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A Guide To Traveling To All 50 States

(Last Updated On: September 15, 2022)

Hello The Abroad Blog readers! Today’s post is such an exciting one as it’s my official announcement of my journey to traveling to all 50 states! Now…this is coming a bit late. I did formally announce this challenge on Instagram in early May and am well underway documenting my journey there. Feel free to follow along @nicole.rosania to read travel guides for every state in the form of in-feed posts. I’m also saving all of the in-feed posts to an IG guide called “50 States” and creating stories to document the highlights of every state.

As for my blog, I already have city and state guides published for most of the states I’ve been to, such as my recent Things To Do In Minneapolis guide for Minnesota. Because of this, I will not be writing brand new guides for all 50 states, as this will just be a repeat of information. Instead, I will be updating this post often with links to these guides as I write them so that all of my USA state guides are easily discoverable in one place. This will eventually be one giant guide to traveling to all 50 states!

You can keep track of where I’ve been so far with this map:

The USA Placeholder

Additionally, I figured this post would also be a good way to keep my readers updated on my progress. Now that that’s all squared away, let’s hop into the details of my crazy challenge, shall we!

Traveling to all 50 states

50 State Challenge: The Idea

As you can tell from this blog post and some of my more recent Instagram posts, I kicked off my 50 state challenge in May 2021. In theory, I should’ve done this back in January at the start of the new year, but 1) I didn’t think of it then and 2) COVID cases were peaking. The ever-evolving COVID-19 pandemic has continuously improved in the past few months here in the US thanks to mass vaccinations, so I feel more comfortable traveling now than I did in January.

To back track even more, I thought of this idea because of COVID. If it weren’t for the international pandemic, I’d probably be typing this post from a cafe overseas somewhere. In typical Nicole fashion, I would’ve found a way to scrape together some money and make that work. However, this past year has kept me at home. At first I was upset about it (we all were), but changed my mindset and decided to use this year to explore more of my home. This began in 2020 with more frequent day trips around my home state of Massachusetts and New England, and eventually turned into this challenge: Traveling to all 50 states!

No International Travel For Me Anytime Soon…

With international travel still on hold for the foreseeable future and domestic travel on the rise, I’m more excited than ever to explore more of the US this year. I always told myself I would travel to all 50 states by 50, but as I continue to set my focus on traveling internationally, establishing my career, and one day a family, this goal may not have been feasible. I mean… when would I ever visit Kansas? A quick PTO weekday trip? Probably not.

So, here we are. I’m only 22, with a completely remote job (in the travel industry may I add), and with an itch to explore more of the US. So, I’m taking advantage of it and seeing as much of the US as I can now! I originally told myself I would complete this challenge by the end of the year, but that’s a bit ambitious, so instead I’m just going to try and complete it before international travel makes a full recovery. Maybe by summer 2022? Don’t quote me on that.

Other Travel Accounts Doing The #50StateChallenge

Lastly, I want to acknowledge some other awesome travel accounts who inspired me to turn this crazy idea into action. Some of my fav travel bloggers, Kate and Maggie at Two Sisters Abroad, are doing a similar challenge except Kate is trying to visit ALL 50 states before the end of 2021. Plus Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico! Crazy! My favorite YouTubers, Kara and Nate, are currently traveling the US in a van and are also trying to knock off their remaining 20 states this year.

Now you know how this crazy idea came about. Let’s hop into my guidelines.

Traveling to all 50 states

50 State Challenge: The Guidelines

I need to preface this challenge by saying I am NOT going to be traveling to ALL 50 states this year. Or even next. Props to Kate for doing this, but that’s too much for me. I’ve also been to states like Florida and New Hampshire dozens of times and am not interested in returning at the moment. Instead, I’m going to focus on visiting all the new states I have yet to explore. As of early May, I’ve been to 28/50. Thus, my challenge is to visit the 22 states I have left before / in 2022. No hard deadline here.

Of course I will naturally be revisiting some states throughout the course of the next year because of road trips and what not, but I’m prioritizing visiting what I have left. This way, I can successfully say that I’ve been to all 50 states and have the rest of my life to revisit those I loved the most.

