From Los Angeles to Niagara Falls, consider classic American destinations

World travel certainly has its appeals, but you don’t need to look beyond the United States’ borders to find excitingly diverse travel options. With so much country to cover, you could spend a lifetime visiting destinations that are uniquely American and rich with things to do, see and experience.

There really is something for every taste when it comes to American travel destinations, but a good place to start is with the classics. Find out what’s made them so beloved over decades – and even centuries – and get to know your country a little bit better.

* California has a legendary pull, luring people from across the country with promises of beautiful weather, sunny beaches and a laid-back attitude. The state’s top two cities are San Francisco and Los Angeles, and making a road trip along the coast between the two is a great way to see the state. Since cheap flights to Los Angeles are abundant, fly into LAX and rent a car to drive up to the Bay area. If you book airline tickets and car rental at the same time on sites like Travelocity.com, you can often save extra cash.

* Don’t count out kitsch when it comes to selecting your destination. Glitzy, flashy, high-rolling destinations like Reno and Las Vegas are on the list of must-experience cities in America. From the shows to the shopping to the slots, having fun in these destinations is all but guaranteed. Even better is the fact that you can find exceptionally good values on Las Vegas vacations and Reno hotels with a quick search of the Web.

* America’s great outdoors are second to none, and it’s just as essential to get a taste of the wilderness as it is to experience big cities. Yellowstone was the first National Park to be established, so it’s a great place to immerse yourself in the exceptional beauty of the mountain West. The park stretches through Idaho, Montana and Wyoming and offers myriad camping options, as well as a plethora of activities like hiking, canoeing and kayaking, horseback riding and watching for wild animals.

* Contrary to popular interpretation, Chicago isn’t called “the second city” because it plays second fiddle to New York. The nickname actually comes from the fact that the city had to be rebuilt following the great fire that swept through the city in 1871. Pay the city a visit and you’ll find out that it’s second to none in terms of its restaurants, attractions, arts – or anything else.

* When it comes to long-lived travel attractions, there aren’t many that can match the lasting appeal of Niagara Falls. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, it was the honeymoon mecca of America, and it’s little wonder why. The falls are at once romantically beautiful and awe-inspiringly powerful, which explains why they’re still drawing many tourists in, even today. There are plenty of options for Niagara Falls hotels, making it easy to get a great deal at almost any time of year.