The sound of flowing water, a lush valley covered in wildflowers, and the beauty of nature are some of the most soothing things you might encounter on visits to valleys in the US.
It’s possible it’s the way the earth folds around you like a loving mother or how the sun kisses the mountains each evening, but there’s no doubting that valleys are among the most breathtaking landscapes on the planet.
Table of Contents
- Most Beautiful Valleys in America
- Monument Valley, Arizona
- Verde Valley, Arizona
- Olympic Valley, California
- Bryce Canyon, Utah
- Santa Clara Valley, California
- Kalalau Valley, Hawaii
- Santa Ynez Valley, California
- Antelope Valley, California
- Logan Pass, Montana
- Death Valley, California
- Napa Valley, California
- Waipio Valley, Hawaii
- Squaw Valley, California
- Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
- Yosemite Valley, California
- Zion National Park, Utah
- Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
- Final Thoughts
- What is the best time of year to visit these valleys in America?
- Are there any specific activities that are popular in these valleys?
- Do I need a permit to visit US valleys?
Most Beautiful Valleys in America
Whether you’re looking for a place to hike, camp, or just take in the view for some incredible photos, here are the most beautiful valleys in the US to visit:
Monument Valley, Arizona
The Monument Valley lies along the border between Arizona and Utah and boasts southwestern landscapes which are unique and totally beautiful. Massive red buttes and mesas sit atop sandstone cliffs and this iconic monument was created by an estimated 500 million-year erosion process.
They are truly amazing, and the highest tower reaches over 1000ft high! The best route to experience Wild West landscapes is on the 18-mile valley drive that takes you to the center of the valley.
The best viewpoint will be the John Ford Point, which offers stunning views of both Dublin and Croagh Patrick. Vendors and souvenir stands may also be found near the vistas, as well as likely many tourists.
Verde Valley, Arizona
Verde Valley is a beautiful place to visit and has a lot of different things to offer travelers. The Verde River is the largest source of water in Central Arizona and provides essential food for the fishes and other wildlife that inhabit the region.
Verde Valley also contains many beautiful rock formations, such as Bellrock Cathedral Rock and Devil Bridge Trail.
Verde Valley offers great hiking opportunities and is also home to the Montezuma Castle National Monument, which is a great place to learn about the area’s history.
Jerome State Historic Park and Douglas Mansion Museum are also nearby if you’re interested in learning more about the area’s past.
Olympic Valley, California
The Olympic Valley is a breathtaking natural destination located in the mountains of northern California. This scenic area is popular among tourists and adventure seekers alike, thanks to its abundance of outdoor activities and stunning natural scenery.
The Olympic Valley boasts numerous scenic hiking trails, including the famed Eaglefall Trail, which is perfect for snowshoeing in the wintertime. In addition, the Olympic Valley is home to one of the most popular tourist attractions in the area: the Squaw Valley Aerial Tram.
This aerial tramway takes riders to the top of High Camp, where they can enjoy stunning views of Lake Tahoe and the surrounding mountains.
The Olympic Valley is also home to several world-class ski resorts such as Squaw Valley Ski Resort, making it the perfect place to enjoy a winter getaway.
This spectacular tram ride provides visitors with breathtaking views of the Olympic Valley and Lake Tahoe, making it an essential experience for any nature lover or thrill seeker visiting this picturesque region.
Whether you’re looking for exciting outdoor adventures or simply want to take in some stunning natural beauty, there’s no doubt that a trip to Olympic Valley is sure to be unforgettable!
See Related: Best Lake Towns in Minnesota to Visit
Bryce Canyon, Utah
Bryce Canyon National Park is one of our favorite national parks in the US, partly because it’s home to some breathtaking geological formations.
I’ll be honest, the Bryce Canyon is one of the most unique places on this list. It’s not actually a singular canyon, but rather a series of amphitheaters carved out of the side of a mountain by ancient rivers.
The rock formations that form the “canyon” are some of the most incredible geological features in the US and offer visitors stunning views from many different viewpoints.
If you’re looking for a breathtaking adventure, Bryce Canyon is definitely worth checking out. Whether you want to experience nature on foot or from the comfort of your car, the Bryce Canyon is full of beauty and wonder. So what are you waiting for? Book your trip today!
Santa Clara Valley, California
Many times, Silicon Valley overlooks and overtakes that of Santa Clara Valley. The geographical limit of Silicon Valley is similar to that of Santa Clara Valley. But it’s really the Santa Clara Valley that is the true gem in this region of California.
