Time is a tricky thing, in a way it feels like I spent years in the USA and in another way being back in SA makes me feel as if this whole experience was ages ago, even though I haven’t even been back for 2 weeks. These 6 months have hands down been the best experience of my life – I loved it so much! All the places I traveled too, the amazing friends I made, the food I ate the things I saw, memories to last me a life time and sharing almost all of it with my love was just the BEST.
You can see in the map above 2 colours, the states in purple are the ones I visited and the green are states that I want to visit next time! I have given a brief over view below of each of my trips, the highlights and so forth – happy reading!
We visited San Deigo from 22 July – 27 July. San Diego was beautiful and reminded me a lot of Cape Town. We were there for a work conference for Robert so wasn’t exactly a relaxing holiday as there were many work functions we needed to attend. It was also still at the beginning of my stay in the USA and I was still finding my feet. I think if I went back now again I would have a better time.
- This would have to the the Gaslamp District and the great restaurants, bars and shopping! Go get a decadent ice cream at Ghirardelli and then leisurely walk the district and shop your heart out.
- Also I have to recommend the Hard Rock Hotel, that place was amazing!
- Then last but not least, Balboa Park – fantastic museum, art and music hub! You can spend the whole day there just taking in everything.
From San Diego we took the train to Los Angeles and stayed there for the weekend of 27 July – 29 July. L.A also seemed strangely familiar, from the movies I suppose but also very Cape Town vibes about it. We were really there for too short a time to have experienced too much of the culture, and I was suffering from some extreme delayed jetlag that made me fall asleep in the strangest places ha ha! But it was a fun whirlwind trip. I was disappointed though that I didn’t see one celebrity or paparazzi!
- Santa Monica Pier and beach for sure, so beautiful and with the amusement park right on the water it creates a wonderful atmosphere.
On 12 Aug Robert, George, Danielle and myself took a crazy-action-packed day trip to Oklahoma – we were attacked by wild animals, ate fried pies, saw some beautiful scenery, out-drove a thunderstorm, got lost and made it home in one piece! The most fun day!
- Arbuckle Wildernes, the most random little zoo that you can drive through in your car and feed the animals, very silly but super fun!
- Also you need to get some fried pies somewhere there – mouthwatering!
From 6 – 9 September I joined my best friend Clare in Boston for a wedding! We haven’t traveled together in probably 10 years so it was very special to do it again! I had also been starved of my South African friends for 3 months in the USA and it was heaven to have my bff there with me!
- If you love shopping you must go to Newburry Street, they have the best stores and the atmosphere walking around there is great!
- We didn’t get time on this trip, but on a previous trip to Boston I explored the Boston Common, amazing park with a great historical walk that takes you all around the city. So much architecture and culture to take in!
- Umm in Dover we didn’t really do much except for the wedding, but the area looked beautiful!
My friend Inga came to visit me from SA and with all her heart she just wanted to go to New York! I was a bit skeptical of all the hype made about NYC and it’s awesomeness, but I have to say after spending one week there (from 24 Sep to 1 Oct) I am completely converted. Just like everyone else that has visited that city and felt the energy in the air, I now also have to proclaim that NY is my favourite city in the US (after Dallas of course!).
In the interest of trying to keep this list as short as possible I have had to be ruthless with my selection – so please read my posts about New York to get the full list of highlights.
- You must go to Central Park and take a few hours to enjoy it and all it has to offer.
- Times Square is something to see – the shopping and photo opportunities are amazing!
- Take the Staten Island Ferry and check out the Statue of Liberty.
- I was SO impressed by the World Trade Center Memorial, go have a look even if you weren’t personally affected by this tragedy, it is very moving.
- The MoMa Museum was stunning, wish I had more time to spend there, definitely worth a visit.
- And then of course eat and drink as much as you can the options are endless!
For our 2 year anniversary Robert and I wanted to go away and invited our friends Scott and Jessica to join us in Colorado from 13 – 18 Nov. This for me personally was so nice because I had not had any winter yet this year and really wanted to be in the snow – so this sorted me out big time! Tip to future visitors to Winter Park, don’t go on opening weekend, the staff are not experienced and informed enough and all the activities and slopes are not open or working yet. Despite this and a mild case of altitude sickness, I had a fantastic time!
- Snow! Loved being surrounded by it, playing in it and snowboarding on it!
- The Winter Park resort and village is picturesque, nestled in the mountains you get the most gorgeous views and there are many little shops and restaurants to enjoy.
- This is a little specific but there was a free gondola lift connecting the top parking lot to the main resort – take a bottle of bubbly and ride that lift at sunset – the view is spectacular, dress warmly!
From the 22nd to the 25th of Nov we traveled to Washington State to have Robert’s family together for Thanksgiving. I saw Seattle for the first time FREEEZING is not accurate to describe it! Then we were off to beautiful Lopez Island! I loved this trip and the cosy family vibes!
Gas Works Park, the most breathtaking view of the Seattle skyline – a definite must!
The University of Washington, where Robert graduated, has impressive architecture and grounds!
On Lopez Island the only the actually did, other than chilling, was hiking up to Iceberg Point – unforgettable!
And that sums up my travel experiences in the US of A! I will be posting my highlights of Dallas soon!