This week I decided to theme my posts and with a few American style posts already in the pipeline, it seemed like the perfect theme. It is amazing what you discover when you tell people this is what you are planning, loads of bloggers love the States and will be guest blogging on Phat Cupcake this week! I thought I’d start with my American road trip plans…
I’ve always loved America. I went to New York for the first time thanks to an award my Mum won at work. We spent 3 days being shown the city but, unfortunately for me, it wasn’t long enough and we were very much tied to the plans of the group. It was amazing to fly over the Empire State Building in a helicopter (even though I hated every minute of it, I have a dreadful fear of flying) and drink champagne at the top of the Twin Towers. To be honest it fuelled my love for New York and I have visited 3 times since. Luckily for me I’ve seen different sides of the city from my 21st Birthday at the Waldorf hotel to a friend living on the outskirts of the Bronx and sleeping on her floor for a week. I loved every second and have been dying to see more of America ever since. I’ve always fancied seeing some of the West Coast having also been to Florida and had thought of doing the Pacific Coast Highway a few times. This year I decided to bite the bullet and book something.
I’ve looked at arranging my trip myself. I mean how hard can it be? Book a few hotels, arrange a hire car and flights. Problem is I know very little about the West Coast so when it comes to getting a decent deal, I am clueless. That is where The American Road Trip Company has come in handy for me. Not only do they sort all my flights, accommodation, route plans and car hire; they have introduced me to places I simply wouldn’t have known were there.
In October Nicola and I will be arriving at LAX for our trip of a lifetime. She wanted to see Las Vegas, I wanted to see the Grand Canyon. This has sort of formulated our trip and we get to see both as well as a bit of everything the West has to offer. I love that our trip will take us to big cities, mountains, lakes, beaches and parks.
We start with beaches namely Laguna Beach where lots of millionaires live, apparently. If I find a man there is every chance I won’t be coming home! I can’t wait to get over the jet lag on the beach.
In a day we will leave the beach and head for the desert seeing Sinatra’s favourite hangout Palm Springs and then over the Joshua Tree National Park. I can’t wait to get some photographs of the weird rocks and trees! We are staying in Lake Havasu which is the home of the old London Bridge which was taken down brick by brick before being transported to the USA. Next up is my choice of destination, the Grand Canyon! I’m not good with heights and it will take a real surge of courage to get me near the rim.
After the Grand Canyon we drive to Las Vegas via the Hoover Dam and part of the old Route 66. Ironically we are staying at New York, New York and the last time I went on holiday with Nicola guess where we went? New York! I am looking forward to seeing the glitzy lights and the huge casinos for myself as well as taking my picture outside 2 of the wedding chapels where friends have gotten married.
Next we travel through Death Valley onto Lake Tahoe where my Dad tells me a lot of The Godfather was filmed. I have since watched the first film and the beginning of the second. It looks so beautiful with it’s mountain backdrop. Speaking of mountains we will have to brave some interesting roads as we head into Yosemite National Park to visit the bears before heading into Napa. I’m super excited about visiting the vineyards and seeing where some of my favourite wines come from.
Along the coast we drop into San Francisco over the Golden Gate Bridge before heading south along the All American drive of Highway 1 through Carmel, Big Sur and back into the bright lights of Los Angeles. It is probably very sad that I am looking forward to seeing Rodeo Drive a la Pretty Woman. I can’t wait to see the walk of fame and the Hollywood sign in the hills as well as the tomb where Marilyn Monroe is now resting.
I have 13 weeks to wait, any hints or tips of what to see or where to eat are greatly appreciated. I’m lucky that The American Road Trip Company will supply me with lots of things to see and do but anything else is a bonus. I think we have filled the San Francisco days already with a visit to Bubba Gump Shrimp Co and Alcatraz! I’ll be blogging along the way too with hotel, restaurant and what to ‘try’ whilst there. It’s going to be an amazing journey.
All photos are courtesy of The American Road Trip Company and this trip has been paid for in full.