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North America Travel Guide

Looking for an in-depth North America travel guide?

Then you’re in the right place!

As the third-largest continent in the world, it’s hard to boil North America down to just a few sentences. The cultures of each of the three major countries in North America — the United States, Canada and Mexico, are so unique and each country offers something different to travelers of all kinds.

With such vast geographic and natural diversity on the continent as well, there’s also much beauty to see wherever you go. From the Rocky Mountains of the U.S. and Canada to the beaches of Mexico, North America really does have something for everyone. And don’t forget the gorgeous Caribbean region and Central America!

In this guide, we’ve put together some tips to plan your ultimate North American adventure, whether you want to road trip through the United States, climb Canada’s highest peaks, or explore the ancient ruins in Mexico.

Check out each of our individual destination guides to learn more about the top countries, states, and cities to visit on the continent. We’ve also got you covered with safety information, budget hacks, visa questions, and more.

Keep reading to dive into resources that will help you with planning a trip to North America.

Note: This ultimate North America guide contains affiliate links to trusted partners!

North America Map

Use this North America travel map to begin planning your trip to this incredible country!

North America travel map

Click here for an interactive Google Map version of the above graphic.

North America Travel Tips

Check out these guides sharing tips & itineraries around the continent:

Canada Travel Guide

Planning a trip to Canada? The following guides can help you create the perfect travel itinerary!

Alberta Travel Guide

British Columbia Travel Guide

Ontario Travel Guide

Plan an unforgettable trip to Ontario with the help of the following guides!

Quebec Travel Guide

Mexico Travel Guide

Planning a trip to Mexico? The following guides can help you create the perfect travel itinerary!

Mexico Travel Advice

Baja California Sur Travel Guide

Mexico City Travel Guide

Puebla Travel Guide

Puerto Vallarta Travel Guide

Yucatan Travel Guide

USA Travel Guide

Planning a trip to the USA? The following guides can help you create the perfect travel itinerary!

USA Travel Tips

Arizona Travel Guide

California Travel Guide

San Francisco City Guide

Los Angeles Travel Guide

Southern California Travel Guide

California Hiking Guides

California Road Trip Guides

California Travel Tips

The following California travel advice can help you plan the perfect trip to The Golden State!

Colorado Travel Guide

Breckenridge Travel Guide

Denver Travel Guide

Grand County Travel Guide

Vail Travel Guide

Ouray Travel Guide

Other Colorado Places To Visit

Tips For Visiting Colorado

Connecticut Travel Guide

Florida Travel Guide

Georgia Travel Guide

Atlanta Travel Guide

Savannah Travel Guide

Hawaii Travel Guide

Big Island Travel Guide

Oahu Travel Guide

Hawaii Travel Tips

Maine Travel Guide

Minnesota Travel Guide

New Mexico Travel Guide

Albuquerque Travel Guide

New Mexico Travel Tips

New York City Travel Guide

Manhattan Travel Guide

Brookyln Travel Guide

Queens Travel Guide

New York City Travel Tips

New York State Travel Guide

Hudson Valley Travel Guide

Long Island Travel Guide

Other New York State Destinations

North Carolina Travel Guide

Things To Do In Puerto Rico

Want to travel in the Caribbean? Puerto Rico has so much to offer, like…

South Carolina Travel Guide

Texas Travel Guide

Austin Travel Guide

Houston Travel Guide

San Antonio Travel Guide

Solo Travel In Texas

Planning a solo trip to Texas? These guides can help!

Utah Travel Guide

Virginia Travel Guide

Washington Travel Guide

Seattle

Best North America Tours

Explore local culture with a North America tour guide through these unique excursions:

Canada Tours:

  • North Shore Day Trip from Vancouver: Capilano Suspension Bridge & Grouse Mountain from Vancouver
  • Fundy Coast to Fundy Shore Tour from Saint John in New Brunswick
  • Northern Lights and Huskies from Whitehorse
  • Valley Wine Tour from Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • Tundra Buggy Autumn Day Tours with Polar Bear viewing from Churchill
  • Niagara Falls in One Day: Deluxe Sightseeing Tour of American and Canadian Sides from Ontario
  • Mountain Lakes and Waterfalls Day Trip from Banff
  • Victoria Whale Watch Tour with Views of Vancouver Island from Victoria

Click here for a full list of Canada travel tours!