I count day trips as visits, even internationally, as long as I spend a good chunk of time there. I usually do some sightseeing to ensure I cross off any major attractions, along with sampling some local food, shopping for a souvenir or two, and chatting with a local. I’m always on the move and am a firm believer that you can get to know a place in just one day.

As mentioned above, I will be documenting this journey both through travel guides on here and on Instagram, and plan on having my camera with me at all times. I also like to purchase post cards wherever I go, but other than this, I’m not setting any other “rules” for myself. I just want to feel like I made the most of my time in the destination!

Traveling to all 50 states

50 State Challenge: The Plan

So now you know how this crazy idea came about and what the “50 state challenge” entails. At this point you may be asking yourself… Nicole, how in the heck are you going to find the time to do this? Pay for this? Even plan for this?

Let’s break it down…

I’m Working With Partners

First, I am beyond grateful (and very excited) to share that I’ve grown my blog’s readership to a place where I can work with partners. This means I’ve been working with hotels, tour companies, tourism boards, and more to produce sponsored content (both on here and Instagram) in exchange for a comped stay, meal, tour, or wait for it… money!

This has always been a dream of mine and I’m so happy it’s finally coming to fruition. I’ve worked really hard this year to boost my blog’s SEO, Pinterest strategy, and even Instagram content to grow my following organically, and it’s working!

So, I’m thrilled to share that I will be working with several hotels and tourism boards in the next few months as I work my way across the US. There’s a mutual benefit to doing this as I get to fund my trip and further develop my Media Kit, and smaller companies in the travel industry get promotion! Obviously flights, rental cars, gas, etc. are funded on my own, but these partnerships make my constant travel sustainable.

My Job Is Entirely Remote

In terms of time, as I mentioned previously, my job is entirely remote. Even without the pandemic – there’s no office. This allows me to be a full-time digital nomad and work from wherever! I will definitely be taking full advantage of this in the coming weeks as I work remotely from national parks out west-  without having to take PTO or squeeze trips into the weekends.

Planning Regional Trips

Lastly, logistically, this challenge is a bit hard to complete without road tripping or #vanlife. I’m going to instead accomplish this goal by planning a handful of region-focused trips. For example, a southwest road trip, a midwest road trip covering 6 states from Michigan to Minnesota, etc. This way I won’t be on the road 24/7 when traveling to all 50 states.

Traveling to all 50 states

50 State Challenge: The States

Now that you have some background on the challenge, here’s a list of every state in the US that I’ve been to so far with links to all my guides! I will update this as I continue traveling to all 50 states.

PS. These are listed in the order I visited them, although most of them happen to be in geographical order. I’ve been featuring the states in this order on Instagram as well, not alphabetically.

1. Massachusetts

The Old State House in Boston, MA

Massachusetts is my home state and therefore the first state I ever visited! From summers in Cape Cod to Octobers spent in Salem to guiding tours around Boston, I’ve seen it all. Here are my travel guides for the Bay State…

2. New Hampshire

Fall leaf peeping in New Hampshire

Known for its mountain ranges, leaf peeping and downhill skiing, here are some highlights for the Granite State…

3. Vermont

Staying at the Von Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe

This state is more than just maple syrup, wooden bridges, and ski resorts. Add these VT classics to your Green Mountain State bucket list…

4. Maine

Acadia National Park in Maine

Maine, also known as the Pine Tree State, is the most northeastern state in the US. It’s also the largest in New England – taking up more than 1/2 the area! Famous for its rocky coastline, lobster, lighthouses, blueberries, and the end of the Appalachian Trail, here are my guides for Maine…

5. Rhode Island

Exploring Block Island in Rhode Island

Rhode Island is the smallest state in the US, but don’t miss it! From its lively capital city to its college towns and beautiful New England coastline, there’s a ton to do in the Ocean State…

6. Connecticut

Firehouse Deli in Fairfield, Connecticut

The last state I visited in New England quickly turned into my second home when I chose to attend Fairfield University for college! Connecticut is home to quaint coastal towns, the Long Island Sound, & my alma mater! Here’s what you should check out in the Constitution State…

7. New York

Visiting all 50 states New York

New York is so much more than just NYC! Be sure to check out the Hamptons, Adirondacks, Finger Lakes, and Niagara Falls when visiting the Empire State. Here are some more ideas for your next trip…

