Atlantic Coast Vacations

The Atlantic Ocean is the second largest ocean on Earth (Pacific is the largest) covering about 20% of Earth’s surface. It has a surface area of over 100 million square kilometers. It separates what is called the “Old World” (Africa, Asia, and Europe) and the “New World” (North and South America). 

There are a total of 14 states that border the Atlantic Ocean from north to south: Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. Traveling to any of these states are places you can go to see the Atlantic Ocean. There is no right or wrong place, it is whatever you desire. I liked going to both North and South Carolina because you can have both mountains and beaches.

Myrtle Beach South Carolina USA
Myrtle Beach South Carolina USA

Here are some cities you can visit along the shoreline: Miami, Jacksonville, Charleston, Myrtle Beach, Wilmington, Virginia Beach, Long Island, Boston, and so much more. I personally liked Myrtle Beach because it is a fun family destination.

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Pacific Coast Vacations

The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean on Earth covering more than 30% of the Earth’s surface. Its surface area covers more than 150 million square kilometers. This is bigger than the landmass of all of the continents combined.

Pacific Coast USA
Pacific Coast California USA

California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii are U.S. states that border this massive ocean. There are too many great places to name, but just for example, in California, you need to check out the Pacific Coast Highway 1 which you can find with the previous link. The Oregon Coast Aquarium is one of many places in Oregon next to the ocean you can go to. For Washington, the Olympia National Park is also one of many.

Please click here to read the article for Alaska and Hawaii. If you would like, remember to read some more about the great Pacific on this website.


Warm Places in the U.S.

If you like the heat or you want to travel to somewhere hot for vacation because you just can’t handle the cold, there are some places in the U.S. that you can go to. They are all down south near Mexico or the Gulf of Mexico. California, Texas, or Florida are just some of all 8 states that border it. California is most likely the warmest of the three, also right next to the Pacific Ocean. 

In California, you can visit cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose, San Diego, Sacramento, etc. In Texas, Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, Waco, and San Antonio are some places you can visit in Texas. Corpus Christi and Houston to Galveston are some places in Texas by the Gulf. In Florida, very popular cities such as Tallahassee, Jacksonville, Tampa, Orlando, Miami, Key West, and other cities in Florida are always closer than 80 miles from the Gulf or the Atlantic Ocean, maybe even less depending where you are.

Myrtle Beach South Carolina USA
Myrtle Beach South Carolina USA @travelexplorerusa


Myrtle Beach Vacation is highly recommended for the entire family. Unlike some beaches, Myrtle Beach location highlighted here is family friendly.


Cold Places in the U.S.

If you like the cold or you want to travel to somewhere cold for vacation because you just can’t handle the heat, there are some places in the U.S. that you can go to. They are all up north near Canada. Minnesota, Maine, and North Dakota are some of all 13 states that border it. But the coldest place has to be Alaska, where the average temperature is always somewhere below freezing. In the summer there, you have sunlight for around 80% of the day, while in the winter, you only have a few hours. This is a link to an article for more about Alaska.

Or visit somewhere in Middle but high in altitude like the Rockies.

Rocky Mountain National Park Snow
Rocky Mountain National Park Snow

If you want to travel to Minnesota, for example, you should travel up north to St. Paul where you can visit the Como Park Zoo Conservatory, the Science Museum, the Cathedral of St. Paul. Also, Minneapolis has the Institute of Art, Sculpture Garden, or Minnehaha Falls. There are just examples, there is so much more in this state and in other northern U.S. states already mentioned.


Alaska and Hawaii

Alaska and Hawaii have some similarities and differences. The two states are the only two states not part of the forty-eight contiguous states and were also the last two states admitted into the United States both in 1959, Alaska the forty-ninth, and Hawaii being number fifty. The two states also have differences from each other, mainly in weather. Alaska is the coldest U.S. state and is either experiencing sunlight or darkness for almost the entire day. Hawaii always has hot weather and has just about the same amount of sunlight all year round. Alaska is the biggest U.S. state while Hawaii is one of the smaller ones, being the eighth smallest in the country. Each are unique and special in their own ways, and there are many places to go to in these areas that you should check out. 

In Alaska, USA, some destinations are listed here:

  • Aurora Ice Museum
  • Mendenhall Ice Caves
  • Dr. Seuss House
  • Glacier Bay National Park
  • Juneau
  • Homer
  • Anchorage
  • Fairbanks
  • Kodiak Island
  • Seward

In Hawaii, USA, some destinations are listed here:


What Are Mile Markers?

Highways and Interstates
What is interesting about highways or interstates is that usually, there will be some sort of a small green sign that has a number on it which will occur every mile. It is probably the most helpful if you are traveling to the end of that highway, or if you are traveling to a new state. It gets even better than that when you are traveling south or west. 

End of the Road Sign
End of the Road Sign

If you notice the highways, you can see that there are exit numbers and they either count up or count down depending on the direction that you are going. The numbers relate to the mile marker that is at that spot. The reason for that specific number comes from how far you are from the end of the road or the state from the south or west side. If you know the mile marker number at the point where it goes to another state or where it ends, the cool trick can work any direction. 

Do the math!
The cool trick is that you know how far it is from that end point to where you are, thanks to the number on the green sign. The engineers building the road have already done that math for you. It just gives you a better idea of how far you have to go if you are traveling to that endpoint and why the number on the mile marker sign is that specific number.

