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Thread: USA travel tips and discussion

  1. #81
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by petetherock View Post
    Thanks bro
    My route in mid November:

    Vegas - 3 nights for meeting (other half shops)
    + Flyover Grand Canyon
    Day 4:
    Road trip
    Hoover Dam
    Valley of the Fire State Park & Red Rock Canyon National Park

    End up in Death Valley (place to stay?)

    Day 5:
    Barstow one night + shopping

    Day 6-7:
    Yosemite

    Might spring for Ahwanee hotel for one night
    2nd night in El Portal ?

    Day 8-9

    SF sights + food - tips on food + hotel?

    Stay Wharf area / Union Sq?

    Day 10:
    Fly home

    How's that?
    Gilroy outlets is much bigger and better than barstow now. Consider shopping in gilroy instead.

    Btw you did not plan to stop in monterey bay and santa cruz? look up big sur, 17 mile drive and carmel.

  2. #82
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Big Sur kiasu!
    Expand your mind or get left behind

  3. #83
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikonzen View Post
    Big Sur kiasu!
    LOL jeff your use of singlish still needs work.

  4. #84
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    One thing about SF, there is so much to do there. If you like relax street cafes and quaint shops, check out chestnut ave. Head down to castro district also, capitol of gay movement in the bay. Cafes shops and food there is also awesome.

    you should also visit lombard street, the famous curvy road. Then on to Coit tower for the view of the bay with alcatraz. You can also buy tickets to the alcatraz tour at fishermans wharf....

    For classic view of golden gate, cross the bridge and head up the mountain to the battery point. Or you can go down to Marshal beach to capture the sunrise with the bridge. Or you can visit Fort Point which is under the bridge on sf side.

    For classic bay bridge view, go to treasure island. take the bay bridge and exit yerba buena. Drive down to the parking lot along hillcrest road at the waterfront for the view of the bay bridge leading into sf downtown. best timing there is sunset.

    If you have time also try to visit the Palace of fine arts. You can see beautiful columns and a pond and park there. Very beautiful.

    Also try to visit Grace cathedral in SF. it is designed to be very similar to notre dame with some specific differences. The stained glass art and wall frescos in there are absolutely amazing, all done in Renaissance style. There is also a copy of Ghiberti's famous florence doors at the front facade of the church. And the church comes with a labyrinth too. A very very beautiful old church.

    Also visit the conservatory in the presidio.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 5th April 2015 at 01:02 PM.

  5. #85
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    LOL jeff your use of singlish still needs work.
    Meant to say "can't afford to lose" seeing Big Sur...must revisit that one bro's thread where he explained a term like that to me.

    Do they have a Rosetta Stone Edition? hahahehe I've been looking around town for a Singlish Dictionary hard copy...haven't ran into the city yet...and I guess there is always Amazon. So many things for me to absorb.
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 5th April 2015 at 12:52 PM.
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  6. #86
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Don't forget to drive defensively!

    https://youtu.be/0vNvc9n1ikI
    Expand your mind or get left behind

  7. #87

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Thanks bros
    Been to Big Sur - it's nice, but I don't think I can squeeze it in... I prefer to do less "Chan Bros Refugee" style, and chill more...
    So even for those two days in SF, I will see some sights, then sit back, drink some kopi and people watch...

    Gilroy is an option...

    So when I leave Death Valley, I will need to drive further...

    Besides, the main shopping will be in Vegas, apparently that mall is even better, so that covers it... and the tax is lower in NV than CA..

    But yes, those little food and chill tips are very nice...

    Keep them coming bros
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  8. #88

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Nikonzen View Post
    Don't forget to drive defensively!

    https://youtu.be/0vNvc9n1ikI
    Steve did most of the driving himself....
    Looks like the scene was filmed in Marin County?
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  9. #89

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by petetherock View Post
    Besides, the main shopping will be in Vegas, apparently that mall is even better, so that covers it... and the tax is lower in NV than CA..
    And gasoline prices are also lower in NV than CA.
    Wilbur

  10. #90
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by petetherock View Post
    Steve did most of the driving himself....
    Looks like the scene was filmed in Marin County?
    I'm not sure bro...the talk of SanFran evoked that movie in my head! If I were 20 years younger it would probably be F&F instead! lol

