Many people travel in the US by having road trips or taking tours. Especially the china tour because the price is not too expensive. At that time, I really wanted to have road trips but my friend didn’t agree with me. So we chose to have West Coast Tour by taking tours because it was cheaper and safe (we didn’t have to drive) and yes, It’s China Tour which is the business ran by Chinese people or maybe the ABC (American Born Chinese).
We decided to choose the Take Tours agency which is so popular in the America. We took the West Coast Tour. Our wish list goals were Yosamite, San Francisco, and Horseshoe Bend. We needed to end the trip at LA because I had the flight back to BKK at LAX airport. Evenually, we chose the 6-Day 5-Night package tour that started at San Francisco and ended at Los Angeles. Actually it was just 5 days 5 nights becuase the first day we did nothing but cheked in the hotel.
Take Tours has an add-on option like, the more people come the less you pay. I traveled with 3 more friends just 308.5$ for our West Coast Tour package. It sounds worth it right? You’ll see how tricky it was.
Day 1 : Sanfrancisco
The tour would pick us up at SFO airport and you needed to pay for it. Before joining the tour, We stayed at my cousin’s home in Oakland for 5 days (near San Franciso) so we went to the hotel instead of the airport.
Day 2 : Sanfrancisco
The real begin of the tour was this day. We started to travel around San Franciso city and stayed at Modesto hotel near the city. And guess what? We had to pay more for the city tour 50$ each person. I still don’t understand untill now why we had to pay.
- Lombard Street
The crookedest street in the world has beautiful flowers along the sides. It has the stunning view in the morning but nothing’s more
- Cable Car
The San Francisco cable car system is the world’s last manually operated cable car system. An icon of San Francisco, it costs 3$ all the way (this fee was already included in the city tour). San Franciso is a city in the hills. It has many sloves but doesn’t make you feel vomit when riding. Riding the cable car for look around the view in the city was a good choice. I came in the middle of Septemper. The weather was so cool, espeicially in the morning. I had to wait in the line with 14 celsius degree with the light sweather.
- City Hall
San Francisco City Hall is the seat of government for the City and County of San Francisco, California and still lets tourist in. In my opinion, the building interior looked like a big church. The achitecture was so stunnig and magnificent. This is the reason why many people set the wedding here. I saw 3-4 wedding about to getting married here. I also felt blessed and congratulated to them all.
- St. Mary’s Cathedral
The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption, also known locally as Saint Mary’s Cathedral, is the principal church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco in San Francisco, California. It is the mother church of the Catholic faithful. Since I am a buddhist so I might not be into it much but it was very grand inside.
- The Fisherman’s Wharf
The famous Pier 39 is the peir where many chubby seals live and always sunbaht showing the travelers. Seals screamed a little bit loud and it had fishy smell. There were many gift shops around the area. You can buy all souvenir here.
- Palace of Fine Art
The Palace of Fine Arts in the Marina District of San Francisco, California is a monumental structure originally constructed for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition in order to exhibit works of art. Completely rebuilt from 1964 to 1974, it is one of only a few surviving structures from the Exposition. This place was so aesthetic and shady.
- Golden Gate Bridge
The most popular tourist attraction in San Francisco, Golden Gate Bridge. If you come to San Franciso and don’t come here, It means you don’t come to San Francisco. The tour let us photograph here around 20 minites. I came here few days before and prefered the view point in the hill where my friend’s cousin took us.
- Berkeley University
the last place we visited of today was Berkeley University. I only took one picture haha. The university was beautiful and big.
Day 3 : Yosemite National Park
Today tour we were at Yosemite National Park all day and stayed atthe Hotel in Los Angeles. This was my No.1 Wish list goal. I saw my freind posted many stunning photos of this place. But unfortunately, it wasn’t as beautiful as I expected. Don’t get me wrong, it was still beautiful. The weather was so nice and chill. I cou’dn’t remember all the spots we went. There was one spot we had to walked in to the wild to see the waterfall. But when we arrived there was no any waterfall. The water was dry. Maybe it wasn’t a season to fall.
