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United States: the best tropical destinations

To the point Let's explore the best tropical destinations in the USA, from the mainland to the islands of paradise!

The USA isn’t just known for its bustling metropolises and spectacular scenery; it’s also home to tropical destinations that rival some of the world’s most popular destinations.

The country has several tropical regions due to its vast coastal and island territory, and the influence of the oceans and ocean currents.

These regions therefore have everything to attract travelers looking for warm climates, pretty beaches and the great outdoors.

Key West Pexels

The U.S. also has several tropical overseas territories, including Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands.

And let’s not forget Hawaii, an island state in the Pacific Ocean. It’s a place renowned for its impressive archipelago of islands enjoying a warm, humid climate, where travellers feel right at home in paradise!

Now here’s a list of 10 of the best tropical destinations in the U.S. that will transport you to a world of natural beauty and relaxation.

Key West, Florida

The Keys are a string of tropical islands off the southern tip of Florida.

With their relaxed atmosphere, turquoise waters and dazzling coral reefs, the Keys are a paradise for diving, snorkeling and water sports enthusiasts.

Key West, in particular, captivates with its lively atmosphere and superb sunsets.

In Key West, be sure to visit the home of Ernest Hemingway, the famous American writer, as well as the southernmost point of the continental USA, marked by an iconic buoy-shaped monument.

Key West – pexels
Oceans Edge Resort & Marina Key West

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory located in the Caribbean, is well worth a visit for its culture, heavenly beaches and diversity of landscapes, from verdant mountains to historic cities.

You’ll love discovering the rainforest of El Yunque, the magnificent beaches of Vieques and strolling through the picturesque streets of San Juan’s old town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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Here are some of the best hotels in Puerto Rico:

San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino

Catalina Island, California

Off the coast of Southern California, Catalina Island offers a picturesque tropical getaway near Los Angeles.

Here, you can explore the seabed on a diving excursion, kayak along the rocky coastline or visit the island’s famous aquarium to discover the wealth of marine life. Or take a stroll through the charming streets of Avalon, admire the Mediterranean architecture and enjoy the stores and restaurants.

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Take a look at these Catalina Island establishments:

Hotel-Atwater-Visit Catalina Island

Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama

Located on Alabama’s Gulf Coast, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach are ideal for swimming, sunbathing and water sports!

In addition to superb beaches, seafood restaurants and spectacular sunsets, both destinations are popular with deep-sea fishing enthusiasts.

Gulf State Park is well worth a visit, with its hiking trails, unspoilt beaches and famous pier.

You can also visit the famous Pensacola Lighthouse, explore The Wharf amusement park, or soak up local history at the Alabama Gulf Coast History Museum.

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Popular hotels in these destinations include :

Best Western Premier The Tides

Kauai, Hawai

The island of Kauai is one of Hawaii‘s most stunning islands. It’s not for nothing that it’s nicknamed the “Garden Island”! A must-see on Kauai: the spectacular cliffs of the Napali Coast, the turquoise waters of Tunnels Beach and the Waimea waterfall.

Kauai, Hawai pexels
Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa

Key Largo, Florida

Located at the northern end of Florida’s Keys chain, Key Largo is renowned for its coral reefs and crystal-clear waters, ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving.

You can explore John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park to admire marine life including colorful corals, tropical fish and sea turtles.

Key Largo – pixabay

Popular Key Largo hotels include:

Baker-s Cay Resort Key Largo – page facebook

Maui, Hawaii

Maui is Hawaii’s second-largest island. An enchanting tropical destination par excellence, we love it for its magnificent Paia Bay and golden sandy beaches, such as Kaanapali. But also for the scenic Hana route to hidden waterfalls and superb secluded beaches.

Maui – Pixabay

Here are some of the best hotels in Maui:

Wailea Beach Resort – Marriott, Maui

Santa Barbara, California

Santa Barbara is a popular seaside destination on the California coast. Its mild climate, golden beaches and elegant ambience make it an incomparable holiday destination.

Discover the famous Butterfly Beach and the palm-lined Stearns Wharf promenade for fresh seafood and breathtaking views, as well as picturesque vineyards, botanical gardens, art galleries and gourmet restaurants.


Take a look at these accommodations in Santa Barbara :


St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands

In the heart of the U.S. Virgin Islands in the Caribbean, St. Croix boasts lush natural surroundings, white sandy beaches and turquoise waters perfect for diving.

The island abounds in historic sites such as the Whim Estate sugar plantation and the charming port town of Christiansted. Be sure to visit Buck Island National Park for its incredible coral reef and unspoilt beaches.


Among our favorite hotels in Sainte-Croix :

The Buccaneer st. Croix

South Padre Island, Texas

While the western half of Texas is semi-arid, the eastern half enjoys a humid subtropical climate.

For a laid-back seaside vibe, head to South Padre Island off the southern tip of Texas! In addition to the vast beaches, lively bars and beachfront resorts, nature lovers can explore South Padre Island State Park, home to endangered sea turtles.

South Padre Island – pexels

In South Padre Island, popular accommodations include:


La Copa Inn

Save with travel points

Credit card rewards points could make your getaway virtually free. Discover our strategies for quickly accumulating travel points in our guide.

When it comes to loyalty programs in Canada, Marriott Bonvoy is the most attractive for free hotel nights.

In fact, there are two Marriott Bonvoy credit cards issued by American Express that allow you to collect points in the blink of an eye.

Depending on where you’re staying, you may also be interested in other loyalty programs such as World of Hyatt and Hilton Honors.

And when it comes to airline tickets, credit card points can also help you save money. To earn travel points, you can turn to the American Express Membership Rewards program.

The easiest way to earn points is to subscribe to one of our Membership Rewards cards and take advantage of the welcome bonus.

Bottom Line

In short, for a vacation in a tropical climate, there’s no need to fly so far from Canada, unless Hawaii catches your eye… With its many beaches, beachfront towns, palm trees and lush forests, Hawaii is a great place to visit. United States are brimming with destinations that will satisfy all your desires for a sunny getaway.

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Marjorie has three passions in life: writing, travel and the world of wellness. The last decade has been full of exploration for her! Her travels have taken her all over the world, from Central America to Asia, Europe and Africa. This former travel consultant loves to inspire us and share her best discoveries. She is also the author of several novels and guides.

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