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Top landmarks to visit in the United States

Updated: Jan 21, 2024  | Tags: ESTA for Tourism, ESTA for Business

The United States has many renowned landmarks that offer visitors insight into the history and culture of the country. Here are some of the landmarks travelers should consider when visiting the United States. As always, international travelers are advised to regularly check travel restrictions on their local U.S. embassy website for the latest information.

The White House, Washington DC

The White House in Washington, D.C. is the official residence of the President of the United States. It was built in 1792. The White House is perhaps the most famous landmark in the United States, and it is certainly one of the most visited places in Washington D.C. It has been home to every U.S. president since John Adams in 1800 and is now open to public tours.

United States Capitol, Washington DC

Just a few blocks from the White House is another iconic structure, the United States Capitol building. The United States Capitol is also located in Washington, D.C. and is the meeting place of the U.S. Congress. It was designed by architect William Thornton and construction began in 1793. This grandiose neo-classical building is home to both the Senate and the House of Representatives and also welcomes visitors for guided tours.

Lincoln Memorial, Washington DC

Another must-see attraction in Washington D.C. is the Lincoln Memorial. This colossal marble monument pays tribute to Abraham Lincoln, one of America’s most beloved presidents, and features an impressive statue of Lincoln himself. Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president of the United States. The memorial was dedicated in 1922 and features a statue of Lincoln inside. 

Statue of Liberty, New York NY

If you’re looking for something more patriotic to see, then head down to New York City where you’ll find the Statue of Liberty. This colossal statue was a gift from France and has been welcoming visitors to New York Harbor since 1886. The Statue of Liberty is located in New York City and is one of the most famous landmarks in the United States.

One World Trade Center, New York NY

Just a few blocks from Lady Liberty is One World Trade Center, which stands as a symbol of hope and resilience following the tragic events of 9/11. It’s worth a visit for both its historical importance and its stunning views of Manhattan. One World Trade Center is located in New York City and is the tallest building in the United States. It was completed in 2013 and has become an important symbol for American resilience after 9/11.

Grand Canyon National Park, AZ

Of course, no trip to America would be complete without a visit to one (or more) of its amazing national parks. The Grand Canyon National Park is an absolute must-see, with its breath-taking vistas and plethora of outdoor activities on offer. The Grand Canyon National Park is located in Arizona and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States. The park spans over 1 million acres and offers some of the most amazing views in the world.

Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Keystone, SD

Mount Rushmore National Memorial is located near Keystone, South Dakota and features 60-foot tall sculptures of 4 American presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln. The memorial was dedicated in 1941 and attracts millions of visitors each year.

Yellowstone National Park, ID, WY and MT

Yellowstone National Park is located in Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana and is one of America's oldest national parks. The park covers over 3,500 square miles and contains a variety of different landscapes including forests, canyons, lakes, and geysers. The park covers features a variety of wildlife, including grizzly bears, bison, elk, wolves, and moose.

Yosemite National Park, CA

Yosemite National Park is located in California and is known for its dramatic cliffs, waterfalls, and sequoia trees. The park was established in 1890 and attracts millions of visitors every year. The park is a three-hour drive from San Francisco, so if you're traveling to the west coast you can consider making at stop at Yosemite.

What do I need to enter the United States?

There are many different types of travel authorizations that are needed in order to enter the United States for tourism purposes. The most common type of authorization is a visa, which is issued by a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. A visa allows a foreign national to travel to the United States and request permission to stay for a specific amount of time.

Other types of travel authorizations that may be needed include a green card, which is proof of lawful permanent residence in the United States, and an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), which is a required travel authorization for nationals of 41 countries who are seeking to enter the United States under the Visa Waiver Program.

Nationals of countries that are not eligible for the Visa Waiver Program must obtain a visa in order to travel to the United States. A visa allows a foreign national to apply for entry to the United States at a port of entry, such as an airport or land border crossing.

The procedures and requirements for obtaining a visa vary depending on the country of origin, so it is important to check with the U.S. embassy or consulate in your country to find out what you need to do in order to get a visa. Generally, you will need to complete an application form, provide supporting documentation, and pay a fee.


America in known for many of its famous attractions and the ones described in this article are just a few. If you are not a Canadian or U.S. citizen, you will need an ESTA or visa to enter the United States. Getting your travel authorization sorted before you travel minimizes your chances of missing out on a trip to the U.S. due to denied ESTA or visa.