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Apr232013

Tour/Activity

Elvis Presley's Graceland Tour

Memphis, Tennessee

My Rating
4 star rating: Recommended

My Review

We arrived at Graceland directly after seeing the Sun Studio where it all began. This is a tour as you might expect - audio based, being led through rooms and buildings of the (surprisingly small) home. And of course there is a lot of people. You gotta do it out of respect, but make sure you do the Sun Studio tour - you tend to feel the energy there!

Apr192013

Tour/Activity

Experience Cajun Country: Swamp Boat Adventure and Plantations Full-Day Tour from New Orleans

New Orleans, Louisiana

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Okay, we just happened to pick the coldest April day on record in New Orleans, but this tour was extremely informative, interesting and conducted with great insight and care by Dylan our tour guide (a native who returned to New Orleans after Katrina). The Laura plantation is great - and fascinating. Oak Alley is impressive, but a little more scripted and family-history oriented - much more forgettable in the end. Lunch was filling and authentic! The Swamp tour was great - again informative with Captain Torres (who has never left Louisiana) pointing out fascinating areas along the way, as well as making sure we knew which type of duck was best for eatin'. Because of the weather, alligators were a little shy, nut I want to immediately go back in summer. A great day all up.

Apr152013

Tour/Activity

9/11 Memorial and Ground Zero Walking Tour with Optional 9/11 Museum Upgrade

New York City, New York

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Well worth doing. Be prepared to walk for a fair way here - the tour is quite long and you are walking through the streets of the financial district. Very informative guide, and the ending at the memorial is poignant - made even more so as we did the tour on the day of the Boston bombings.

Apr082013

Tour/Activity

Top of the Rock Observation Deck, New York

New York City, New York

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

I must admit, I wasn't expecting too much here, but the chance of avoiding lines on the way to the top of the rock was too good to pass up. I was surprised - the tour takes you around the buildings of the Rockefeller Centre - inside and on the street - with great insight into the purpose, the vision and the history of the whole section. A great insight into the American "vision thing" from the early 20th Century. And when you get to the Top (avoiding queuing!), it is breathtaking. A great deal.

Apr032013

Tour/Activity

Alcatraz Tour plus Muir Woods, Giant Redwoods and Sausalito Day Trip

San Francisco, California

My Rating
4 star rating: Recommended

My Review

This tour is worth doing. The Alcatraz section is simply a standard Alcatraz audio-based tour and you are left on your own. It IS fascinating, if a little ghoulish. You need to catch a ferry back before the other half of the tour (by bus) is ready. Muir Woods is delightful - and great to get into a remarkable wooded environment during a city-based vacation. Sausalito is unimpressive - not sure why it is included other than to get us to spend money here... could do without it. But all up, you cover a lot in one day.

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