Mexico Tours:

  • Chiche Itza & Cenote Full-Day Tour from Cancun
  • Rio Secreto Underground River Tour with Crystal Caves in Riviera Maya from Quintana Roo
  • Sumidero Canyon, Chiapa de Corzo Magical Town from San Cristóbal de las Casas
  • Flavors of Oaxaca: Cooking Class with No Set Menu and Local Market Tour from Oaxaca de Juárez
  • Sian Ka’an UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Adventure from Tulum
  • Guadalupe Valley Wine Route Tour in Baja California from Ensenada
  • Outdoor Adventure Zip Line and Speedboat Ride from Puerto Vallarta

Click here for a full list of Mexico travel tours!

USA Tours:

  • Las Vegas Helicopter Night Flight with Optional VIP Transportation (Las Vegas, Nevada)
  • Big Island in a Day: Volcanoes, Waterfalls, Sightseeing, History (Kailua-Kona, Hawaii)
  • Steamboat Natchez Evening Jazz Cruise with Dinner Option (New Orleans, Louisiana)
  • Napa and Sonoma Wine Country Full-Day Tour (San Francisco, California)
  • Statue of Liberty Monument, 9/11 Memorial, and Wall Street Tour (New York, NY)
  • Chicago Architecture River Cruise (Chicago, Illinois)
  • Salt Lake City Bike & Brew Tour (Salt Lake City, Utah)
  • True Crime Stories Walking Tour (Des Moines, Iowa)
  • Fountain Square Food Tour (Indianapolis, Indiana)
  • 45-minute Helicopter Flight Over the Grand Canyon (Tusayan, Arizona)

Click here for a full list of USA travel tours!

Renting A Car In North America

Need a rental car for your North America trip?

Use Discover Cars to quickly compare your car rental options.

Their comparison tool does the homework for you, so there’s no need to have up 10+ tabs trying to figure out which company is the most affordable. Actually, you can save up to 70% using their tool!

Public Transportation In North America

Getting around North America by train, bus, or ferry?

Omio is a must! You can use this tool for all of your public transportation needs when traveling around the continent.

The site is straightforward and user-friendly — and you can pre-book your tickets in advance at a discount.

They even offer flight and car deals!

Hotels In North America

Click here to browse the best North America hotels!

Prefer self-contained stays?

Click here to check out unique local rentals!

You can also use this map to search for local stays and experiences!

It’s set to NYC, but you can easily change the location to your specific destination:

North America Travel Insurance

It doesn’t matter if you’re traveling solo or with a group on a North American tour. When visiting North America — or any other country in the world — make sure to get travel insurance to protect your health and safety.

In my opinion, the best travel medical insurance for travelers is SafetyWing as they’ve got a large network and offer both short-term and long-term coverage — including coverage if you’re traveling for months as well as limited coverage in your home country).

Additionally, SafetyWing is budget-friendly and offers $250,000 worth of coverage with just one low overall deductible of $250.

With coverage, you’ll have peace of mind as you embark on your North America travel itinerary.

Click my referral link here to price out travel insurance for your trip in just a few clicks.

North America Travel Guide FAQ

Below, find answers to frequently asked questions about traveling around North America.

Q: What is the cheapest way to travel in North America?

The cheapest way to get around North America is probably by car. Car rentals in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico are fairly affordable and will allow you the freedom to visit some off-the-beaten-path destinations.

North America is a huge continent and public transportation varies significantly from place to place. If you want to visit a lot of destinations in one trip, renting a car is often your best bet.

Q: What is the best road trip in North America?

There are tons of great road trips to take throughout North America but Route 66, that classic highway that stretches from Illinois to California, is probably the most iconic.

On this trip — which is one of the best solo road trip ideas in the USA — you can pass through eight U.S. states, see gorgeous natural sites like the deserts of the Southwest, and stop by fun roadside attractions like the Cadillac Ranch in Texas.

