General Question

Ranimi23's avatar

Where we MUST visit in USA at our honeymoon?

Asked by Ranimi23 (1914points) February 26th, 2012

We are going to be at:

New York
Orlando (Disney, Universal Studio)
Caribbean (Royal Caribbean cruise, Allure of the sea)
Las Vegas
San Francisco
Los Angles

Please advice. It is going to be a FULL mounth trip, once in a life time vaction. We are not from USA, it will be our first time.

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23 Answers

JilltheTooth's avatar

What time of year?

Ranimi23's avatar

This April, sorry I didn’t mention that…

JilltheTooth's avatar

I used to live in Seattle and it’s one of my favorite places on earth. Two of my favorite things to do were A) On a nice day (for both things) go up the Space Needle. I know it’s very touristy, but the 360 degree view is stunning, with Mount Rainier, the Olympics and Cascades. The other thing is riding the ferry.

marinelife's avatar

New York
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Museum of Natural History
Have a slice of pizza with cheese
Eat a bagel with cream cheese (best on Earth)
Ride the Staten Island Ferry (Go back and forth just for the trip)
The Empire State Building

Disney is about 30 miles from the city of Orlando
If you want to see some real Florida get away from the theme parks.
Take the Winter Park boat ride through the canals
Or go to Blue Spring (it will be a little late to see the manatees) but it is an amazing site (if you walk up to the source of the spring)

South Beach

Las Vegas
The strip
Take a ride out to Lake Mead and see the London Bridge
Hoover Dam

Take the time to drive to the Olympic Peninsula and see the Pacific Ocean and the rain forest
Have coffee in Starbucks
See the troll under the Aurora Bridge
East some salmon or Dungeness crab

San Francisco
Drive across the Golden gate bridge and stop on the other side to have your picture taken with the bridge and the city at your backs
Then continue on to Muir Woods and Cathedral grover where there are giant redwoods (Go early in the day)
On the way back stop in Sausalito for a funky art colony
See Coit Tower
Ride a cable car (Wait until it completely stops before getting off and don’t get stuck on the inside)
Meet up with some Fluther jellies

Los Angeles
The La Brea tar pits
Have a fresh-squeezed glass of orange juice
Eat at Spago’s (probably need reservations)

gailcalled's avatar

Will you have a car?

Are you interested in the natural wonders or more drawn to the cities and what is available there?

filmfann's avatar

When you are in San Francisco, you can easily spend two days doing tourist stuff, from Alcatraz to Chinatown to Cable Cars to a walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.
You should take a day and go to Napa Wine Country, which is about an hour away.
If you have 2 more days, a trip to Yosemite is required. That might work well if you are driving to LA. Yosemite is a good 3 hours from SF.

filmfann's avatar

While in Vegas, you really do need to see Hoover Dam. Don’t miss it!

