USA

libertysmall

The USA, land of the free and self-appointed protector of the world is an interesting amalgam of people, places and experiences. In many ways, it is a contradiction in terms. It’s united in so many ways, but the recent 2016 elections proved it’s completely divided. A so-called class-less society, there is an obvious split between rich and poor, black and latin. Yet there’s a patriotic fervor here like no other. It’s these tensions that make it an interesting study in humanity – the world looks to it for leadership, trends and ideas, yet they mock it for its exclusionary attitudes. Strange for a country that was a beacon of hope and attracted generations of new-comers to find freedom in the place that was originally (like Australia), a dumping ground for criminals and miscreants.

The best way to experience the United States is to split it up into manageable bite-sized chunks. Start with the obvious coastal cities and the bright lights of Vegas, and then start digging a little deeper to see what makes this such a weird and wonderful place to visit.

Rockaway Beach, New York

It’s not hard, not far to reach, we can hitch a ride to Rockaway Beach. 

 Before ever visiting New York, Rockaway Beach was just another Ramones lyric. We never imagined it was a real destination, possibly due to the Ramones’ reliance of the word “rock” in many of its song titles and lyrics. See: Rock n Roll High School, Do You Remember Rock n Roll Radio...

Review: Rockaway Beach Surf Club, New York

Every self-respecting beach has its surf club and Rockaway Beach is no different. 

 Surfing’s thirsty (and hungry) work. All that paddling, the waves, the rips, the bails, the dumps. It will leave you exhausted, but glad to be alive. And especially glad to know there’s a place that serves fresh, authentic tacos, $5 beers and frozen margaritas. The Rockaway Beach...

Union Square Green Markets, New York

In a megalopolis as large as Manhattan, you’d think accessing fresh food from local Green Markets would be nigh on impossible, but Union Square is the place to go. Thankfully there’s no shortage of farm fresh and farm-to-table options. From the Westside Markets to Whole Foods, there’s genuine, GMO-free deliciousness to be found if you know the right place to look...

Cats of Old San Juan, Puerto Rico

Old San Juan is a city with character and more than its fair share of cats roaming the streets. In this world, there are cat people and there are dog people. If you’re a dog person who doesn’t like cats, Old San Juan could be your idea of a personal hell. If you’re a cat person, there’s no shortage. Old San Juan has a cat epidemic. Gingers, black cats, tortoise...

Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition, Coney Island

World class competitive decadence is a major draw to Coney Island on the 4th of July for the annual Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Competition. Americans are known for their love of a fair fight and their love of carbs. These come together perfectly once a year. Nathan’s is one of the original creators of the hot dog (there’s some conjecture between junk food historians)...

Friedsam Carousel, Central Park, NY

The Friedsam Carousel stands as a living piece of history in Central Park’s southern end. For a couple of dollars, you’ll be transported back to the final years of the 19th Century as you ride a fine stallion accompanied by an original music box. Step right up! There’s a strange, stately majesty that collides with a spirit of childlike glee when one first sets eyes...

Exploring Coney Island, New York

Bright lights, boardwalks, hot dogs, Coney Island had us at hello. Growing up in Australia, it sounded like an amazing place, mentioned in Saturday morning cartoons like a mecca for kids. Sadly it’s not as pristine or exciting as an adult, but gladly not as seedy as ten years ago. The Coney Island of today is a quirky place, the closest beach to Manhattan, yet only a...

Culebra and Flamenco Beach, PR

Crystal-clear turquoise waters, white sand, abundant sea life and sunny skies make Culebra a hard place to beat. Coming from tropical Queensland, home of the Great Barrier Reef, it takes something special to impress us. Culebra didn’t just impress, it set the new standard for holiday destinations. This way to paradise Culebra is a large island, 27km off the east...

Algiers Point, New Orleans, Louisiana

Algiers Point is a quaint, leafy suburb of New Orleans. We used it as a base to explore the Cajun wonderland. As budget conscious, but seasoned travelers, we have been supportive of the rise of Air BNB. It gives you the opportunity to step outside the tourist traps and experience at least a basic immersion into local cultures. Early indecision in our booking plans...

Review: Hundred Acres, Soho, NY

Brunch is our favorite meal of the day and a Hundred Acres in Soho, New York has been on our list for a long time. A Hundred Acres is within walking distance from our Greenwich Village home and we have walked past it several times but never at the right moment to go in. It’s regularly on the hotlists for brunch places in all the right NY magazines. One morning...