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Saturday, September 30, 2017

American West Destinations and Travel Itineraries



The Pacific Coast Lake Tahoe Deserts and Rocky Mountains
The US West the Rockies and the Pacific Coast of the United States comprise 13 states, including Alaska and Hawaii, from the Canadian to the Mexican border, the coast and the Great Plains. A geographically diverse region with mountains, deserts, rich agricultural lands and spectacular coastlines, it was settled by succeeding waves of fortune seekers between the second half of the 19th and the early 20th centuries. Today, this part of the country is renowned for its entrepreneurs and high-tech industries, wineries, sky slopes, vacation resorts and a multifaceted entertainment industry.
The Pacific Coast
Sacramento California sits at the confluence of the Sacramento and American rivers, and is an ideal destination for a Northern California itinerary and getaways to visit the Wine and Gold Countries, the Redwoods, San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, Reno, Yosemite, Lassen Volcanic National Park and the Central Valley. The city has a colorful history filled with humor, steam trains, ghosts, heroes and villains, the California Gold Rush and other tales of the Wild West. Read More
San Mateo California and the Silicon Valley is equidistant from San Francisco and San Jose and is home to 90 miles of Pacific Coastline and Bay Front, charming old-style neighborhoods, vibrant downtowns, bay front parks, recreational lagoons and Silicon Valley businesses. Explore the stunning coastline and discover its hidden treasures with an eco-cycling or hiking adventure or experience whale watching and deep sea fishing. 
Sonoma County California is home to over 425 wineries, miles of rugged Pacific coastline, towering redwood forests, and proximity to San Francisco. Also, more than 50 nature parks that offer travelers miles of hiking and cycling trails through towering redwoods or oak-studded hills, and rivers for kayaking and canoeing.
Wineries Rugged Coastlines and Redwood Forests
Los Angeles is a metropolis with an extraordinary history and a rich cultural heritage. An entertainment capital that is also home to renowned museums, a flourishing downtown, 75 miles of sunny coastline and internationally flavored neighborhoods.
The Nine Cities that comprise Greater Palm Springs offer an endless supply of sunshine and a local culture ranging from art and air museums, tours of midcentury modern homes, a living desert - a unique zoo and botanical garden that specializes in the deserts of the world - hiking, biking at the Indian Canyon, with its numerous natural springs, Tahquitz Canyon, the Coachella Valley Preserve and the Joshua Tree National Park, 794,000 acres with two diverse desert ecosystems: the Colorado and Mojave Deserts. Read More
Oregon is an ideal winter destination where you can ski on volcanoes in the Cascade Mountains; a nature lover’s paradise as you watch hundreds of gray whales spout and storms over the Pacific; a connoisseur destination where you can sip award-winning Oregon wines and micro beers; an environmentalist’s delight with Portland’s green lifestyle, free downtown transport and local distinctive neighborhoods. Video
Environment Friendly Destinations and Vacations
The Landscape is diverse, with a windswept Pacific coastline, a volcano-studded Cascade Range, abundant bodies of water in and west of the Cascades; dense evergreen, mixed, and deciduous forests at lower elevations; and a high desert sprawling across much of its east all the way to the Great Basin. The tall conifers, mainly Douglas fir, along Oregon's rainy west coast contrast with the lighter-timbered and fire-prone pine and juniper forests covering portions to the east. Abundant alders in the west fix nitrogen for the conifers. Stretching east from central Oregon are semi-arid shrub lands, prairies, deserts, steppes, and meadows. At 11,249 feet (3,429 m), Mount Hood is the state's highest point, and Crater Lake National Park is Oregon's only national park. Read More
Portland located between the Cascade Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Portland is at the northern end of the Willamette Valley and river which flows through the city and links with the Columbia River. The citizens and their local government are notable for: land-use planning, local transport, environment conscious policies, high walkability, a large number bicyclists and ten thousand acres of public parks.
Neighborhoods The Office of Neighborhood Involvement serves as a conduit between city government and Portland's 95 neighborhoods, each represented by a volunteer association serving as liaison between residents and the city government. Portland and its surrounding metropolitan area also have the only directly elected metro planning organization the United States with responsibility for land use, transport planning and solid waste management. Read More
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Nevada
Lake Tahoe is the largest alpine freshwater lake and second deepest in North America. Located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains between Nevada and California, it is home to ski resorts and other year round tourism and recreation activities. Formed about 2 million years ago, it is known for the clarity of its water and the panorama of surrounding mountains on all sides. Read More
Reno named for Civil War Major General Jesse Lee Reno, continued to grow as a business and agricultural center and became the principal settlement on the transcontinental railroad between Sacramento and Salt Lake City. The Reno Arch was erected on Virginia Street in 1926 to promote the Transcontinental Highways Exposition of 1927. Read More
