My Holiday Adventure

As I mentioned yesterday, the trip I had planning to take at the end of the year has been called off and I’ve put together another trip to take all on my own.

Can I let you in on a secret?
I’m excited.  So excited.
It’s all I’ve been talking about since the original plans changed last Tuesday.

So what’s the plan?
A month in the US of A, baby!  And it’s going to be awesome.

Flying in and out of San Francisco, where I will be for Christmas with friends.
New Orleans for New Years Eve.

And a month of selfishness, solely devoted to cheesy tourist activities, and exercising self-restraint with all the “must-try” fast food.

I’ve never been to the States before, but I’m looking forward to seeing things for myself – and proving some of those stereotypes wrong (hopefully).

There’s a lot packed into only 31 days.  The longest I’m in any one place is 9 nights in New York city, followed by 7 nights in San Francisco (split between the start and end of the trip).  Everywhere else is only a couple of nights – and Portland’s literally only 24 hours!

Since I don’t drive, and I wanted to do more than simply travel for full days (New Zealand’s very small folks, we’re not conditioned for that kind of torture!), I’m travelling mostly by place – with a couple of trains thrown in for good measure.

And my accommodation – a combination of hostels and cheap city hotel deals – is awesome.  I’m staying more or less on Times Square in New York.  Stoked!

So team, what would you do in the cities I’m visiting?  Any tips, hints or suggestions?  What do you think I need to know about travelling in the States, especially as I’m doing it alone?

Or – more excitingly – what travel plans (real or imaginary) do you have?

21 thoughts on “My Holiday Adventure

  1. Hey there, hope you have a wonderful time in the States. I spent about nine months in NZ and really loved it. San Francisco is one of my favorite cities so I’m sure you’ll have fun no matter what you do. I’d advise taking a walk/bike ride across the Golden Gate Bridge, visit Alcatraz, ride the street car, stroll through Golden Gate Park, explore the Castro, Mission, North Beach, Chinatown and Lombard Street and cruise through Haight-Ashbury.

      • I had a Stray bus pass and visited both North and South islands for two months. Then, I got two jobs in Rotorua and lived there for about six months. The last month I was in New Zealand, my mom came to visit and we took a road trip around the North Island. My favorite places were definitely Wellington, Wanaka and Mount Maunganui.

      • Some of my favourite places, too! (and I admire your ability to live in Rotorua for that long – I’ve never stayed long enough to get used to the smell!)

  2. Wow, lucky you. I love San Francisco there’s so much to do and it’s so easy to get around. Make sure you save some pennies (I mean cents) for New York shopping 🙂

  3. It’s fantastic you’ll be in Portland, but a shame you’re only staying for 24 hours! I live here, and in my opinion, it’s the best city on your trip 🙂 (and I moved here from New York City). You must visit Powell’s, the USA’s largest indie bookstore, and Voodoo Donuts, our signature doughnut shop, and get a coffee at Stumptown, the best coffee in the entire country. You’ll find Portland to be a wonderful urban city in the midst of mountains, forest, gorges, and not far from the ocean. We have the best of everything here, you’ll love it!

  4. I recommend reading up on bedbug prevention if you’re going to be staying in paid accommodations (especially here in NY), stick to non crawly souvenirs!
    There is a dinner cruise through NY harbor I highly recommend – – the views are amazing
    If in doubt make an annoyed or determined expression and *keep moving*. Stopped confused people can attract the wrong kinds of attention (and are REALLY annoying when you’re trying to get somewhere).
    Bring comfy boots and warm clothing, winter in NYC can be pretty brutal (it’s the wind and slush) and this year is expected to be bad.
    Look around at the buildings whenever possible, I’ve lived in the NYC suburbs most of my life and I’m still amazed at the architecture.

  5. I’ve only been to NYC out of those places, but I definitely recommend doing some of the tourist stuff like the Empire State Building, 9/11 memorial, Times Square, etc. Eat in Little Italy for a meal if you can.

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  10. You’ll enjoy the “city” (San Francisco). I used to live in the bay area and recommend to try to see as much as you can. If you drive an hour south of the city, you’ll be in the heart of silicon valley. Stop by Mountain View, which is home to Google and some of the best restaurants in the downtown Mountain View area. If you like sushi, I highly recommend Sono Sushi in downtown Mountain View. If you like Mexican food, I recommend stopping by the Mission District in the city. You’ll have to go down Lombard Street (famous twisted street)… what else… too many things to list in the city. Enjoy your stay in the states!

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