8. New Jersey

LBI is my favorite part of the Jersey Shore

Located right across the Hudson, the Garden State is home to the world’s largest boardwalk, well-known beaches on the infamous Jersey Shore, the Miss America pageant, and so much more…

9. Pennsylvania

Independence Hall in Philadelphia, PA

Pennsylvania is one of the most historical states in the USA as this is where the Declaration of Independence was signed. More importantly, it’s also home to the Philly cheesesteak! The Keystone State is one of the largest states in the northeast, so there’s a lot to see including Philadelphia, Lancaster, Gettysburg, and Pittsburgh…

10. Delaware

A day at Rehoboth Beach is a must when visiting Delaware

Welcome to the first state in the USA! I’ve crossed through Delaware a few times on road trips and really only visited for the first time this spring. This small state is often overlooked, but here are some fun highlights for the First State…

11. Maryland

Washington DC is a must when visiting all 50 states

The Old Line State, also nicknamed the Free State, is known for its fresh crab and major cities – including the capital Annapolis, Baltimore, and nearby Washington D.C…

12. Virginia

Governor's Palace is one of the top things to do in Williamsburg, VA

I first visited Virginia on a day trip from DC years ago, and have since been back multiple times. At this point, I’ve covered most of the state! Aside from the Arlington/Alexandria area, I recommend exploring Richmond, Norfolk, Appalachia, and the Historic Triangle when visiting the Old Dominion State…

13. North Carolina

North Carolina is a must when visiting all 50 states

The Old North State was my first state visited in the southeast. NC has it all – foliage and mountains in the west, beautiful beaches along the eastern coast (where my Outer Banks fans at?!), major cities, and ideal weather year-round. My recommendations for your next visit include: Outer Banks, Raleigh / Durham, Charlotte, Asheville, and Wilmington! Here’s your go-to weekend guide for Charlotte…

14. South Carolina

South Carolina is a must when visiting all 50 states

My new home! South Carolina is known for its coastal charm, tropical climate, and of course – Charleston! Here are some highlights of the Palmetto State for your next trip…

15. Georgia

Georgia is a must when visiting all 50 states

Welcome to state #15/50 aka the Peach State! Georgia is known for its metropolitan capital city, golden isles on the coast, SEC football, and of course – its peaches (you probably already knew this thanks to Justin Bieber!). I’ve been to Georgia a handful of times now to visit family and explore…

16. Florida

Florida is a must when visiting all 50 states

The last state I visited on the east coast was the Sunshine State! Florida is known as the “Beast of the Southeast”, meaning that there’s SO much to do here. Check out my guides below to read about some major highlights from past trips…

17. Washington

Exploring Washington state

Welcome to Washington, the only state ever named after a president! Washington or the Evergreen State, is the gem of the Pacific Northwest, packed with beautiful coastline, national parks, skiing, and rainy cities. I first visited WA in 2008, before I knew anything about travel blogging, and was grateful to visit again last September. Here’s your WA bucket list…

18. Oregon

Explore Oregon when visiting all 50 states

Welcome to the Beaver State! The *other* gem of the Pacific Northwest. Oregon is known for its Columbia River, the deepest lake in the US, cheesy vampire movies, and the eclectic city of Portland…

19. Alaska

An Alaskan cruise is the best way to explore this state

The 19th state I visited in the US was Alaska in August 2013 on a Royal Caribbean family cruise! A cruise is the BEST way to explore the Last Frontier State. Recommended cities include: Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Hubbard Glacier, Icy Strait Point, Anchorage, Talkeetna, and Denali National Park!

20. Wyoming

Wyoming 50 state guide

Ah, the Wild Wild West! A visit to the least populated state in the US needs to be on EVERYONE’S bucket list. This trip was one of my favorite family vacations EVER! Here’s some ideas for the Equality State: Jackson Hole, Yellowstone National Park, and Grand Tetons National Park.

21. Hawaii

Hawaii state guide

The 21st state I visited was an absolute dream – Hawaii! My family and I visited the island of Kauai and the Big Island in June 2016, and embraced the ~aloha lifestyle~ by diving, swimming in waterfalls, dancing at a luau, & more. I hope to go back and visit Maui and Oahu, but I have great memories of the Aloha State from our trip!

