Friday, 24 October 2014

National Lampoon's Vacation - part 1 of 2

Well... not quite. But we did have our share of laughs and memorable moments. It was the trip that my parents and I have been looking forward to for months. They haven't been to the United States before. It was an action packed trip - covering both the East and West coast in less than 20 days.

Our first time sitting on the upper deck of the plane!
Day 1 - We arrived on Tuesday, October 7 (my birthday too!) late morning but we have a few hours rest and to get over jetlag before the first item on the itinerary, night tour in New York city.

General Electric (GE) building at the Rockefeller Centre. This was my 2nd time here and I'm embarrassed to say that I mistook it for the Empire State building the first time!
Following a tour on a tight schedule, we only spent less than 15 minutes at Times Square
Day 2 - We were still in New York but we packed over 6 places of attraction in the same day.

New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street
Looking forward to a bullish year!
Views from the Empire State Building observation deck
We were a bit disappointed that the cruise organized by the tour company didn't get us to the Statue of Liberty island. That was as close as we got to the Statue.
On board the USS Intrepid, World War II aircraft carrier, now being used as a museum for air, sea and space
On the other side of Metropolitan Museum of Art, overlooking the many food trucks
Madame Tussauds, we sure did have some fun here!
Day 3 - first stop was Princeton, on the way to Philadelphia - a place full of American history. It was the temporary US capital from 1790 to 1800 and also where the Declaration of Independence was signed. We stopped by an Amish farm for a tour of the Amish community before arriving in Washington DC.

Independence Hall where the Declaration of Independence was signed. On top is the Liberty Bell.
Hello Benjamin!

Day 4 - Washington DC, so many historical sites! The tour group split and we had the rare opportunity to explore Washington on our own. It drizzled a bit but that didn't spoil the day. We actually made it to Washington's Chinatown!

Outside the Lincoln Memorial
Inside the Lincoln Memorial
Playing with the Washington Monument
Korean War Veterans memorial
In light of recent years events, this is as close as tourists can get to the White House
US Capitol, meeting place of the Congress. Notice the scaffolding around the dome? Redevelopment works have been going on for a couple of years
Touching a piece of moon inside the National Air and Space Museum
Washington's Chinatown!
Day 5 - A long 8 hour drive to Niagara Falls. We arrived in the late afternoon, just in time to visit the historic Old Fort Niagara and catch the night view of Niagara Falls after dinner.

My first time at the USA side of Niagara Falls. There are more buildings at the Canadian side, so a nice change to the view.
Day 6 - We did the Maid of the Mist boat ride before leaving Niagara Falls, which takes us to the bottom of the falls. A fun ride (and wet!) and a handy tip - bring a fresh change of socks and shoes, if possible! Then, another long drive to Boston, arriving just in time for dinner.
It`s not very often that I get to see my dad dressed in pink!
Day 7 - A brief tour of Boston in the morning, covering Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). We had a couple of hours to ourselves to explore Boston downtown before catching our flight to Los Angeles. My parents managed to get a pair of Skechers shoes each at great discount.

The John Harvard statue, rub his foot for good luck! Apparently, the sculptor did not know how John Harvard looked like, so this statue ain`t all that true!
The tour bus dropped us at the airport at noon and we had a long wait before our 8pm flight. It didn't help that the flight was further delayed for another hour or so.
It`s a good thing the airport had rocking chairs!
 Stay tuned for part 2... the West Coast!


CheapRunnerMike said...

Wow you guys sure covered a lot of the East coast! And nice to know you will have special Moon powers for your next race ;)

Kevin Siah said...

Thanks Mike! Yes it was an action packed trip, we need to another holiday to recover from this vacation!

Hahaha, I'll let you know if I will actually fly or sink with gravity at the next race.