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America the Beautiful: domestic travel at its finest

When people think of travel, they often imagine exotic locations and sights far from home—the Parthenon in Athens, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, or the Savanna of Africa. Some ambitious travelers spend a lot of time and money seeing the world, forgetting that some of the most magnificent treasures in the world are right here in the U.S.

How many Americans have seen the depths of the Grand Canyon, the enormity of Mount Rushmore, or the grandeur of Half Dome in Yosemite? The funny thing is— when you go to these places, you see visitors from around the globe—they are out seeing the world... and they came to America! Why not join them in exploring this country—it has so much to offer!

Some of America's picturesque and historical landscapes can be found within her 58 national parks. Visitors come from across the globe to see the breathtaking beauty that can be found in America's wilderness. Many travelers have seen our country's beauty in movies, or read about it in magazines, and now they want to see it for themselves.

From Denali to the Everglades, from Sequoia to the Shenandoah, the variety of natural beauty in our country is staggering, we just forget about it because it's home.

The easiest way to see our national parks is during a well-planned group tour (see a list of Orbridge-led programs below). These programs deliver you into the heart of the important sights, providing an educational focus on each location's history and culture therein. Escorted coach tours cover a lot of ground, allowing travelers to see much more than they could on their own, and someone else does all the planning, preparation, and driving—leaving you with only time and excitement to enjoy the experience.

If you wish for a more cosmopolitan experience—all major American cities have a vibrant culture and a chamber of commerce just waiting to be discovered.

Whatever your passion, be it architecture, art, music, food, history or something completely different—local organizations in every major city, both public and private—have created enticing activities so visitors can see, and experience, all that their area has to offer—from festivals to sporting events and even holiday spectacles. Details on anything you can imagine are probably listed online at one of the 3,000 chambers of commerce websites here in the U.S. And remember, not all trips to explore America need to be long and involved, many can be weekend getaways that are close to home. Sometimes the best discoveries are those places that can be visited during the week, off-season or when you have a few hours. Take advantage of periods when regular visitors are not around, you'll have the place to yourself, and the guides/staff will be happy to help you see all that there is to see—minus the crowds.

There are many ways to explore our country. From cars to coaches, planes to trains, and even much slower ways like horse and our own two feet, there is much to see and many ways to do it. The flights are shorter, you speak the language and there are often great deals to be had. And with history, culture and friendly people in every corner of our great country, you will never run out of things to do.

Orbridge National Parks programs:
The Great Parks of California
National Parks & Lodges of the Old West
Southwest National Parks
The Wolves of Yellowstone

Other websites that provide more travel ideas:
www.visittheusa.com
www.exploretheusa.com
www.touropia.com/explore/usa