22. California

California state guide

The most populous state in the US is home to iconic cities plus 9 national parks. A road trip down the Pacific Coast Highway has been on my list for YEARS, but I’ve been lucky to visit Cali a few times already. I even lived in the Golden State for a summer in college working for EF Education First! This allowed me (+50 international teens) to travel around daily. Hop off the plane at LAX and follow these guides…

23. Colorado

24. Tennessee

25. West Virginia

26. Kentucky

27. Indiana

28. Ohio

29. Michigan

30. Illinois

31. Wisconsin

32. Iowa

33. Minnesota

34. Montana

35. Idaho

36. Nevada

37. Utah

38. Arizona

As I mentioned above, I plan on updating this post often as I continue traveling to all 50 states and writing over the course of the next year. Check back often for updates! Happy travels!

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A guide to traveling to all 50 states



  1. May 29, 2021 / 2:37 PM

    Wow! This is so awesome and so ambitious! Looking forward to your adventures as you travel to all 50 U.S. states. Good luck and safe travels!

  2. May 29, 2021 / 2:49 PM

    Such an awesome challenge! I would love to do this as well but can’t wait to read up on your experience! My dad has traveled to all 50 states but he cheated — he’s a pilot xD

  3. May 29, 2021 / 3:01 PM

    So fun! Have a great time. We have been doing the same but over the years πŸ™‚

  4. May 29, 2021 / 3:03 PM

    What an exciting challenge! I’d love to visit all 50 states! Although living in the UK, this one might take me quite some time to complete! I can’t wait to follow your journey! Thanks for sharing it with us!

  5. May 29, 2021 / 4:16 PM

    I have always wanted to do this! We’re from MI so it’s hard to road trip east coast/west coast. So we typically have to fly. Good luck and have all the fun on your trip!

  6. May 29, 2021 / 9:37 PM

    I love this! We have always focused on international travel but are sticking to The States for a few months this summer and all when we get back from Costa Rica. This is so helpful for some ideas for where we are going. I am definitely taking notes and will bookmark this for reference. Thanks for putting this together! What an amazing adventure!

  7. Taylor
    May 30, 2021 / 12:48 AM

    What a helpful guide! It is actually my mission to see all 50 states at some point. I don’t think I will complete them all this year, but I’m at 33 right now and hope to see all 50 within the next 2-3 years. πŸ™‚

  8. Emma
    May 30, 2021 / 2:46 AM

    What an incredible idea. I really would love to do something like this too. I’ve made it to 10 so far, which considering I’m not American I think is pretty good. But there are so many great states out there to visit. Looking forward to following your journey and getting some good ideas for what to do when visiting some of these beautiful states

  9. May 31, 2021 / 9:04 PM

    What a fun idea! Good luck with your challenge!

  10. Magicandbliss
    June 2, 2021 / 8:08 AM

    This is so great! I am so happy that you’re living the life you always wanted and can now support your travels with some kickass partnerships. Wish you all the best for your challenge πŸ™‚

  11. June 7, 2021 / 3:06 PM

    Thank you so much! It is a bit crazy, but I’m super excited about it!

  12. June 7, 2021 / 3:06 PM

    Thanks for following along! Good for your dad!

  13. June 7, 2021 / 3:07 PM

    That’s so cool! How many do you have left?

  14. June 7, 2021 / 3:07 PM

    Thanks for following along Hannah! I hope you complete your goal one day!!!

  15. June 7, 2021 / 3:08 PM

    Thanks Chelsea! Michigan is a bit isolated, but I did a great midwest road trip that started in Michigan in May. I worked my way down to Indiana Dunes, to Chicago, Milwaukee, Madison, through Iowa, and up to MSP!

  16. June 7, 2021 / 3:09 PM

    Thank you so much for your kind note! I also have always been focused on international travel but am so excited to explore more of the US this year! I hope my posts help you to plan some trips of your own πŸ™‚

  17. June 7, 2021 / 3:10 PM

    That sounds like a wonderful goal! No need to rush it! You’ll definitely get there sooner than later with less than 20 left.

  18. June 7, 2021 / 3:10 PM

    For not being American, this is amazing Emma! I’m assuming some of your 10 include NY and CA? These are always the most popular for tourists! Thanks so much for following along!

  19. June 7, 2021 / 3:11 PM

    Aw this is so sweet, thank you so much for your kind words!

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