Top 15 Must-See Hidden Destinations In America

All over the world, you can find beautiful places. They exist as special reminders that even in the midst of all the chaos and turmoil, beauty can be found if you simply look for it. Such places you can spot around the world, but truly, many of the most beautiful sights can be found in the United States. Gorgeous locations are scattered all over the country, and compared to others, these are relatively unknown.

But what makes a beautiful place seem so beautiful? Is it the captivating landscapes filled with rolling hills? Perhaps the vacant caverns deep beneath the Earth that seem so lonely, yet filled with mystery? It's hard to tell. Whatever it is that draws us to these wondrous places, it continues to captivate us and provide us with an amazing sense of awe. These places remind us that travel and nature are two very important things that we often forget about during the bustle of our everyday lives. And whether you're an experienced traveler, or a new beginner just starting on a road trip, it's important to see the world and truly take in what beauty this planet has to offer. Listed here are fifteen truly beautiful places across the United States which are often overlooked.

15 The Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Few places hold the capability to truly captivate and form a lasting impression. If you're planning on taking a trip to the Yellowstone National Park, don't forget to stop by the Grand Prismatic Spring. This is a very large hot spring, which is 300 feet in diameter, and believed to be almost 200 feet deep. It is considered to be the largest hot spring in the United States as well as one of the three largest in the world. It's constantly giving off around 560 gallons of water about every minute and its colors are something you can't miss. Many visitors call it one of the most beautiful places they ever laid their eyes on. With its beautiful blue center and the dark and light orange tints around its side, it is truly a site to behold. Even with the thousands of visitors that Yellowstone receives each year, the Grand Prismatic Spring doesn't take in the attention it truly deserves, making it a wonderful gem.

14 Natchez, Mississippi

Remaining a strike of deep rooted stories from the past, along with a modern twist of Antebellum homes and buildings, there's one place in the South that you can count on for its vibrant past. If you're looking for your fill of southern history, Nachez, Mississippi is definitely the place to go. There exists a great diversity within the city, as well as its history. You can find many different examples of African American slavery, the story of various pioneers and frontiersmen who played with their luck while gambling, and even a Native American historic village. The preservation is a necessary attribute, as it was almost lost, due to settlers coming in from the east.  A perfect travel destination, especially for those who love deep rooted history, Natchez is a place that doesn't receive the attention it so greatly needs.

13 Pismo Beach, California

Beaches are some of the most popular places for people to visit. They're scattered all across the globe, with their beauty and popularity completely undying. Often considered one of the most beautiful beaches, Pismo Beach is a very clean and friendly place to explore. People of all types can come here to enjoy one of the greatest vacation experiences on Earth. Its beauty and daily activities, provide a great environment for anyone to enjoy. The beaches, which are monitored daily to keep the trash off the shores, hold many different pools, coves, and even caves that visitors have the opportunity to explore. Then, during sunrise or sunset, people can take a trip to the Pismo Pier, a 12,200 foot structure that offers the perfect view. The beaches go on for miles and whether you are visiting for the wine in the area, which is considered a popular pursuit, or just the beauty of the ocean waves, it's a place anyone is more than welcome to enjoy.

12 Leavenworth, Washington

If you enjoy German-American culture, there's a place in the Northwest that fits the bill. Leavenworth, Washington, is a mountainous town filled with many Bavarian twists. This beautiful town is naturally tucked away at the lower parts of the Washington Cascades. Alpine inspired structures scatter the streets, along with beer halls, and folk culture that come from the Bavarian homeland. This is a town that's considered a precious treasure, mainly for its ability to transform itself into something different with each season. Summer brings in those who seek the outdoor adventures, such as biking, hiking, golf, and many other outdoor activities they have to offer. When Autumn arrives, the town transforms into a Bavarian paradise with various beer and harvest celebrations. During the Winter months, the town rings in the Christmas spirit, with warm fireplaces in stores, and beautiful light displays all throughout the town. All together, it is a town worth visiting for everyone and has been a must-see for many years.

