Hawaii is probably one of the top most popular destinations for vacationers all over the world. There is something most find hard to express, and utterly alluring about the islands Hawaiian islands of Kauai that bring visitors back again and again. It truly is one of the most beautiful places on Earth, being home to beautiful beaches, friendly locals, weather that is neither too hot nor humid, peaceful ocean breezes, not to mention other fascinating facts and sights, such as being the location of the world’s most active volcano, the world’s tallest sea mountain, as well as being one of the youngest geological formations in the world, and the youngest of the United States. There are six islands that makeup Hawaii; Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui, and “The Big Island” which is actually named Hawaii, but called The Big Island so people don’t get confused with the state, and the name.
One of the favorite activities to take part in is the submarine tours of the reefs that surround the island of Oahu, and the tours can be found in Honolulu, along with several other aquatic activities, such as diving, swimming in the beautiful waters of Hawaii’s hundreds of beaches, as well as taking private or public charter boats out into the ocean for fishing trips with family and friends. Luxury resorts and waterfront spa treatments are also popular indoor activities in Hawaii, as well as more family-oriented activities such as “Sky Adventures”, which are helicopter tours of the volcano and breathtaking mountains. Another popular attraction to Hawaii is the nightlife; dance clubs, and live beach-front entertainment, including Hawaii’s famous scantily clad Hula dancers.
One of the most multicultural of all of Hawaii’s many attractive properties, is the cuisine visitors will find there; some of the most prominent influences in Hawaiian food are Polynesian, Asian, and American. The most popular vegetables and fruits used in Hawaiian foods are coconuts, yams, macadamia nuts, guava, tamarind, melons, seaweed, kukui, sweet potatoes, breadfruit, pineapples, and bananas. The popular spices used in Hawaiian cooking are Five Spices, Char siu, soy sauce, jicama, fish sauces, Bagoong, Patis, and Wasabi. One of the most interesting choices of meat in Hawaii, while pork is very popular, is actually Spam. Believe it or not, Spam is used in almost everything in Hawaii; it can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Hawaii is the planet’s second-largest consumer of Spam, –the first is actually Guam. Tuna is another staple food of Hawaii and is used in many traditional dishes. Some of the delicious dishes you’ll definitely have to taste in Hawaii is Loco Moco; two fried, seasoned hamburger patties, topped with cooked eggs, and gravy, as well as, Kalua Pig, a favorite of natives and visitors, which is pulled pork, with marinated and steamed cabbage.
In Hawaii, when looking for hotels, your options are various, to say the least. Choosing a hotel further inland can be cheaper, though further from the beaches. The hotels on the beach are picturesque but much more expensive; there are resort hotels, spa hotels, luxury five-star getaways, and economically sound hotels as well, for those who prefer to spend their time outside their hotel rooms. Travel back and forth to the islands is done either by ferry or air.
California is located on the Western Coast of the United States and is home to hundreds of different attractions for tourists who want to experience a diverse period of leisure. There are twelve main regions of California, but California is mainly divided by North and South. In Northern California, tourists can find winter and nature-oriented activities, while in Southern California, California are summer activities, shopping, and entertainment-based things to do. The twelve main regions of California, from north to south, are the North Coast, Shasta Cascade, the Bay Area, the Central Valley, Gold Country, High Sierra, the Central Coast, the desert region, Orange County, the Los Angeles region, Inland Empire, and San Diego.
When most people think of vacationing in California, their minds usually take them to the busy streets of the L.A. and San Diego region, Hollywood, and Disneyland. Strolling around the busy streets of Los Angeles, shopping and perhaps catching the rare glimpse of a celebrity, or riding the world-famous rides in one of the nation’s top theme parks at Disneyland. However, California has much more to offer. There’s the wide expanse of beautiful desert in eastern California, stretching out for miles of flat, beautiful terrain, famous for the sunsets that take up the entire sky. For those who love the beach, but prefer not to wade through heavily populated stretches of sand that are usually notorious in L.A. and San Diego, year-round, there’s also the central coast, and the beaches of Santa Cruz, and Santa Monica. The Central Valley region boasts wide expanses of plains, and bountiful stretches of green hills; a perfect destination for those who would prefer a quiet, sunny vacation getaway in a country atmosphere.
In Northern California, the possibilities are even more variable for activities. In the Shasta Cascade region, there are majestic mountains, for skiing and snowboarding, or mountain biking. As well as wildlife preserves, and enormous natural parks, where tourists and vacations can see the beauty of nature preserved, and flourishing before their eyes. On the North Coast of California, vacationers can travel through wine country, and sample some of the finest wines made right there on the coast, from the freshest source available; acres of vineyards, and wineries. As well as touring wine countries, travelers can also view one of the most famous attractions of that region; the Giant Redwoods found in Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, or Del Norte State Park, hiking among some of the largest trees on the face of the Earth, as well as the oldest. Just standing beneath the Giant Redwoods, you can feel their ancient testimony of life, a bygone past.
Cuisine in California is probably the most diverse you’ll find in many places. In the urban areas, you can find a melting pot of different foods and traditional dishes, such as a variety of Asian foods, sold from street vendors, as well as South American, Mexican, and Western foods. Because of California’s abundance of fresh fruits, and the perfect climate fruits and vegetables from around the world can grow here, whereas, in any other part of America, they wouldn’t be able to survive the climate. Not to mention other cultural foods such as Greek, Italian, German, and much more, available from all over the cities, as well as being prepared by the finest and most culturally diverse chefs. Eating out in California is a world tour for your mouth.
As far as getting around in California goes, traveling by car is the best way to go, either renting a car when you fly in or driving there from wherever on the North American content you happen to be coming from. In urban areas, such as San Francisco, San Diego, or Los Angeles, however, there is heavy traffic, and public transportation is cheaper and more reliable than waiting in traffic for hours. Taxis are also popular in urban areas, as well as renting scooters or motorcycles. Another popular choice for those visiting California, more for the natural activities, and camping, is the RV rentals. Like a moving hotel, tourists can roam freely in Northern California, experiencing the best of both worlds; the hotel and the campfire.
Accommodations in California are numerous and very diverse as well; it all depends on what kind of visit tourists are planning to have. When it comes time to book and reserve a hotel, the choices are endless. Tourists can reserve campsites near the enchanting state parks so that they’re close to their favorite activities. Those who prefer quiet vacations can book a reservation in a quiet lodge, or in a privately owned bed and breakfast in the Central Valley. For those vacationing in the city, or planning to spend their time in California’s various theme and amusement parks, there are luxury hotels, teeming with different options to pamper themselves, and have a relaxing spa experience. Also, resort hotels, provided by amusement or theme parks, can be purchased as part of a vacation package, which takes some of the stress off of finding perfect accommodations.
Alabama is a great destination for people interested in getting back to nature, relaxing, and meeting some of the friendliest people in America. Known as “The Heart of Dixie,” Alabama certainly takes southernness to heart. From the rolling foothills of the Appalachians in the north, through the plains in the middle of the state, and down to the beaches and bayous along the Gulf of Mexico, Alabama offers hospitality, a laid-back attitude, and enough history, soul, and activities to satisfy any visitor.
The South is proud of its history, and although its past certainly has some checkered moments, modern Alabama has come to grips with the worst parts, while embracing the future at the same time. Certainly, no city demonstrates this juxtaposition more than Huntsville. Located an hour and a half north of Birmingham, Rocket City is home to Alabama’s high-tech industry. NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center is there, along with the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, and companies such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and others. The Space and Rocket Center is one of the largest museums in the world dedicated to space travel and home to Space Camp. Each year kids from all over the world come to learn about humanity’s continuing journey to the stars, operate mock-ups of NASA equipment, and undergo some of the same training that real astronauts do.
For outdoors enthusiasts, Alabama is chock-full of rivers, trails, lakes, parks, and beaches. Canoeing is very popular in the state, and the numerous river and streams offer challenges for all skill levels. The Coosa River in Wetumpka offers seven miles of rapids, calm waters, and gorgeous scenic views as paddlers make their way through the canyons and hills of central Alabama.
Golfers will find a few destinations that can offer a passion for the sport as well as the quality of courses that can be found in the Heart of Dixie. The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail offers ten public courses spread throughout the state, all of the championship quality and affordable prices, and all showcasing the beauty of the state. Many tourists to the state spend days, if not weeks, traveling up and down the state stopping at each spot on the trail and lingering over their putts.
Most people don’t think of Alabama as a beach destination, but the same coastline that millions travel to Florida to enjoy is present in Alabama, if on a much smaller scale. Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, and Dauphin Island all provide visitors the chance to dive, ski, swim, or just laze about under the sun. The cuisine is also second to none, featuring fresh fish and shellfish, as well as seasonal fruits and vegetables from one of the best-growing regions in the U.S. Mobile showcases its antebellum past with its forts and historic battle sights of the Civil War.
Alabama does things its own way. It could be the heat, but things seem to get done on a different schedule than the rest of the country. They still get done, but never in a hurry, and rarely without a smile and a ‘Thank You or ‘You’re Welcome.’ People interested in seeing what the south has to offer will find it all in Alabama.
Las Vegas is now more than a gambling haven. . .it’s a family destination, with entertainment for all ages.
Nevada is not where one would expect to find one of the top tourist destinations in the world, but Las Vegas has been challenging expectations ever since being established as an entertainment capital in 1946. In just a few years, Vegas went from being a wide spot on the road to the playground for gamblers, Hollywood stars, and tourists from all over the world. Las Vegas legalized gambling in 1931, but it wasn’t until Bugsy Siegel opened the Flamingo Hotel on the day after Christmas in 1946 that the Strip, and modern Las Vegas, was born. In the following years, the smaller, ‘family-run’ hotels and casinos would gradually be replaced by mega-resorts and corporate hotels, and the city that was once based purely on entertainment for adults began billing itself as a destination for the entire family.
Today, the action has moved from downtown Las Vegas to the Strip. The Strip is actually a four-mile section of Las Vegas Boulevard South and contains most of the newer mega-hotels that Vegas offers. Many of these hotels are some of the biggest, most expensive properties in the world. Las Vegas is located in the Nevada desert, so the resorts and hotels are open year-round, the sun is always beaming, rain is almost non-existent, and fun is always in season.
Every year the hotels in Vegas get bigger, more lavish, and the entertainment choices more fabulous. On any given night, visitors can choose from old Vegas stand-bys such as Barry Manilow, David Copperfield, and Tony Bennett, to the biggest shows of today like the Blue Man Group, Spamalot, and Penn and Teller, to the more eclectic, like tribute show to Neil Diamond or the Rat Pack. Las Vegas, Nevada is also famous for its championship-quality golf courses. Each year, the PGA hosts numerous events and tournaments in and around Vegas, and likewise, for tourists, the courses are always in great shape, the sun is always shining, and the bunkers are always raked.
The Strip is home to the largest, most lavish, and most luxurious casinos and hotels in the United States. Some of the most famous that tourists will encounter are:
Circus Circus: Themed after its name, guests enjoy its daily acrobatic shows, clowns, and other amazing displays. One of the older casinos on the Strip, and a Vegas landmark.
Bellagio: When it was built it was the most expensive and largest casino in the world. In addition to thousands of game tables and rooms, the Bellagio has a world-class art museum, and it features the nightly dancing water fountain in front.
Ceasars Palace: An ancient Roman-themed affair, Ceasars has waiters working in togas and is another of the most famous and well-known in Vegas.
The Venetian: One of the largest hotel complex in the world, this Venice-based resort features gondola rides along waterfront shopping and a Guggenheim art museum.
Although Las Vegas has grown incredibly fast, the best may be yet to come.
Texas is a beautiful state to visit for many reasons. First of all, there are so many different things to do that you could move to this state and never accomplish all there is to do! Next, the weather is beautiful year-round so no matter what time of the year you can travel Texas will be waiting for you with the sun shining. Texas is really growing and each year millions of tourists visit the state for all the fun things the state offers and many individuals decide to call this state home. The following activities are some things you should take advantage of if you are visiting this great state. Keep in mind, however, that Texas is huge, so you might want to focus on activities in the area you will be traveling to and check out other offerings on a subsequent trip.
