Top 25 Famous Landmarks In The USA That You Should Visit Today

The United States of America is home to some of the most iconic landmarks in the world. Even though the USA is a young country compared to many others, it has a rich history which has frequently been commemorated through its landmarks.

Each of these landmarks sees tourists traveling from all across the globe to visit, whether they are natural or manmade.

Top Landmarks In The USA That You Should Visit Today

By standing before these impressive landmarks, we are able to better appreciate the history of the US, and understand how people of the past carved the fate of the nation into what it is today.

So let’s say you’re traveling in the USA and are trying to narrow down the most important landmarks to visit.

The good news is that you have a lot to choose from, the bad news is that it can feel overwhelming to try and visit them all. If you’re wondering what the most important ones are for you to visit, don’t panic! We’re here to help you with that.

In this article, we’re going to be taking you through a list of the top 25 landmarks in the USA that you can visit today.

We’ve made sure to include a mixture of natural and manmade landmarks, as well as some important information about each one.

We’ve also included a short Frequently Asked Questions section to help answer any other questions you may have.

What Makes A Famous Landmark?

Before we get into our list, let’s take a moment to consider what makes a landmark famous and iconic. In our modern use of the term, a famous landmark is basically anything that humans recognize as a place of note—especially one that is given a name.

Landmarks will typically have one of two important features; either natural or historical significance. Some landmarks are also pieces of artwork, which have become recognized over the course of time and beloved.

The United States of America has an impressive amount of landmarks for a country as young as it is. This could be because of the impressive growth of the country over the course of its 246 year history.

More than this, the idea of America has been one very tied to the idea of patriotism and pride; so many human-made landmarks have been created by those dedicated to the idea of the USA as a country.

Our list below will focus on two main categories of famous landmarks—human-made and natural.

Human-Made Landmarks

A human-made landmark is any kind of landmark (often impressive in its structure, or design)that has been created by a human. Human-made landmarks can be anything from a modern skyscraper, to an ancient pyramid.

Some examples of the most famous human-made landmarks across the world include the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt (an ancient landmark), and the Burj Khalifa (a modern landmark).

Almost all human-made landmarks are given names that are commonly used, and as a result they become renowned throughout the world for their mystery, beauty, or historical importance.

Natural Landmarks

Natural landmarks are any landmark that has been named and maintained by humans that occurred through a natural process.

Natural landmarks are often protected by institutions throughout the world so that we can save them for future generations.

Some examples of the most famous natural landmarks in the world are the Sahara Desert in Africa, and Ha Long Bay in Vietnam.

1. The Statue Of Liberty

Address: New York, NY 10004, United States

If there’s one thing that comes to mind when you think of ‘United States of America,’ it could well be the Statue of Liberty.

This copper statue was gifted to the United States of America by France, and was designed by sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi. In short, the Statue of Liberty is a depiction of Libertas, who was the Ancient Roman Goddess of Freedom.

The reason why the Statue of Liberty is so widely known and considered one of the country’s most impressive monuments, is because of two reasons.

The first is its location. It stands on Liberty Island in New York City, which makes it one of the most noticeable monuments in the country. The second is its meaning alongside popular American ideas.

The United States of America is a country that was founded around the concept of freedom and liberty. The statue is a symbol of this freedom and this is one of the reasons why it is so beloved.

2. Golden Gate Bridge

Address: Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CA, USA

Next up, we have something a lot larger than the Statue of Liberty and a lot further to the west. The Golden Gate Bridge is the most magnificent human-made landmark in the State of California.

It is a gigantic, red suspension bridge that was created to link the city of San Francisco with Marin County.

It is one of the most impressive bridge structures and a monument that many people traveling around the west coast take the time to check out.

The Golden Gate Bridge is also one of the most well known bridges in the world, and it may be the most photographed bridge in the world.

From its opening in 1937 until the 1960s it was the longest suspension bridge in the world, but it was eventually overtaken by the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.

