NORTH AMERICA

New York, NY

Cape Cod, MA

Following a glorious few days in Falmouth (click HERE to read about Cape Cod and HERE to see my post on Boston), it was time to head out to our final destination, New York. The plan was to spend a couple of days in the Big Apple to take in the New Year festivities, before flying back to Australia, late on New Year’s Day.

New Year in New York

New York 2015

A search on Google will quickly confirm, that New York is the place to be for New Year’s Eve and, in particular, Times Square, which attracts more than a million revellers. For those wanting the full experience and to get close enough to see the ball drop on the stroke of twelve, it is necessary to get there early in the day and be prepared to spend many hours in the cold and in a cramped environment, without toilet facilities! Entertainment commences mid-afternoon and after the ball drop, there is a dazzling pyrotechnic light show.

New York City Sightseeing Bus Tours

Brooklyn Bridge

This was my first visit to New York and as it was only for a couple of days, I decided to purchase a ticket for one of their “Hop on Hop off Bus” tours. This is a great way to take in the sights and to get a feel of the city. The guides on the buses were all amazing and had a great knowledge of the history and the tales of the city. I would highly recommend both the uptown and downtown options as well as suggesting that you give yourself plenty of time to enjoy the experience.

Central Park, New York

Central Park is in Central Manhattan and is a must see on any visit to New York. There is such a buzz about the park and there is always something going on there. The childrenN USA88 went ice skating on New Year’s Day. The park is far bigger than I imagined but can be explored on a hired bicycle.

There are a number of activities/attractions on offer around Central Park that are also well worth experiencing. These include the American Museum of Natural History, Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum and the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts. For my fellow fitness fanatics, wake up early and join the numerous joggers who frequent the park.

Newark, New Jersey Sunset

Newark, New Jersey

New Year’s Eve Fireworks in New York

New Year Fireworks

Boston, MA

Boston – An Iconic Historical City

Whilst staying in Cape Cod (Read about Cape Cod in winter HERE ), the opportunity arose to visit Boston, a city I have always wanted to explore for of its rich economic and social history, which dates back to the sixteen hundreds. The city and its environs, have become the region’s hub and are now home to some of the finest hospitals in the world, numerous cultural and professional sports organizations and many institutions of higher education such as the prestigious Harvard University. As it was going to be a one day excursion, we decided to make an early start in order to fit in as much as possible!

Boston, MA

Boston Freedom Trail

On arrival, one of our first activities was to walk the 2.5 mile Freedom Trail. This was an excellent way to get a quick, historical perspective of the city. The trail starts at the Boston Common and takes you past such sites as Massachusetts State House, Benjamin Franklin’s Statue and Paul Revere House. It ends at the USS Constitution Museum which preserves the memory of the World’s oldest commissioned warship and recounts many of its stories.

Massachusetts State House

Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum

Visiting the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum, is a high tech, interactive experience that includes a show with entertaining actors. The museum itself is small and sits on a barge in the water. Part of the tour is on restored tea ships, where a re-enactment of the tossing overboard of the tea chests takes place. This activity is a great choice, especially if there are youngsters in your group!

Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum

Boston Architecture

Boston is one of America’s oldest, continuously occupied cities and is made up of buildings constructed in many different ways and a diversity of styles. Beautiful historical structures have been carefully preserved and stand next to interesting and sometimes colourful, modern structures.

Boston Architecture

Harvard University

Another thing on my “Must See List” was Harvard. This university reigns supreme, in terms of global higher education institutions and so a visit to its campus was our next stop. Not only did we get to view the actual grounds and buildings but we were extremely fortunate to have arrived just in time to watch an Ice Hockey game. The cream on the cake being, that Harvard won!

Harvard Ice Hockey

A New York New Year

The final stop of our American tour, is New York and as luck would have it, it was just in time for New Year!! Click HERE to view the post on New York.

A window to Boston

Cape Cod, MA

Falmouth, MA

Cape Cod, Sunset

After two hectic weeks of skiing in Vermont, we left Warren (HERE is my post on Warren, VT) and headed south on a 260 mile journey to our house rental in Falmouth, MA. The two busy weeks would now be replaced by a few, well-earned quieter days of sight-seeing, shopping and exploring the beauty of the Cape Cod region.

Cape Cod Winter Landscape

Cape Cod MA

As we travelled south from Warren to Cape Cod, we started to see some very apparent changes. The first of these was the the noticeable increase in habitation and traffic on the roads. Then the mountains and snow we had got used to, began to give way to rolling hills and forests and as we neared Cape Cod, great expances of water appeared. The landscape here is fascinating and seems to beckon travellers to stop and explore it.

Cape Cod is not renowned as a winter destination but I highly recommend it as a place to chill out, sightsee and just enjoy its sheer beauty.

Cape Cod Lighthouses

Nobska Lighthouse

There is a plethora of lighthouses around Cape Cod which can be found at all the important navigation points. They not only warn unsuspecting ships of imminent danger but also symbolise hope and safety. Most have interesting stories related to them and one, well worth visiting, is the Nobska Lighthouse, south of Falmouth. It was originally built in 1828 and automated in 1985 but remains an historical site today.

Cape Cod Winter Sunsets

Falmouth, Cape Cod

The sunsets of this region are absolutely stunning and gave us great pleasure each evening of our stay there. Hence, I would warmly endorse booking into waterside accommodation, where the views of these glorious sunsets are best. Our family house in Falmouth was perfectly situated and if you are considering a visit to this area, I am only too happy to put you in touch with its delightful owner, Olga (booked online through Flipkey).

Cape Cod Churches

North Falmouth Church

There are many charming little churches in the region _ such as the one shown above. This was wonderful for me of course, as it gave me another excuse to practice my photography skills!!!

Cape Cod Fauna

Mallard Duck, Cape Cod

Cape Cod has over 450 species of amphibians, reptiles, fish, birds and mammals. We were lucky enough to spot a fox on one of our early morning walks and never failed to be intrigued and dazzled by the flocks of Mallard ducks, no matter how many times a day we sighted them.

Falmouth, MA Sunset

Central Avenue, Falmouth

Another glorious sunset taken at our rental in Central Avenue, Falmouth.

Boston, MA

Wanting to see and explore more of these beautiful environs before leaving Falmouth, we decided that we would make a trip up to Boston (Click HERE to see my post on Boston, MA) for the day. I leave this to be the subject of my post next week.