Traveling across North America opens a wide variety of activities and places to explore from a weekend city break in Florida or a ski holiday in Colorado or book a tour over the summer vacation. It’s a land of adventure. You can explore ancient rites at Maya and Aztec ruins, hike the National Parks, relax on the palm-lined beaches, traveling across North America is full of amazing adventures no matter what time you chose to travel.
Below we’ll share just a few of the underrated destinations you can visit in North America.
Top 10 Underrated Destinations To Visit In North America
Photo credit: Rita Willaert / Flickr
Boquete is a village in Chiriqui province, in the north of Panama only a couple hours drive to the Costa Rican border. Boquete is known as a prime coffee growing region, with many farms with agriculture as well as strawberries, oranges, and coffee come from this region.
Boquete is only 40 minutes from David, Panama’s third-largest city. You can see many retirees who come for the temperate climate, moderate prices and relaxed living, it has become a favorite for the low cost of living and change of lifestyle.
Boquete some of the incredible wildlife and rain forests and it is known as the “Valley of the Flowers”. There many things you can see or do – you can hike through the mountains to see waterfalls, coffee plantations, visit the cloud forest, white water rafting, and the Volcan Baru National Park.
Photo by G Yancy/Flickr
Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
Quebec City is the capital of Quebec and, after Montreal, the second-largest city in the province. The city was settled by the French and it was the capital of the French empire in North America, you can feel the influenced by the Catholic Church and find many places of interest to Catholic travelers.
The Quebec side of the Ottawa River with mountains, forests and plenty of outdoor activities. Québec has a number of sites and attractions, including Montmorency Falls, which is taller than Niagara Falls, the Montreal Botanical Garden, the Insectarium, Reford Gardens, the Basilique Notre-Dame-de-Québec, and over 22 provincial parks.
Quebec City’s Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and with Campeche in Mexico are the only two cities in North America with its original city walls.
Photo credit: Ramon / Flickr
Santa Ana Volcano, El Salavador
The Santa Ana Volcano is a large stratovolcano located in El Salvador. It is the highest volcano in the Pacific and it contains four recognizable craters, superimposed or born within the oldest crater, with a depth of 289 meters.
The oldest crater is known as the “Hole Plan”. The eruption occurred at Santa Ana volcano in 2005 when ash was emitted to a height of 14 km.
Behind Santa Ana is a large caldera lake which is created when a series of volcanoes collapsed in explosive eruptions.
Photo credit: Udo S / Flickr
Montana is the 4th largest state by landmass in the United States and one of America’s greatest unspoiled treasures of scenic lands and wildlife. The state economy is primarily based on ranching, agriculture, logging, and the last decade tourism became one of the growing industries. The tourism received annually nearly 13 million tourists visiting Yellowstone National Park, Glacier National Park, Beartooth Highway, Flathead Lake, Big Sky Resort, and other attractions. The longest river in North America officially starts in Western Montana.
Montana has over 3,000 lakes and reservoirs, including Flathead Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake in the western United States. It has more than 1,100 km of hiking trails,
Montana offers an opportunity for every adventure seeker in every season including hosting numerous arts and cultural festivals and events every year. During the winter there are two large resort ski areas, Big Sky and Big Mountain, as well as smaller local hills.
Photo credit: mzagerp / Flickr
Campeche has well preserved 17th-century colonial architecture and has great seafood, nearby Mayan ruins, and it is a UNESCO world heritage site. It has 17 archaeological sites including Calakmul, the largest Mayan city that has ever been discovered.
The main attractions here are the Maya ruins, scattered throughout the state. The traveler can enjoy all the city’s attractions, the old town of Campeche, with towers, bastions, and walls, on board of one of the old-time vehicles replicas named “El Guapo” and the “Tranvía de la Ciudad” (City’s Tram).
Campeche also offers a wide variety in its cuisine and some of the typical dishes include seafood, chocolate, bean stew with pork, beef.
Photo credit: Fort Simpson Chamber of Commerce / Flickr
Alexandra Falls, Canada
The Alexandra Falls is a 105 ft waterfall located on the Hay River in the Northwest Territories, just 30 to 40 minutes south of Whistler in the Callaghan Valley. The Alexandra Falls is part of the Twin Falls Gorge Territorial Park and along with Louise Falls, make up two large waterfalls in the Twin Gorge Falls Territorial Park. In the Alexandra Falls day-use area you can find also picnic tables, fire pits, grass lawns, firewood, viewing benches, a kitchen shelter.