If you’re looking for an opportunity to see one of the most iconic feats of civil engineering in human history, then the Golden Gate Bridge is a great choice for you.

3. Mount Rushmore National Memorial

Address: 13000 SD-244, Keystone, SD 57751, United States

Another one of the most impressive human-made landmarks in the United States of America is the Mount Rushmore Memorial in The Black Hills, near Keystone in the state of South Dakota.

Like the Statue of Liberty, this is another monument that often comes to mind when you think of the United States of America. It is a gigantic stone sculpture, composed of the heads of four of the most important US presidents.

The first is George Washington, who represents the nation’s birth. The second is Thomas Jefferson, who represents the nation’s growth.

The third is Theodore Roosevelt, who represents the nation’s development over the latter part of the 19th century. Finally, the fourth is Abraham Lincoln who represents the nation’s preservation.

Each one of these presidents is an important figure in American history and the Mount Rushmore Memorial helps visiting tourists to understand the importance of each one.

4. Seattle Space Needle

Address: 400 Broad St, Seattle, WA 98109, United States

Next up we have a lesser known, but no less iconic monument that takes you to the heart of Seattle.

The Space Needle is the most notable building in the center of Seattle, and the pride of the city in terms of feats of architecture. It was built to be an observation tower, and was originally built for the 1962 World’s Fair.

Since then, it has remained an integral part of the Seattle Skyline, and for the longest time was one of the tallest structures west of the Mississippi.

The Seattle Space Needle allows you to get some incredible views of the surrounding area, including the Cascade Mountains, Elliott Bay and Downtown Seattle.

When you show up at the Space Needle, you’ll be able to quickly get to the top through use of its impressive elevators that lift you up to the top in less than a minute.

Although the Space Needle is a younger structure than some of those on our list, it is a very important place to go if you find yourself in Seattle.

5. The Grand Canyon

Address: The Grand Canyon, Arizona, United States

For the first natural landmark on our list, we have what is without a doubt one of the most colossal and impressive natural formations in the world.

The Grand Canyon is an incredible natural formation composed mostly of layered bands of red rock. The canyon is around 10 miles across and over 200 miles in length and is today protected by a national park.

The Grand Canyon is expected to be around 5 to 6 million years old, and is now one of the most widely visited natural wonders in the world.

It’s also a great place to check out the Colorado River, which flows through parts of the Grand Canyon.

This area has been widely preserved throughout the history of the United States of America, and many presidents (including Theodore Roosevelt) have made sure that it is kept as it is so that future generations can enjoy it.

6. Hoover Dam

Address: Nevada 89005, USA

Next up on our list of human-made locations, we have the impressive and vast Hoover Dam. If you’re looking for a place that will take you all the way back to the 1930s, during the Great Depression, then this is a great place to visit.

The Hoover Dam is located on the border between Arizona and Nevada, and is a great example of human engineering that highlights the natural beauty of the surrounding area.

It was named after President Herbet Hoover, and eventually opened by the next president Franklin Roosevelt.

The opening of the Hoover dam also made way for 5000 workers who were all housed in the nearby city of Boulder City.

This is a great place to go for tours if you’re looking to learn a little more about North American History, or the history of Civil Engineering.

7. The Washington Monument

Address: 2 15th St NW, Washington, DC 20024, USA

Washington DC is one of the most landmark-dense cities in the United States of America. It is the capital city, after all.

One of the most impressive monuments you’ll find in Washington DC is the Washington Monument. This is a gigantic, white, tall statue that was built in order to commemorate the life of George Washington, one of the founding fathers of The United States of America.

This is one of the oldest monuments in the US, first beginning its construction in 1848 and being finished in 1888.

The monument took so long to build because of the American Civil War, but was eventually finished and has stood in the same place ever since.

The Washington Monument is one of many in the surrounding area, some of which we’re going to cover in the sections below.

We’d recommend visiting this monument if you want to see one of the oldest and most significant landmarks in the United States.

