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  • Dacoda Maddalone

Wanderlust & US Travel

Those that know me well know that I am an A-class travel-junkie. I can hardly sit still and am always looking ahead to an upcoming trip or adventure. I have a savings account specifically for airfare (or to fill my gas tank) because who KNOWS when I’ll need to book my next trip…

Yes, that’s right. I suffer from a bit of “wanderlust,” if you know what I mean - the kind that has me scrolling through Pinterest and Instagram travel accounts on the daily.

Right now, with the global pandemic that we are all facing, I’ve had to pull the reins back on my travel quite a bit, and understandably so. I’ve recently relocated back to the great U. S. of A. from Australia for the next few months and I feel inspired...

When was the last time I viewed my own home country as a place to discover and explore?

While international travel may be tricky for a bit longer, states across the country have begun to open up their doors again, drawing me in as if to say, “welcome, adventurer!”

I have decided to create a list of my top 5 must-explore destinations in the US along with what I would like to experience in each place. I've also included a link for each location to give you more experience ideas! Even if all of these places are not open quite yet, I expect they will be in the near future. Maybe you’ll be inspired to travel and discover our beautiful country too...and we can meet each other on the road ;)

1. Yosemite National Park, California

The beautiful, infamous, and vast Yosemite National Park - I love a camp, a hike and a good view. A visit to Yosemite National Park offers me plenty of opportunities to experience all of that. Yosemite is known for its waterfalls, towering granite monoliths, deep valleys and ancient giant sequoias. You don’t need to be a professional rock climber to enjoy the fullness of Yosemite (though that would be awesome). It’s array of hiking trails and 13 country-front campgrounds give every kind of traveler the opportunity to have a great time within its limits!

For More on Yosemite, check out this article.

2. New Orleans, Louisiana

The historical, deep south, New Orleans is said to be one of the best cities to visit for loads of fun, events and rich culture. Located right on the Mississippi River, a venture to New Orleans’ French Quarter and cobblestone streets are sure to transport us right back to the year 1718 when it was established. Experience the old city by foot with a guided tour or by boat with a harbor cruise. A stroll through the Old Quarter for history lessons by day and a visit to Preservation Hall at night for a bit of good grub and local jazz artists...what could be better?!

For More on New Orleans, check out this article.

3. Napa Valley, California

Mmm...I bet we’ve all dreamt up luxurious vacations to Napa Valley before. Napa Valley is the main wine growing region of the US and one of the major wine regions of the world! Wine tours, hot springs; the Napa Wine Train to take us through the majestic vineyards all sounds A-MAZING. How does a hot air balloon ride at sunrise sound? Or ending your day with dinner at a Michelin Star restaurant? Yes, please! Say no more. When can I go again??

For More on Napa Valley, check out this page.

4. Niagara Falls, New York

I was born and raised in the Capital Region of New York and I never made it to Niagara Falls. Can you believe it? I guess the hidden mysteries of my home state were never desirable to me until I couldn’t access them as easily anymore! Did you know that there are actually 3 falls that make up Niagara? Surrounding the falls are beautiful restaurants, wineries, tour companies ready to take you on a helicopter ride above the falls and hiking trails that descend 175 feet into the gorge! Sounds like a worthy adventure to me! See you soon, Niagara.

For More on Niagara Falls, check out this page.

5. Outerbanks, North Carolina

I am an ocean lover and could spend all of my days at the beach, sunrise to sunset. (Anyone with me?!) Outerbanks Beach in North Carolina is ranked as one of the top 5 beaches in the USA according to a US News Travel report. The beach spans more than 100 miles with areas good for fishing, sun-bathing and surfing! What more could you need? There are said to be over 3,000 shipwrecks that can be explored under the surface of the deep by scuba diving and snorkeling as well. Whether you prefer to be a beach bum or water sport adventurer, OBX is definitely for you...AND for me!!

For More on Outerbanks, check out this article.

Now I’m sitting on my front porch, typing this to you and WISHING I were out there experiencing it all! I’m excited to get started on these bucket list adventures.

What about you?? What beautiful wonders of our nation are YOU just dying to experience and explore?

#travel #traveljunkie #travelmore #wanderlust #bucketlist #UStravel #Yosemite #NewOrleans #NapaValley #NiagaraFalls #Outerbanks

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