The Alamo is where the Texas army was attacked by the Mexican army. Although there were thousands of soldiers in the Mexican army the 182 Texans stood strong and fought for their independence. They lost to the bigger army, but their fight for independence was well documented at the Alamo. This is an amazing place and full of Texas history, so it is a great place to visit.
El Mercado, or the Market, is an astonishing place where tourists can buy handmade goods and get a real feel for the Mexican influence in Texas. Being so close to Mexico there is a lot of culture mixing and in El Mercado, this is very obvious although at times it seems to bend more towards the Mexican influence than the Texan.
If you are in San Antonio then you should definitely check out the Riverwalk. A great walkway that winds along the river sets the stage for dining and shopping. This is a very popular place to visit and is really beautiful and enjoyable at the same time.
Houston Space Center
NASA’s Johnson Space Center is another place that is worth a visit if you are in the Houston area. Learn about space exploration, see items and footage from space, and if you are lucky you might even meet an astronaut or see a launch!
If you are in San Antonio then Sea World should definitely be on your list of things to do. There are many aquariums, exhibits, and shows for you to take in and see plenty of live marine life. You will love the killer whales and dolphin shows. This is a great destination for couples with or without children!
Of course, these are not the only things to do in Texas. In a state that covers more than 262,000 square miles and has more than 600 miles of shoreline, there are hundreds of activities to keep you entertained. Enjoy golf, the beach, shopping, fine dining, and more when you visit Texas!
As one of the western states Utah has a lot to offer with its colorful terrain, an assortment of national parks, and recreational activities. It boasts multi-hued mountains, plateaus, and desserts as part of its landscape. Thousands of visitors are drawn to this state each year.
Utah, the 13th largest state in the country, was admitted to the union in 1896. Most of the state’s residents, known as Utahns, live in urban areas. Among these urban areas is the state’s capital and largest city, Salt Lake City. Utah, which means “People of the mountains,” is known for its religious and hardworking people hence the state’s motto “Industry.”
Each year Utah attracts thousands of tourists looking to indulge in outdoor recreational activities. And Utah delivers just that. Among the outdoor activities are skiing, golfing, hunting, kayaking, fishing, whitewater rafting, house boating, biking, and hiking. Whatever you choose to do there’s an adventure waiting for you. For nature lovers, the state offers a wide mountain terrain and beautiful scenery as most of the state’s land is uninhabited.
Utah is rich in history and culture as evident in the variety of heritage and art museums throughout the state. Many cities have museums that focus on the state’s history, traditions, natural resources, and art. Some of these museums include the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Museum, John Hutchings Museum of Natural History, Chase Home Museum of Utah Folk Arts, Fort Douglas Military Museum, Hellenic Cultural Museum, Museum of Utah Art & History, Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Springville Museum of Art, Territorial Statehouse State Park Museum and the John Wesley Powell River History Museum. Whatever your area of interest you’re sure to find a museum suited to your tastes.
While outdoor activities are popular in Utah there are also plenty of places to shop. Those looking for shopping in Utah will find a variety of venues including quaint stores, specialty shops, malls, and outlets. The state’s largest mall is the South Towne Center in Sandy, Utah.
Utah has all the competitive action sports enthusiasts need. Those in town for a basketball game can watch the Utah Jazz play at the EnergySolutions Arena in Salt Lake City. Football fans can watch the Utah Blaze, the state’s newest professional team. The state also has a professional soccer team, Real Salt Lake as well as a hockey team, the Utah Grizzlies. There are two minor league baseball teams as well as a variety of college sports.
There are plenty of places to stay during a trip to Utah. In addition to the traditional hotel accommodations, Utah offers lodging at charming bed & breakfasts. For those looking for destination lodging try campgrounds and ski resorts. Popular hotels in Utah include the Stein Eriksen Lodge, the Garden Cottage Bed And Breakfast, Marriott Salt Lake City Center, and the Canyons Resort.
If you are looking for a way to get around and enjoy all that Utah has to offer there are a variety of travel methods to suit your needs. Options include renting a vehicle, using a private transit service, or taking advantage of the state’s public transportation system.