8. The Abraham Lincoln Memorial

Address: 2 Lincoln Memorial Circle, NW, Washington, D.C.

If the Washington Monument was all about commemorating the life of George Washington, then the Abraham Lincoln Memorial is all about everyone’s favorite, top-hat wearing president.

The Lincoln Memorial is probably one of the most impressive monuments because of its size and detail.

In short, it is a large building with columns that gives way to an impressive interior. The most significant feature of this monument is the statue of President Lincoln that waits inside.

It was created in 1920, sculpted by Daniel Chester French and carved by the Piccirilli Brothers. It’s composed of Georgia Marble and measures at 580cm.

This is a great one to visit if you want to see an incredible statue of one of the most important historical figures in the history of the United States of America.

9. Niagara Falls

Address: Niagara Falls, New York, USA

Back to natural wonders for our number 9 spot, and one of the most iconic waterfalls in the world. Niagara Falls sits on the border with Canada, with one of the waterfalls (horseshoe falls) actually residing in Canada.

It is formed by the Niagara River, which creates the natural wonder by draining Lake Erie into Lake Ontario.

There are lots of opportunities to enjoy the natural beauty of Niagara, whether you use a ferry to get close to the white water, or if you simply choose to enjoy it from a distance.

We recommend going to this one if you want to see an incredible natural wonder, and one of the most impressive waterfalls in the world.

10. Independence Hall

Address: 520 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, USA

Independence Hall is a building located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It might not look as impressive as some of the other buildings on our list, but it is one of the most important historical landmarks in the country.

Independence Hall is the location where the Declaration of Independence was signed. More than this, it is also the place where the US Constitution is signed.

This makes it the place where the United States of America was born as we know it today.

It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a place that’s well worth a visit and a tour. We’d recommend taking the time to really step back into the past and look closely so that you can understand why this little red-bricked building is so important.

Keep in mind that it has hosted some of the most important figures and events of American history.

11. The World Trade Center Memorial

Address: 180 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10007, USA

In September 2001, New York City was victim to a horrific series of terrorist attacks that saw planes flying into the World Trade Center and almost 3000 deaths.

Where the towers once stood, now is a memorial that commemorates the terrible event.

The World Trade Center Memorial in New York City is an important place to go if you’re looking to gain a better understanding, or just to pay your respects to what happened on that terrible day in 2001.

The memorial is made up of two pools of water that sees every name of each person who lost their life into a metal barrier.

It’s an impressively peaceful space, considering it’s in the center of Manhattan, and it can be a great place to come and reflect.

It’s an important place to go if you’re looking to understand New York City and the underlying spirit of North America.

12. Fort Sumter

Address: Fort Sumter National Monument, South Carolina, United States

Fort Sumter in Charleston, South Carolina, is a great place to go if you’re fascinated by the American Civil War. This location will take you back to 1861 when the Civil War began.

In 1861, Confederate soldiers unleashed fire upon the fort and as a result the war began. It’s worth noting that Fort Sumter is only accessible via boat, and as a result, it’s not a place that you can just show up to and explore yourself.

So if you want to explore Fort Sumter in its entirety, make sure you book a guided tour which will help you with the boat ride, and an extensive guide that will show you everything you’ll need to know.

We recommend Fort Sumter to history buffs, especially those who are intrigued by the American Civil War and how it first began!

13. The Empire State Building

Address: 20 W 34th St., New York, NY 10001, USA

Like Washington DC, New York has so many important landmarks that it’s hard to choose between them.

There are a lot of impressive skyscrapers on the New York Skyline, but the most iconic is without a doubt the Empire State Building.

This was created as an Art Deco skyscraper that was built in 1930 to 1931. It was designed to be one of the most impressive skyscrapers in the world, and it was the tallest building in the world until the late 20th century.

The Empire State Building is still in use today, but you can always go to visit it. Taking a tour to the top floor is one of the most recommended things to do in New York City, as it offers an unparalleled view of the city once you get to the top floor.