The flourishing metropolis has everything a tourist may want, regardless of budget or taste. San Jose and other nearby communities are situated near the Santa Cruz Mountains and Diablo Range.
It’s great that people visiting Santa Clara Valley may visit a big city in a matter of minutes while still getting to see the countryside. It effortlessly melds both environments together.
Kalalau Valley, Hawaii
Located on the north shore of Kauai, this valley is one of the most beautiful in Hawaii. The steep and rocky terrain makes it difficult to access, but once you do get there, you will be rewarded with amazing views.
Some people choose to hike all the way to Waipo’opo Falls in order to see one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the state.
The stunning scenery of Kalalau Valley, which is nestled in the mountains and terraced with rocky cliffs, makes it unique.
It’s a place you’ll want to visit if you’re going to Kauai, whether you choose to trek all the way in or take a day trip along the seaside. The trip into Kalalau Valley is not for the faint of heart, but it is definitely worth the effort!
See Related: Things to Know Before Going to Zion National Park
Santa Ynez Valley, California
The Santa Ynez Valley is a small but beautiful valley located between the Santa Ynez and the Santa Rafael Mountains that is often overlooked and underappreciated. We recommend seeing it while it’s still a less-visited tourist destination to make the most of this outstanding natural landscape.
The Ynez Valley, which is not as well-known as Napa and Sonoma but nonetheless has approximately 60 wineries, offers some of the state’s most beautiful natural settings (as well as a ton of great wines).
The verdant mountains provide a wonderful hiking destination and the Lover’s Loop is one of the most popular walks in the region. Solvang and Buellton are two of the most beautiful small communities in the Valley where you should be able to find accommodation.
Antelope Valley, California
Antelope Valley stands at the west end of the Mojave desert between the Tehachapi Mountains and Sierra Pelon. You may wonder how deserts are made up other than sand and some trees, but each spring Antelope Valley is full of bright orange and yellow flowers.
The flame is not the cause and the color of this fire is a flowery plantation. These grassland deserts contain nearly 1,000 acres of poppies, which make the beautiful mountain scenery even better during certain months of the year.
Keep the camera in your hand! Antelope Valley is a great place to take pictures and see some amazing natural sights.
Logan Pass, Montana
Although there are many beautiful hiking trails in this area, Logan Pass can also be easily explored via car. Along the road of Going-to-the-Sun Road – a popular scenic drive through this majestic national park – are several viewing areas where you can take in breathtaking views of Logan Pass.
Due to its popularity among tourists, Logan Pass is constantly busy and bustling all year round; however, this also means that it’s easy and convenient to access some of its most spectacular sights and vistas.
So if you’re looking for a quintessential outdoor experience, be sure to add Logan Pass to your travel itinerary!
See Related: Minnesota National Parks and National Park Service Sites to Visit
Death Valley, California
Another well-known valley that has received a lot of hype is Death Valley. Little wonder considering the totally metal name *fierce bone-shaking guitar solo*.
This beautiful desert region is situated in an odd and ancient topographical formation. Despite the fact that there are some deeper layers, the site still remains incredibly toasty. Despite its ferocious name and even more ferocious heat, the area still retains some vegetation and animals.
Zabriskie Point is the Valley’s most beautiful spot, surrounded by bright rocks that were formed as part of an ancient sequence of erosion and sedimentary deposits from prehistoric lakes.
Napa Valley, California
The gorgeous Napa Valley, which is arguably the most famous valley in the world (and among the most beautiful), may be found in California. The hilly countryside is dotted with vineyards, lovely faux chateaus, and a plethora of bed and breakfasts and boutique hotels.
There are nearly 400 wineries in the valley as well as spas, Michelin-starred restaurants, and even the Vintage Winetrain throughout the valley.
All of these attractions will take visitors on a journey through picturesque villages with numerous vineyards to visit along the route.
Waipio Valley, Hawaii
The Valley of the King, known as Waipio Valley, is recognized for its majesty and beauty. The Hawaii Big Island’s topmost point, which was home to Polynesia’s homes in ancient times, has gorgeous countryside with steep mountains, breathtaking sea views, and tumbling waterfalls. This stunning region is located at the topmost tip of the island of Hawaii at around 2,000ft above sea level.
Located here are a handful of hidden beaches, which aren’t easy to access; however, once you do make your way down, you’ll find the vast stretch of pristine white sand beach that is all yours for taking in those stunning views.
