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Best History & Culture Vacations - United States & Canada

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Results for: Best History & Culture Vacations - United States & Canada
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1New York City, New York
Though it is not the oldest city in America, no place has more history or culture than New York. One visit can't fit all the highlights: the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Central Park, Metropolitan Museum of Art, MoMA, Natural History Museum and, of course, the moving site of Ground Zero.
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    • Family Fun
      New York City
      New York's many zoos, museums and landmarks make the city a perfect destination for families of all ages. Explore Times Square or take the kids to FAO Schwarz, take a boat ride to the Statue of Liberty or an elevator to the top of the Empire State Building, eat lunch at Carnegie Deli or picnic in Central Park - the choices are endless.
    • Shopping
      New York City
      Perhaps the world's top shopping spot, the Big Apple hardly needs an introduction. Fifth Avenue. Madison Avenue. Soho. Times Square. The list of stellar shopping destinations and famous names is almost endless, so pack light and stock up on everything from electronics to vintage clothes while you're there.
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2Boston, Massachusetts
"The Athens of America" has an important place in American history. One can explore the city's past and present along the Freedom Trail and at Faneuil Hall, the USS Constitution, the Kennedy Library, Fenway Park, the Public Garden and the Boston Public Library, the first of its kind in the United States.
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    • Shopping
      Boston
      From hot haute couture mecca Newbury Street to the eclectic shops of historic Faneuil Hall Market Place, Beantown has an impressive array of places to shop and splurge. Vast Copley Place teems with shoppers stocking on upscale attire, while couples go antiquing on Beacon Hill's Charles Street.
    • Family Fun
      Boston
      With its host of revolution-related sites and an eclectic range of attractions, from the Museum of Science to the Museum of Bad Art, Boston is an inspired choice for family vacations. Watery wonder is on offer at New England Aquarium and from a swan boat on Public Garden Lagoon.
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3Washington DC, District of Columbia
Perhaps the most political city in the world, Washington D.C.'s history has been colored by democracy, debate, scandal and progress. Visitors can relive the highs and lows of American history at the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial, the Smithsonian Institution, Capitol Hill and the White House.
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    • Family Fun
      Washington DC
      D.C. diversity dazzles. Families find an endless variety of attractions to explore, from the buzz of Georgetown and funky Adams Morgans to more than a hundred monuments and museums, including the Smithsonian. And most are free! There's also a vibrant performing arts scene and major league sports excitement, courtesy of the Redskins and the Nationals.
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4Montreal, Quebec
Since Cartier landed in Montreal in 1535, it has evolved from a small village into a major world metropolis. Trace its development from the days of Champlain as you walk through Old Montreal's Parisian-style streets, explore the Botanical Gardens and visit the renowned Notre-Dame Basilica.
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    • Romance
      Montreal
      With its European ambiance, Quebecois joie de vivre and its elegant architecture, Montreal is ideal for romantic escapes. Intimate bistros, perfect for tête-à-têtes, nestle on cobblestone streets. Patio tables give views of Montrealers strolling their streets. A thrilling slew of hot hotels and nightlife make for exciting nights.
    • Shopping
      Montreal
      Shoppers of all budgets can find a lot to love in Montreal, from the Marché Jean-Talon farmers market to the mid-range trendy shops and department stores along rue Ste-Catherine, to the more cutting edge fashions of rues St-Denis and St-Laurent, to the high end luxury boutiques on rue Sherbrooke.
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5San Francisco, California
The Golden Gate Bridge is just one sight among many in the historic maritime city of San Francisco. Visit Alcatraz, explore Union Square and Fisherman's Wharf, ride a cable car to the Cable Car Museum and discover the city's Spanish roots at Mission Dolores and Asian influence in Chinatown.
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    • Shopping
      San Francisco
      The choice of distinctly different shopping districts in San Francisco is almost overwhelming. Whether you want to opt for the opulent Westfield Center or go funk fantastic in the eclectic Mission or tourist traditional in Union Square, you'll definitely need to bring an empty suitcase when you visit.
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6Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver's immigrant history takes off from 1824, with the arrival of the Hudson's Bay Company. But indigenous tribes have lived here on the Pacific hem for 8000 years and their rich culture is beautifully presented at the Museum of Anthropology. The stunning city has a lively arts scene and a flourishing festival calendar.
7New Orleans, Louisiana
Claimed, bought and sold by the French, Spanish, Haitians and Americans, the resulting melange of cultural identities give the Crescent City its distinct flavors. New Orleans' irrepressible spirit can best be experienced during February's exuberant Mardi Gras celebrations, festivals and Cajun, Zydeco and jazz music.
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    • Romance
      New Orleans
      New Orleans' distinct sensual soundtrack plays as you explore the atmospheric streets of the French Quarter and beyond. Jazz, zydeco and blues waft out of bars and juke joints, the clip of hoofs resounds as carriages trot past and the murmur of couples' voices rises from hidden courtyard cafes.