The Empire State Building is frequently called one of the wonders of the modern world, and we would recommend going to see it if you’re in New York City.

14. One World Trade Center

Address: 285 Fulton St, New York, NY 10007, USA

Speaking of tall buildings, another impressive building to check out is One World Trade Center.

After the September 11 attacks in 2001, this is one of the buildings created as a replacement for the twin towers. It was called Freedom Tower during its construction but was since renamed.

The main reason why you’ll want to check out One World Trade Center is because it is the largest building in the United States of America, and the seventh-tallest in the world.

One of the most impressive things about its height in feet—1776 feet in total—is a reference to the signing of the United States Declaration of Independence.

We would recommend going to see One World Trade Center if you’re looking for a glimpse at one of the most impressive buildings in the country, that highlights some of the main ideals of the United States of America.

15. Yosemite National Park

Address: Yosemite National Park, California, USA

Yosemite National Park in Eastern California is by far one of the most beautiful natural places you can go in the United States of America.

With its magnificent rock faces such as El Capitan and Half Dome, it is a place of gigantic natural formations and wonder.

If you’re trying to find a place that will show you some of the best that the American countryside has to offer, then Yosemite is a must!

One of the best things about Yosemite National Park is that it is only a 6 hour drive from Los Angeles, making it an easy place to get to if you’re staying in the city of angels.

Yosemite is beautiful all year round, but most people recommend that you go in either the summer or fall for some of the most beautiful sights.

It’s also a hot-spot for nature lovers who love to check out the wide range of wildlife, and also climbers, who love to test themselves on some of the most impressive rock structures that the US has to offer.

16. Times Square

Address: Manhattan, NY 10036, USA

Another important New York Location is Times Square. It was once named Long Acre Square, but was since changed to Times Square as it became one of the most iconic locations in the city.

One of the best times to go to Times Square is on New Year’s Eve, where countless people gather in order to commemorate the new year coming in.

Times Square is one of the busiest metropolitan areas in the world, as it draws an incredible amount of tourists every year.

It’s the center of New York City in many ways, and a place to go if you want to truly understand quite how diverse and busy the city really can be.

Times Square is also an important location for advertising, as it has a series of digital screens that create some of the most impressive advertisements you’ll ever see.

17. Alcatraz Island

Address: San Francisco, CA 94133, USA

Alcatraz may well be the most well-known prison in the world. It is an island prison that has contained some of the most notorious criminals throughout American history.

Alcatraz Island is a small island off the coast of San Francisco Bay that was used as a maximum security prison.

These days it’s a landmark for people to go and visit—accessible via boat ride—but it was once a serious place that housed some very dangerous individuals.

While Alcatraz might not be the most pleasant of landmarks to visit, it can be a fascinating look into the history of the American judicial system, and holds more than one important story behind its walls.

We’d recommend booking a tour and checking it out if you’re intrigued by its dark history.

18. The Hollywood Sign

Address: Los Angeles, CA 90068, USA

Hollywood is one of the most iconic areas in all of the United States of America. If you’re thinking of western cinema, the chances are that the Hollywood sign will come to mind.

It is a landmark that overlooks Hollywood in Los Angeles, sitting on top of Mount Lee in the Santa Monica Mountains.

The sign was first erected as an advertisement for the real estate development project ‘Hollywoodland’ in the 1920s, but ever since then it has become synonymous with Los Angeles and the Hollywood area.

If you’re in Los Angeles, the chances are that you’ll want to see the Hollywood sign in all of its splendor.

In many ways the Hollywood sign represents wealth and artistry in the United States of America, as Hollywood is the area of Los Angeles best known for its studios, actors and directors.

We’d recommend going to see the Hollywood sign as part of a longer tour of the Hollywood hills and Los Angeles in general.

19. The Alamo

Address: 300 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX 78205, USA

The Alamo is located in San Antonio Texas, and is a great example of an old building that seeped in history.

