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Old 07-25-2011, 10:05 AM
 
8,266 posts, read 10,707,875 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thewitchisback View Post
Everything is soo slickly packaged. There is often style with no substance, no layers.I have found I have seen as much if not more beauty in other parts of the world, without the packaged American blandness.
Everything is what you make of it, one can end up in a prepackaged shuffling mob with a tight controlled agenda thru prepackaged goodness in Rome/London/Paris just as easily as one can do NYC or Big Easy on their own.

Places that get tourists offer prepacked, same everywhere from Bangkok to Los Angeles to San Jose.
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Old 07-25-2011, 11:56 AM
 
Location: too far from the sea
19,838 posts, read 18,845,295 times
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I agree that it's lack of money, lack of time mostly. With our huge country our families are all spread out so when we do get a little bit of time and money we tend to spend it traveling far and wide to see them.

I was lucky! Ages ago, I was a teacher married to a teacher and we would drive to Florida each winter vacation. We camped to save money and enjoyed the Everglades and other natural attractions.

One summer we went to Europe and stayed on the cheap with some friends for the summer--camped again so that we could see the Alps and the German countryside. Staying with a German family was the best part--eating their food, living the way they lived, and becoming immersed in their culture. I had learned a little bit of German before we went, thank goodness, because in this remote village only our friends spoke some English.

It was many years until I was able to travel again--almost retirement time--when I got involved with genealogy and a group was going to England. I went alone but was with the group when I got there. I met new cousins and again, saw how people lived, what they ate, (had Yorkshire pudding MADE for me by a 4th cousin in Yorkshire!) and absorbed the culture. Got to go again a few years later with a friend to share expenses and stayed part of the time with my new cousins to save money. Now I'm married to someone from the UK and we are saving desperately to return to England. He's a great guide to the off-the-beaten-path places as well as to the Lake District, castles, gardens, Roman ruins and other usual attractions that most people would see.
Now I do have the time, it's just the money that's stopping me.

Yes, I did camp all the way across the USA and back again one time, being a teacher I had the summer to do it. We stayed in most of the national parks and I loved seeing places that I had read about in US history class.

If some people just want to go to Vegas or Disney, that's their problem lol. They have the time and money but that's what they choose.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:58 AM
 
22,769 posts, read 26,209,016 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by queensgrl View Post
Why is it that so many Americans don't travel abroad while so many foreigners take holidays to the US? I've longed to travel for years but I'm single and the prospect of going alone is scary, especially since I'm limited in foreign languages (I read, write and speak some Spanish). However I am making plans to study abroad later this year if all goes well.

There's something very insular about Americans that I can't quite pinpoint. It's woven into the design of our suburban communities, where every town has strip malls with the same stores, we aspire to wear the same clothing, drive similar cars and live in subdivisions with four styles of houses. This sameness is also creeping into major cities once known for their uniqueness.

It's like wherever we go, we have to see the things we have back home. It feels like the 1950s all over again (from what I've read, anyway -- I was not born yet). It's like an artificial existence of sorts.

We stay in our backyards and grill food, go on cruises (semi-foreign travel) or we travel to Vegas and Disney World, but we won't visit the real world.

What gives?
i think you're making the assumption that Europeans are more likely to travel to the United States than vice-versa. I don't think that's the case.
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Old 07-26-2011, 10:52 AM
 
1,246 posts, read 2,986,779 times
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I'd like to see some Europeans actually come to America and venture out of the big cities and the national parks. They all come here for: New York City, Niagara Falls, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Yellowstone, Florida, or maybe some of the Rocky Mountain resorts. You don't see too many of them venturing off the approved tourism lists either, so they shouldn't put on airs.
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Old 07-26-2011, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Englewood, FL
1,460 posts, read 1,492,072 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
I agree with all of the above, which is right on the mark.

Another is language. Americans are in a state of institutionalized denial about the value of bilingualism, and actually obstruct the efforts or opportunity of any child learning a second language at an appropriate age.

And food. Americans get very nervous if they are not in the delivery radius of a Pizza Hut.

And car dependence. Americans feel naked without a set of car keys in their pocket. A majority of Americans have never ridden a public bus in their lives, and would be terrified if they had to.

And filth. Americans believe every country in the world is dirty compared to America, and for our antiseptic demands, it probably is, but harmlessly.