Are we there yet?
Also, mostly on interstates, you might notice that there are smaller, white signs on the side of the road that appear a lot more frequently. They represent every tenth of a mile. You know this because after ten of those white signs, the next green mile marker sign pops up indicating that you have traveled one mile from the last one of those same signs you saw. Another fun fact, on some interstates, most likely in urban areas, there will be some signs in the middle of the road on a mini barrier that indicate you have travel every fifth of a mile, possibly with the interstate you are on with the direction you are going. After five of them, there will be yet again an indicator that says you have traveled yet another mile along the long highway.

Thank you to those who have read this fun article over mile markers and what they are all about. This was written for anyone who was curious about this topic and took the time to read a little bit about them. Now you probably know a lot more about them than you did before!


Wide Open Spaces

A lot of people think that places like Western Kansas or Eastern Colorado before you get to the Rocky Mountains is just mostly flat with wide open spaces. It is true that you can see a long way since, after all, the place is wide open, but it’s not necessarily true that the land is just flat. In fact, when you go from Eastern Kansas to Western Kansas, the elevation rises by around 3,000 feet. Precisely, the lowest point, at 679 feet above sea level is by the Oklahoma border in Montgomery County. The highest point, at 4,039 feet above sea level, is on the Colorado border in Wallace County, also known as Mount Sunflower.

There are also many places to visit in Western Kansas. For example, you can check out tracks from the Santa Fe Trail, Castle Rock, some Bison ranges, Parrot Cove Water Park, and so much more. The Cimarron National Grassland in Southwest Kansas is also a good place to visit. So what are you waiting for?

Click here for info on Little Jerusalem Badlands Kansas

Little Jerusalem Badlands
Little Jerusalem Badlands Kansas USA

Beautiful Patagonia!

Some of the world’s most beautiful places are located in Patagonia. Explorer Ferdinand Magellan called the Southern region of Chile and Argentina “Patagonia” which means “big feet”. This region is sparsely populated and offers miles and miles of pristine beauty.

Parks to explore
Parque Nacional Los Glaciares, Argentina
Perito Merino Glacier, Argentina
Torres Del Paine National Park, Chile
Bernardo O’Higgins National Park, Chile

How to get explore Patagonia
You can fly into Santiago International Airport, Chile (SCL) or Buenos Aires International Airport, Argentina (EZE) to start your journey to Patagonia. You may wish to fly into one country and fly out of the other. If you can spare the time, fly into Santiago, Chile. Go down to the Valparaiso, Chile on the Pacific Coast of Chile. Enjoy some time on the beach and then get on a Patagonian cruise down to Punta Arenas in the Straits of Magellan (which connects the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean). If you do not have the time, fly from Santiago,Chile to Punta Arenas, Chile. You can make Punta Arenas, Chile your base in Patagonia. Take your time to to discover the Chilean side of Patagonia. Cross the border over to Rio Gallegos, Argentina and take Ruta 40 that runs along the Andes Mountain Range to explore the breathtaking Patagonian region of Argentina. You can make your way North to Buenos Aires, Argentina if time permits.

Antarctica
Do you know that Chile has its own Chilean Antarctic Territory? Chilean Antarctica is a territory claimed by Chile across from Patagonia. Puerto Willams (Cabo De Hornos), Chile would be your starting point to Antarctica. You can also cross from Puerto Willams, Chile over to Ushuaia, (Tierra Del Fuego) Argentina which many consider the end of the world. You are pretty much in the bottom of the world here! It is an experience of a lifetime! You can fly from Ushuaia, Argentina to Buenos Aires, Argentina to connect to your international destination.


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Kerala, land of coconuts and curry!

Kerala is located in the West Coast of Southern India. The climate is excellent for growing spices such as cardamon, cloves, cinnamon and peppers.

Cochin (Kochi)
The beautiful beaches of Cochin (Kerala), with graceful coconut trees must have been a welcome sight to weary European sailors. Cochin became a very important trading post settled by the Portuguese. Cochin’s history goes further back. Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Jews and Chinese have all traded in Cochin and along the Malabar Coast. Its natural harbor and trade made Cochin to become the Queen of the Arabian Sea.

Take a houseboat cruise through the calm backwaters of Kerala. The lush greenery is breathtaking.

Or visit Cherai Beach with beautiful coconut groves in Kochi (Cochin), Kerala.

Kerala Food
Seafood is abundant here and many dishes include coconut. Freshly grated coconut has a delicious taste. It is not the same as what we get here in the US in the frozen section. Fresh coconut makes delicious chutneys and coconut oil is used to cook pretty much everything in Kerala.

Try some Kerala Karimeen (local fish) and huge Kerala prawns (shrimp) cooked with local curry leaves and spices. This region of India is a paradise for food lovers. You can find tasty vegetarian and also a variety of delicious meat dishes in Kerala.

Getting here
Now you can fly in style into the green solar powered Cochin International Airport (COK). Cochin International Airport has grown quickly to become the 4th busiest airport in India.

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Christmas in Lalibela Ethiopia

Christmas is celebrated in January in Ethiopia. An exceptional place to celebrate Christmas is in the ancient rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia. This place is also known as the “New Jerusalem”. There are eleven ancient churches clustered together. Pilgrims clad in white come from all over to celebrate Christmas. Eat some wat (thick spicy stew) on a Ethiopian sourdough bread (injeera) which looks similar to Indian dosas.

Getting to Lalibela, Ethiopia
Addis Ababa International Airport (ADD) is the international gateway to Ethiopia. Addis Ababa means “new flower”. Ethiopian Airlines flies into the local airport in Lalibela. Lalibela is situated in the Northern part of Ethiopia in the region of Amhara, South of neighboring Eritrea.

Attractions
If you have time visit ancient Aksum, Gondar (Camelot of Africa), Lake Tana and the breathtaking Simien Mountains National Park.

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