east coast Florida southeast travel

50 Places to visit in the South East

There is nothing quite like the South Eastern United States. Miles upon miles of coast line make up this amazing area. Swim in the Atlantic Ocean or take a dip in the Gulf of Mexico. After all, some of the best beaches can be found in the South East.

Take a detour from the beaches and visit cities like Atlanta, Miami, Orlando, New Orleans, or Memphis. Take in American History in Washington, DC. Or get a real taste of Moonshine in and around the Great Smoky Mountains. There is fun and adventure around every corner in the South East.

The South East consists of Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Washington, DC. Many of these states helped fight for Independence in 1776. Now get back your independence by visiting the south. Roll down the windows and smell that salty air as we explore 50 must see places in the South East.

Key West, Florida

Key West, Florida, Southernmost point, holiday, vacation, road trip

It’s the southernmost point in the US. 

Biltmore Estates- Asheville, North Carolina

Many things in Asheville, NC are worth a visit but a must-see in this area is Biltmore Estates. Asheville is also where you can hope on the Blue Ridge Parkway and really get to see some of the beauty of North Carolina.

Memphis, Tennessee 

Memphis, Tennessee, Mississippi River,

Memphis is located along the mighty Mississippi River in southwest Tennessee. Legendary artists like B.B. King, Johnny Cash, and Elvis Presley recorded albums in the city. But there is more to Memphis than just music. If you are a fan of dry rub barbecue, Memphis is a must-do. 

New Orleans, Louisiana 

French Quarter, New Orleans,  Louisiana

New Orleans is more than just Mardi Gras. Visit Plantations, ride Streetcars, or take a stroll around the French Quarter.

Fort Delaware State Park – Delaware City, Delaware

This state park in Delaware City is an amazing sight to see that dates back to 1859 and once housed Confederate prisoners during the Civil War. 

Savannah, Georgia 

Don’t skip this city in Georgia as you are traveling up and down I-95. This coastal Georgia city is known for its antebellum architecture, horse-drawn carriages, and Forsyth Park. 

Tampa Bay, Florida

Clearwater, Florida,

The Tampa-Clearwater-St. Petersburg is one of the best locations in Florida. Located on the Gulf Coast of Florida and is home to Busch Gardens, ZooTampa, Florida Aquarium, and much more. A visit to this area is even worth skipping Orlando.

Nashville, Tennessee

The home of Country Music so of course, you have to pay a visit to the Grand Old Opry and the Country Music Hall of Fame. While you’re in town also stop by to see the largest collection of Johnny Cash memorabilia and artifacts at the Johnny Cash Museum. 

Kentucky Down Under– Horse Cave, Kentucky 

Kentucky Down Under, Kentucky, Kangaroo,

Looking to take a tour of a cave and pet kangaroos? Kentucky Down Under is the place for you. Never in my life did I think I would be able to get so close to a kangaroo. It is an amazing experience. 

Washington, DC

Capital Building, Washington, DC,

So many things to see and do in DC that you should check out some of our other posts. Many of the museums are free and the Monuments around town are beautiful. The National Zoo is another great location for anyone to enjoy. 

Arlington, Virginia

Arlington National Cemetery,

Visit the National Cemetery at Arlington and pay your respect to those Americans who fought so you could be free. While there, remember to see the US Marine Corps War Memorial. Semper Fi Devil Dogs

Miami, Florida 

Miami is full of beautiful views, beaches, and art deco landmarks. Don’t pass on a visit to Miami while you are on your way to the Florida Keys. 

Miami, florida, Skyline, nighttime, east coast, United States,

Ocean City, Maryland

Ocean City, Maryland is a popular summer destination for its wooden boardwalk, shops, hotels, and of course beaches. 

Jackson, Mississippi

It might be the capital of Mississippi but Jackson has some amazing sites to see. Jackson played an important role in the civil rights movement and you can find landmarks throughout the city for this. The Mississippi Freedom Trail also runs through the city. 

