With 50 diverse states to experience, the USA’s vast lands would take more than a lifetime to explore in full. History, culture, food, and landscapes magnetize the nation and draw in both American and international tourists to enjoy all that it has to offer. Most visitors are charmed by calls of the USA’s most popular tourist traps – like New York’s metropolises, California’s culture, Florida’s beaches, and the deep south’s rugged, wildlife-riddled paths.

However, intrepid travelers are beginning to scope out some of the USA’s most underrated destinations worthy of a vacation – where crowds never form, and influencers haven’t yet discovered. So where exactly are some of these low-key places in the USA that promise a unique American holiday out of sight of the masses? Well, without further ado, holidaymakers seeking an answer to this question need to look no further than the following on this list.

Related: The Midwest Is Home To Some Of The Most Underrated, Understated National Parks In The Country

8 Fredericksburg, Texas

Not too far from Austin and San Antonio, this town in Central Texas is one of the USA’s best-hidden gems. Fredericksburg really does promise something for everyone and is particularly well-noted for its breathtaking scenery, incredible food, German architecture, and its sprawling vineyards reminiscent of southern France.

As one might have guessed due to its name, Fredericksburg does indeed have history intertwined with Germany; this colorful town was developed into what it is today by German settlers, who made it their home in the early 1800s. And what they brought with them made Fredericksburg more German than ever; exceptional beer, German cuisine, and fine wines, which are just a few samples of its European charm that enchants visitors and locals, the latter of whom are lucky enough to call the place home.

Alongside the scenic vineyards and wine-tasting tours to be indulged in, visitors can also enjoy a fantastic live music scene in Fredericksburg, as well as discover the authentic “Marktplatz” and German-style churches that are definitely worthy of a photo or ten. Couple this with glorious scenery – such as the amazing lavender fields for which the town is famed – and it’s astonishing why the town doesn’t see more tourists than it does.

7 Alabama Gulf Coast

Move over Florida, for the Alabama Gulf Coast has some of the top beaches in the USA. Home to some of the whitest sand in the country that stretches over 32 miles, it baffles the mind why this paradisiac part of the country doesn’t experience the crowds that neighboring Florida or the not-too-far-off Caribbean Islands do.

Temperate turquoise ocean and pristine white sand aside, the region’s bars and restaurants line the seafronts to offer the perfect day at the beach, whilst a wealth of water sports – ranging from relaxing to heart-thumping – entice visitors both zen and adventurous.

With all this on offer, the area really is a top-tier summer holiday destination, promising everything that one would ever desire from a beach vacation – and Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are especially hot spots that could easily rival some of the world’s most beautiful beaches; not just in terms of beauty, but also, fun and adventure.

6 Solvang, California

Only two and a half hours from Los Angeles, Solvang is located in Central California’s Santa Ynez Valley – a superb wine region, which is enough of a reason to visit in itself. However, this pretty city itself is even more of a draw than wine; waltz through the streets of the very quaint Solvang, and it feels as if one’s been teleported across the pond to Europe. Known as the “Danish Capital of America,” the city with its colorful residences, wooden windmills, authentic Danish bakeries, and year-round festive Christmas village feel, is one of the most unique destinations in the USA.

The whole place screams Euro-trip, where one can savor sumptuous cuisine in many a restaurant, and stroll through traditional shopping streets while chowing down on Scandinavian pastries. There’s even a museum dedicated to famous Danish fairy-tale author – Hans Christian Andersen.

Related: Underrated Destinations For Warm Winter Vacays In The U.S

5 Yadkin Valley, North Carolina

Marveling at the landscapes striped with grapevines in this stunning part of North Carolina will make any visitor wonder if they’re still in the USA. With its French vineyard ambiance, Yadkin Valley in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina’s north is a unique part of the country and visiting feels as if it’s actually a European countryside – not the USA.

Along with plenty of local restaurants, there are around three dozen or so vineyards that make up the scenic landscape, and each one is special in itself. Take Divine Llama Vineyards for example, with its grazing llamas who munch grass around the vines while visitors taste award-winning wines with views out to Pilot Mountain. Sounds like a European dream, doesn’t it? Well, almost – but it’s still North Carolina, surprisingly.

