The United States, the United States of America, is a federal republic in central North America. It is a huge country bordering Canada in the north and Mexico in the south. Many people think that the United States and America are the same country, but that is not true. Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Argentina belong to America, but not the United States. A well-known symbol of the United States is the Statue of Liberty – a symbol of American freedom. The United States was founded on July 4, 1776 and today is the country’s national day. The United States is the world’s only superpower and the country is in a class of its own in terms of economic and political as well as military and cultural influence. No wonder, since the US military budget is larger than the ten closest major military powers combined and their GDP accounts for a fifth of the world’s total output. The United States is the world’s third largest country in terms of population and also to the surface if you count all the islands and territories that the United States has in the various world oceans. The capital of the United States is Washington, DC.
The United States is made up of 50 different states, which exercise extensive autonomy, all under the federal system. Of these 50 states, 49 are designated as continental and are located in North America. The fiftieth is Hawaii, an archipelago in the Pacific Ocean. The largest city in the United States is New York. Then comes Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Phoenix. Other cities that are famous and well visited by tourists are Orlando, Miami, Honolulu, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Washington DC.
Because the United States has such a large area and a large geographical variation, there are also most types of climate in the country. East of the 100th meridian, the climate varies from a humid continental climate in the north to a humid subtropical climate in the south. Hawaii and southern Florida are tropical. The mountains in the west have a mountain climate. The area west of the 100th meridian, Great Plains, has a semi-arid climate. In the southwest, the desert prevails. Along the California coast there is a Mediterranean climate, while there is a coastal climate along Oregon and Washington as well as in southern Alaska. The rest of Alaska has a subarctic climate. Extreme weather and natural disasters in the United States, such as hurricanes and tornadoes, are not uncommon.
What can you do in the US?
There is so much to do, see and experience in the great country in the west. More than 300,000 Swedes visit the United States every year and what mainly attracts them is shopping, sightseeing and American culture. American culture has a strong influence on the rest of the world, especially when it comes to music, movies and TV series that are exported on a large scale. The American lifestyle with fast food and high dependence on motor vehicles is also a cultural feature that has influenced the outside world. American food is reminiscent of European food. Traditional dishes include turkey, venison, corn and potatoes. The United States is also known for its great interest in sports and baseball, American football, basketball and wrestling are the biggest sports. Feel free to go to a sporting event if you visit the country, if nothing else for the atmosphere.
There are also plenty of attractions and tourist destinations in the United States. Cities such as New York, Los Angeles and Honolulu attract large numbers of visitors every year. The Statue of Liberty is also something that tourists want to see, just like the Golden Gate Bridge, the Grand Canyon and Disney World. Visiting celebrity houses is also something that is often high on the list for tourists.
Roadtrip in the USA
By far the most common form of excursion and travel in the United States is undoubtedly a road trip. This phenomenon has been immortalized in a long cavalcade of college movies, but taking your car and traveling around the United States is an activity that is almost as old as the car itself. And why not take the opportunity to travel around? Petrol is cheap, and in such a large country it is without a doubt the best way to experience as much as possible!
Things to think about before a road trip are above all the distances: they are much longer than you think! Should you also stop on the way to visit sights, eat, sleep, refuel and so on, everything will take much longer than planned. List a roadmap on the map, and the number of days you need. Then add a third of the days, or subtract a third of the distance. Otherwise, you will only be disappointed when you realize that you are 300 km from your destination with one day left of the US trip.
An alternative to renting a car is otherwise to get a Greyhound pass. With around 13,000 departures daily from over 2000 destinations, it’s an exciting way to travel! You also never know who you end up with…