My road trip in the American West

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My road trip in the American West

Hitting the road is the best way to discover the United States and its large spaces. This time, I could not choose between the ocean and the wild west, so I decided to do a mix and travel through Nevada, Arizona, Utah and California. Here are the places that I enjoyed the most!

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🏙 Big City Life

If you arrive to the US travelling by plane, you will probably visit a city in the first place. Here are the ones I went to:

Image - Las Vegas
Las Vegas
Marion:What a first stop! Everything is huge in Las Vegas, from the casinos to the big hotels. It has to be crazy to live here. The city looks a bit like a theme park, but you should definitely go over there once in your life.
Image - Los Angeles
Los Angeles
Marion:Hollywood, Santa Monica, Venice, Malibu… There are a to see and to do in sunny Los Angeles, so plan to stay a few days. It is the most populous city in California, and the second one in the US after New York City!
Image - San Francisco
San Francisco
Marion:Your trip would not be complete without the Golden Gate Bridge. But San Francisco has so much more to offer: the cable car, the Pier 39, Lombard street, the Painted Ladies, the Coit Tower… I love this city so much!
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🏞 Nature and National Parks

The diversity of landscapes certainly is the thing I enjoyed the most during this road trip. Let me show you why:

Image - Grand Canyon National Park
Grand Canyon National Park
Marion:Located in Arizona, it is the first National Park that I visited. Grand Canyon is known worldwide for it steep-sided canyon carved by the Colorado River and, now, nearly two billion years of Earth geological history can be seen. You will feel so small (and so young)!
Image - Zion National Park
Zion National Park
Marion:It is Utah’s first national park. It’s here that you will find the Narrows trail, a very famous hike that is the narrowest section of Zion Canyon. There are also a lot of other beautiful walks to do.
Image - Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce Canyon National Park
Marion:One of my favorite parks! In two days, I had the chance to hike it both under the sun and… under the snow! It was a really great experience. The landscape is indescribable, with its shaped orange-colored “hoodoos”.
Image - Arches National Park
Arches National Park
Marion:This park is really huge, so easily plan two days if you want to see the whole thing. More than 2,000 natural sandstone arches are located in the park, which represents the highest density in the world. You will have the chance to see the famous Delicate Arch.
Image - Canyonlands National Park
Canyonlands National Park
Marion:With Arches, it’s the second nearest park around the city of Moab. It offers a colorful landscape made of mesas, canyons and buttes. I did a great two-hour hike to discover part of it, and it was really nice.
Image - Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park
Marion:This park is a world-class climbing spot, including thanks to El Capitan, a very famous vertical rock formation. Thanks to its beautiful green landscapes, Yosemite also is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are so many beautiful hikes to do here!
Image - Sequoia National Park
Sequoia National Park
Marion:This park is located not too far away from Yosemite, so you can easily visit both of them. Here, you will find giant sequoia trees, including the General Sherman, one of the biggest trees on Earth. I even saw two bears!
Image - Horseshoe Bend
Horseshoe Bend
Marion:On your way to Page, you should stop by this place. It is a horseshoe-shaped canyon incised by the Colorado River. It is really impressive! And, thanks to the amazing viewpoint, you will be able to take beautiful pictures.
Image - Lake Powell
Lake Powell
Marion:It is also located near the city of Page. It is a beautiful reservoir on the Colorado River, restrained by the Glen Canyon Dam. Lake Powell is an important vacation spot (sailing, water activities, etc.).
Image - Monument Valley
Monument Valley
Marion:Welcome to the Navajo Nation! Monument Valley is the only US natural site located at the border of both Arizona and Utah. It is an amazing place, where you should watch the sunset. The park has also been the set of numerous western movies!

🛣 Along the Road

I love road tripping because it allows me to stop wherever I want to see whatever I decide. Here are some stuffs you should not miss:

Image - Route 66
Route 66
Marion:The Mother Road! It was one of the original highways, that used to run between Chicago and Santa Monica, for those who migrated west. Nowadays, you still can drive on some sections of it, and live your American dream.
Image - Moab
Marion:It is the main city around Canyonlands and Arches. As you can guess, the surroundings are beautiful. But Moab also is the heart of a sportive culture, and people like to hike, ride their quad or kayak on the river.
Image - Hearst Castle
Hearst Castle
Marion:If you drive for four hours north to Los Angeles, you will find this absolutely amazing and eccentric residence. It was built between 1919 and 1947 by William Randolph Hearst, a publishing tycoon, and Julia Morgan, its architect. So extravagant, but so astonishing!
Image - Big Sur
Big Sur
Marion:Big Sur is a cliffy section along Scenic Highway One, between Los Angeles and San Francisco. People often go through it quickly, but you should definitely take your time to enjoy the scenery, and even stop to take some pictures. You will not regret it.
Image - Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz
Marion:Do not forget to walk along the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, and its amusement park. You will also be able to catch some waves over there, unless you choose to skateboard between the colorful houses.
Image - Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley
Marion:It is a word-class center for high technology, innovation and social media. People rarely believe than there actually are some interesting stuffs to see around Palo Alto. Wrong choice! Here, you can see Stanford University, the Googleplex, or go to Apple headquarters.
Image - Huntington Beach
Huntington Beach
Marion:It is an ocean town south of Los Angeles. There always are waves, and surfing is the most popular sport of the county. International contests take place here. The city also organized an important parade for the 4th of July. Fun moments guaranteed!

Wonderguide map

  1. Las Vegas
  2. Los Angeles
  3. San Francisco
  4. Grand Canyon National Park
  5. Zion National Park
  6. Bryce Canyon National Park
  7. Arches National Park
  8. Canyonlands National Park
  9. Yosemite National Park
  10. Sequoia National Park
  11. Horseshoe Bend
  12. Lake Powell
  13. Monument Valley
  14. Route 66
  15. Moab
  16. Hearst Castle
  17. Big Sur
  18. Santa Cruz
  19. Silicon Valley
  20. Huntington Beach

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