US & Canada

The US and Canada share much in common, including their long border along the 49th parallel. They are among the world’s largest countries by land mass (Canada second and the US third). And both countries are culturally and geographically diverse, with substantial variation as one travels east to west and north to south.

The eastern states and provinces in each country contain many of their most significant cultural and historic destinations. These were the areas first colonized by European settlers, and many of small villages that were built have evolved into major global cities.
The central states and provinces are marked by vast prairies and extensive agriculture, and are also home to many lakes, including the Great Lakes region that is the largest freshwater complex in the world.

Travelers moving west first encounter the Rocky Mountain chain that extends from the southwestern US through the western Canadian provinces of Alberta and British Columbia. The Pacific coastline marks the western extreme of the contiguous states and provinces, and area marked by scenic coastlines, temperature rain forests, and a number of significant global cities.

 

Share:
FacebookredditpinterestmailFacebookredditpinterestmail
 

Click on a country or destination pin to explore.


Show destinations that are ideal for these travel months.
Show destinations with these overall atmospheres.
 
 

Countries in this region:

Combination Atmosphere destinations combine elements of both cultural and natural destinations, where this combination is itself essential to the travel experience. Common examples are Archaeological Sites (where culture is usually experienced outdoors), Scenic Local Markets (where indigenous cultures interact outdoors), Hotsprings and Vineyard Areas (where nature provides the raw materials but humans create the surroundings), and Unique Cultural Landscapes (where humans and nature interact in innovative ways, as in the elaborate rice terracing systems of Asia).

Combination Interests typically fall somewhere in the middle of the three types of primary interests in terms of
(a) how climate-dependent they are
(b) how accessible and physically demanding they are.

Eastern Canada

Atmosphere: Combination    
Best Weather: May, June, July, August, September

Eastern CanadaEastern Canada differs significantly from the eastern US as a result of Canada’s enduring British heritage, as well as the specific influence of immigrants from Britain and France. The eastern Atlantic Provinces are known for their history, particularly during the formation of Canada as a sovereign state. It is known for its beautiful coastal areas. Quebec is located in the region’s geographic center. Originally settled as part of New France, Quebec is culturally distinct from the rest of Canada, with French the main language. West of Quebec is the province of Ontario, Canada's most populous province and in many ways its most representative.
 
A Cultural Atmosphere includes both the historic (eg, landmark town centers) and the contemporary (music, nightlife, etc).

Cultural Interests tend to be:
(a) indoors-oriented, and therefore not as linked to weather conditions for enjoyment
(b) relatively physically accessible, while also not being physically demanding.

Eastern United States

Atmosphere: Culture    
Best Weather: April, May, June, July, August, September, October

Eastern United StatesThe Eastern US, and especially its coastal regions, includes a majority of the largest and most historically significant cities in the country. New England, in the northeast, is best known for its gabled churches, rustic antiques, and significant sites of American history. The Mid-Atlantic region ranges from New York to Washington, D.C., and is home to some of the nation's most densely populated cities and historic sites. The Midwest region is best-known for its farmland, industrial cities, and the Great Lakes -- the largest system of freshwater lakes in the world. The Southern region is a center of music (blues, jazz, rock and roll, and country music. The Florida peninsula is among the most popular travel destinations, known for its mild winter weather and extensive beaches.
 
 
A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).

Western Canada

Atmosphere: Nature    
Best Weather: May, June, July, August, September

Western CanadaWestern Canada is much larger geographically than its Eastern region. The central Prairie provinces are known for their open spaces and extensive agricultural economy. Western Alberta is the start of Canada’s vast alpine mountain region that extends to the Pacific Ocean. British Columbia (B.C) represents a continuation of alpine Canada and is widely recognized for its extraordinary and diverse natural beauty, as well as its charming cities. Canada’s vast northern region represent some of the remotest regions on Earth and cover much of Canada's landmass.
 
Combination Atmosphere destinations combine elements of both cultural and natural destinations, where this combination is itself essential to the travel experience. Common examples are Archaeological Sites (where culture is usually experienced outdoors), Scenic Local Markets (where indigenous cultures interact outdoors), Hotsprings and Vineyard Areas (where nature provides the raw materials but humans create the surroundings), and Unique Cultural Landscapes (where humans and nature interact in innovative ways, as in the elaborate rice terracing systems of Asia).

Combination Interests typically fall somewhere in the middle of the three types of primary interests in terms of
(a) how climate-dependent they are
(b) how accessible and physically demanding they are.

Western United States

Atmosphere: Combination    
Best Weather: April, May, June, July, August, September, October

Western United StatesThe Western US is dominated by its geographic and cultural diversity rather than history. This includes the Rocky Mountains offering diverse outdoor activities (hiking, mountain biking, rafting, skiing, etc), as well as vast, beautiful desert landscapes. To the south lies Texas and Southwest region, with strong cultural influences from its Spanish and Mexican past. The West Coast, from California to Washington state, includes some of the most scenic and culturally interesting parts of the country, including temperate rain forests, volcanic mountains, and extensive coastlines. Outside the continental US lie Alaska, known for its extensive mountain wilderness and native cultures, and Hawaii, a semi-tropical volcanic archipelago known for its beaches, surfing, and Polynesian culture.