Kim&Ali's Bigger Adventure


Kim&Ali's Bigger Adventure

5 years ago we embarked on a European adventure, that took us through 23 countries across Europe. This time we are going around the globe! We both suffer from a 'wanderlust' alway's wondering what is over the next hill or around the next cove.

We will be travelling by Train, Bus, Plane and who knows what. Exploring some of the coldest regions on the planet as well as some of warmest and remote.

We are writing this blog so we can keep in contact with our family and friends, to let them know what we are up to.

North America » United States » New York » New York » Manhattan July 22nd 2016

We head out of Pennsylvania into New Jersey towards Cape Cod for 6 nights of rest and recuperation, before hitting New York, our last stop before going home. I had hoped to avoid the city on our drive to this coastal region, but the route took me on the fringes, we could see the NY skyline from the New Jersey turnpike from our car. With the satnav working overtime, ‘……take the left lane, then keep right for the New Jersey Turnpike then keep left, keep left, then right lane over the George Washington Bridge…..’ fortunately, Alison was eagerly being a second pair of eyes on the satnav so as not to be going down the wrong highway or interstate. After a long drive we arrive at Cape Cod, a popular holiday and second home destination on ... read more
Is this a bust??? Times Square New York
Central Park
View over Manhattan

With Brexit vote happening back in the UK, the fallout appears bizarre from over the pond and the drop of the pound against the dollar hasn’t helped with our budgeting on our final weeks in the US. We now head out of Nashville into the countryside. We had been keen to see an actual plantation house of the deep south. On our way was ‘the Hermitage’, home of Andrew Jackson the 7th President of the United States. He was a self-made man and influential in the early American history, notably defeating the British at New Orleans in 1815. He was a popular president and was a man of people, on the downside he signed the Indian Removal act that drove Indians west of the Mississippi River and he was pro slavery. After being greeted by 18th ... read more
Mabry Mill
Blue Ridge Mountains
Washington DC

North America » United States » Tennessee » Nashville July 5th 2016

Its 10pm and we are set to spend the next 48hrs on the ‘Sunset Limited’ Train that takes us from Los Angeles to New Orleans. We are travelling east to explore the music cities of New Orleans, Memphis and Nashville each with their own flavour. Our conductor Carmel, or CC as she likes to be called, welcomes us aboard and lets us know that ours beds are made, and ready for the night. We have hired a roomette, kitchenette as Alison insists on calling it, on the upper floor of the carriage. There is room for two facing seats that turn into a bed, and one above that folds out. Very cosy, although we did meet others on the train who when given the larger cabins, have jumped ship because of the lack of space. Unlike ... read more
Observation Car-Amtrak Train
Really good jazz band
Graceland Mansion

North America » United States » California » San Diego » La Jolla June 24th 2016

We are heading back west to LA nearly completing our California/Oregon/Washington/Montana/Wyoming/Colorado/Arizona/Nevada (phew!) loop. Leaving Silverton we headed to Mesa Verdi National Park. This park is different from other US parks in that its main aim is to preserve the buildings of the ancient Puebloans, who settled here in the 13th century, staying only about 75 years. They left behind unique mysterious dwellings built into the cliff face, added to the fact that we had to drive high into these hills that overlook the surrounding plains, building and living in these dwelling must have presented great challenges. They would have farmed food and kept their animals up on the top plains, then climbed down into their dwellings. After stopping at various overlooks and the museum we drove back down the hills for an overnight stay in Cortez. ... read more
Paris in Vegas
Panda at Breakfast-San Diego Zoo
Route 66 Diner

North America » United States » Colorado » Montrose June 21st 2016

Yellowstone was a must see stop on this trip for both of us, a magical place, why? because you can see wild animals, bear, bison and wolves; fantastic scenery in the rivers, gorges and waterfalls; and witness eruptions of geysers, boiling mud pools and colourful geothermal sites all sitting on top of a huge volcano! However, it’s a long way from anywhere, and we had a 12 hour (minimum) drive from Seattle. We stopped at a place called Coeur D’Alene which left us 7 hours to drive the following day, with 1 hour lost in time difference from Washington State, through Montana to Wyoming. The journey through Montana was great diverse scenery, hills, mountains, forest and a lot of green pasture, there’s a reason they call it the Big Sky State. We arrived at the entrance ... read more
Norris thermals
Black Bear
Camping Yellowstone