According to Wikipedia, Alexandra Falls is among the top 30 waterfalls in the world for water volume. There is a boardwalk trail connecting Alexandra Falls to Louise Falls with a viewing platform with benches overlooking the Hay River Canyon and Alexandra Falls and the trail continues another 2 kilometers to Escarpment Creek.
Traditional Dene people say that the two falls are two spirits, Grandmother and Grandfather, who protect the area.
Alexander Falls is one of many stunning ones you can visit in the Whistler area. Others in the area include the geologically marvelous Keyhole Falls, Brandywine Falls, the scenic Rainbow Falls, the splendidly crashing Train Wreck Falls or hike to Wedgemount Lake where you will see the tall and loud Wedgemount Falls.
Photo credit: Matthew Paulson / Flickr
Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica
The Osa Peninsula is located on the Southern Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, in the Puntarenas Province and it is covering an area of 700 square miles. It is known as one of the most fabled and also most remote destinations in Costa Rica and the whole of Central America. The peninsula is home to at least half of all species living in Costa Rica. Here is the world-famous Corcovado National Park, home to some of the most fascinating creatures on earth including scarlet macaws, bull sharks, and tapirs.
It is named by National Geographic as “the most biologically intense place on earth. Nearly 3% of Earth’s species live in this one small region.
The Osa Peninsula is a great place for wildlife observation and ecotourism with breathtaking, untouched scenery, secluded beaches, and abundant wildlife. TIt is the most significant wetland ecosystem and mangrove forests of Central America and the largest remaining tract of lowland rainforest in Pacific Mesoamerica.
Here you’ll find 2-3% of flora found nowhere else in the world, 323 endemic species of plants and vertebrates, more than 4,000 vascular plants, 463 species of birds, 140 mammals, including 25 species of dolphins and whales, 4 species of sea turtles.
Photo credit: Matías Callone / Flickr
Bacalar is located in Quintana Roo, Mexico, surrounded by blue Lake Bacalar, a Yucatan small-village and is absent of crowd of tourists. The lagoon is known as the Seven Colors, featuring unique natural beauty and home to some of the oldest organisms on the planet.
Bacalar has a more traditional Mexican feel than many other destinations in the region. Bacalar was a city of the Maya civilization in Pre-Columbian times. The Fortress de San Felipe Bacalar, in the center of town, represents one of the bastions used by the Maya.
Bacalar offers activities like guided kayak/canoe trips, bicycle tours and jungle walks to explore the beautiful lake and its surroundings.
Photo credit: EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid / Flickr
Sololá is one of the few villages where people proudly wear their traditional clothes, with embroidered motives, portray the social and economic status position of the civil and religious hierarchies. The majority of the city’s inhabitants are Cakchiquel Indians who proudly retain their heritage.
It is situated 600 meters above Lake Atitlan. Lake Atitlan is a beautiful lake surrounded by inactive volcanoes and small towns filled with Mayan culture. Three spectacular volcanoes, Toliman, Atitlan, ans San pedro, form the frame of the lake itself.
Guatemala is home to immeasurable cultural and natural treasures. Travelers can taste international and local food. There are also a large number of cooperatives around the lake that offer different products and handicrafts. There are museums showing Mayan ceramic and remembrances.
Photo credit: Mo Barton / Flickr
Denali National Park, USA
Denali National Park and Preserve is an American national park and preserve located in Alaska. It was first established in 1917 as Mount McKinley National Park and renamed Denali National Park, centered on Denali, the highest mountain in North America. Here is located also the Mt. McKinley – the continent’s highest peaks.
One of the best ways to view this mountainous park is to take a helicopter tour from Anchorage. Alaska’s incredible national parks are visited by thousands of visitors each year. Choosing reusable bags, water bottles, and recycling are easy ways to reduce waste while you travel and footprints.
Denali National Park and Preserve is 6 million acres large and it offers a mix of forest at the lowest elevations, including deciduous taiga, with tundra at middle elevations, and glaciers, snow, and bare rock at the highest elevations.
The Kahiltna Glacier is the longest glacier here. Winter activities include dog sledding, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling.
Make sure you always follow basic travel safety precautions like not wearing fancy clothes or jewelry, not carrying big amounts of cash on you, and avoiding poorly areas at night.
Don’t forget to check some of our other travel resources and destinations in North America.