The third spot was Tunnel View, a scenic viewpoint and iconic of the famous Yosamite. It was beautiful but not that stunning. We had been taking photos for an hour and the bus was gone. we waited there for too long and then a guide told us that one tourist was lost in the second spot so the national staff were finding here. All the tourist blamed on the company. All the torists had to wait 2 hours and it made us coudn’t go to the fourth spot. We directly went to the hotel after that.
Day 4 : Las Vegas
Today was the Las vegas Day. On the way to Las vegas, we stopped at the Outlet. It was big and too dry, of course, it was in the middle of the desert.
When we were riding, a guide told us that we will pass the Mojave Desert. I thought they would stop but no they just drove pass. When arriving at Las vegas, we could travel by ourselves. If you wanted to join the night tour 35, you gotta pay for 35$. I didn’t go. I just waled around the city with my friends. Every hotel had casino but you must be 21 years old to join.
Day 5 : Antelope Canyon – Horseshoe Bend
We went to Antelope Canyon – Horseshoe Bend and stayed in the hotel at Las Vegas. This program you can should between Grand Canyon or Antelope Canyon. I chose Antelope Canyon because I really wanted to visit Horseshoe Bend. First, we stopped at Antelope Canyon and paid the entrace fee for 135$ per person but already explained in the package. we also had to pay tips for the local guide 4-5 dollars without telling before.
Luckily our guide was so good and he deserved every dollar. we gotta walk into Antelope Canyon which located in the undergroud. THIS PLACE WAS A BLAST!! it was so magnificant and worthed every penny! (look at the photos and you’ll see!) Each group has around 20 people with one local guide and it had many groups many queues to go inside. It meant you don’t have much time for each spot. You need the model skills to get good photos here. Most spots they let you take only one shutter. It took around 15-20 minutes to walk in here.
- Antelope Canyon
- Horseshoe Bend
Horseshoe Bend had no entrance fee but we had to walk so far to be there. As you can see on the way to go in the photo, we had to walk in the hot tempurature and laterite walk way. I suggest everyone who wants to come here, don’t wear white shoes! It took around 15 minutes to be at the spot. It was so beautiful but dangerous. No fences, be aware and don’t fall!
I recommend both places. They were so good but not the restroom. If you need to use it, just be patient and use at the bus stop near Horseshoe Bend.
Day 6 : Los Angeles
Last day of the long trip, first spot was an Ethel M Chocolate Factory. The outside had cactus garden but I was just not in the mood for photos lol. Last spot was the outlet mall and then heading to Los Angeles. We left the tour at somewhere near the bus stop and then took a taxi to our stay. The last day I was so tried and annoyed about the tour so I didn’t take any photos.
Finally the tour was ended. Nothing was better than this haha. This photo was another day, I visited the iconic Hollywood Sign.
What I hated most about China tour was they didn’t tell you all the costs in the brochure. They kept adding on some costs we couldn’t deny like the driver tips or city tours. In the conclusion, the West Coast Tour wasn’t cheap as it supposed to.
Pros & Cons
As I mentioned, I didn’t enjoy much. West Coast Tour made me Wake up at 4 -5 in the morning every day that made me so tired. Most touring time was in the bus. If you need to pee, you gotta be patient and wait till arriving the bus stop. They changed new guides almost evey day. Someone was so rude and unrestpectful.
The only profits of taking tour was I could visit all tourist destinations and be safe but still had to protect all valuable belonggings myself.
Overall, I was not happy much to join the West Coast Tour. Everything was too rush too handle but I still enjoyed every place that I went in the west cost tour. Many places were far away and I had to sit in the bus exhaustedly. I prefer to travel by myself next time. No more taking tours! I might go back and have west cost tour by myself next time. But taking tours are the good choice to collect all your bucket lists as well.
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