There’s something about travel that is inspiring. Perhaps it’s the endless possibilities of an adventure that lie before you, or it’s simply the thrill of exploring new tourist places and learning more about the world.
No matter your reasons for wanting to travel, one thing is certain: you must make sure that you see all the top tourist attractions in the world while you’re at it!
With their guide, we’re providing a checklist of Earth’s most iconic tourist destinations, from UNESCO world heritage sites to picturesque temples and tourist hotspots. So start packing your bags and get ready for an adventure!
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14 Top Tourist Places in the World
1. The Eiffel Tower in Paris, France
The Eiffel Tower, or “Tour Eiffel” in French, is the world’s most recognizable monument. Built to impress at the 1889 World’s Fair, the tower is symbolic of art, love, French culture, and industrial prowess.
Whether you’re backpacking through Europe with friends, traveling with family, or even if you want to solo travel to Paris, this charming, historic, and culturally-rich city is an unforgettable destination.
If you plan to spend money hard-earned money to travel to France and see the best of Paris, the Eiffel Tower will naturally be on your itinerary. But don’t worry, there are plenty of other incredible things to do in Paris to keep you busy for days or even weeks, beyond just the city’s most famous monument.
2. The Colosseum in Rome, Italy
Next on our list of the most visitable tourist destinations in the world is the famous Colosseum in Rome. Although earthquakes and neglect have destroyed much of its structure through the centuries, it is the world’s largest amphitheater that is still standing.
Here, you can delve into this historical marvel and conclude your tour with a visit to the Roman Forum next door, or perhaps a delicious pizza and gelato nearby.
Read More: Rome, Italy: Ultimate Travel Guide
3. Machu Picchu in the Sacred Valley, Peru
Mysterious, spiritual, and stunning – Machu Picchu is an out-of-this-world citadel high up in the Andes mountains in Peru.
If you are into mind-blowing architectural forms, Machu Picchu is the place to visit. You will be dumbfounded by the beautiful structure, detailing, and technology that went into building it.
One of the world’s seven wonders, the mountainous citadel is a paradise for sightseeing, landscape photography, hiking, and spending the day among the treasures of the Incan civilization.
4. The Grand Canyon in Arizona, USA
The Grand Canyon in Arizona is one of the most iconic landmarks in the United States of America. It is a natural wonder that was formed over time by the Colorado River. The canyon is vast, running for about 277 miles. It is 18 miles wide at its widest point.
You can explore the Grand Canyon on foot or via a helicopter tour. The latter is an excellent option if you want to explore more of the area in a short amount of time.
5. Taj Mahal in Agra, India
The fifth Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan, built a massive tomb for his beloved wife, Arjumand Banu, after she passed away during childbirth. The spell-bounding white marble mausoleum is now a symbol of love, and thousands of tourists visit it every day to witness eternal love wrought in stones.
Furthermore, the structure represents the lavish lifestyle of the Mughals, the might of their dynasty, and their culture. That is one of the top attractions and places to visit in India and more than worth the travel to get to it.
6. Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Angkor Wat was built for immortal gods, and its builders ensured that the temple shared their immortality. Even if you plan a brief temple visit, this temple will make an imprint on your mind: How minuscule our lives are, how awe-inspiring engineering can be, what a rich civilization Cambodia has, and more. Angkor Wat comes home with you.
Tourists love to visit for an adventurous hike up the shrines, the bas-relief area that is a narrative of Hindu epics, and an unforgettable sunrise seen through the silhouette of the central sanctuary.
7. Las Vegas in Nevada, USA
Synonymous with gambling, top-notch casinos, and nightlife, Las Vegas is one of the most visited and happening places on Earth. “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” as they say. But we are sure that the memories of your fun-filled vacation will stay with you forever.
You can explore several themed hotels, party at top nightclubs, witness live shows, and pamper yourself at luxury spas. Gambling is legal here, and you will find world-famous casinos like Caesars Palace, Bellagio, MGM Grand, Venetian, Wynn Las Vegas, and many more.
You can also visit the newest attractions like FlyOver Las Vegas and Area 15. And if you get lucky, you just might spot a celebrity or two!
