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  1. Default California stuff

    I posted on here a long time ago about a cross country trip with my friends. However, I still have a bunch of questions and I was wondering if some of you guys could help me out.
    My one friend and I plan to drive from upstate New York starting on Wednesday and get into Naples, Florida sometime on Friday at the absolute latest (hopefully). We plan to stay the day there, and then embark from Naples, Florida on to San Diego, California. We are pretty flexible with however long it takes, but we'd like to be in California by about 4 days. From what I remember, I think we go through Mobile, Alabama, Baton Rouge, Lousiana, Houston, Texas, El Paso, Texas, and then to San Diego. I would like to try some Southern seafood like Cajun catfish. I've had it up here in New York, but I'd like to think it would be tastier down there. Where should we check out along the way, if anywhere? We would like to stop in Tijuana, Mexico for one of the nights that we are in San Diego. Recommended or not? Then, we plan to travel from there on to San Francisco and take about 6 to 7 days doing that. I want to check out Big Sur. I've seen pictures of a waterfall going into the Pacific Ocean. I can't think of where it is in Big Sur. Anyone familiar with what I am talking about? And, if so, is it possible to sleep in a tent there? In San Francisco, is Fisherman's Wharf recommended? Where is a good place for nightlife in San Fran? Where in Los Angeles would be good? Okay...I don't want to make this too long where people are scared to respond. Thank you for any help. We really appreciate it more than anything!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
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    10,059

    Default Who was the member?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aboslet1
    I posted on here a long time ago about a cross country trip with my friends.
    Welcome (again?) to the Great American RoadTrip Forum? What was the user name you used before? We can link to it and find those original postings.
    My one friend and I plan to drive from upstate New York starting on Wednesday and get into Naples, Florida sometime on Friday at the absolute latest (hopefully). We plan to stay the day there, and then embark from Naples, Florida on to San Diego, California. We are pretty flexible with however long it takes, but we'd like to be in California by about 4 days.
    Four days doesn't allow for much flexibility since by the shortest possible route it is still 2600 miles, which means that you have to cover 650 miles per day and drive for about 12 hours every single day.
    I've seen pictures of a waterfall going into the Pacific Ocean. I can't think of where it is in Big Sur.
    Yeah, there is only one.... It is in the Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and here is a photo of the park and proximity information.

    Happy Planning!

    Mark

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
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    13,063

    Default Speed Demon

    I'm going to agree with Mark, You really are trying to push things to make it from FL to CA in 4 days, particualrly since you're only giving yourself one day rest after the NY-FL leg. I don't think you'll end up giving yourself nearly enough time to enjoy those things like Cajun Catfish along the way.

    We would like to stop in Tijuana, Mexico for one of the nights that we are in San Diego. Recommended or not?
    TJ's a pretty easy trip from San Diego. Either park near the border, or better yet, take the trolley from downtown. From there you can walk across, or pay a dollar to ride a bus more into the downtown area of TJ. Its certainly an experience worth checking out when you're there.

  4. Default !

    Nice, nice. My old screenname I think was Bozzer112. However, it could be any number of things. Yeah...we're kinda worried/concerned that it will be a major pain to make it there in four days. We looked at expedia.com and they said it would only take about 36 hours...which is still a pain at 9 hours a day. However, at 9 hours a day, it would kinda just be like a job. Go to job during day...have fun at night kinda thing. Nice on the pictures! I thought the name of the park it was in was something like that. Thanks. Do you think it's possible to camp under and/or near it for a night? Thanks for the advice on Tijuana. I've heard from a friend that lives in San Diego that it's an interesting experience. It's one place I really want to go to. Any streets or areas that you would recommend? We kinda want to get the party scene in a little bit on this trip, and there would most likely be the easiest place to do it, considering that only one of us is 21. I like the idea of taking the trolley in downtown. That sounds nice. Hmm...what other questions do I have? On the way to San Diego, where would you recommend for us to eat? Catfish in the South...hot food in the south west...Asian or fish on the west coast? Do you think it would be possible for us to walk into like hostels or motels in San Fran or San Diego and get a room easily, or should we do it in advance? Thanks guys for the replies!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
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    10,059

    Default Old trip, old thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Aboslet1
    Nice, nice. My old screenname I think was Bozzer112
    , It was, and normally I would just merge the old threads together, but it looks like the trip has changed a bit, so here, instead, is a link to the old trip....


