From Vancouver to LA in 18 days – [The Americas – #chronicles 2022]

I’m back (after not writing for ages)

The post below is a very brief summary of my past 18 days on the road with my friend Jess. I do intend to write a few longer blog posts about some of the places we’ve been to during the past 18 days, but currently I’m just too tired, overwhelmed and worried about my next few steps to write too much.

During the past 3 weeks my friend Jess and I did a road trip from Vancouver to LA. Jess planned the majority of the trip and did all the driving, which I’m incredibly grateful for.

> side note: This trip would have not been possible without Jess. She looked into everything, drove me around, planned it all and put up with me, my moods, my tiredness, my car naps, my lack of energy or willingness to go out etc. Nothing that I might do will ever be enough to put into words how grateful I am. So Jess, if you ever read this, thank you. You gave me a trip of a lifetime that few people will ever be able to do. Thank you. <

Doing the route we did in 18 days is not easy and Jess drove a a couple of 15 hour days, so as far as advice goes… I’m not sure I can recommend it, however…. I did get to see some incredible places that I can only assume are some of the most beautiful, magical and random in the United Stated of America (route below).

Below is a short summary of the places we went to, without much detail. I will try to write short blog posts about each place as soon as I can. (photos at the end of the blogpost)

  1. Vancouver
    • Just for a an hour or so, for lunch and a quick walk
  2. Whistler
    • We stayed here for 3 days to rest and do nothing. I was suffering from jetlag (again? Still? Who knows.) but is was awesome to just stay still for a bit
  3. Vancouver to Portland
    • First long drive for Vancouver to Portland with a quick 2 hour stop in Seattle on day 1 and a visit to the Multnomah Falls on the morning of day 2
  4. Portland to Crescent City (Coastal drive)
    • We went towards the coast and did a lot of the trip with a prime view of the Coast.
  5. Crescent City to San Francisco
    • I found one of my happy places on earth during this day. The Redwood Forest. The drive was difficult (I get motion sickness very easily) but I regret nothing and already know I’ll have to come back for at least a week to do loads of trails etc.
  6. San Francisco to Groveland (Yosemite)
    • Groveland and Yosemite are also some of my favourite spots. Our hotel in Groveland was awesome and there was an awesome pub (Iron Door Saloon) and Yosemite well… it’s Yosemite. Not sure I need to describe how incredible it was. On the way to Groveland we stopped at Columbia State Historic Park, a living gold rush town featuring the large single collection of existing gold rush-era structures in the state. It was like travelling back in time!
  7. Groveland (Yosemite) to Las Vegas
    • This one was tough. We got stuck for 3 hours in the highway due to a car crash and the temperature was … hot. Too hot! We finally got to LasVegas where we stayed for 2 days. Not, I’m not a millionaire just yet.
  8. Las Vegas to Page (Antelope Canyon)
    • During this drive we went through Zion Park and oh my god… Very few words. Although I got very very car sick, it was so beautiful! Long, hot and beautiful. On the second day we visited Antelope Canyon which is also one of my favourite places from this journey.
  9. Page to Flagstaff (through Grand Canyon)
    • On the way down to Flagstaff we went go Grand Canyon and yes… it is Grand. I was very surprised to feel so overwhelmed by the size of it and the fact that the Canyons come out of nowhere…on the ground. Usually you can see a mountain in the distance but you just don’t expect a massive canyon to open up in front of you on the ground. It is incredible. I also loved Flagstaff! Although everyone that we’ve met has been pretty nice, Flagstaff has the nicest people I’ve met until now. And the best Pizza!!
  10. Flagstaff to Anaheim (Disneyland)
    • To finish our trip, we booked 2 days at Disneyland. Both Jess and I are big fan of rides and Disney so it was amazing to just spend 2 days totally absorbed in a Disney world. Very tiring, but worth it! (Tip: The best hours at Disneyland are from 8am – 10am. Trust me on this one. It’s worth getting up early!)

I have now come to Venice Beach as my last stop before getting a flight to my next destination.

It will take me a little bit to process the last month and I’ve got a lot of sleep to catch-up on, so let’s see if I can do that during my next few weeks.

Published by Mariana Vieira da Rocha

"I think it's perfectly acceptable and rather admirable to be moderately delusional"

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