    Quote Originally Posted by Wilbur Su View Post
    And gasoline prices are also lower in NV than CA.
    Fuel is significantly cheaper in all of the states right now but you are indeed correct. One of the big problems NV and even more so Cali is having nowadays is water. This extended drought is hurting them. Cali is under rationing I believe and authorities are now using there hammers (severe fine) to police water usage. This is chatter that I gather from reading the newspapers around here not first hand knowledge. Either way there is maybe a possibility that one could run into smoke filled skies from forest fires or mudslides from a deluge as the conditions in Cali are prime for either event. I pray for you though.
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 5th April 2015 at 11:14 PM.
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  11. #91
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by petetherock View Post
    I prefer to do less "Chan Bros Refugee" style
    I encourage you guys to visit the midwest around my area sometime if you are able. Not a whole lot to do like in Gothman but you can discover many wonderful things here. Seems like many here have a huge problem with African Americans and Hispanics but when it comes to Asians and Indians it is like they get a pass or something. It is weird. Comport yourself well and speak English and it's almost like "it's okay they are one of us" deal. Just my observation.

    I'm hesitant to talk so much about myself but when I was a kid I'd get mad if I missed an episode of this... http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0068037/reviews When you said Chan Bros Refugee you reminded me of that! haha
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 5th April 2015 at 11:36 PM.
    Expand your mind or get left behind

  12. #92

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Nikonzen View Post
    Meant to say "can't afford to lose" seeing Big Sur...must revisit that one bro's thread where he explained a term like that to me.

    Do they have a Rosetta Stone Edition? hahahehe I've been looking around town for a Singlish Dictionary hard copy...haven't ran into the city yet...and I guess there is always Amazon. So many things for me to absorb.
    Here you go, Jeff. No need to spend money, we Singaporeans are famously stingy when free alternatives are available.
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  13. #93

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    Hey guys, I'm going to cali for 11 days. I'm planning LA 3-4 days then to SF 2 days, then the remaining for Yosemite and Death Valley. But I need to fly back from LAX. Does anyone know of transport from SF to Yosemite and Death Valley and back to LAX?

    Has anyone been to OKC, what's interesting there. Thanks in advance

  14. #94

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Vgnrj Vsls View Post
    Hey guys, I'm going to cali for 11 days. I'm planning LA 3-4 days then to SF 2 days, then the remaining for Yosemite and Death Valley. But I need to fly back from LAX. Does anyone know of transport from SF to Yosemite and Death Valley and back to LAX?
    You are probably going to have to rent a car if you want to visit Yosemite and Death Valley. Public transportation options from the National Park Service.

    Public transportation to Yosemite: http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisi...sportation.htm

    No public transportation to Death Valley: http://www.nps.gov/deva/planyourvisit/directions.htm

    Are you totally dead set on going to SF --> Yosemite --> Death Valley --> LA? Death Valley is the largest national park in the lower 48 states. There is a lot to see and do there. You are going to be spending a lot of time going from point to point and you will probably be rushed.
    Wilbur

  15. #95

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Vgnrj Vsls View Post
    Hey guys, I'm going to cali for 11 days. I'm planning LA 3-4 days then to SF 2 days, then the remaining for Yosemite and Death Valley. But I need to fly back from LAX. Does anyone know of transport from SF to Yosemite and Death Valley and back to LAX?

    Has anyone been to OKC, what's interesting there. Thanks in advance
    Your route is similar to mine but you are giving yourself much less time, and you won't find public transport. You can rent a car, or join a tour in USA. Many companies there will do the "Refugee Style" trips that you are looking for
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  16. #96
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by Vgnrj Vsls View Post
    Has anyone been to OKC, what's interesting there. Thanks in advance
    You mean OKC as in the capitol of Oklahoma? If so there are a few very fine things...
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 12th April 2015 at 05:16 AM.
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  17. #97

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    One thing about SF, there is so much to do there. If you like relax street cafes and quaint shops, check out chestnut ave. Head down to castro district also, capitol of gay movement in the bay. Cafes shops and food there is also awesome.

    you should also visit lombard street, the famous curvy road. Then on to Coit tower for the view of the bay with alcatraz. You can also buy tickets to the alcatraz tour at fishermans wharf....

    For classic view of golden gate, cross the bridge and head up the mountain to the battery point. Or you can go down to Marshal beach to capture the sunrise with the bridge. Or you can visit Fort Point which is under the bridge on sf side.

