Hi all this is my first post on the site, i have been reading through previous posts and have found some very useful information about travelling around various parts of the US. Me and my mate are planning a 4 week trip for july this year:
The plans so far is to fly to boston or new york (visiting both), then get an internal flight from new york across to san francisco. Then basically do a loop, heading down the west coast to san diego, then LA across to vegas then back up to san francisco via Yosemite National Park.
I was hoping for some advice on:
[*]places to see/visit and stay
[*]best methods of transportation
Also how feesable would it be to travel using public transport, as we figured it would be potentially expensive hiring a car due to there only being 2 people on the trip and myself being a young driver.
Thanks for reading.
I took the greyhound minimally around there, but it was somewhat manageable. The greyhound station in L.A. though is in a slightly frightening area and getting from that area to any where else, without a cab, is not even worth trying. I really liked Venice Beach in L.A. and I think that you could probably meet some people at your hostel to travel with easily. Or if you stay in Hollywood, same situation. There is usually postings on bulletin boards for people looking to share rides and such up to San Fran, down to San Diego or to the Grand Canyon. I'd say that would be the best situation for you.
Renting a car, if you are under 25, is a bit tricky I believe. But it might be worth it. The Pacific Coast Highway is gorgeous. Or maybe a train? Good luck.
I'm doing the same thing, although me & my friend will be there for 6 weeks.
We fly into LAX on the 30th June, we have our first hostel booked on Hollywood Boulevard.
We were looking into the Greyhound for the majority of our travelling, we also want to go into TJ, Mexico.
When you are in NYC /Vegas you can just walk or just use public transportation. LA, San Francisco, San Diego and Boston would definitely require a car to get around.
hotels.com to search inexpensive accommodations
http://www.nyctourist.com/ = for all events happening in NYC
http://www.bostonusa.com/ = events in Boston
http://www.lasvegas.com/ = events in LV
http://hollywood.losangeles.com/ = events in LA
http://www.onlyinsanfrancisco.com/ = events San Fran
http://www.sandiego.org/nav/Visitors = events in San Diego
The website above will let you know everything going in those cities, so you can pick and choose what you like
thanks for the replies guys, jeantyc i'll take a look at those websites. We have basically planned to stay in hostels / motels then step up when we visit vegas As for travel I hope we can sort something out, we figured that renting a car would be the best option particularly for driving down from san francisco as I've read many times that the drive is supposed to be very nice!!
Amie L How long did u travel around and where bouts roughly did you go using the greyhound? My friend travelled america last year and he too had advised us about the greyhound station in LA and others being in not so safe areas so that would definately be something to avoid. Also as you said hopefully there may be the possibility of meeting people in hostels etc wanting to travel to similar plasces etc.
Although i think with there only being 2 of us then renting a car will be too expensive and also may be hard to achieve seems as though i'm the only driver of the 2 of us and we'r both only 21, so deposits etc will be very expensive.
DaniAJ10, 6 weeks will be well good, TJ would also be cool....I never realised it was so close! We'r aiming to book our flights for the 30th of june!
When I was travelling on the Greyhound I came into L.A. on bus from Texas and went out to Venice Beach by cab I believed. At some point I must have also greyhounded from L.A. back up through Northern California and home to Canada on a previous trip.
It's manageable but in L.A. (because it's massive and so spread out) getting a cab to somewhere costs a bit and public transportation can be a bit hard to figure out if you are travelling to another area.
When you are taking the greyhound you want to get in line early so you can get decent seats and sit together. Also make sure to minimize how much you store underneath the bus and at stops when bags are being unpacked, keep an eye on your stuff.
Buses are pretty full in the states. Try to grab healthy snacks to bring on the bus with you and I would strongly recommended one of the geeky neck pillows, because it will SAVE your neck. While some stations look a little sketchy, and are in sketchy parts of town - if you're not an idiot you should be okay.
The other issue of course is time. Greyhound can take awhile.
P.S. The most I ever travelled on greyhound was about 40 days from Winnipeg to New York to Memphis to Austin to Los Angeles and then I think after rented a car and went to Vegas I bused home to Winnipeg from Long Beach.
When in Venice Beach me and my friend got invited to travel with a couple guys who had rented a car up to San Fran then to the Grand Canyon and back to L.A. and that was awesome considering we didn't have the means to rent a car at that time and wouldn't have seen the Grand Canyon otherwise. Definitely a highlight of the trip.
Thanks for the replies Amie L, will definately take your advice on board if we do make use of the greyhound service. The flights should hopefully be booked this week, we will be basically flying to boston, then moving on to New York then philadelphia then fly across to vegas to start the west coast travel After vegas the plan is to visit san diego then travel up the coast hittin LA etc and finish in san francisco.
Hopefully we mite even hit on lucky as you did and meet people wanting to travel to the same areas. We'r hoping to prebook accomodation for boston and new york, as we figured that availability may be low so does anybody know of any good hostels to stay in? Also Amie L when you were in california did you simply stay in hostels and motels?
Im Travelling to USA .. (landing IN LA ) in May.. and going up the west coast and across Montanna .. Dakota to St Paul..
Someone I interact with in USA suggested I look into using AMTRAK(trains) instead of Greyhound... as very dodgy etc..
I have booked a USA rail pass(for international travellers).. I have reserved my seats/roomette all the way up the coast etc.. and all done online.. so far the interaction.. service even tho just online has been excellent ..
Im not sure this is for you .. but worth a look
I'm in the same boat, we have booked a hostel for our first 5 days in L.A bt were unsure whether or not we need to book in advance for hostels or whether you can fit in fairly easily?!