The Mississippi State Capitol building is one of the most beautiful state capitol buildings in the US. 

Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas 

Mountain views, abundant creeks, and ancient thermal springs are just a few reasons to visit this National Park that is smacked in the middle of the town of Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Many people will just visit New Orleans when visiting Louisiana but that would be a mistake. Baton Rouge should also be on your must-see Louisiana list with the antebellum landmarks dotted throughout the city.

Cape Henlopen State Park – Lewes, Delaware

You can grab a ferry from here to Cape May, New Jersey. 

Birmingham, Alabama

When in Birmingham you must stop by and see the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum. You don’t even need to be a motorcycle or racing fan to enjoy this place. You will also find the world’s largest iron-ore statue and one of the nation’s tallest statues called the Vulcan after the Roman god.  

Chincoteague, Virginia

Ever wanted to watch wild ponies in action? 

St. Augustine, Florida

old city, St. Augustine, Florida, East Coast, United States

Looking to visit the oldest city in the US? Well, St. Augustine claims to be that city. Even if it is not it is still a beautiful city on the Florida coast. 

Louisville, Kentucky 

Home of two important things in sports. Churchill Downs home of the Kentucky Derby and Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory. 

Blue Ridge Parkway- North Carolina and Virginia

Blue Ridge Parkway, North Carolina, Road Trip, scenic,

Some of the best views on the east coast of the United States can be found along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina and Virginia. Pack a lunch and sit back and relax. 

Biloxi, Mississippi

You can gamble in Biloxi or you can enjoy the view of the Gulf of Mexico. One thing you should do, however, is to visit the Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum. 

West Virginia Penitentiary – Moundsville, West Virginia

Visit this prison that once held more than 1,000 prisoners between 1876 to 1995. If you are brave enough visit them at night. Close to 100 executions took place here so you never know who’s ghost might show up.

Charleston, South Carolina

Founded in 1670 this coastal city is known for its French Quarter, cobblestone streets, and Fort Sumter. 

Atlanta, Georgia

One of the Largest Aquariums in the world can be found in Atlanta and should be on any aquarium lovers list. The World of Coca-Cola museum also calls Atlanta home.

Skyline Drive- Virginia

This 105-mile road takes you through the Shenandoah National Park in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia. Depending on how you look at it, it is either the start or end of the Blue Ridge Parkway. 

Disney World – Orlando, Florida

WDW, Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida, Theme Park, Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Slinky Dog Dash, Seven dwarfs mine train,

The most visited theme park in the World. Disney World is made up of 4 theme parks, 2 water parks, a shopping district, and many resorts. Once you visit you may never want to leave again. 

Oak Alley Plantation – Vacherie, Louisiana

Historic plantation on the Mississippi River. 

Cheaha State Park, Alabama 

More and more people are rediscovering state parks since the Pandemic and a visit to Cheaha State Park is a must if you are traveling through Alabama. The views will leave you speechless. 

Universal Studios Florida – Orlando, Florida

Harry Potter, Simpsons, Cat in the Hat, Universal Studios Orlando, Florida, Islands of Adventure, Theme Park, Central Florida, East Coast

A theme park with many rides and attractions that are based on the entertainment industry. Spend the day fighting aliens, escaping Gringotts, or racing through New York with Jimmy Fallon. 

Hunting Island State Park– St. Helena Island, South Carolina

Hunting Island State park, Beach, Lighthouse, South Carolina, East Coast,

Hunting Island State Park is home to one of the only publicly opened lighthouses in the State. Plus you can go sand dollar hunting here. Maybe you will have better luck than we did. 

Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee

Great Smoky Mountains, scenic, road trip, Tennessee, North Carolina

Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains and worth the trip up. Most of the trip can be made by car. The rest will need to be done on foot. 

Red River Gorge, Kentucky

Red River Gorge lies within the Daniel Boone National Forest and they claim to be the best-kept family vacation secret. This side of the Mississippi river of course.