4 Seaside, Oregon

Oregon’s coastline is a secret stretch of pristine beauty, and the rugged surfing town of Seaside is the perfect base from which to explore it. Seaside offers an intriguing mix of gorgeous landscapes and fun activities, with its wipe-open, long promenade peppered with benches against a backdrop of hotels and ice cream stalls being an idyllic place to start one’s Oregon escapade.

The seafront and town aren’t the only draws though; Ecola State Park’s hiking trails open up a wealth of adventure, where golden beaches, bluffs, and diverse fauna and flora can all be gazed upon. Even grey whales can often be seen passing by on their migration route from December to January, and again between March and June.

3 Providence City And Block Island, Rhode Island

The small city of Providence is often overlooked in favor of its famous neighbors, like Boston. But folks who put this amazing city on the itinerary will get to relish lots of juicy cultural and culinary treats. Restaurants and craft breweries abound, where booze is made locally and dishes are created using local seafood and authentic seasonal ingredients – much to the appeal of the taste buds. The architecture and landscapes are just as sensational as the city’s flavors; from 18th-century buildings to reservoirs, rivers, and woodland, this beautiful part of Rhode Island really does have something for everyone.

What’s more, there’s also another diamond just off Rhode Island that, despite being sensationally stunning, rarely sees crowds. Travelers that love the quintessential New England atmosphere of Nantucket or Martha’s Vineyard will love the hidden gem of Block Island, which has managed to remain undiscovered by the hoards. Incredible landscape and lovely beaches are what make this little spot so wonderful and worthy of a visit, and although there are few cars and amenities, there is enough going on for visitors to be kept entertained. Conveniently, Block Island is connected to the mainland by ferry and plane, which makes it a great day trip option. But for the best experience – including breathtaking sunrises and sunsets all to oneself – staying overnight is recommended.

Related: A Day On Block Island: Exploring Rhode Island’s Most Iconic Vacation Spot

2 Molokai, Hawaii

The birthplace of the Hula and a former leper community, Molokai is without any doubt one of the most secluded places to visit in the US. Overshadowed by the popular Hawaiian Islands like Maui and Oahu, Molokai gets far fewer visitors, which means peace and quiet, untouched landscapes, and authentic local culture that hasn’t been diluted by tourism and development. Molokai is about as off-the-radar as one can get; there are no luxury resorts, no traffic lights, and no towering buildings. But what this idyllic paradise lacks in infrastructure it makes up for with unspoiled landscapes and authentic Hawaiian culture.

Home to some of the world’s highest sea cliffs and one of the longest fringing reefs, as well as bounties of waterfalls and valleys, it’s remarkable how the island has stayed so pristine and free from the clutches of over-tourism. It’s the perfect place to experience the untouched tropics, along with the traditional Molokai way of life and culture, and travelers happy without the comfort of luxury resorts and urban amenities will, overall, be in their element here.

1 Rawah Wilderness, Colorado

A hiker’s heaven, this raw, pristine wilderness looks almost identical to the Swiss mountains or the Austrian Alps and promises an incredible retreat away from society. Not many people ever talk about Rawah Wilderness, which is astonishing, because it deserves far more attention than it gets due to its inexplicable beauty. The name “Rawah” means “wild place” in Native American terms, and it truly does match its meaning in reality.

Over 74,408 acres of unspoiled landscapes make up this alpine wonderland of forests, lush mountain slopes covered in green, and more than 25 glistening lakes. The place also hosts plenty of alluring wildlife perfect for photographers and nature fanatics, including marmots, moose, elk, and bighorn sheep – all grazing peacefully in the wilderness.

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About The Author

Lauren Feather
(54 Articles Published)

Lauren is a scuba diving instructor and award-winning underwater photographer originally from the United Kingdom. Having spent the last decade traveling and working around the world managing dive centers in Japan, the Philippines, Thailand and France, she enjoys sharing her passion for the underwater world with others. Before her adventures, Lauren attained her degree in Japanese and French languages at the University of Hull, which has served her well in the world of travel, diving and tourism. Whilst her day job involves training people to scuba dive, by night, she indulges in various projects such as writing, translating, and working as a volunteer for an international dog rescue organization. When she’s not busy with any of these things, she’s walking her dogs, sipping coconut water on the beach, indulging in anime and manga, or rocking out to her hefty heavy metal collection.

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