Don't let you dreams be dreams. Make it happen. And this is my dream, "The American Dream".
I still vividly remember when I was travelled to Europe and one of the travellers I met in the hostel asked me, "Have you ever thought of going US since you've been to Europe couple times?" I was stunned, paused for a moment - the kind of question which never cross my mind. I keep planning my future trips to Europe but never once planning to go US. Why? Two simple reasons; due to airfares and the visa application.
Most of the times I saw the airtickets are between RM3,000 or even more, which I found quite costly, considering I still need to book additional ticket for my domestic round-trip from my hometown (Kota Kinabalu) to Kuala Lumpur (KL). Secondly, in order to apply US visa, I need to fly to KL prior to the trip (again, I have to bear another additional cost myself). Just with these two reasons, they dampen my dreams of going to US - costly and troublesome.
Not until one fine day, the boyfriend told me about trip to US from Kota Kinabalu which cost roughly around RM2,300 with China Southern Airlines. Plus, we don't have to fork out any additional costs, except flying to KL for visa application. But when I found out I can claim my round-trip tickets to KL as well as hotel stay for free (claim using my MAS Enrich points, AirAsia Big points and Agoda points I managed to accumulate), I think I have no excuse of not buying this ticket to US.
I went KL alone at end of July cause the boyfriend had applied US visa last year. You can't imagine how stress, nervous and tension I was as I have Iran stamp on my passport. But turn out, my US visa application process was actually pretty fast and smooth - the interview was done less than 2 minutes. And that concludes - US, here I come!
Since we're flying with China Southern Airlines, we need to transit in Guangzhou first before continue with our flight to US. For transit more than 8 hours, we're given hotel stay for free. Just that we need to apply China visa. Oh well, applying China visa in Kota Kinabalu is actually more convenient, easier and cheaper too (Single entry for RM30 and Double entry for RM50).
After 3 hours flight to Guangzhou, almost 24 hours of transit in Guangzhou plus 14 hours flight to US, finally I arrived in US. Let me kiss you, US Soil!
The duration of our trip was about two weeks and we only focusing on the West Coast, covering cites and places like:
Los Angeles - We spent three days here and these are the things we do and see in the "City of Angels"
Got out Go LA 3 Days Pass from Klook and we can enter numerous attractions such as Universal Studios, Warner Brothers Studios and more with breeze and easy. We even saved a lot for buying this pass.
From Los Angeles, we took overnight bus to Las Vegas. Once we arrived there, we rented a car and drove to Arizona. It's time for nature and landscape!
Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona
Antelope Canyon in Page, Arizona
This is one of my favourite spots for this trip. Apparently, Antelope Canyon is separated into two scenic slot canyon sections, referred to as Upper and Lower. We signed for the Lower tour with Ken's Tour. Bear in mind that you are not allow to enter Antelope Canyon without a native Navajo guide.
Horseshoe Bend (not far away from Antelope Canyon)
No entrance fee being charged but those with cars need to pay for the parking fee. And because of that, we went here twice - before the sunrise and during noon time for the sake of the Gram!
Las Vegas - They won't call this place "Sin City" for nothing. I never thought I will fall in love with this place cause initially I kept thinking this city is all about gambling, not until I was there myself.
There are plenty of things to do and see if you are not into gambling, like me. Who will ever thought my friends and I ended up buying a last minute ticket to watch Gwen Stefani performing live in Vegas. Now I know why this city is known as The Entertainment Capital of the World.
San Jose - Known as Capital of Silicon Valley, it is home of most tech industries like Facebook, Google and Apple. We took flight with Frontier Air from Las Vegas.
San Francisco - Golden Gate Bridge is #1 on every visitor's list. Do you know that this iconic of San Francisco has been listed as one of the Seven Wonder of the Modern World?
Anaheim for Disneyland - There are two Disney Parks in California; Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park. And guess what, we went both of them in two separate days. We played from 9am until 10pm. I definitely need a recharge battery for my body.
Thanks to Klook once again for the Disneyland tickets. We don't have to bother about the long queue at the ticket booth and by just showing our mobile voucher at the entrance, the next thing we are in. These passes are hassle-free. Tickets sold by Klook is indeed more cheaper than the official website.
After spending two weeks in US, finally back to reality again. Before reaching back home, once again we transit at Guangzhou and because our transit time more than 8 hours again, we're got hotel stay for free.
Well, the hotel room might not looking so grand and luxurious but at least I'm enjoying staying here for its excellent location - abundance of shops and eateries just outside the hotel (there are 7-Eleven, KFC, Pizza Hut, McD) and not forgetting, metro station just in front of the hotel.
And because metro station is just nearby, I took this opportunity to visit Guangzhou Tower (known as Canton Tower by the local). Now I can ticked off Guangzhou from my China list.
Since I have 10-year multiple entry visa now, I'm looking forward to venture more cities of US like New York and Florida (especially for Disney World) in future. My one and only consideration - cheap airticket. Keep my fingers crossed that I will spot another cheap fares again.
"All our dreams can come true,
if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney