Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Butterfly Maiden
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Tentative holiday plans to USA

#1

Post by Butterfly Maiden »

A visit to USA for Sophia and I have been in our minds for a while, but the arrival of COVID-19 completely scuppered any more thoughts about it.

However, we're trying to be optimistic. With the imminent arrival of vaccines, the chance for international travel may yet be a possibility in the near future.

It could still be a long time before that happens though, but as we've never been to America it is something we would like to do at some time.

We don't have any specific areas in mind at the moment, but with so many members on the Forum who live there then we could be looking for some 'local guides' to help us out.

I know that Marshall (Makuser) has already volunteered (on the Music thread) to show folks around who visits his area which gave us an idea. Maybe we'll take him up on his offer if we get over that way.

Maybe we'll get the opportunity to see a few other members too, who knows.

Anyway, as I say these are just tentative plans at the moment. We thought it would be a good time to have a few more options if we do decide to travel abroad.

The holiday may not yet happen, but there's always hope.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

#2

Post by pakarinen »

I think a return to anywhere near “normal” here is a long way off. I hope I’m wrong.
I heard that ζ η θ, but I’m pretty sure she just had π.

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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Butterfly Maiden »

pakarinen wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 10:46 am I think a return to anywhere near “normal” here is a long way off. I hope I’m wrong.
You could be right. We've been watching the news (CNN) a lot recently and it's not looking too good at the moment.

We're not too hopeful that it will be next year anyway. It could be a couple of years or so down the line yet :sigh:

Fingers crossed though.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

#4

Post by Shabadoo »

Doesn’t hurt to dream . For now. I think “shout outs” are appropriate.
Figure out where you might want to go. I’m sure you have some....thing in mind.
New York City, Hollywierd, Miami Beach, Wine Country, Las Vegas?
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Maybe who has the darkest skies????
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

#5

Post by KingNothing13 »

Make lemonade out of the lemons life has given you and take the time to plan out an exceptional, memorable trip. There's much to see here.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

#6

Post by seigell »

You should "Pick a Time of Year" for your hoped-for US Vacation.

We're a Very Big Nation, with numerous different Seasonal Weather "Benefits" and "Detriments", and depending on what your anticipated activities include...

For instance:
Summer is NOT the best time for Astronomical Clear Skies for either the SouthEast or the New Mexico / Southern Arizona / Western Texas Dark Skies Areas (Monsoon and Hurricane Seasons).
But, visits to the Dark Skies Awarded National Parks of the Mountain West are potentially still Snowed-In (or actually Snowed-Out) until later April (or even June for Yellowstone or Glacier or the Jasper/Banff area of Canada).
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Ylem »

I could show you around here if you like muddy soybean fields LOL
The US has a wide assortment of geography, the east coast is rather similar to where you live now.

Maybe the west might be a good place to start.
Utah and Arizona have some amazing sites, including the Grand Canyon.

You can also purchase a rail pass on Amtrak, (get a sleeper) you see a lot that way also.
My wife and I do that frequently, the last trip was to Glacier Park, Montana. Seeing snow covered mountains while it was 30*C, 86F, was an experience :)
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by helicon »

I'm hopeful we all will be able to travel some time in 2021. So far the covid pandemic has scuttled any travel plans I've been working out. I am planning a camping trip with my ten year old nephew sometime next summer, kind of a tour of national parks including Zion, Arches, Yellowstone and a couple of others. May also visit Great Basin National Park in Nevada. It's supposed to have Bortle 1 skies, so I will definitely be taking one of my scopes on the trip.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by KathyNS »

Once covid is over, you are welcome to stop by Nova Scotia. (Not the U.S., I know, but same continent.) The leaves are pretty in October. We could show you the highest tides in the world (~15m).
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Butterfly Maiden »

Thanks for the offer Kathy :smile:

You never know... ;)

It could be a possibility, but we won't just drop in unannounced :lol:
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Ylem »

If you or anyone else is planning a trip somewhere with dark skies, don't make the mistake I once made.

My first trip to Montana;
Took the train to Glacier, set up the ST-80 and it never really got that dark, I'm thinking extended twilight, NOPE, there was a FULL MOON, rising behind a tall mountain.

I a big dummy 😂
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by GCoyote »

The best time to visit the monuments and museums in the Washington, DC metro area (once they reopen of course) is the winter off season. They can be very crowded in the summer with long lines for the most popular attractions.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Thefatkitty »

Well Sophie, I would take Kathy up on her offer if you want to visit Canada, she's so right about NS.

Or you could drop by here and I could introduce you to a city with the worst drivers ever...;) Of course, if you and Sophie did visit us, between you two, my wife and daughter, I'm worried that mayhaps I might be "ganged-up" upon... Four girls of various ages, and one guy? I don't know if I like the sounds of that; it could be a working holiday for me :lol:

Ah, just kidding on the last part (not the drivers part); you're both more than welcome to stop in anytime :D And everyone is right; take the time now to plan it out. Lotsa folks on here could help you with that.

You two take care and all the best,
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Thefatkitty »

Ylem wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 8:00 pm If you or anyone else is planning a trip somewhere with dark skies, don't make the mistake I once made.

My first trip to Montana;
Took the train to Glacier, set up the ST-80 and it never really got that dark, I'm thinking extended twilight, NOPE, there was a FULL MOON, rising behind a tall mountain.

I a big dummy 😂
Vanessa, not to intrude on your thread, but Jeff, that is so funny; I laughed out loud when I read that. Just what I would do... :lol:

Gotta love a kindred spirit :D

Now back to Vanessa's thread :D
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by gregl »

A common mistake visitors make is to plan to see too much. The US is a whole continent from east to west. It's sort of like Europe from Portugal to the eastern border of the Ukraine, and from Turkey to Lithuania, tossing in the UK as well. So you need to pick a Very Small, relatively speaking, area and enjoy that. Google drive times are based on non-stop at the speed limit — you will never do that as you will need to stop for sightseeing, gas, food, etc. When on the road, trips always take longer than the numbers suggest. Many trips will take a whole day or more just for checking in and out and traveling to the next spot.

I live in California and frequently hear visitors planning to see Las Vegas, Death Valley, Yosemite, Sequoia, and San Francisco, and do it all in ten to fourteen days. Perhaps, if you don't plan on sleeping or seeing anything more than one or two highlights of each place. The state of California is larger than many countries and is over 700 miles from north to south.

So when you decide what you want to do, I advise you to cut that in half. Give yourself time to absorb what you see and make contact with the natives.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by notFritzArgelander »

Since you are interested in country music you simply must visit Nashville TN.

For some art and culture the National Gallery in DC is doable in a day, the Art Institute of Chicago might take two days but it is the largest collection of French Impressionists. The Philips Collection in DC is also good.

For outdoors activities and scenic delights I recommend Colorado. Rocky Mountain and Mesa Verde National Parks are very different with snowy peaks in RMNP and high desert archeological sites at Mesa Verde. Mesa Verde is my favorite National Park. I've been there more often than any other. The thousand year old cliff palaces that the Anasazi lived in are amazing. If you can manage it, stay at the lodge on top of the mesa. My last trip with my daughters we took advantage of a cancellation and stayed. It was a breathtaking and magical night with the Moon on one side a thunderstorm near the San Juan Mountains and the scent of sage and juniper in the air.

I used to collect SW American art so Santa Fe NM is also a place I'd frequent.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

#17

Post by AntennaGuy »

If (as I do) you prefer natural to man-made marvels, the Grand Canyon could be an awesome choice. I admit that its been more than a decade since I last visited it. But... sunrise over the canyon can be magnificent to behold. I saw it as a child and never forgot about it.
And it looks like I'm not the only one to be impressed that way:
https://explorethecanyon.com/grand-cany ... a-sunrise/
https://www.findingtheuniverse.com/phot ... sunset-at/
p.s. The photographs on the web don't do it justice. Take a good pair of binoculars (and a warm coat) and go (but make reservations far in advance).
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Butterfly Maiden »

WOW! Thank you everyone for all the advice that's been offered here so far.

I never really expected all that (well, actually I did, because I know how wonderful all you guys and gals are on here :D )

I'm going to have to go through all these comments again very carefully and make notes of all the suggestions.

gregl, I think you have made a very compelling point there. We would probably only get chance for a 2-week visit, so there's only so much that can be seen in that timeframe. Planning is going to be key so that we can see as much as possible in a calm manner. But we have plenty of time to do our planning.

Mark, I wouldn't stress about being outnumbered by females - I really think you would love it :lol:

It seems that we could practically spend the whole holiday just dropping in on everyone who has made suggestions. Then we wouldn't have time for sight-seeing ;)

I've really got to think about Sophia though. As much as she likes the comments everyone has made, it is her holiday as well, so I've got to break her in gently to you lot. I can't be too selfish :tease:

Anyway, neither of us have been out of the UK before, and we don't even have passports. So that is going to be the first order of business.

We're trying to not get too excited at the moment, as we don't know how long the pandemic restrictions will hinder travel.

We want to make absolutely certain that it is going to be safe for us to go.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

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Post by Butterfly Maiden »

I've shown Sophia all the comments we've had so far, and she is overwhelmed at the response.

She has asked me to pass on her thanks to everyone.

We're both very excited about the possibility of going, but we know it will probably be a long waiting game.

If it eventually works out, however long into the future, there is definitely one place we would both like to visit. That is the Smithsonian, so we will have to work that into our itinerary at some stage down the line.

As for other places to visit, that is yet to be determined.
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Re: Tentative holiday plans to USA

#20

Post by Makuser »

Hi Vanessa and Sophia. When the Covid stuff is over, I sincerely hope that you can visit the US. Here are 3 great picks from my experiences.
1: And, I agree with AntennaGuy, in that the natural monuments are really great to see and experience. Here are 3 from Arizona:
https://grandcanyon.com/
and close by are:
https://www.visitarizona.com/places/par ... ed-desert/
and
https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/e ... 463822002/

2: And you don't have to go to the US southwest to see great ancient geologic formations. In the midwest of the US, there are great boat tours to enjoy in Wisconsin and Michigan:
https://www.google.com/search?source=un ... 00&bih=786
and
https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractions ... higan.html

3: I have saved the last for my favorite. The Westgate Cocoa Beach Pier (which extends 800 feet into the Atlantic Ocean) if you like a tropical theme. In the below link, on picture 3 (click on the arrows) you can see the Rikki Tiki Tavern where local musicians play on the weekends, and in picture 12 is the Pelican Bar and Grill. Sheri and I sat at that table on the far left center of the photograph when her sister and hubby from Illinois came down to visit last month.
https://www.google.com/maps/uv?pb=!1s0x ... HXoECDYQAw

We live only 20/25 minutes travel time away from there, and is close to paradise for us here on this earth. Great beaches, shops, and always nice folks. And, we also have the Brevard Zoo nearby, where you can take an open train ride through the back areas and see the animals up even closer. I hope that you enjoy this Vanessa and Sophia, and the kindest of regards.

PS: Bring lots of camera image storage memory cards, as all of these are an experience of a lifetime.
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