Tag Archives: hostel

Day 34: Los Angeles

We decided to book seats to LA with the “Hostel to Hostel Hopper”, this is a shared van service that costs $40 USD and takes you from one hostel to another hostel! Initially we had planned on going to LA by train (Amtrak), this costs $35 pp, but we would need to cab it there and then cab it from Union Station to StayOn Beverly, so ultimately the shared van service was the most economic choice.

We stood outside the hostel for a while before a man in a big white car came out and asked if we were going LA, Anna had noticed the car and wondered if it could possibly be our ride, but decided that she didn’t know and to ignore her gut feeling (I’m making this up, she never told me why she never spoke up lol). Anyway, the car was very new, the interiors were clean, and were riding with another Aussie, he is from Brisbane and had just completed his Finance and Law degree and was going on some epic world trip, I think his next stop was Mexico or something. The ride was fun and didn’t feel nearly as long as it actually took (approx 3 hours), the driver (Ernest? No? Oh god, Anna what’s his name?) was super nice and genuinely seemed like he liked talking to people, he gave us a couple of recommendations of where to go, how to drive… and we tipped him $10. Each. I felt like a baller, tipping 25%, I never tip 25%. Also, I hate tipping here, take me back to Australia please, tipping, be gone!

We arrived at our hostel a little after 4pm, which was fantastic as check in was at 4pm, the hostel is super cool as we don’t have keys, there are secure pin number entrances, we met the owner and he was super nice. I highly recommend staying at StayOn Beverly, it’s located in Koreatown and there’s lots of Korean food around to eat. The rooms are decently sized, it’s about $45-50USD per night per room (+ tax), and this is during July, so it’s a BARGAIN. It’s a private room too, I wouldn’t really consider it a hostel, more like a really clean rental room, haha the rooms have a nice neutral sort of theme, pale walls, a 32 inch flat screen tv, a secure safe, a study desk, a double bed… it might have been a queen, I wouldn’t know, I sleep in a single bed… what else? A fridge inside the room, microwave outside, 3 super clean and spacious bathrooms… seriously, you’re not going to find a better priced room in LA, it’s amazing, I can’t recommend it enough.

Taken with Instagram

StayOn Beverly, super clean rooms

Anyway, we aren’t renting a car until tomorrow; I think we’re pretty satisfied with staying in our rooms and doing nothing tonight. Oh oh, we went to HK supermarket, a Korean supermarket down Western Avenue, it closes at 12am and houses all sorts of delicious food, we ate dinner at a place called Western Doma Noodles – Anna had spicy cold Korean noodles and I had chicken noodles (hand made noodles with a delicious chicken broth)… yum yum.

Taken with Instagram

Feels like KOREAAAA

Taken with Instagram

We are going to go pick up our car tomorrow and do some shopping! Six Flags Magic Mountain is planned for Wednesday, I figured we may as well get the scary scary part of the trip over with so that I don’t have to live in fear for the next 10 days.

Signing out.

K.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , ,

Day 21: San Francisco + Yum Cha

Ahhh finally left the hole that is Orlando today, that place seriously has nothing, I like my cities like… well, cities! So it is with tremendous excitement that we have finally arrived to San Francisco! I have been told that I will love this place, and I really do, it’s such a chilled out city, reminds me of Melbourne.

We flew with AirTran, which isn’t too bad. I passed out before the plane even took off and woke up mid way through; I have a habit of sleeping through all my plane rides.

We are staying at the Green Tortoise Hostel here, SUPER CUTE HOSTEL, about $35 per person per night, it’s located in North Beach (near China Town, Little Italy, sort of near Union Square). Though the stares were a super bitch to get up, you need to walk up a flight of stairs to check in, I wanted to cry. Lucky the Hostel staff helped us when they saw two little asian girls struggling with their 22kg bags. Ahh, the life of a weak person, Anna did okay, she has guns. I will be first to admit I will let the men do the heavy lifting as soon as I can, so we checked in and got put up onto the floor above (HAHAH MORE FLIGHTS OF STAIRS), thank goodness the staff helped us out.

We had a super late lunch in some random Chinese restaurant in Chinatown, oh my, we did not realise how badly we missed Chinese food until that moment. We had yum cha and I swear to you I was THIS close to tears.

Next we headed to Union Square and had a stroll around, I’m kind of not allowed to shop until Los Angeles, my luggage is full as anything in the world and I want to buy a new Samsonite in LA to store new goodies. We also went to San Francisco Westfields.

The rest of our night was filled with eating more Chinese food (at New Sun Hong Kong Restaurant – they are so stupid, SUN in Cantonese means New, they are essentially saying NEW NEW HONG KONG RESTAURANT) and watching Zoolander on our TV  – Anna had wonton noodles and I had Thousand Year Old Egg Congee with those fried bread stick things, heaven! Some guy was super drunk and vomited and it stunk up the place.

K. 