Have a little extra time and want to cross another country off your travel list? Drive down the California coast from Los Angeles (where the route ends) and dip into the Mexican state of Baja California, driving Big Sur and spending a weekend in Paso Robles along the way.

Q: What are the best things to do in North America?

If you’re visiting the U.S. for the first time, make sure you hit some of the country’s major cities like New York City, New Orleans, Las Vegas, San Francisco, and more. Visiting these cities will give you a taste of the true diversity of the country and the culture of each region. Moreover, these are some of the best places to travel solo in the USA.

In NYC, you can explore the many reasons New York is so popular. For instance, you can catch a Broadway show, visit iconic sites like the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building, check out some of the more local things to do, and feast on foods from all around the world — or even take a day trip to explore some of the best hiking trails in Upstate New York! And if you’re going to New York alone, there is loads for solo travelers, too.

You can party it up in New Orleans, home of Mardi Gras, while learning about the Cajun culture that has endured on the Gulf Coast for centuries.

San Francisco will give you a taste of the West Coast, with a mix of great sites and fabulous natural wonders to explore. Moreover, a Big Sur road trip can be a scenic and adventurous experience to add to your California itinerary, or you can do a larger California road trip.

A visit to Canada is all about the great outdoors. Canada has tons of incredible national parks to explore, like the iconic Banff National Park in Alberta. This is one of the best places to see the Canadian Rockies in all their glory, hike through the hills, and do some rowing on crystal clear lakes. Bonus: There are a number of gorgeous Jacuzzi suites in Banff for relaxation after your adventures.

Additionally, there are some beautiful hiking trails near Toronto.

Canada is also a top destination for winter sports, boasting some of the best ski resorts in the world. Whistler in British Columbia is an incredible place to visit all year round, whether you’re into backcountry skiing or mountain biking.

Mexico is probably best known for its beaches but there’s so much culture and history to explore here as well.

You can get a bit of both on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula — one of the best places in Mexico to travel alone.

Here, you can relax on the beach and see some of the country’s top historic sites. The Yucatan is home to Chichen Itza, a Maya city with some of the best-preserved examples of pre-Columbian architecture still around toda.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site really gives you an idea of what daily life looked like for the ancient Mayas. Once you’re done exploring, relax at one of the famous beaches in cities like Tulum, Cancun, and Cozumel. If you have the time, spending 7 days in Cancun is highly recommended!

Q: How many days do you need for North America?

The length of your trip to North America definitely depends on your destination. If you’re looking to do a big trip visiting the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, plan for a long trip — like over a month if possible.

You’ll need lots of time to get from place to place; drives between destinations can take hours. You can also save some time and fly or take the train between cities if that’s available to you.

If you’re just planning on visiting one country at a time, plan for a week or two away.

Visit our individual country guides above to learn more!

Q: Is North America safe to travel?

This will vary depending on where you go. Each country and city has different crime levels and some types of crime are more common than others in different destinations.

In general, North America is fairly safe to visit. Most travelers do not run into any major issues in any of the major North American countries.

That said, petty crime like pickpocketing does happen, particularly in more popular tourist destinations, so knowing how to avoid pickpocketing is important.

Q: How long can a tourist stay in North America?

The length of time a tourist can stay in North America depends on the specific country being visited. It’s recommended to visit the following pages for more information:

Canada Travel Guide

Caribbean Travel Guide

Central America Travel Guide

Mexico Travel Guide

United States Travel Guide

Q: Do I need a North America travel visa?

Visa requirements for visiting North America depend on the specific country being visited. It’s recommended to visit the following pages for more information:

Canada Travel Guide

Caribbean Travel Guide

Central America Travel Guide

Mexico Travel Guide

United States Travel Guide

Q: Where is North America?

North America is a continent in the northern hemisphere and is a northern subcontinent of the Americas.

It is bordered by the Arctic Ocean (north), the Atlantic Ocean (east), South America and the Caribbean Sea (southeast), and the Pacific Ocean (west and south).

Q: Are credit cards accepted in North America?

Credit cards — particularly Visa and Mastercard — are widely accepted around North America, though it is always wise to carry some cash for smaller establishments and in case of emergency, as well as in more rural areas.

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