Dutchess_III's avatar

I live in a small town in Kansas. Yesterday there was the yearly farm equipment auction at The Sale Barn (local name for a place that sells cattle the rest of the year.) I drove out there. Trucks were parked in the deep ditch alongside of the busy, 65 mph highway a quarter of a mile from the parking lot. People had been arriving since six A.M. I got there at around 11, so I took a chance and actually found a spot in the dirt, dusty parking lot.
I walked toward the fields that were packed with combines and tractors and Bobcats, parted out silos and farm implements, cattle chutes.
I gazed around at the hundreds of people, mostly men, almost all farmers. The salt of the earth. They all wore jeans and boots, or overalls, clean but well-worn with hard, demanding physical work. Almost all had a baseball hat or a cowboy hat setting comfortably on their heads.
Farmers never rest. The cattle have to be milked every day, at 6:00 a.m. sharp, seven days a week, without fail. Vacations are few and far between. The only excuse for not getting the milking done is if a tornado came through and blew everything away. Then it’s time to pick up and start over.
It was a beautiful, cloudless day. It would have been utter perfection, if not for the wind which was blowing like hell! But it was easy to find shelter among the gigantic machines perched on tires taller than me.
Occasionally you would catch a brief sense of the warm, light smell of cow manure wafting over the fields from the surrounding cattle pens. The black cattle, with tags in their ears, placidly stood in the large, one acre pens, chewing their cud, showing not the least bit of alarm at all of the hubbub. The horses, on the other hand, would prance and dance and gallop around their corrals until they just got tired. Then they’d walk up and stick their heads over the fence in curiosity. Some of them let the kids (and adults, like me!) rub their long noses. Others would skitter away, bucking and kicking up their heels if they were approached.
To one end of the fields were at least a hundred round bales of hay. Each one was about eight foot tall and eight foot long, and they were packed tightly together. They made up a playground for the kids five times bigger than a basketball court. Kids were scampering and jumping like goats, playing tag up there on their high-rise, hay bale, playing field. They’d lay down on one and roll into the crevice that two round bales made between themselves and lay for a second, just laughing. The kids who weren’t playing on the hay bales were sitting next to deep tractor ruts that had water in them, creating things out of the mud. Once I walked past rows of ginormous tractor tires, some stacked two and three high, up to five feet tall. Suddenly, on some command, tousled, giggling kid heads heads popped up out the middle of the tires, like Gophers Gone Wild, shouting at one another!
Kids were running in and down and around and out of the cattle chutes, playing on cattle feeders like they were monkey bars
The auctioneer’s voice could be heard from miles away, booming out through speakers mounted on a Gator (a little four wheel truck, kind of like a golf cart.) “I have threethousand,threethousand,dohear,threefive,threefive….HUP! Threefive! DoHearfour,four,four…HUP! Going, going….pause…And SOLD for Four Thousand!” There would be satisfaction on the face of the winner, and pained disappointment on those who just couldn’t or wouldn’t go any higher, because the tractor that sold for $4000 was worth $10,000 easy. That’s what auction is all about, getting a fantastic deal…OR ripping your own self off because you get lost in the moment and refuse to stop bidding! Here’s ours, The One That Got Away. It went for $1800 dollars. EIGHTEEN HUNDRED DOLLARS! Makes me want to cry!! But..we weren’t there for a camper. We were there for a tractor…which we didn’t get either.
The equipment went for a couple of hundred dollars to a hundred-thousand plus, to be paid in cash. Those laid back farmers, those hard workin’, Good Old Boys in their dusty overalls and scruffy boots are among the richest people in the state.
I thought…“THIS is Kansas!” I know it wouldn’t be thrilling like the regular tourist places (of which I vote for Seattle,) but it was down home, earthy and just plain simple and good. The Heartland. I wish everyone could experience it, live it, breath it, just once.

Anyway, go to Seattle! Better yet, go the the country side in Washington State. It’s breathtaking scenery. And it doesn’t smell like cows. :) But it DOES smell like Sasquatch, so be careful.

wilma's avatar

@Dutchess_III I’m not sure what it is about yesterday but there was an auction just exactly like you described, about 5 miles from my house. Right down to the hay bales and tractor tires. It might have been a bit colder here, and we have had a recent snow storm, so there was snow for the kids and slush to be walked through.
I was thinking the same thing as you when I read this question. I wish everyone could see where I live and know the reality of it.

I also vote for Hoover dam when in Vegas.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@wilma It’s a secret in small communities that seem like they have “nothing” to offer, isn’t it. We don’t worry about our kids getting wet or muddy or falling off of hay bales. If they can’t do that, there ain’t nothing much else to do! Where do you live?

wilma's avatar

Michigan, farm country.

@Ranimi23 I guess that I would suggest that when you would leave at least some of the cities that you visit, and head out into the country to see some of the farms, both small and large. Perhaps a Bed and Breakfast stay. It can be very different from the city, in attitude and appearance.
Maybe some of the folks here that live in more rural areas near the cities that you are visiting could make suggestions.
@gailcalled , and others are from more rural areas. Adirondack and Coloma?
Mods, is is OK to use their names? please remove them if it isn’t.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I second @wilma. If you really want to “see” America you gotta get to the small towns off the beaten track.

jaytkay's avatar

If easy hiking appeals to you, Griffith Park is right in Los Angeles. You can park by the observatory, check out the Hollywood sign, and walk to the top of Mount Hollywood .