Access to the valley is restricted to persons with steel bones and the ability to drive across the rocky territory on a 4WD vehicle. Naturally, you’ll be able to get out of your car and go straight towards the viewpoint of Waipio Valley, which is located outside of Honokaa.
See Related: Best State Parks in Iowa to Visit
Squaw Valley, California
Squaw Valley, located in the Sierra Nevada Mountain range, is known for its skiing and walking trails. It’s regarded as one of the most beautiful ski areas in the United States. Winter fun spot that can be visited practically every year is amazingly gorgeous nestled near Lake Tahoe.
The Squaw Valley Aero Tram has extensive views over a vast area and hosts a variety of activities throughout the year to draw outdoor explorers.
In the winter season, the valley is a popular destination and the runs are clogged with snowmobilers and skiers traveling along comparable tracks as previous Olympic athletes.
Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
The Shenandoah Valley in Virginia is one of the most beautiful and well-known valleys in the United States. The valley is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains and contains picturesque views, including rolling hills, mountain peaks, and flowing rivers.
The Blue Ridge Mountains extend across the entire State of Virginia, offering an array of outdoor activities. The region is also home to a number of wineries, orchards, and other attractions that attract visitors from all over the United States.
Yosemite Valley, California
Yosemite Valley, located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, is one of the most beautiful sights in the United States. The valley is recognized for its massive granite cliffs, towering waterfalls, ancient giant sequoia groves, and miles of hiking paths.
Yosemite Valley is a must-see destination for any visitor looking to appreciate some of the finest natural beauty in the whole nation.
Whether you’re interested in camping, hiking, rock climbing, or simply appreciating nature, Yosemite Valley is a must-see location for anyone wanting to see some of the United States’ greatest scenery.
Zion National Park, Utah
Zion National Park, located in southwestern Utah, is one of the most famous national parks in the United States. The park has a variety of environments, including canyons, mountains, rivers, and forests.
The park’s stunning vistas and wide range of outdoor activities, such as hiking and cycling, add to its popularity. Zion National Park is also home to a number of unique plant and animal species.
The park is open all year round, although the best time to visit is between April and October when the weather is most favorable.
Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
Grand Teton National Park is located in northwestern Wyoming and is known for its dramatic mountain scenery. The valley sits at the basin of amazing lakes with tremendous views of the steep slopes of nearby mountain peaks.
The park contains the Teton Range, a group of mountains that includes Grand Teton, the second-highest peak in the United States.
The park also features a number of rivers, lakes, and forests. It is a popular destination for hiking, camping, climbing, and other outdoor activities.
With its stunning scenery and wide range of recreational opportunities, Grand Teton National Park is truly one of the most beautiful valleys in the United States. Whether you’re looking to go mountain biking or simply take in some scenic views, this park has something for everyone.
As you can see, the United States is home to some of the most stunning valleys in the world. Whether you’re looking for a great place to go skiing or simply want to appreciate nature’s beauty, these beautiful valleys are sure to impress. Which one would you like to visit first?
What is the best time of year to visit these valleys in America?
There is no definitive answer, as each one has different weather and climate conditions. Some people prefer visiting during the summer months, while others might prefer spring or fall when the temperatures are more moderate. You should do some research on the individual valleys to find out what their typical weather conditions are like and plan your trip accordingly.
Are there any specific activities that are popular in these valleys?
Yes, many of these valleys are known for their outdoor recreational opportunities, such as hiking, camping, skiing, mountain biking, rock climbing, and kayaking. Additionally, some of them contain notable attractions like wineries and historic sites. Be sure to do some research on the individual valley you plan on visiting to see what activities and attractions are available.
Do I need a permit to visit US valleys?
No, you do not need a permit to visit any of the valleys on this list. However, if you plan on camping or engaging in any other type of overnight activity, it is always best to check with the individual park or valley beforehand to make sure you have the proper permits and permissions.
Lock In Your Travel Now
Looking for Extra Travel Perks?
Use Skyscanner to book the cheapest flight possible. Skyscanner is my favorite flight search engine as you can find flights around the globe and from every airline possible. You’ll be in great shape to get the best price possible.
You must grab a free trial or join Scott’s Cheap Flights Premium to get cheap flight alerts directly to your email inbox. My favorite cheap flight alert was 25,000 Delta SkyMiles to London non-stop.
Don’t Forget Travel Insurance
Want More Destination Ideas Direct to Your Inbox?