11 Arcata, California

In Humboldt County, you will find a neatly tucked away town full of redwood trees. These trees are very well preserved and full of life, thanks to the residents of the town who have formed a lasting alliance with the nature that surrounds them. In return, the redwood trees provide the residents with shelter, as well as a means of enjoyment such as zip lining and various sight seeing. The town also has locally grown foods which are kept fresh everyday. One of the best ways to see the town is by attending one of the many tours they commit to everyday. You have the choice of viewing the trees from the ground, or, if you're in the mood for something more adventurous, you can take three zip lines, which will take you soaring over the trees, 100 feet above the ground. It's a place that still holds close to nature, all while providing good, clean entertainment for visitors and locals alike.

10 Fort Bragg, California

Truly a beautiful and compelling seaside getaway, Fort Bragg is one of the most beautiful places on the planet. It does have quite the history, being known as a company town at one point, but as time moved on, so did the town, as it was transformed into the perfect vacation getaway. Considered to be "off the beaten path", Fort Bragg offers many great activities. One of its best attributes is the glass beach. Many years before, tons of glass from various items were tossed into its waters, only to be washed up on shore later, sanded and polished, forming what is now known as the glass beach. You can also find a rather large botanical garden if gardening and the botanical arts are among your hobbies, as well as plenty of local places offering locally grown food, and amazing, breath taking coastal views that seem to go on forever.

9 Valley of Fire State Park, Nevada

If you're looking for a different kind of hiking experience, then look no further than the Valley of Fire State Park, located in Nevada, just about an hour away from Las Vegas. This vibrantly red and scorched looking park is full of trails across its stretch of 42,000 acres. The hikes can be very strenuous, attracting many different adventurers and sight seers. For history lovers, the park offers 150 million year old sandstone formations as well as petroglyphs, ancient images that have been carved into rock by early man. The park is also known for its location being used in the 90's movie Total Recall. And while the park has been used for popular cinematic experiences, amateur filmmakers often make their way into the park to film their own movies. Whatever the motivation for visiting the park, it's well worth the trip.

8 Ludington State Park, Michigan

Even though it has only been established for a little over 76 years, the Ludington State Park is one of the most intriguing and paradise-like parks that there is. Not many places hold the wonder of the beach as well as the woods, but Ludington holds the magic of both. Nearly 5,300 acres stretch across this part of Michigan, offering visitors many different options to enjoy themselves. Ludington is noted for its more than 20 miles of hiking trails that take you throughout the park, as well as miles of beaches one can walk. If you are looking for a more relaxed form of adventure, take your inner tube down the Big Sable River. Follow the stretch of forest until you reach the beautiful beaches and find yourself at a lighthouse, which people are more than welcome to climb. This park offers a great balance of strenuous hikes, as well as more soothing walks that one could take through the woods or on the beach.

7 Cache River Park, Illinois

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There are plenty of state parks in Illinois, but none of them truly catch the eye, like Cache River Park. The area spreads out over a span of 14,960 acres and holds over 100 animal species which are known to be endangered and threatened in Illinois. But the most defining feature of this beautiful and mysterious looking area, is the massive cyprus trees which are spread throughout the area. They give the park a creepy yet beautiful feel, with some of the trees being more than 1,000 years old. The trees are very large, some of them measuring 40 feet in circumference, making the park stand out against the others. The park offers many different activities, the most popular being boat tours and being able to take a canoe out into the waters to see the trees.

6 Weaverville, California

If you are a fan of Gold Rush inspired streets, old saloons, and various Western tendencies, then Weaverville in the place to be. But this area isn't just known for its Western culture. There exists other attributes to the town; a Chinese temple, which has been in use for over 138 years. At the time of the Gold Rush, many of the Chinese immigrants in the area, specifically San Francisco, were facing many bouts of discrimination from everyone, until they found their way to Weaverville. The people of the town welcomed the immigrants, even offering them jobs and places to live, if they would work. The town is truly a staple of diversity, all while maintaining its old Western tendencies that have become so popular in our culture. And with the great reviews from travelers all around the world, it's no wonder this town is such a gem. Weaverville is definitely a place that shouldn't be missed on the travel list.