Also go to the beach! If you go to Santa Monica beach, for the rest of your life you will notice the pier and Ferris wheel on television and in movies again and again and again, and say “Hey look, it’s the Santa Monica pier, I’ve been there!”

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

San Francisco: My favorite place to take tourists was Fort Point. It’s a fort built in the early nineteenth century, and it sits directly below the Golden Gate Bridge. Also in the city don’t miss riding on the cable cars and visit the Cable Car Museum.

Los Angeles: Whatever you do, don’t miss the Getty Art Museum. It’s spectacular. Take a tour of the Universal Studios movie lot.


Dutchess_III's avatar

I’m curious, OP. What country are you from?

jaytkay's avatar

Another thought – driving the Pacific Coast Highway between LA and San Francisco is a something lots of Americans dream of. Rent a convertible if you do it!

bkcunningham's avatar

Wow, $1,800 for that fifth-wheel? It makes me want to cry. I loved, loved, loved your story. I feel like I was there.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Thanks @bkcunningham. Yeah, that one has two pop outs on each side. There was another one that had one popout for the dining/living area. The door was banged up, like someone kicked the s**t out of it, but other than that, it was perfect…it sold for $1000. Craziness. My poor husband. He went out early, early hoping to score a tractor because we really need one for our new land. I was kind of pissy though, certain that he’d get us another $5000 in debt that we can NOT afford right now. He knew I’d be upset if he spent too much. Then I talked to him later in the morning and he told me about the $1000 camper. I was speechless! I couldn’t believe he didn’t bid on it! So I hustled right out there to make sure he didn’t not do something stupid again! Poor guy. Can’t win for losing!

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh...@wilma...I bet the auctions have something to do with tax return time….

dabbler's avatar

+1 @jaytkay for driving from LA to San Francisco on Hwy 1. Or at least drive south from San Francisco to Monterrey. There is a great aquarium in Monterey.

And @Hawaii_Jake +1 for the Getty Museum in LA. The museum complex is absolutely astounding, and is on a commanding piece of land overlooking the whole LA basin. In my opinion the architecture actually outclasses the art there (which is top-drawer stuff too, but we’re a little spoiled in NYC)

@marinelife great list(s) ! If you like art add MOMA and the Guggenheim to your list in NYC. The Guggenheim is a fascinating building too, a continuous spiral of galleries designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

If you get to Chicago visit the Art Institute there. The way they group and display their collection is unusually accessible and informative, I think.

Silence04's avatar

IMO, Miami is not that great if you’re going for the beach… Clearwater beach (Tampa area) is much better…

Gemma_rose's avatar

Since you have San Fran and LA on your itinerary, rent a car and drive from San Fran down to LA along Route 1 (Pacific Coast Highway). After visiting the Monterey Aquarium, stop off at Pebble Beach, Big Sur, and San Simeon. While in San Fran, I would make the drive north to Point Reyes, spend some time doing a wine tasting tour in Napa, hike in Muir Woods/Mount Tamalpais, and shop in Sausalito. Try to get a reservation at the French Laundry when you’re out in Napa. (It’s hard to get a reservation less than a month in advance, but well worth it.) In LA, make sure to get out to the Getty Museum, La Brea tar pits, and Griffith Park. LA has tons of great restaurants, but one of my favorites is Inn of the Seven Rays, which is off the beaten path. Very romantic! Also spend some time on the Santa Monica Pier and on Venice Beach. If you have time, I would also recommend driving down to Dana Point. One of my favorite spots to have dinner as the sun sinks down over the ocean. Absolutely spectacular. One place that isn’t on your list that I’d recommend is Jackson Hole. Amazing scenery. Tons of outdoorsy stuff to do regardless of physical ability. Enjoy your trip!

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