I’ve just booked what’s probably the most exciting trip of my 24 years to date – a two-week trip to America!
In one fell swoop I’m going to be ticking off three of the big cities that have been on my bucket list for years: Las Vegas, Los Angeles and San Francisco. And I’m so bloomin’ excited!
It all happened rather quickly. My friend Helen (of 5 Things To Expect When You Go Away With A Travel Blogger fame) and I were originally planning on going to Dubrovnik, Croatia this June for a week of sightseeing, sun and Game of Thrones walking tours. That quickly got blown right out of the equation when we realised we could get fairly cheap flights over to America. After just a few days of planning, ironing out a basic itinerary, and sorting out a budget, we booked those flights!
We’ve got a bit of a wait to go as it’s not until November that we set off. However, that gives us a few months to really get everything planned. This’ll be my longest trip to date (I’m usually one for a long weekend here or a week further afield there), and I want to make sure I tick off as much as I can while I’m over there.
So far, this is what we’re eyeing up:
Sin City seems to have divided opinion amongst my friends. While some people adore it, some people swear blind that they’d never, ever return. I’m going to try and go in with no real preconceptions, as I’m eager to experience it all for myself. One thing I am expecting, however, is that it’s very much going to be a massive assault on the senses.
As well as just soaking up the lights at night and the absolutely incredible casinos, I’m looking forward to visiting the Neon Boneyard, home to dozens of vintage neon Vegas signs. And, of course, no trip to Las Vegas would be complete without trips to the Grand Canyon and Death Valley. We’ve got a lot to pack in.
From Vegas, we’re going to get a transfer over to LA. Again, this is another city that a lot of people have warned me about: it’s dirty, it’s got poor public transportation, it can be scary. But I’m going to try and deal with all that for a few days while I hit up all the big sights. I’m most excited about seeing the Hollywood sign, the Walk of Fame and Santa Monica.
We’re also thinking about Universal Studios – for those of you have been, would you recommend it?
We’re travelling on to San Francisco along the Californian coast via the Coast Starlight train. It would most probably be easier (and quicker) to fly, but my friends have told me the coastal views are not to be missed…and I do love a good train journey.
While we’re in San Fran, we’ll obviously be doing all the typical tourist things, like visiting Alcatraz, Pier 39 and the Golden Gate bridge. But we’ve also got our eye on day trips to Yosemite, Muir Woods and Monterey. Again, any advice on whether you would recommend visiting these places would be much appreciated!
I’m very lucky to have visited quite a few places now in Europe. However, there are still a HUGE number of places I want to visit outside of this little bubble, from Africa to more of Asia and America.
If I’m quite honest, I haven’t really known where to start. I’ve been tempted by spending a few weeks in Central America, or a fortnight travelling around Asia – but I’ve always been reluctant to solidify plans.
It’s only hit me recently, however, that I’ve been planning all these big trips for a very long time. Back when I was 19, I used to print out maps during my part-time job and plan my ideal routes around America, Australia and Canada. I’m now 24, and I’ve yet to really knuckle down to any of them.
The main reason has been my anxiety disorder. As some of you may well know, I’ve been the lucky recipient of anxiety and depression since I was 17 years old. Since then, I’ve made huge leaps and bounds, finishing university, qualifying as a journalist, and setting up this very travel blog. However, I’m very keen to push myself as much as I can, to prove to myself – and to others who are struggling with the same conditions – that they needn’t stop you from tackling your dreams, no matter how big they are.
This is where you come in!
I’m fully aware that this America trip is going to be a pretty full-on two weeks, but we’ve built in a few days where we’ll just be wandering around at our own pace, sightseeing as much as we can.
But here’s where I need your help, lovely readers! Are there are places in any of these three cities you would recommend? How about hotels, restaurants, museums? I’d absolutely love your suggestions, or even any links to your blog articles!