Texas has a long, bloody history, which includes the Texas Revolution. The Alamo is one of the most significant locations in this conflict which held host to the Battle of the Alamo in 1836.

Defending soldiers held out for 12 staggering days as they were attacked by Mexicans; this is the event that acted as the fuse for Texas to attempt to break away from Mexico.

Many Texans consider the site to be a relic of Texan independence and resilience throughout time. The Alamo is well preserved and you’ll feel as if you’re stepping back in time once you enter through its main door.

There are lots of tours you can take here, so we’d recommend searching around to find the best one if you’re really interested in the history.

20. Gettysburg National Military Park

Address: 1195 Baltimore Pike, Gettysburg, PA 17325, United States

Speaking of important battles in American History, none is more notorious than the Gettysburg battle of 1863.

The American Civil war is one of the most tragic conflicts of American history, and it was at Gettysburg Pennsylvania where the most bloody battle occurred. Because of this, it is a site that is a dream for anyone looking to learn more about the history of America.

It is where President Lincoln delivered his legendary Gettysburg Address which has been recorded and studied for generations.

As with the Alamo above, you can go on a variety of different tours here that will take you through some of the most important sites of the battle, as well as significant monuments which commemorate the immense loss of life that happened.

This is one of the most important historical locations you could go to in North America, and we’d recommend checking it out if you’re in the Pennsylvania area (Also check out Best Lakes In Pennsylvania).

21. The Gateway Arch

Address: Gateway Arch, St. Louis, MO 63102, United States

Back to human-made architectural monuments now with the Gateway Arch that stands in St. Louis Missouri.

It’s a stainless steel structure and one of the tallest buildings in the western hemisphere. It is an arch that was made to commemorate the west and as a dedication to each American citizen.

It was designed by architect Eero Saarinen, who did not see it begin construction until the 1960s. It was eventually finished in 1965 and has stood ever since as an architectural marvel.

We’d recommend checking this one out if you’re in Missouri and want to see what is the world’s tallest arch. It’s also a great place to learn some history about Thomas Jefferson, who it is dedicated to.

22. The White House

Address: 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20500, United States

Another important Washington DC monument here, and what is probably the most well-known house in the entire world.

The White House is a large complex, but perhaps best known for being the residence of the President of the United States. It’s a great place to visit if you’re in the area, even if it’s just for a glimpse.

We need to explain ahead of time that it can be difficult to get a tour inside, as it’s a government building that is still in use. However, if you are American then you can request a tour—though this can take quite some time.

The White House has been the center of American government for a long time now, and as a result it is a significant location for anyone interested in history.

Some of the most important decisions in the history of the nation have been made behind its walls, so we’d suggest checking it out if you’re fascinated in either American history or government.

23. Key West Lighthouse

Address: 938 Whitehead St, Key West, FL 33040, United States

Key West, Florida might feel more like the Caribbean than the United States of America, and it’s one of the coolest places you can travel to.

Although it might be a great place to chill out and relax on the beach, it’s also home to a lot of important history.

If you want to learn more about this, then we’d suggest checking out Key West Lighthouse. It’s a large lighthouse that was built in 1825 to guide ships to the shore safely.

It was in operation all the way up to 1969, and is now a museum that you can explore in its entirety.

We’d recommend checking it out if you want to learn more about the history of Key West and why it’s been such an important destination throughout the history of the United States of America.

24. Crazy Horse Memorial

Address: Crazy Horse, SD 57730, United States

Would you be surprised to hear that Mount Rushmore is not the only head sculpture memorial in the United States of America?

If you’re in the Black Hills of South Dakota, then you should also check out the much lesser-known Crazy Horse Memorial.

The lives and history of Native Americans is not often commemorated in the same way much of the settler history is, but this sculpture depicts Crazy Horse, one of the most famous Native American warriors of all time.

It’s not yet completed, but the plan is that the memorial will eventually depict the Crazy Horse riding a horse.

