Any trip to the USA should fill you with excitement and even a little awe. It’s a huge, sprawling country with much to see and do. The problem is picking the best state to visit so you get the most out of your vacation.
Is California better than New York? What does Alaska offer that you can’t get in New Jersey? Is Nevada just for gamblers or can you take in a show or two? These are just a few of the questions you might want answers to before you plan your trip.
The team at PlayNJ have done some research to help and now have an interactive map of the US which makes that decision making process a whole lot easier. They’ve taken a range of parameters including tourism income, gambling and theatre, things to do, and general happiness level to rank each of 50 states.
The general ranking gives a listing of overall performance and it’s no surprise that states such as California, Texas, Florida and New York figure at the top. Curiously, the team have also included a happiness ranking which shows a slightly different story. While California comes first in general classification, it only manages 13 for happiness. Hawaii only hits 20 on the general ranking but comes out on top for fun.
While you may have to take some of the listings with a pinch of salt, the interactive map does give you a good idea where the strong point of each state lies.
California has the highest tourist income at $126.3 billion, mainly because it’s one of the most popular holiday destinations on the planet. Not only is it home to Hollywood and the iconic city of San Francisco, it’s also got Disneyland and the Yosemite National Park. Wyoming has a much lower income but does have some noteworthy places to visit such as The Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains.
If gambling is your big thing and you want to combine it with a show or two, then the obvious choice is Nevada. Las Vegas is the gambling capital of the western world and is full of casinos. There are also plenty of shows to take in and the service, so visitors say, is second to none. There are even a couple of zoos and a few theme parks to give you something different to do. For overall happiness ranking though it rates well down at 34.
For those looking for variety in their trip, it’s best to look at the ‘Things to Do’ map. Here Florida is top of the list with 1,699 separate activities and Alaska is not far behind on 1,644. These are two totally different locations, so it’s wise to take a deeper look at what’s on offer. Florida is famous for sun, sea and sangria as well as its numerous theme parks. Alaska is more for your outdoor types with breath-taking locations like Winner Creak, Kincaid Park and Resurrection Bay.
For those who want to take in some sport, Texas and California top the list for stadiums. You can go see the Dallas Cowboys play in Arlington or visit the world famous Rose Bowl in California. If you don’t like sport and won’t be visiting a stadium anytime soon, Vermont is the place to go, they don’t have any. Of course, it will all depend on who your favourite team is and the sport you want to watch.
Next time you’re planning a trip somewhere in the USA, take a look at the PlayNJ interactive map to help you begin planning the best locations to visit. It’s a great way to start exploring what this vast, sprawling country has to offer for the humble tourist.