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8Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii
History lovers will find much more to Honolulu than the beaches at Waikiki. Visitors should not miss Pearl Harbor and the accompanying USS Arizona Memorial. Those interested in the story of the islands will enjoy the displays of Polynesian artifacts at the Bishop Museum.
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    • Romance
      Honolulu
      Honolulu is the perfect base for enjoying everything Hawaii has to offer. Stroll or sunbathe on white-and beaches, climb a volcanic crater, surf the best waves, hold hands and watch the sun dip below the horizon or enjoy romantic candlelit dining and live entertainment.
    • Family Fun
      Honolulu
      Honolulu has more than history and tropical beaches. The entire family can delight in the astounding views from the short hike to Diamond Head crater, splash about in any of the water parks, investigate Hawaiian marine life in nature reserves and aquariums and indulge wonder in the many kid-friendly museums.
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9San Antonio, Texas
Don't leave San Antonio without learning about its fascinating evolution. Trace its history from the small artisan neighborhood of La Villita to Davy Crockett's last stand against Santa Anna at the Alamo to the vibrant community that lines the city's famous Riverwalk today.
10Quebec City, Quebec
Charming Quebec City, the only fortified city north of Mexico, turned 400 in 2008. Once the heart of New France and a crucial fur trading post, today Quebec City's proud culture and ambiance are best experienced by strolling its narrow streets, exploring the Citadel and in the fine museums and galleries.
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    • Shopping
      Quebec City
      Vieux Port is a thriving, diverse shopping area with a rich merchant heritage. European influences abound in the charming 400-year-old city. A proliferation of antique stores has sprung on Rue St Paul, while galleries display excellent indigenous art and crafts. Don't forget to pick up ice wine and maple syrup.
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11Toronto, Ontario
Vibrant Toronto has a dazzling array of arts and culture venues; more than 200 theater companies tread the city's boards; big name and alternative museums and galleries abound; orchestras and bands thrive in the spirited city; and a seemingly infinite number of festivals confetti the calendar.
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    • Shopping
      Toronto
      A smorgasbord of scintillating shopping experiences awaits in Canada's largest city. Intrepid shoppers can sashay along up and coming Queen West, with its independent boutiques and funky, trendy galleries, or strut through flagship stores and big name emporia in chic, sleek, star-studded Yorkville.
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12Savannah, Georgia
Visitors to Savannah will not find any dearth of history; some of the city's best attractions are historic homes and final resting places. These include the Owens-Thomas House, the Bonaventure Cemetery and the birthplace of Juliette Gordon Low, founder of the Girl Scouts.
  • Also recommended for:
    • Romance
      Savannah
      Sometimes sultry, sometimes genteel, sometimes a little shady, Savannah's southern charms are alluring. The elegant city's plethora of historic bed and breakfasts offer intimate bases for a romantic trip. Many are situated in the gracious historic district, inspiration for "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil."
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13Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The City of Brotherly Love was vital in the shaping of America. Explore Philadelphia's history - and the history of the United States - by visiting some of its many historic attractions: Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell, the National Constitution Center and Independence National Historical Park.
14Charleston, South Carolina
The picturesque streets of Charleston charm visitors with 19th-century architecture and scenery. Historic sights abound: the old gardens at Middleton Place, Drayton Hall, many other historic houses and plantations and Fort Sumter National Monument, the very spot where the American Civil War began.
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    • Romance
      Charleston
      Romantic restaurants, elegant inns and a pervading ambiance of old glamour entice those with romance on their minds to visit charming, historic Charleston. Cobblestone streets and stately squares make for enchanting ambles and carriage tours can carry the two of you through the city's atmospheric alleys.
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15Williamsburg, Virginia
Most people don't believe in time travel, but a visit to Williamsburg could change that. A living-history museum, Colonial Williamsburg takes visitors back to the Virginia of the 1700s, as do the town's many historic taverns and restaurants and the nearby Jamestown settlement, which dates back even further.
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    • Family Fun
      Williamsburg
      Try the coasters at the 100-acre, 17th-century Europe-themed amusement park Busch Gardens or get a taste of everyday 18th-century life in Colonial Williamsburg. Water Country USA 's park boasts more than 30 rides and attractions plus terrific shopping and live entertainment.
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16Anchorage, Alaska
The construction of the Alaska Railroad was responsible for Anchorage's remarkable beginnings in 1914. The city burgeoned and was incorporated in 1920. Anchorage continued to boom, particularly after 1968's oil discovery. Russian, native and pioneer cultures are represented at Anchorage Museum.
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    • Skiing
      Anchorage
      Forty miles south of town, Alyeska Resort is by far the largest in the area, with over a thousand skiable acres for all ages and skill levels, including 68 runs, nine lifts and a 2500-foot vertical rise. Arctic Valley is a family-friendly resort just ten miles from downtown. Hilltop is also close to the city.
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