    For classic bay bridge view, go to treasure island. take the bay bridge and exit yerba buena. Drive down to the parking lot along hillcrest road at the waterfront for the view of the bay bridge leading into sf downtown. best timing there is sunset.

    If you have time also try to visit the Palace of fine arts. You can see beautiful columns and a pond and park there. Very beautiful.

    Also try to visit Grace cathedral in SF. it is designed to be very similar to notre dame with some specific differences. The stained glass art and wall frescos in there are absolutely amazing, all done in Renaissance style. There is also a copy of Ghiberti's famous florence doors at the front facade of the church. And the church comes with a labyrinth too. A very very beautiful old church.

    Also visit the conservatory in the presidio.
    Great info!
    Seems like you are familiar with SF
    Any interest to venture to San Jose?
    I am planning to visit Stanford University.

    Which part of the city I need to be extra careful? I am not driving in SF.
    Thanks!

  18. #98
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shen siung View Post

    Great info!
    Seems like you are familiar with SF
    Any interest to venture to San Jose?
    I am planning to visit Stanford University.

    Which part of the city I need to be extra careful? I am not driving in SF.
    Thanks!
    Lived 12 years in San Jose but now based in China. Worked for 2 years in SF and explored a lot. Still lots of places i do not know in SF. but also lots i have yet to list. No plans to visit in the near future though.

    After dark it is usually prudent to avoid anywhere south of Market street. Market street also get swarmed with many homeless, drunks and junkies later at night. south SF is also best avoided especially if you are not driving. Other high crime areas are High street area in Oakland and East Palo Alto. Downtown San Jose is also not as safe at night especially beyond 3rd street.

    If you are going on an intensive visit of the city, I strongly recommend renting a car to get around.

    Btw, i left the bay area end of 2004. Some of the info may be outdated, but sf does not change that much, unlike shanghai or china.

    Btw, let me know if u need ideas for south bay. I am very familiar with san jose, and the surrounding areas as well.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 12th April 2015 at 08:00 PM.

  19. #99

    Default Re: USA travel tips and discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    Lived 12 years in San Jose but now based in China. Worked for 2 years in SF and explored a lot. Still lots of places i do not know in SF. but also lots i have yet to list. No plans to visit in the near future though.

    After dark it is usually prudent to avoid anywhere south of Market street. Market street also get swarmed with many homeless, drunks and junkies later at night. south SF is also best avoided especially if you are not driving.
    Avoid South of Market street in SF you mean?
    How about twin peaks at night?

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    Other high crime areas are High street area in Oakland and East Palo Alto. Downtown San Jose is also not as safe at night especially beyond 3rd street.
    Thanks!
    I am a street / architecture observing person. I like to wander on street to observe life / living.
    Is there anything interesting in San Jose, compared to SF?
    I have 6 D 5 N in SF free and easy, thought to visit San Jose if it is interesting

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    If you are going on an intensive visit of the city, I strongly recommend renting a car to get around.

    Btw, i left the bay area end of 2004. Some of the info may be outdated, but sf does not change that much, unlike shanghai or china.

    Btw, let me know if u need ideas for south bay. I am very familiar with san jose, and the surrounding areas as well.
    Too bad I cannot drive.
    Thanks for the tips!

  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shen siung View Post
    Avoid South of Market street in SF you mean?
    How about twin peaks at night?
    Yes, south of sf starting from market street gets very unsafe especially for walking at night. If you drive it is still ok. But seriously there is not much there.

    Twin peaks is ok at night. Usually you will see many people there. But to get there at night you probably need a ride.

    Thanks!
    I am a street / architecture observing person. I like to wander on street to observe life / living.
    Is there anything interesting in San Jose, compared to SF?
    I have 6 D 5 N in SF free and easy, thought to visit San Jose if it is interesting
    San Jose is a different kind of city from SF. san jose is a lot more spread out and suburban. downtown is very small and uninteresting. San jose and santa clara county is mostly dotted with tech firms and surburban homes. What is interesting is santa cruz 30mins and monterey 1hr south of san jose.

    If you have friends in sf or san jose, it will be best to hitch a ride wherever you are going. Cabs are.hard to come by, you pretty much have to call in advance and they are hella expensive. Sf you have more options with public transport. San jose public transport is a lot more inconvenient.

    To people watch, check out union street (not union square), and chestnut ave. Outdoor cafes, and quaint shops.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 12th April 2015 at 10:59 PM.

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