AmricanShamrok From Ireland, joined May 2008, 3070 posts, RR: 0 Posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 1947 times:
I am planning on touring the US (and 2 Canadian cities) next May and June with a few friends. I'm half American but I've never really wandered too far from Chicago. Organizing is well underway and we plan to visit the following cities over a 5-week period:
1. New Orleans (1 day)
2. Dallas (1 day)
3. San Diego (1 day)
4. Vegas (4 days)
5. LA (4 days)
6. San Francisco (2 days)
7. Seattle (2 days)
8. Vancouver (1 day)
9. Toronto (3 days)
10. Boston (1 day)
11. New York (4 days)
12. Philadelphia (1 day)
13. Washington DC (2 days)
14. Orlando (3 days)
15. Miami (3 days)
Are there any particular places you would recommend visting/seeing in any of these cities (or indeed, anywhere I haven't listed!)? What do you think of the time schedule - would more than a day be needed for some places? I appreciate any comments and suggestions.
3 days is a lot. If you are looking for a South Florida party, you can do that in 2 days. If you are looking at just sitting on a Florida beach, I would recommend elsewhere (the Gulf coast is more relaxing in my opinion).
I say get rid of Dallas add another day to DC, SO MUCH TO SEE!!
Must do: Arlington National Elementary, The whole entire National Mall and make sure to see some of it at night. Unfortunately when your there the reflecting pools will not be finished with their restoration/maintenance.
American History, Air and Space, Natural History are all must see's. If you have a car and the other friends like aviation the museum in Dulles is much better and by that time will have one of the Space Shuttles that actually went into space currently it has a test shuttle.
Probably should do:
A Capitol tour is also something I would do make sure to make reservations online a few weeks before.
Visit the White House of course but that will just be a walk by it.
Visit the National Archives.
Holocaust Museum is something too, I highly recommend it.
The Newseum is pretty cool too if your into media etc..
I will probably think of more things and places to see I will come back. DC is a fantastic place. IMO if you really want to see a lot 2 days is not enough
Depends what you want to do. Make sure to go out one night at South Beach of course, make sure to get some Cuban food in little Havana. Everglades National Park is awesome if anyone like nature and wants to see lots of alligators in the wild. Biscayne National Park is awesome if you want to go snorkeling in a coral reef. Both will take most of the day and both you would want to leave in the morning so I say do one. Alligators vs Fish/Reef. Also I recommend taking either a amphibious tour or a seaplane tour. The Seaplane tour I know of goes out of Watson Island, Chalks Ocean Airways old base. Make sure to check out Lincoln Road on Miami Beach also.
DesertJets From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7828 posts, RR: 15
Reply 5, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1894 times:
Somebody else posted a similar topic a while back and was overly ambitious. I think you are as well. While 5 weeks sounds like a ton of time it looks like you'll spend more time visiting airports than actually visiting cities. While I enjoy visiting cities, outside of a few in the US (which you have in your list) a lot of places end up being more of the same. Without the mouse could you really tell a difference between Orlando and Dallas for example?
For me what is missing are some of the better scenic destinations -- national parks, beaches and such. I say you need to pick a region and focus on destinations there vs. hopping all over the US. You could take your time and actually relax. You could do a 5 week trip starting in San Diego and ending up in Vancouver just driving/taking the train up the coast and stopping along the way (which is something I wouldn't mind doing).
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
Geezer From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 1479 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1875 times:
It would be quite impossible for me to suggest what cities to spend X amount of time in, as I have no idea what you are interested in. Having said that............as you are going to be in Florida, here's an idea; many people go to Florida mainly to "sit on a beach"; this is great, if you like to "sit on a beach"; however, the vast majority of "beach sitters" go mainly to two "areas", ( both of which have "great" beaches..........the east coast, ( Ft. Lauderdale, Miami, etc ) and the west coast, (St. Petersburg, Ft. Meyers, Sarasota, etc ) I have been to all of these places numerous times ( but not necessarily to "sit on the beach"), and I can now suggest a "better" option, for several reasons; Panama City Beach !
