The Numbers On This Map Could Affect How Much Fun You Have On Your Next Vacation

What are the most entertaining states in the U.S.?

Imagine that you're planning your next vacation and don't know where exactly you want to go. Each state has its own appeal — but which one would be the most entertaining overall? 


Thanks to a new study from PlayNJ, you can see which state has the best options overall in terms of entertaining you and your family, and can narrow down which type of entertainment matters most to you among gambling, theme parks, zoos, things to do, stadiums, and theaters, while also seeing which states rank highest with tourism income and happiness.

In the end, California comes in at No. 1 in the overall score thanks to tourism income (1st with $126.3 billion) and doing pretty well in gambling (4th place with 193 places to try your luck), theme parks (3rd place with 28), zoos (2nd with 13), things to do (4th with 1,566), and stadiums (2nd with 69). It's only in the theaters (44th with 26) and happiness (13th) categories where it falls into the double digits. The rest of the top 5 include Texas at No. 2, Florida at No. 3, New York at No. 4, and Nevada at No. 5.

Here is the full overall rankings, with the states listed in alphabetical order and their overall ranking in parentheses:

Alabama (47)
Alaska (31)
Arizona (14)
Arkansas (44)
California (1)
Colorado (11)
Connecticut (45)
Delaware (49)
Florida (3)
Georgia (29)
Hawaii (20)
Idaho (27)
Illinois (9)
Indiana (34)
Iowa (21)
Kansas (36)
Kentucky (42)
Louisiana (23)
Maine (22)
Maryland (24)
Massachusetts (17)
Michigan (30)
Minnesota (6)
Mississippi (43)
Missouri (13)
Montana (15)
Nebraska (40)
Nevada (5)
New Hampshire (35)
New Jersey (7)
New Mexico (32)
New York (4)
North Carolina (39)
North Dakota (46)
Ohio (16)
Oklahoma (33)
Oregon (37)
Pennsylvania (12)
Rhode Island (50)
South Carolina (25)
South Dakota (28)
Tennessee (8)
Texas (2)
Utah (26)
Vermont (38)
Virginia (19)
Washington (18)
West Virginia (48)
Wisconsin (10)
Wyoming (41)

And here's a list of them ranked from the bottom of the list to the most entertaining state:

50. Rhode Island
49. Delaware
48. West Virginia
47. Alabama
46. North Dakota
45. Connecticut
44. Arkansas
43. Mississippi
42. Kentucky
41. Wyoming
40. Nebraska
39. North Carolina
38. Vermont
37. Oregon
36. Kansas
35. New Hampshire
34. Indiana
33. Oklahoma
32. New Mexico
31. Alaska
30. Michigan
29. Georgia
28. South Dakota
27. Idaho
26. Utah
25. South Carolina
24. Maryland
23. Louisiana
22. Maine
21. Iowa
20. Hawaii
19. Virginia
18. Washington
17. Massachusetts
16. Ohio
15. Montana
14. Arizona
13. Missouri
12. Pennsylvania
11. Colorado
10. Wisconsin
9. Illinois
8. Tennessee
7. New Jersey
6. Minnesota
5. Nevada
4. New York
3. Florida
2. Texas
1. California

When it came to the individual categories, Nevada came in at No. 1 for gambling, New Jersey was No. 1 for theme parks, Texas reigned at No. 1 for both zoos and stadiums, Florida was No. 1 with things to do, Illinois dominated at No. 1 with theater, and Hawaii was No. 1 in terms of happiness.

Now that you have this data, you have the power to plan your getaway by choosing what form of entertainment matters the most to you or if you're going for an overall, well-rounded experience. Each state has its own expertise and, with so many options, you can never go wrong.


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