North America » United States » Washington » SeaTac June 20th 2016

Leaving Yosemite by what seemed like the back end of the park, we headed north on the Highway 395 we are now in America’s big country with sweeping plains to the right and the Sierra Nevada mountains in the far distance to our left. We travelled 150 miles to overnight at Lake Tahoe a beautiful lake that straddles the California and Nevada state lines. Because of Nevada’s gambling laws there are quite of few large towns that have grown here. We picked the quiet town of Tahoe City on the California side with a motel by the edge of the lake. After another long drive we arrived at Klamath Falls, just to overnight. In Oregon you are not allowed to fill your own petrol. The girl on pump, enquired where we were from, when we said ... read more
Air Force One
Crater Lake

It was a relatively short hop from Monterey but we arrived into San Francisco into a busy Memorial Day bank holiday weekend. We chose well for our accommodation just behind Fisherman’s wharf a busy bustling waterfront with ferries across the bay, many eateries - including popular seafood restaurants, museums and street entertainers to make things lively. To get a flavour of what the city has to offer we jumped on a city sightseeing bus just outside our motel. The bus had live commentary delivered at a 100mph, he hardly drew breath even when we got stuck in traffic. We went past downtown SF, the Italian quarter, Chinatown and other famous parts of the city. One story we were told was the creator of the Golden Gate park who managed to actually create it on sand dunes. ... read more
Golden Gate Bridge
Vernal Falls-Yosemite
Sea Lions

North America » United States » California » Monterey May 26th 2016

Leaving Raratonga one of the smallest international airports in the world, we arrive at Los Angeles one of the largest in the world. It felt like being hit with a hammer, so many people, so many security and customs checks. We were to hire a car and drive straight out into LA’s busy road system. We came face head-on with the city’s extrovert nature when the car hire shuttle bus driver, decided he would paraphrase the automated information system himself saying, ‘ I usually play an announcement that goes like this, ‘Welcome to the Alamo and National shuttle ya-di-ya-di-ya-da, hold on as the bus might stop ya di ya di ya di ya-da stow bagages safely, ya-di-ya-di-ya-da and so on…’ I suppose it was what we were expecting! I had pre booked a midsize car, and ... read more
Rodeo Drive-Beverley Hills
50's themed Johnny Rockets - I loved their hamburgers
Hearst castle

Oceania » Cook Islands » Rarotonga May 21st 2016

A four-hour flight from Auckland took us to the tiny island of Raratonga one of the 15 Cook Islands in the South Pacific. It had been suggested that we could stopover in Tahiti, which was exciting enough, but on researching, the Cook Islands seem to have better reviews. We landed in pouring rain, not very tropical, but we had a warm welcome, first a singer with ukulele (we later found out he had been welcoming, and seeing off people for 30 years!) then a flower necklace put around our necks. For the first time since we left, we will in the staying in the same place for a whole week, 8 days to be precise. Although we left New Zealand on Saturday, because we travelled across the international dateline, we arrived on Friday - how cool ... read more
Atutaki boat trip
Swimming with the GTs!
Last rays of the sun

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland May 13th 2016

We’d been told of some fantastic glow worm caves at Waitomo, so we headed off debating how best to see them. Sounds strange but there are several ways to view the caves, boat abseiling and ‘black water rafting’. We both fancied the latter, but as we approached we changed our minds as we didn’t want an injury to spoil the rest of our trip- so the boat it was. A young lad led us (along with a few others) into a cave, quite interesting but then we got into a boat in silence, in the dark and drifted into the underwater caverns, then wow! a spectacular display of glow worms all over the roof of the cave….quite magical. We didn’t get a picture, no photography allowed, so Kim photographed the brochure, and just has to photo-shop ... read more
Uretti beach
Auckland from Davenport ferry

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