The beach is probably better than most of the S. Florida beaches, offers all the same things, but is, well, somewhat newer, slightly less crowded, great food, and so on. Until May, a year ago, getting to Panama City was mainly a "drive to" matter, (unless you were EXTREMELY brave, and didn't mind landing on a runway about half long enough for the RJ's that used it. )
That has now changed completely ! You now have the option of not just Delta, ( in a dinky RJ ) but also SW in a "real airplane" ( a B 737-700 ), and the runway at the brand new ( are you ready for all this? ) "North West Florida Beaches International Airport" is not only "smooth as silk", it also 10,000 ft long, ( which should be sufficient length for all but drowsy pilots ), ( and you will never see a drowsy SW pilot ) Because SW has 8 flights in & out per day, the overall "load factor" is relatively low, so there is not much worry of getting canceled or "bumped". ( Both of which are mainly problems only to "non-revs" ( like me )).
Next is Las Vegas; ( or just "Vegas" to many ) No doubt about it, Vegas probably offers more things for more people than any "destination" I can think of; ( even those who have absolutely NO INTEREST in gambling ), ( of which I'm one). No need to "brag up" Vegas, as everyone knows all of this; there is one small thing that has changed recently about Vegas though, and it has been a "let down" for some; Until the severe "contraction", "implosion", ( what ever you want to call it ) of the U.S. economy, the overall "plan" of all the people who run the place ( the casino owners ), was to make everything ( such as fabulous hotels and entertainment ) relatively "cheap", ( or at least, not "high priced" ), just to "get you there", then relying on "human nature" ( and their slot machines and other "devices" ) to make sure you left Vegas with empty wallets and maxed-out CC's. That "plan" worked great, until the "bottom fell out"; the "guests" were starting to show up with "thin wallets" and un-realistic expectations of "freebies", so they had to "adjust" their "plan", ( and adjust it they have ! ) The hotels are still cheap; dirt cheap as a matter of fact. ( how's 3 nights for 2 people at Hooters, a VERY nice hotel. right across the street from NY, NY, for .......$60 sound ? ) Yep, it's a FABULOUS deal; ( until you get hungry) That's when they get you ! Eating has just become the 2nd most $$$$$ intensive activity there is in Vegas !
So if you go.........have a "substantial" food buget ! You'll need it ! ( I'm not sure if the "hookers" have raised their prices like the restaurants, or if they still rely on "bargains" like the hotels; ( I take my "entertainment" with me. )
Looking again at your "list", it's awfully "ambitious", and I hope you have "deep pockets"; and, are you: driving, RV'ing, walking, hitch-hiking, flying, or what ? I think I'd probably "delete" LA, Seattle, "Bean Town", Miami and Philly, ( if you do fly into Philly, TSA is always a "bitch" there, but you should notice that WN has "straightened up" their image quite a bit in the last few months.
Other than that, I can think of 4 or 5 places to go, but like I said, I have no idea what you like to do, and...............wait a minute...........you said "a few friends"; here's my BEST ADVICE so far..............the "fewer" the friends, the more what's left gets to do.......whatever ! One friend would be perfect; two.......maybe OK; three..........( that's 4 total ) That's a CROWD ! I'm not big on crowds ! ( especially on trips ! )
Have fun !
Stupidity: Doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result; Albert Einstein
Springbok747 From Australia, joined Nov 2004, 4387 posts, RR: 10
Reply 8, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1864 times:
If you're heading to the east coast, or passing through, visit Atlanta and the nearby areas. I loved day trips around ATL to places like Huntsville, AL (which has the space camp and space center) and from there (100 or so miles) you have Chattanooga, TN with Ruby Falls (its an absolutely amazing underground waterfall).
Like others have said..nothing much to see in Orlando, apart from the Disney parks (meh...I've been to Disney World and Magic Kingdom 4 times..and there were literally millions of people everywhere..all the time, not really an enjoyable experience and the space coast nearby (but with the space shuttle retired, I don't think there's much to see there anyway (Kennedy Space Center was quite boring honestly).
Aaron747 From Japan, joined Aug 2003, 8466 posts, RR: 26
Reply 9, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1846 times:
Just my opinion but no US visit is complete without seeing some of our incredible natural treasures...if you're limited to the east coast, Arcadia, Shenandoah or Great Smoky Mountain national parks are a must. Of course if you had more time, Zion and Bryce Canyon parks in Utah or Grand Teton in Wyoming are must-sees in one's lifetime period.
If you need someone to blame / throw a rock in the air / you'll hit someone guilty
flymia From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7347 posts, RR: 6
Reply 13, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1820 times:
Quoting Geezer (Reply 7): The beach is probably better than most of the S. Florida beaches, offers all the same things, but is, well, somewhat newer, slightly less crowded, great food, and so on. Until May, a year ago, getting to Panama City was mainly a "drive to" matter, (unless you were EXTREMELY brave, and didn't mind landing on a runway about half long enough for the RJ's that used it. )
You cant seriously say Panama City Beach has all the same things as Miami Beach. Lets get real here. Also I would say the water is nicer in Southeast Florida. The water in SE Florida is like Bahamian water clear blue and warm. Of course the water up there is great too and I think the sand there is better. But you cant compare Panama City Beach and Miami Beach and say the offer the same things.