It’s going to take a long while to be finished, but we’d recommend getting to see it in its earliest stages. It will be a story to tell your grandchildren about one day!

25. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial

Address: 1964 Independence Ave SW, Washington, DC 20003, United States

Another important landmark to see in Washington is the statue of Martin Luther King Jr. If you want to pay your respects to this legendary and influential human rights activist, then this is a great place for you to go.

It’s located in West Potomac Park and acts as a reminder to his important life’s work that attempted to bring equal rites for all humans, no matter the color of their skin.

The memorial has some of the most important quotes from Martin Luther King Jr. etched into the stone, and it can be a great place to go in order to fully appreciate the impact of one of the greatest men in American history.

It’s also a gorgeous sculpture that you’re bound to find an awe-inspiring piece of art.

Final Thoughts

So that was our list of the top 25 landmarks for you to visit in the USA! We hope that this list has given you some understanding of all the incredible natural and human-made wonders that North America has to offer.

Trying to choose which of these to go to can be difficult, especially as many of them are multiple states apart from each other. That said, we would always recommend trying to visit the one that you find most fascinating.

One of the most amazing things about The United States of America is its sheer variety of different things to see, whether they are natural, human-made, or an important historical site.

If you still have some questions about choosing the best landmarks for you, make sure to keep reading for our Frequently Asked Questions section that will help to answer any other questions you may have left over.

We wish you the best of luck in your travels around the United States of America, and hope that you see some of the incredible things out there for you to experience!

Frequently Asked Questions

How Can I Pick The Best USA Landmark To Visit?

When trying to figure out which USA landmark to visit, you’ll need to ask yourself some important questions.

The first, is whether or not there are any that you have always wanted to see.

For example, if you’ve dreamed about seeing the Statue of Liberty for a long time, then you should make it a priority to go and visit it. If you don’t, you may find yourself regretting this in later life.

When it comes to which other landmarks you should see, consider what amazes you more out of architecture, natural formations, and historical significance.

If you like architecture most, then somewhere like New York City is going to be a great place for you to go, so that you can see all of the most impressive buildings in the country.

Similarly, if you value natural wonders, then going to somewhere like Yosemite National Park might be a great choice for you!

What Is The Most Famous Landmark In The United States Of America?

As you can see from our list above, there are a lot of iconic landmarks in the United States of America, so it can be very difficult to determine which is the most famous.

Times Square is undoubtedly one of the most visited places in the World, however it might not be fair to say that everyone who goes there is to visit it as a landmark.

Other options include The Statue Of Liberty, which is frequently visited and accepted as a symbol for American ideals such as freedom and independence.

You could also say that Mount Rushmore is the most famous landmark, as it depicts four presidents of extreme historical importance.

Why Was The Statue Of Liberty Given To America?

We mentioned above that the Statue Of Liberty was a gift to America from the people of France, but you might be wondering why this happened?

The statue was gifted on the 17th of June, 1885. It was to commemorate the alliance between America and France during the American revolution.

France has a rich history with the concept of independence and freedom, having their own revolution many years before.

Since it was gifted and America gained their Independence from the British, the Statue became a symbol of freedom that was picked up by the common populace and remains an important figurehead of American ideals to this very day.

How Does Something Become A Landmark?

Something can become a landmark in many different ways. The first way is through time. For example, the Grand Canyon has been around since the formation of the United States of America, and as a result it has been appreciated for years.

The second is through spectacle. This can be seen with the Space Needle in Seattle, which was created in order to be a spectacle at the World’s Fair.

After the event, it has been adopted by the people of Seattle and the wider world as a landmark.

The final way that something can become a landmark is through historical significance. Take the Gettysburg National Military Park, for example.

Some time ago, the town wouldn’t have been so important, but because of the battle that took place, it is now a location that history enthusiasts and citizens flock to in order to explore the history of the nation they call home.

Something is usually declared a landmark after a period of time when people have agreed that it is an important place worthy of note.

Alex Kallen
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