National Museum of the United States Marine Corps – Quantico, Virginia

USMC, Marine Corps, Museum, Devil Dogs, Semper Fi, Quantico, Virginia, East Coast, United States,

A museum all about the history of the greatest fighting force in the World. Learn the history of Devil Dog, Jarhead, Leatherneck, and more. 

Baltimore, Maryland

Baltimore doesn’t get enough credit for the amazing city that it is. Fort Mchenry, Baltimore Museum of Art, the National Aquarium, inner harbor, Babe Ruth Museum are just some of the many great places you can visit. Don’t just drive by on your way to DC or NYC. 

Assateague Island National Seashore – Berlin, Maryland

Ever wanted to camp on the beach? Here’s your chance at Assateague Island National Seashore. Don’t forget to watch the wild horses and other island wildlife. 

Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

These two great towns are nested in the Great Smoky Mountains and offer a wide range of interesting one of a kind places and thrilling rides. Dollywood will satisfy your craving for thrill rides. The Titanic Museum will let you discover the interesting and tragic history of this massive vessel. 

Gatlinburg, Tennessee, Smoky Mountains,

Of course, you can’t miss out on all the Ripley’s attractions or Cooters Place (Dukes of Hazzard Museum. Don’t forget to taste some moonshine at the Sugarlands Distilling Company. 

Rehoboth Beach, Delaware

The best boardwalk in Delaware? Of course, it is. 

Outer Banks, North Carolina

The Outer Banks of North Carolina is more than just beaches. Of course, there are plenty of beaches for you to enjoy. But take a day away from the beach and discover where the Wright Brothers first took flight. 

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Not only is Myrtle Beach one of the most popular beach locations on the east coast of the US. It is also home to one of the tallest Ferris Wheels in the country.

Pensacola, Florida

Pensacola, Florida is known for its white-sand beaches and is part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore. 

Talladega National Forest, Alabama

On the southern edge of the Appalachian Mountains is Talladega National Forest which covers 392,567 acres. 

Cypress Swamp – Canton, Mississippi

cypress swamp, Mississippi,

Cypress Swamp is part of the Big Cypress National Preserve. 

Avery Island, Louisiana

Avery Island is home to TABASCO® but also home to Jungle Gardens which features a Chinese garden and bird sanctuary. 

Gulf Shores, Alabama 

Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, Alabama has beaches, a pier, and miles of trails to enjoy along the Gulf Coast. The Gulf Coast Zoo is another great place to visit. Did you know they have a two-toed sloth named Speedy and Sonic?

Mississippi River

Mississippi River, Bridge, Sunset, water,

The mighty Mississippi River flows 2,320 miles starting in Minnesota and empties into the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana. The river touches 5 different Southeastern states and a stop of any of the river towns will leave you with plenty to do. Have you ever been on a paddlewheel cruise?

Williamsburg, Virginia 

Ever wonder what it was like to live in the Colonial days? Williamsburg can answer that and more for you. 

Old Salem – Winston-Salem, North Carolina

A historic district in Winston-Salem, NC. It was originally settled in 1766 and lets you relive that time with a visit. This is an amazing living history museum like Williamsburg, VA.

Mammoth Cave, Kentucky

Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky, biosphere reserve, world heritage site, National Park Service

Mammoth Cave National Park is the longest cave system known in the world. Some people even claim it is one of the entrances to the hollow earth.

The South East is packed full of interesting, amazing, and unique places for anyone to visit. How many have you visited? How many are you going to add to your next summer adventure? Let us know in the comments below.

Looking for even more places you need to visit in the US? Check out our list of 200 places you need to visit in the US. Who knows where the road will take you.

Want to continue on the journey with us? Be sure to follow us on social media by clicking the icons below. We post content weekly and are always looking for fun and exciting places to visit. Just drop us a line on where we should go next or what we should do.

Thank You everyone who has commented and followed us. It means a lot and helps us continue making post, photos, and guides for you. Till our next post….. Have a great day!

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