You do have a lot of cities, Do you really need to see Disney World? Instead skip Orlando and use one of the days in Disneyland in LA which is the orginial park. San Deigo is great but one day is enough just drive down from LA. Dallas? It really makes no sense to go there unless there is a certain thing you really want to see.
"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
FingerLakerAv8r From United States of America, joined May 2011, 259 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1816 times:
I'n going to be biased because of my moniker....
The Finger Lakes region of New York.
11 lakes that run North to South. What do we have here? Let me tell you!
1. World class wine region with almost 100 distinct ads award winning wineries.
2. Out door activities like nowhere else. Golf, state parks waterfalls and gorges. Check ot Robert Treman, Buttermilk Falls, and Taughanook Falls State Parks around Ithaca and Watking Glen State park in Watkins Glen. Absolute serene beauty. Fishing, hiking (Finger Lakes National Forest has hiking trails for all levels) And you MUST check out the "Grand Canyon of the East", Letchworth State Park.
3. Excellent dining options especially establishments that focus on local and organic options.
4. Don't like wine? 10+ breweries for the beer snob in all of us.
5. And a exellent distillery, Finger Lakes Distillery. You MUST try there flavored Vodkas!
6. A chance to see White Deer that live on the old Seneca Army Depot
7. Excellent hotels and spas of all star leves and price ranges
8. Antiques and gift boutiques that you won't find anywhere else.
9. Native American and Early American history around every corner.
10. Check out the Canandaigua Wine and Culinary Center in Canandaigua where you can take gourmet cooking classes and eat your creations paired with New York wine.
No, I don;t work for the tourism department. Yes, I absolutely love where I come from and love sharing my region with the world.
But whereever you go get to know the people in each area. What a loss it is if we don't experience how other people live there lives.
steeler83 From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 9361 posts, RR: 21
Reply 16, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1800 times:
You could probably do a few things in western PA, especially if you like the outdoors and a very scenic and picturesque skyline.
Things to see/do in Western PA:
Ohiopyle State Park
Go to the Strip District for a Primanti Bros sandwich
Southside (bar hopping and Southside Works)
I don't know why Seattle should be taken off the list of places to see. My wife and I were there in April from the 10th thru the 14th and didn't see enough. It's right near some primo wine country, is a short drive to a picturesque waterfall, and well the whole area up there is very scenic. Oh, I forgot to mention Mt. Ranier...
Do not bring stranger girt into your room. The stranger girt is dangerous, it will hurt your life.
JetsGo From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3094 posts, RR: 5
Reply 17, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1788 times:
Assuming you were to cancel Orlando and Dallas and reduce Los Angeles and Las Vegas by one day each (all of which I highly recommend) that would give us six extra days to work with here.
Definitely give yourself another day in Boston, San Diego, Vancouver, and two more days in Washington DC. The last day would be up in the air for me, but I would probably lean towards San Francisco. Spend one day in the city, one day in the Napa Valley, and another day driving the 1 down as far as Big Sur and stopping in Monterey and Carmel on the way.
I've been dragged to LAS many times with friends. Never really liked it. It's fun for the first 5 minutes then it got really boring. If you leave the strip, it's a dump. Just like PHX but with bigger hotels and even more nasty hookers. Heck even the strip itself is nasty at times. The only redeeming factor IMO was the food. Definitely check out the buffet at the Rio, it's HUGE and despite having food in industrial quantities the food is excellent, for all-you-can-eat buffet standards at least.
Definitely add another day or two here. I've been living here for little over 7 months and I've yet to see all the go-to attractions. Granted I've been almost 20 times total to both air and space museums.
SCCutler From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 5711 posts, RR: 27
Reply 21, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1760 times:
I cannot comprehend what there is to do in Las Vegas for four hours, much less four days. If you don't gamble or crave staggeringly-expensive shows, why go there at all? I cannot claim Dallas is the most historically-significant city in the country, but it's freaking Mount Olympus compared to Vegas.
Also, I'll second the comment above suggesting you look a little more at some of the remarkable natural beauty the US has to offer.
How about telling us what you like to do?
...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...