5 Blackwater Falls State Park, West Virginia

Black water isn't something that many would find appealing naturally, but Blackwater Falls State Park offers great beauty that's completely natural and amazing. The park actually got its name from the effect the trees can have on the water. Many of the Hemlock and Red Spruce needles often turn the water a murky brown color, which gave way to its famous name, even though the water isn't actually black. The park is actually considered one of the most beautiful and photographed parks in the state and offers many different hiking trails and gorgeous waterfalls. In the Autumn months, the trees turn intense, vibrant colors, giving photographers the opportunity to catch some amazing pictures, while in the Winter, enormous icicles are formed. It's a well rounded park, perfect for those who dabble in photography and want to capture the perfect shot. Visitors often rave about its beauty, making it one of the best hidden gems in the United States.

4 Ohiopyle State Park, Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania isn't what comes to mind when you think of a park that has all the fittings and great places, that make a park so wonderful. However, Ohiopyle State Park, located in the southwestern part of Pennsylvania, stretches out over a span of 20,000 acres. This massive park offers many different options regarding outdoor activities. If waterfalls are a part of your must-see when going to parks, then Ohiopyle is the place to be. It has four waterfalls, all equally amazing and well worth the hikes. In regards to hikers, there exists 79 miles worth of hiking trails, offering a great variety of different trail styles. And unlike other parks, Ohipyle offers two natural water slides that visitors can enjoy. However, the staple of the park has to be the Youghiogheny River Gorge, sometimes known to visitors as The Yough. For those who love to raft and kayak, this river offers many different classes of rushing water to enjoy.

3 Estes Park, Colorado

Estes Park is the best place to visit before you take a trip into the Rocky Mountains. Often considered the base camp of the Rocky Mountains, Estes Park is most famous for being the location where The Shining and Dumb and Dumber were filmed, at The Stanley Hotel. But that isn't all that the town has to offer. Estes Park is filled with Victorian buildings, giving off the feel of a town, tucked away from the rest of society, along with a close knit community. The area is also perfect for families as well as romantic getaways. It has everything from wildlife viewing to horseback riding, as well as quite a few restaurants. There are some where you can grab a quick bite, while others are set up for fine dining and a romantic evening. The area has been described by many visitors as being majestic and glorious and a must-see spot if you are going to be in the area.

2 Door County, Wisconsin

For those who are looking for an adventurous environment but want to keep things mild, Door County, Wisconsin is the place to go. With 300 miles of shoreline to walk upon, it's no wonder that this is one of the most beautiful and scenic places to visit. Lighthouses with access to climb are scattered throughout the area. Local art is a defining feature, and there is lots of it. It's perfect for art lovers of all kinds. While you're in the area, it's a good idea to visit the Peninsula State Park. Currently, the park is over 100 years old and offers a great range of activities anyone can choose from. There are 3,776 acres all together, making nature viewers right at home with many different places to explore. The park also offers four different campgrounds, a beautiful golf course, and bike trails that cyclists would be fond of.

1 Salt Caves, Asheville, North Carolina

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"Experience the miracle of salt therapy..." That is what you find on the website for Asheville's therapeutic salt caves. These caves offer a form of healing known as speleotherapy, which is a type of therapy that uses respiratory techniques of inhaling certain minerals in order to heal the body. The caves are located in downtown Asheville, and not many people know about them. If you're looking for a healing environment or some place just to re-attune yourself to your inner voice, the salt caves is the place to go. This form of salt therapy has been around for centuries, by helping people treat ailments in a variety of ways. A lot of people have problems with arthritis, a very painful ailment, and salt therapy has been known to help with the pain in certain cases.

Sources: HuffingtonPost, LifeHack, Hopper, DNR, TripAdvisor

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