Las Vegas was founded in 1905, when 110 acres - 45 ha - of land adjacent to the Union Pacific Railroad tracks were auctioned in what would become the downtown area. 1931 was a pivotal year as Nevada legalized casino gambling and reduced divorce requirements. At this time, the city also benefited from an influx of construction workers at nearby Hoover Dam. Crime figures such as Bugsy Siegel became involved in the growing gaming center leading to the opening of resorts such as the Flamingo, which opened in 1946, and the Desert Inn in 1960. Read More
The Rocky Mountain States
Montana is western history, national parks, cowboys, rodeos, railroad towns and guest ranches.
Glacier National Park crosses the Continental Divide at Logan Pass, offering breathtaking views and opportunity to see wildlife, the rugged terrain along the way and the many unspoiled lakes on a wooden boat, kayak or canoe, a guided horseback ride, or hiking some of the 700 miles of trails.
Bozeman in 1864, John Bozeman led a wagon train over Bozeman Pass into the Gallatin Valley, where his friends W. J. Beall and D. E. Rouse staked out the town site for the city of Bozeman. It is considered one of the most diverse small towns in the Rocky Mountains, with a mix of ranchers, artists, professors, ski enthusiasts and entrepreneurs drawn here by Montana’s world-class outdoor recreation.
Ranch Vacations the state has many unique guest ranches of different types: dude, working, or luxury resort ranches that offer a diverse array of activities from horseback riding to fly fishing, spa treatments to gourmet meals, hiking to rafting. Read More
Wyoming is the ninth largest state of the Union and includes two National Parks, Yellowstone and Grand Teton, Fossil Butte National Monument and the Jackson Hole area. Traveling along its western border through scenic Star Valley to visit the historic town of Jackson, known worldwide for challenging and exciting winter sports, spectacular Teton Mountain Range, Old Faithful and the Lower Falls in Yellowstone. Wyoming is divided into five regions: 
The Northwest has two iconic National Parks, spectacular scenery and welcoming towns with vacation options ranging from rugged backcountry escapes to serene, luxurious retreats.
The Southwest outdoor enthusiasts, amateur paleontologists, wildlife lovers and history buffs prefer this region with beautiful landscape and national treasures such as Fossil Butte National Monument and the Pilot Butte Wild Horse Loop.
The Central Region the North Platte River flows through this long, wide swath of the state. Discover Wyoming’s pioneer story, from scars in the earth left by the Oregon Trail wagons to fascinating history museums.
The Northeast is home to Devils Tower, the first national monument, and acres of public land with sagebrush plains and rolling hills as background for family outings as well as solo adventures.
The Southeast is home to the Wyoming State Capitol, recreational and cultural activities. Read More
Salt Lake City Utah flanked on all sides by dramatic granite cliffs, Salt Lake is a world-class alpine destination with outdoor recreation, a remarkable history, and an economy that has transformed a pioneer town into a sophisticated metropolitan city. Big Cottonwood Canyon and the world-famous Snowbird Aerial Tram with vistas from the top of 11,000-foot Hidden Peak of over 100 miles. Also, a breathtaking backcountry as you horseback or bike ride in the Wasatch Mountains. Thrill seekers can ride down the alpine slide, a new addition to the Snowbird experience.  The Great Salt Lake renowned for its high salinity which varies between 10 and 25%, second only to the Dead Sea, offers much in the way of recreation and relaxation. Antelope Island is ideal for a bike ride along the causeway or experience the trails as you hike, bike and animal watch: deer, bobcats, coyotes, many varieties of birds and waterfowl, and a small herd of elk call the island home. The Island's American Bison were introduced in 1893 and now number some 600 animals. Read More
Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Region nestled at the base of the Rocky Mountains, visitors to Colorado Springs can enjoy commanding views of Pikes Peak from just about any part of town. The multiple recreational opportunities afforded by the nearby mountains include everything from hiking to taking in the breathtaking geological wonders at Garden of the Gods Park, Cave of the Winds and the Paint Mines Interpretive Park.
Colorado Springs has a Thriving Arts and Cultural Scene
History the area’s first inhabitants were American Indian people. The Ute, Cheyenne, Arapaho and other tribes gathered at the base of Pikes Peak, near its abundant springs. During the 18th Century both French and Spanish flags flew over the region. But with the Louisiana Purchase more Anglo-American explorers and settlers began to venture west. In 1859, Colorado Springs history is marked with the founding of Colorado City which became the first settlement in the Pikes Peak region. It was the territorial capitol for a short period and served as a supply camp for miners traveling to the mining camps west of Denver. Read More


Phoenix is the cosmopolitan heart of Arizona, the soul of the American Southwest and where you will find sports venues, live music, rooftop lounges, museums, theaters and art galleries.
Downtown and its Cityscape two block entertainment district is also home to the Phoenix Convention Center and Arizona State University’s downtown campus; all served by one of the newest light rail systems in the nation.
Arizona Opera produces grand opera throughout the state of Arizona and is one of only three companies in the US that performs in two cities. In Phoenix, the company performs at Symphony Hall in Downtown. Read More