WESTERN UNITED STATES
Fun Facts From Globus Tours
- California is the largest producer of wine in the United States and fourth largest producer in the world, producing an average of 85 percent of the total U.S. wine production at more than 230 million cases of wine each year
- Arizona, the largest copper producer in the United States, has enough copper on the roof of the capitol to create 4,800,000 pennies
- Oregon’s tallest mountain, Mt. Hood, is a dormant volcano
- Utah’s name derives from the Ute Native American tribe meaning “people of the mountains”
The Old West – a place of great intrigue and wonder. Although it is the “newer” half of the United States, the west holds enough natural mystery and Native American tradition to feel like it has been an official part of the nation for many centuries. Along the rugged Pacific Coast, into the wine country of California, to the majesty of the Golden Gate Bridge, and into the melting pot of Los Angeles where many cultures collide – creating a massive area of the country with a little taste of everything, visitors can enjoy a world of big skies and stunning surroundings with a sense they’re escaping. National Parks, diverse landscapes, and reminders of the strong Native American cultures will captivate visitors of the west.
As the final destination of the famous Route 66, Los Angeles, the “City of Angels,” offers many sights and adventures. Home of the world-famous Getty Museum, Universal Studios, Hollywood, and glamour itself, there is always something to see in this massive and vibrant city, constantly humming with energy.
No matter which way you turn, California offers dramatic terrain – from the giant redwoods of Redwood National Park to sunny San Diego that sits just north of the Mexican border. With great year round weather, San Diego offers 70 miles of beaches to enjoy, as well as local favorite Balboa Park and Museums, the San Diego Zoo, Wild Animal Park, and more.
Stop into the more quaint cities of California moving north to Santa Barbara and Solvang, a smooth transition to a different pace of life as you get closer to wine country. Carmel, Monterey, Sonoma, and Napa Valley – proud producers of superb California wines – will charm and impress visitors with their delectable flavors. Sample and delight in the wine and food of the region, as you scratch the surface of the art and science behind wine-making.
Visit cosmopolitan San Francisco, the “City by the Bay,” and enjoy breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge and bustling Fisherman’s Wharf. Hop on a cable car ride and head to Chinatown for dim sum or take a boat trip to Alcatraz Prison.
The charming Southwest is not to be missed when venturing out west. Durango, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Tucson, and Scottsdale are some of the ideal destinations to really get a taste of the culture. Native American culture highlighted by their art, jewelry, scenery, and foods inundate these towns providing a greater understanding to their ancient homes, like Mesa Verde and Bandelier National Monument. Beyond the breathtaking sunsets and seemingly endless skies, almost a world away stands one of America’s most popular vacation destinations, Las Vegas. The lights, glitz and glamour of this desert oasis provide endless entertainment, dining, shopping, and gambling. Spend time on the famous “Strip,” packed with glittering hotels, graced with the stunning fountains of the Bellagio, and home to some of the greatest shows on earth – you’ll never be without something to do in Vegas.
Touring through this region and the wonder of the versatile landscapes and unique history will create stories and memories to share forever. At the heart of a region with so much diversity in its surroundings, cultures, and lifestyles, is a region that still somehow maintains a common sense of history and unity – a fascinating dichotomy that will thrill any visitor of the great American West.
For the most current exchange rates, please go to our website at Globusjourneys.com/Currency.
Although credit cards are widely accepted in the United States, we recommend our passengers carry some cash (~$50.00) to use in circumstances when credit cards are not accepted or in destinations where ATMs are not readily available.
BUDGETING AND SHOPPING
When budgeting for your trip, keep in mind that the cost of goods, including food, drinks, and souvenirs, may differ significantly from what you’re used to at home.
In the western U.S., cowboy hats, cowboy boots, western shirts, and leather products such as belts and wallets are always popular souvenirs. Other regional finds include books on the Western National Parks, Native American handicrafts including pottery, rugs, jewelry, and rugged outdoor wear. Along the coast, regional wines, artisan handcrafts, coffee, salmon (Pacific Northwest), cedar planks (for cooking), and hand-made chocolates are popular souvenirs. San Francisco in particular, is known for its shopping at Fisherman’s Wharf, Chinatown, Union Square, and dozens of boutique shops. Los Angeles and Las Vegas are shopping hotspots in the western U.S. Las Vegas features a wide array of outlets and Los Angeles has its famous Rodeo Drive and Melrose Avenue, and the Universal City Walk near Hollywood.
When traveling to the western United States keep in mind that the temperature can vary greatly between northern and southern destinations. The northern states are substantially cooler than southern states and are also more prone to rain showers. The farther inland you travel the drier the air becomes. If traveling to coastal cities, an ocean breeze may persist. We recommend checking local weather in each of your destinations prior to traveling to ensure you are adequately prepared for the conditions. To help you plan, below are average low and high temperatures for Western United States.
To convert to Celsius, subtract 30, then divide by 2. While not exact, this simple formula will give a close estimation..
The western U.S. is known for a wide variety of specialties. Among them, western-style BBQ, fresh seafood in the Northwestern states, fabulous beef, game meats including venison and elk, fresh trout, green chili, beef jerky, Indian fry bread, breakfast burritos, and the legendary Rocky Mountain Oysters.
The western U.S. is also world renowned for its wine production, particularly in California, Oregon, & Washington.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE COUNTRY INFORMATION
Additional country-specific information for US citizens can be found on the US Government’s website www.travel.state.gov. Here, you can find the most up-to-date information about destination descriptions, passports/visas, safety and security, transportation, travel local laws, alerts/warnings, vaccinations, and more. For citizens of other nations, we recommend you consult your local consulate for travel information, regulations, and requirements.