Don’t think about traveling without a good VPN (Virtual Private Network). Using a VPN while connecting to the internet is an easy way to keep your personal information safe from hackers and trackers. We’ve used NordVPN for years and couldn’t recommend it more – it’s a must for safety online, at home or abroad.
8. Giza Necropolis in Cairo, Egypt
The world of Egyptian Gods and mythologies lures everyone, even if you are not a history buff. The mystical pyramids are not only architectural marvels but have long been the center of several fictional stories and archeological tales.
Visit remains of the world’s most ancient civilization while on a horse ride to the Necropolis. You can also visit the nearby city of Cairo for more modern architecture and culture, plus incredible relics found inside and around the pyramids.
9. Petra in Jordan
The ancient city of Petra houses several architectural monuments hewn in pink sandstone. This is why Petra is nicknamed “Rose City.” It was once a center of trade for the Nabatean Kingdom. But it sat vacant for over 500 years before being rediscovered and earning the name “the lost city.”
It is Jordan’s most famous tourist destination, not just for its historical importance but its beauty. It is also an excellent hiking site for those who love to break a sweat while learning about the past.
10. Niagara Falls in New York and Ontario
Niagara Falls is a majestic waterfall on the border of the USA and Canada. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in North America. The falls are absolutely stunning, and you can experience them up close by signing up for the Maid of the Mist boat tour.
You can also explore the area around the falls by hiking or taking a helicopter tour for a bird’s eye view of one of the tallest falls in the world.
One easy way to enjoy the falls is to have a meal at a fantastic restaurant with a view. Doing so will provide exceptional, unobstructed views of the falls.
11. The Great Wall of China
If you are listing the world’s best tourist places, the Great Wall of China is a mandatory mention. Apart from being a hikers’ heaven, the massive structure is also excellent for a night walk, camping, picnic, marathon, or to create drool-worthy pictures.
To avoid overcrowding, frequent travelers do not recommend visiting during holidays. Not only is it a popular tourist place, but locals also tend to pay frequent visits.
12. Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The Brazilian statue of Cristo Redentor is smaller and not as old as New York’s Statue of Liberty. Yet, its aesthetics, symbolism, and architecture beat Lady Liberty to make it into the new seven wonders of the world list – and it’s easily one of South America’s most famous landmarks.
If you crave a little adrenaline or want to make the most of your trip, we recommend hiking up Corcovado mountain in Brazil. You will come across luscious green forest, spectacular waterfalls, and perhaps a few animals too!
13. The Matterhorn in Zermatt, Switzerland
Skiing through the Alps sounds incredibly exhilarating! And when you’re skiing on the stunning slopes of Matterhorn, you are bound to have the experience of a lifetime.
The mountain is known for its near-symmetric pyramidal structure. Plus, the fact that it is easily accessible makes it even more attractive.
You can reach Europe’s highest station through multiple cable car rides, only to be dumbfounded by the panoramic vistas, the world’s longest ski slope, and breathtaking natural ice sculptures.
14. The Acropolis, Athens
According to CNN, the Acropolis is one of the world’s most overcrowded tourist destinations, but once you get there, you’ll understand why it’s a must-visit.
It is an emblem of Greek history and culture. The citadel still stands despite several wars, atmospheric hardships, theft, and other calamities.
As it honors the Greek goddess Athena, it is a seat to Greek mythology. The panoramic view of Athens that you see from the Acropolis is something you will never forget. The night lights are unmissable.
Make sure you plan a long-enough visit in Greece to experience Acropolis magic – perhaps consider applying for Greece’s new digital nomad visa if you’re able to work remotely!
These are only a few of the best places to visit worldwide that should be on your travel checklist. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your next adventure today!
This post originally appeared on Savoteur.
Carley Rojas Avila is a bilingual New York-based travel writer, editor, content marketer, and the founder of the digital travel publications Explorers Away and Home to Havana. Carley is an expert on all things Latin America, the Caribbean, and Cuba, having lived and worked in four different countries in the region. Her writing has appeared on the Associated Press wires and in Travel + Leisure, Yahoo, MSN, Euronews, The Weather Channel, and more. When she's not writing about her travels, find her front row at a Bad Bunny concert, befriending street cats, and taste-testing every pizza in Havana.