tourist draw in Las Vegas. People would plan parties around the testing times and Casinos would serve up atomic cocktails. The tests could be easily viewed in Las Vegas. Learn all about the history of the Atomic Bomb and check out over 12,000 artifacts from the era. Experience a simulated atmospheric bomb blast in the GZ Theater and learn about the testing at the Nevada Test Site. Rare videos, photographs and artifacts can be viewed along with one of a kind collections from various scientists.
A trip to Las Vegas wouldn’t be complete without seeing at least one show. From concerts to Vegas shows you can take your pick. Singers, bands, magicians, impersonators, comedians and dinner shows are all available. You can get tickets to see people like Celine Dion, Air Supply, Vince Gill and more. World class events such as boxing and MMA routinely held. Check out the famous Vegas show girls or check out one of the free night shows like the fountains at the Bellagio or check out the Volcano in front of the Mirage Hotel and Casino that “erupts” every 30 minutes from 5 pm to 11 pm nightly. The Mirage also has a 20,000 gallon saltwater tank teeming with fish situated behind the front check in desk.
Las Vegas is famous for dining experiences. From $10 dinner buffets to upscale restaurants, it is easy to find a place to suit every budget. You can find several celebrity chef run restaurants in Las Vegas. Chef Wolfgang Puck has six restaurants spread across the city in various Hotels and resorts. Chef Gordon Ramsay has a steakhouse, pub and grill and a casual burger restaurant. Other famous Chefs with Las Vegas eateries, in some multiple restaurants, include Joël Robuchon,Chef Emeril Lagasse, Chef Mario Batali, Chef Bobby Flay, Chef Tom Colicchio and Chef Guy Fieri. With over 30 celebrity chefs and counting more are opening new restaurants all the time. Next time you visit “Sin City” reserve a table in advance at your favorite chef’s restaurant.