A friend and I are coming to the states april next year.
We hope to travel across the whole country.
Could anyone give us any tips on how to travel, where to stay, what to see, where to go and which route to go?
Glad for all help.
Oslo - Norway
as a forigner you can get an Amtrak train pass for $215 for two weeks or monthly pass for a bit more.
or you could use the Greyhound buses which arnt as bad as some people claim.
you could go from New york to Chicago then get the California Zypher train to San Francisco [you might want to stop off somewhere on route for a day or so to keep yourself sane]
spend atleast a week in San Francisco then finish off in LA.
bewarned LA is a bit rubbish, esp if you dont have a car!
That's quite a journey you're undertaking! The United States is obviously a huge place so you could fill a few hundred books with things to see and do but I can give you a few ideas about New York. I've been to California a couple of times too so feel free to ask me about that if you're interested.
If you're starting in NYC then you've got to go up the Empire State building. It's a bit of a hassle during peak periods as it involves queues then lifts (elevators- whatever!) then more queues and more lifts. It's worth it though. The views are stunning and you simply can't go to NYC without saying you went up there. I'd also recommend taking a stroll through central park. It's quite a relaxing place and there's a nice mosaic in an area called strawberry fields that simply says 'Imagine'. An inspiring thought with which start your epic journey I'd say. Obviously it's a memorial to John Lennon and the Dakota building, where he lived (and died), is just near by. You can take a seat and watch the joggers go by, or see kids playing baseball, or simply let you thoughts drift and soak up the atmosphere.
You can spend practically all day walking down 5th Avenue, especially if you have money in your pocket. There's tonnes of nice (and not so nice) shops and it's a constant hub of activity, as is a great deal of Manhattan. The famous Tiffany's is at the top end, although you're unlikely to make a purchase unless you have some serious dollars in your pocket. Saks of fifth avenue is another well known store of grand proportions. There's also plenty of smaller boutiques and souvenir stores to browse around.
To the south of Manhattan Island, Wall Street is an interesting place to visit and is close to the ferry port where you can catch various cruises and ferry boats to the likes of Liberty Island- the location of the famous statue- and to numerous other destinations. Taking a cruise to liberty island is interesting in that it offers fantastic views of the Manhattan skyline but once you get to the island itself, you do tend to feel a sense of, "well, now what?". The statue looks better from a distance. Wall street is also close to the site of the former trade centres.
Getting around NYC will probably either involve the ubiquitous yellow cabs or the underground system. Both are perfectly viable options but the underground has the benefit that you can buy all day passes that will get you to all sorts of places relatively cheaply and you don't get stuck in traffic.
Without trying to upset anyone, because I realise that there are perfectly nice people everywhere, I did find New Yorkers to be a little abrasive at times. New York is a busy working city so the locals don't always take kindly to tourists getting in their way. Just try to be easy going about it. You should also make sure that you tip waiters and waitresses at least 15% to avoid any unpleasantries. Service industry staff rely heavily on tips to get by and they're quite vocal about it if they feel you're being unfair.
I hope this has given you a useful insight and a few ideas with which to start your trip. Have fun!
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