    Mark

  6. Default

    Yeah...that was the old idea. However, since we have to pick up the car and one of our friends in Florida and then drop it off once we are done, we have to start and end in Florida. We would like to take a very Southern leg for the first part of the trip. And then, on return, we would like to take a slightly Northern trip. I heard that there is a route that goes right along Mexico. US-40...or US-10 or something like that?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
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    Default Reality Check

    The 9 hour per day estimate doesn't factor in the realities of a roadtrip - namely you will need to stop. Be it for gas, food, traffic, etc, as the Editor has already pointed out, you will be looking at much closer to 12 hours a day to pull this off in 4 days.

    The only interstates that run along the Mexican border are 2 short stretches, I-10 near El Paso and I-8 between Yuma and San Diego. But honestly, I really doubt you'll even be able to tell that you're close to the border.

  8. Default

    > Do you think it's possible to camp under and/or near it for a night? [ ... ]

    Near it -- there is a public campground at the park. Check out www.reserveamerica.com if you're interested in a campground reservation.

    >Thanks for the advice on Tijuana. I've heard from a friend that lives in
    >San Diego that it's an interesting experience. It's one place I really want
    >to go to. Any streets or areas that you would recommend? We kinda
    >want to get the party scene in a little bit on this trip, and there would
    >most likely be the easiest place to do it, considering that only one of us
    >is 21. I like the idea of taking the trolley in downtown. That sounds nice.
    > [ ...]

    The drinking age is lower in Mexico than California, but you do need to be careful in TJ. They operate under a different code of justice and laws than the US (it is their country, after all). Public drunkeness, and you're in the TJ jail, which isn't nice. Walking around with an open beverage on the street in TJ also means a trip to the jail, and at least a weekend stay and big fine. Similarly for any altercation in a bar. Plus, you have to make it back to the border and get back across and some drunken American tourists can be seen a easy targets -- particularly if they're just going to disappear across the border and not come back to prosecute anyone. So be careful... there are some rough areas in TJ.

    > [ ... ] Hmm...what other questions do I have? On the way to San Diego,
    > where would you recommend for us to eat? Catfish in the South...hot
    >food in the south west...Asian or fish on the west coast? Do you think it
    >would be possible for us to walk into like hostels or motels in San Fran or
    >San Diego and get a room easily, or should we do it in advance? Thanks
    > guys for the replies!

    Food? Cajin in Lousiana of course, Barbeque (of different types) in the South West, Texas and California. Shrimp along the Gulf in Texas. Tex/Mex of course. New Mexican style food in New Mexico (can be HOT!). In California, the local sea food is excellent, as well as a very good selection of Asian foods, and the nouveu "California Fusion" food, combining local, Mexican, traditional US and asian foods. Some of it is ... "interesting"... and some of it is very good. And of course, local Californian food and wine.

    You should be able to get a motel in San Diego or SF without much problem, without much advance notice -- unless there's something like a HUGE convention in town. Hostels I'm not sure of... If you're unsure, or want a specific area/ specific place to stay, you might consider using a cell phone and giving them a call the day before or the morning of your stay, and checking to see if you can get in. That'll give you time to work alternatives or do some quick replanning..

  9. Default

    Okay...thanks guys. Yeah...we realize there are going to be some potentially painful days of driving. We'll see how it goes. We'll play it by ear I guess. Thank you on the website Larrison. I'll check that out ASAP. And yeah, I've heard Tijuana is sketchy in some parts. I've heard some good stories...but I'd rather not spend a night in a jail. We'd like to go to some bars there, but we'd stick out of trouble. Do you have any rough stories about Tijuana? And yeah, about the food. I'm big on fish, so i'd like to try some cajun catfish and check out fisherman's wharf in San Fran. Know of any good restaurants there?

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Default Mexico -- Especialy Baja California is great

    Quote Originally Posted by Aboslet1
    I've heard some good stories...but I'd rather not spend a night in a jail.
    You would have to be pretty "Ugly Americano" to irritate a local or Federale cop sufficiently to go to jail -- bribes are part of the deal and if you are going to travel in some of the dicier sections of Mexico you ought to expect to pay. Don't cross the border with drugs, guns or other contraband, and most importantly, leave the 'tude behind.

    If you want a fun border experience I would go, instead, to Aqua Prieta and park on the USA side of the crossing at Douglas, Arizona. I have done it several times over the years. Bars are friendlier and the mescal is just as nasty there as it is in TJ.

    Mexico is a beautiful country and the people are, like most places, warm and welcoming. There are bandits and you do need to keep your wits alert.

    I really like Baja California -- La Paz is a fun place to be and the bread and fish sandwiches at San Felipe (yummy!) Your US dollars will stretch for food like you can't believe.

    Mark

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