1 in 4 Americans Have Not Visited Famous US Places


10 June, 2018

A new study suggests many Americans have not visited the most popular places of interest around the country or even in their hometown.

The study found that 25 percent of Americans have yet to visit "iconic landmarks" in their own cities. Twenty-three percent said they had not visited any of the nation's natural wonders, famous buildings or historic battlefields.

The study was a project of the research service OnePoll and Zipcar, a car-sharing company.

Statue of Liberty
Statue of Liberty

Researchers questioned 2,000 Americans. Only 33 percent of them said they had been to Niagara Falls and just 28 percent had been to Arizona's Grand Canyon. The study showed that only 30 percent had been to New York's Empire State Building. Only 22 percent had ever visited the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

Many Americans say they would like to travel more. More than half of those questioned said they would like to get out more. Forty-nine percent reported being "creatures of habit." By that, they mean they generally do the same things in the same way. That would leave little time to visit local or national landmarks.

The researchers found that the main reasons keeping Americans from exploring their cities or the country were money, lack of time and a lack of good transportation.

On social media, one Twitter user reacting to the study named a few reasons for not visiting famous places. The writer noted that "most of us don't get paid days off, get punished for taking a day off, or simply can't afford to visit anything or go anywhere anymore."

The Twitter user added, "Childcare costs more than College, College Loans costs more than a mortgage payment, and jobs don't even pay for one of those things."

The study found that three of the places Americans wanted to visit were Grand Canyon National Park, Yellowstone National Park and the Statue of Liberty.

The researchers also found that, on average, Americans go to a new coffee shop every five months, and a new restaurant every four months. They also spent time at a lake or near the ocean once every six months, and go to a park every five months.

I'm Jonathan Evans.

Matt Hilburn reported this story for VOA News. Jonathan Evans adapted it for Learning English. George Grow was the editor.

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Words in this Story

iconic – adj. a widely known symbol

landmark – n. a structure of historical or other importance or other

mortgage – n. a legal agreement in which a person borrows money to buy property such as a house and pays back the money over a period of years

affordv. to be able to pay for something

habitn. custom or behavior; a way of doing things