The global phenomenon of Pokémon GO is still going strong among avid trainers and Pokéfans of all ages. As anyone who spent any time with the game knows, however, you eventually hit a wall with the Pokémon you can catch in your home town or on your regular routes. After an overabundance of Pidgey and Rattata sightings, you’re probably just itching to expand your Pokédex.
Fortunately, one of the best things about the game is how it’s designed to encourage travel and exploration. Check out museums, historic sites large and small, sporting venues, and natural landmarks to track down new Pokémon.
Mix up your routine with a visit to one of these best cities to catch Pokémon of all types, including the elusive rare Pokémon. We’ve put together a brief guide for where to go to “catch ’em all,” including key Pokémon GO tips.
Along with its wealth of natural and cultural attractions, Florida also boasts a collection of special and rare Pokémon. For one, Tauros can be found in and around the Everglades and at theme parks throughout the city of Orlando — as a North America-exclusive Pokémon, Tauros is a tough find, too.
Because Pokémon tend to gather in places of historic or cultural significance, they’re easy to find at popular tourist attractions. Think Kennedy Space Center, or LEGOLAND® Florida, or any of the Disney Parks (the latter of which are chock full of Pokéstops, too). You’ll also be more likely to find water Pokémon on the beaches or near water parks — many of which are found throughout the state.
This sparkling city is an oasis in the middle of the desert–desert being the operative term. You’ll find plenty of ground and sand-type Pokémon here like Onix, Drillbur, or Sandshrew. Head out on a desert safari to catch these exciting specimens.
The Dubai Mall is also famed for attracting Pokémon of many different types, so head here to get some shopping in while you log the distance to hatch your eggs. Similarly, the Mall of the Emirates is top Pokémon-hunting territory. For example, Ski Dubai has been known to be home to ice-type Pokémon!
This tropical paradise offers a wealth of exotic outdoor adventure parks, places to snorkel or dive, and beaches to stroll. Water-type Pokémon are common here, so keep your phone out to track down Gyrados, Lapras, and yes, if you want it, even Magikarp.
You also have a chance of finding rare Pokémon in places of historical significance like the Mayan pyramids at Chichén Itzá — there have even been reports of fossil-type Pokémon.
The heart of America is home to a vibrant population of Pokémon, with new critters to be found everywhere from the fountains and paths of Millennium Park to the shores of Lake Michigan. Navy Pier, for example, frequently boasts a selection of unique Pokémon.
The Art Institute of Chicago is another sure bet for new Pokémon, with its wealth of paintings, sculpture, textiles, and much more. And, if you can’t make it to Cancun, Shedd Aquarium is also home to water Pokémon. SkyDeck Chicago (formerly Willis Tower) is also known to host rare Pokémon.
BONUS: If you’re headed to Chicago in the summer of 2019, the Pokémon Go Fest 2019 will be held in Grant Park in mid-June. While tickets are extremely limited, you can still enjoy the burst of Pokémon enthusiasm that will fill the city!
One of the best Pokémon cities in the entire world is Sydney. Circular Quay, for example, is considered one of the top places to catch rare Pokémon. The Sydney Opera House is one of the significant gyms in the city, too, and is the subject of fierce competition.
You’ll also find plenty of Pokémon in various museums and memorials throughout the city, as well as in natural spaces far outside it, like Budderoo National Park (and the nearby Ilawarra Fly Treetop Adventures). Plus, the exclusive Pokémon Kangaskhan can only be found in this region!
6. New York City
Seems too good to be true — one of the best tourist destinations is also one of the best Pokémon cities. Head to Central Park to find loads of grass-type Pokémon, as well as water-types near the fountains and the ever-popular Pikachu. There are plenty of Pokéstops here as well, so you can keep stocked on Pokéballs and important gear.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is another hotspot in NYC for Pokémon, featuring — among several others — Zubats winging their way through the galleries. The American Museum of Natural History is a big draw for Pokémon, too, with its vast collections of natural artifacts.
7. San Francisco
Another American Pokémon destination, San Francisco’s collection of cultural attractions makes it a sure bet for Pokémon trainers looking to round out their Pokédex. From Golden Gate Park to Fisherman’s Wharf, there’s a wide mix of grass, ground, and water-type Pokémon around the city.
Plus, with unique venues like the California Academy of Sciences — which includes an aquarium, a natural history museum, a four-story rainforest, and an all-digital planetarium — there are places in San Francisco capable of spawning practically any type of Pokémon.
Pokémon GO Tips
If you’re new to the game, or haven’t played in a while, there are a few things to keep in mind when playing Pokémon GO.
- Hatching eggs requires walking or another slower-paced activity like running or bike riding. Rent a bike in your vacation destination to enjoy some exercise and rack up the miles.
- Visit Pokéstops to collect vital items like Pokéballs, lures, and more. They can often be found at important landmarks, ranging from big-ticket places like the Empire State Building to a small historic plaque on the Freedom Trail in Boston.
- Level up Pokémon by battling them at gyms or by collecting type-specific candies. You can trade in repeat Pokémon for candies to help level up your Pokémon faster (hint: you really don’t need all those Spearows). Gyms are usually significant places in a city, so they can be easy to find.
- Type advantages matter in this game, too. If you’ve ever played any other installation of the Pokémon franchise, you’ll know that certain types of Pokémon match up better against others. The dynamics of these match-ups are easily found online, if you don’t already know them.
- Avoid using AR mode. While it’s really neat to see your target Pokémon in front of you as if though in real life, this mode is a giant battery suck and will make it harder to play the game for any significant duration. Switch to the game world maps and enjoy the cute anime-style graphics.
- For the causal player, it’s probably best not to make any in-app purchases. While these upgrades are not expensive, the game can be easily enjoyed in its totally free form.
Save on Pokémon GO Vacations
If a Pokémon vacation is in your future, plan wisely to make the most of your time and energy. Track down special and rare Pokémon by visiting these top Pokémon cities and exploring everything they have to offer.
For those players looking to visit top tourist attractions in service of their Pokémon GO quest, snag a Go City pass for your trip. Save big on admission to popular attractions in each of these Pokémon cities mentioned here and save your dough for the next Pokémon game from Nintendo (Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield are looking pretty epic already!)
Go forth, Pokémon trainers, and catch ’em all!