I don't think geographical proximity has much to do with it. Very few Floridians have ever been to the Bahamas, not many New Yorkers have been to Quebec, and most non-Hispanic Angelinos have never slept Mexico
That, and being afraid of being blown up by terrorists in just about any European airport.
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Old 07-26-2011, 01:26 PM
 
Location: Englewood, FL
1,460 posts, read 1,492,072 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thewitchisback View Post
As a non American who has travelled extensively it is quite amusing to see Americans on here talking about how much there is to see in the US. The BULK of the US (I have travelled to several states that were all widely dispersed geographically) consists of vastly similar cultures. I would even lump Canada in with the US in terms of sameness. I genuinely feel sorry for Americans who feel content to just travel in their country. Every single place in the US I have been to has a pretty vapid culture full of lots of shallow attractions (New York may be the closest to an exception). Which makes the US a perfect vacation spot for a child...an adult ehhhh not so much. I need my vacations with a little cultural depth.

Are you French, by chance?
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Old 07-26-2011, 01:29 PM
 
Location: Englewood, FL
1,460 posts, read 1,492,072 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thewitchisback View Post
Let me just give some background on myself so you guys can understand where I'm coming from.
I'm from the Caribbean and have vacationed (like many Caribbean people) in the US/Canada at least once a year for most of my life. I only started travelling outside of those two countries ten years ago .

I have since been to all the continents (excluding Australia and Antarctica) and the contrast between the places I've been in the last 10 years and the US/Canada is vast. It honestly made me regret all those trips to the States that have been the bulk of my travels. I've been to quite scenic parts of the US and Canada but I find that there is almost always a packaged feel to attractions there. Everything is soo slickly packaged. There is often style with no substance, no layers.I have found I have seen as much if not more beauty in other parts of the world, without the packaged American blandness. I now reserve the US/Canada for more "fluff" trips such as amusement parks, shopping, eating out. Americans/Canadians do fluff very very well and I can enjoy those trips very much in their own way. It's like I wouldn't go to Italy or Kenya expecting to have a great time at amusement parks there lol....But yes, the vacations I really look forward to are always outside of the US/Canada. I take America for what it is and can enjoy it once
I'm aware of its limitations.
Intersting perspective. I've been to the Caribbean several times, to several different islands, and I can truly say if you've seen one island, you've seen them all.
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Old 07-26-2011, 03:45 PM
 
350 posts, read 588,392 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiggy View Post
Intersting perspective. I've been to the Caribbean several times, to several different islands, and I can truly say if you've seen one island, you've seen them all.
Yip...and I feel exactly the same about the different US states.
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Old 07-26-2011, 11:15 PM
 
Location: Tucson/Nogales
17,391 posts, read 21,228,976 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chatteress View Post
These don't really intimidate me much except for the language barriers. Common fears can include the potential of terrorist attacks which makes folks wanting to stay close to home and the fear of international flying where you are over the ocean for hours on end.
I view natural disasters as terrorist attacks as well. Never know when you're going to be in one. You could be on a ride in Disneyland, and there you are in an earthquake! You could be up in Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, walking along the beach, and, without warning, there comes the tsunami!

You could have been in Joplin MO this year, walking back to your hotel, and you never made it back alive! Blown away with the wind!

You could have been in Tokyo this year. Having visited all the tourist sites there, you were itching for something more rural. There you go 100 miles north, and Kaboom! And you faithfully read the U.S. Consular's reports, stating how extremely safe it is over there, not a safer place to be in the world!

Accidents/Terrorist Attacks do happen, any place, any time!

Last edited by tijlover; 07-26-2011 at 11:16 PM.. Reason: edit
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Old 07-27-2011, 09:45 AM
 
1,096 posts, read 4,092,918 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiggy View Post
Intersting perspective. I've been to the Caribbean several times, to several different islands, and I can truly say if you've seen one island, you've seen them all.
Sounds like you've been to Nasau Bahamas and the BVI and USVI which I would sort of agree with that statement.

Jamaica is a world of it's own. Beaches, forests, mountains, waterfalls, so much variety in just in terms of the land where as other islands you got nice beaches but no forests, you got nice beaches but no mountians, etc

Jamaica in terms of music, culture, food, is also in a world of its own.

If you go to the more affluent islands everything probably is the same, same european style restaurants, same pink and yellow stuckow houses, same pristine streets ni the shopping areas, etc.
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