Tagged , , , , , ,

Day 16: Holocaust Memorial, Ocean Drive, Lincoln Mall, 36oz drinks

The hostel we are staying at is really a PART-AYYYY hostel; they go to bars/clubs every single night! Anna and I woke up at around 10:30am and were the first to leave the hostel. 2 of the girls from Switzerland at party animals and we only ever see them for like 30 minutes, that’s how it should be I guess, you shouldn’t be couped up in a room all day if you’re on holidays. Anna and I left at around 11am and took a nice long walk to the Holocaust Memorial, the heat was typical Florida summer heat, I was sweating within 2 minutes of leaving the hostel and it was a 40 minute walk! We managed to find Lincoln Mall and strolled through to get some lunch at the Shake Shack (YES! I didn’t know they had one in Miami – I thought they were only in NYC), we ordered the exact same thing as we did the last time, I don’t know why we didn’t try something new.

Holocaust Memorial

So the walk ended up being over 1 hour since we took a detour through Lincoln Mall, though it was much more enjoyable this way, the walk from Lincoln Mall to the Holocaust Memorial had no shade, we were walking through BLAZING SWELTERING MIAMI HEAT, luckily we bought and wore sunscreen! I am now about 2 shades darker; I think after LA, I will go from a sun-kissed glow to a little black thing (5 shades darker!).

The Holocaust Memorial is a sculpture garden dedicated to the 6 million Jews who perished in the Holocaust, the place is so serene and peaceful while being kind of upsetting at the same time, maybe upsetting is not the right word, I can’t explain how the feeling is, guess you have to go to know. They have these big plaques explaining what happened, I have a general idea of what happened but it goes into more detail and there are graphic pictures of the people who perished, the bodies piled on the ground after the gassing, the emaciated after-shots of women who were so voluptuous prior to the Holocaust, children crying… the main sculpture is of a gigantic hand, with Jewish men/women/children adorned all around it, it takes you a while before you walk into the main area with the hand. It takes roughly 10minutes to get through it, maybe 20minutes if you read through everything. It’s FREE.

www.holocaustmmb.org
1933-1945 Meridian Avenue  Miami, FL 33139

Ocean Drive

It took us a while to find Ocean Drive, it is really quintessential Miami, and you don’t get more Miami than this. We went during the day, but supposedly it really is a sight to see at night, but there are lots of hustlers and they try to lure you into bars and stuff, Anna and I are also scared to walk out on the road at night, yea, call us chickens, but we try to be as safe as we can most of the time. We took a nice walk and had plans to go and enjoy South Beach; we only dipped out feet in the day before. We ended up at a bar instead to cool off, and each ordered 36 oz drinks, I ordered a Mango Madness (Pino Colada with Mango Puree) and Anna ordered a Strawberry Daiquiri, big mistake, BIG BIG BIG mistake. It seems to be a running theme that we do things like that, order excessively, I blame it on the fact that we were in Miami and the drinks were $15 each. The drink was really the size of my head. My belly doesn’t even fit that, I did about half and felt so so so so so so sick after, Anna puked when she got home, so we did not go to the beach as planned – I think we’ve abandoned so many plans, that we our official titles are now ‘Plan Abandoners’.

Fuji Japanese Buffet

We walked past this buffet while going to the Holocaust Memorial, we’re promised nigiri sushi, snow crab legs, and sashimi for a mere $16.95 for dinner – though they don’t tell you that they dump an 18% mandatory gratuity onto your bill, still cheap though! We went at around 8:40pm, and the restaurant was fairly empty – never a good sign eh? It’s usually kind of indicative of the quality of food. Anyway, we sat down and started piling the sashimi, I also grabbed a few snow crab legs, shrimp/prawns, tuna tataki and nigiri sushi (they only had tuna, salmon and albacore). The sashimi was surprisingly edible, I expected worse, we pretty much cleared the big plate at the buffet and the owners were staring at us. The snow crab legs were SO GOOD, so much meat and so sweet, we did not expect that, I grabbed like 3 for myself and Anna ate 2 – so so so good, I love snow crab legs now! They also have an assortment of desserts (6-8 flavours of ice-cream, jelly, pecan pie, brownies, some cheesecake thing). All in all, you get what you pay for but it is pretty decent value for money.

www.fuji-japanesebuffet.com
1415 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139

We retreated back to the hostel and waited until everyone left for the clubs and then we went downstairs for the first time to play pool and ping-pong, I am really not as good as I think I am, so if I have ever claimed to be decent to you, forget about it, I am pretty horrible! It was fun though; I can see why the hostel was righted so high. You meet really friendly people (most of the time), some people are super creepy, we witnessed the front desk guy try to hit on a European girl, he was so much older and brushing putting her hair behind her ear with his fingers.

Times up for me!

K.

Tagged , , , , , ,

Day 15: Miami, bitches

The dreaded time has come, we have left NYC. NYC truly ranks as one of my favourite cities in the world, everyone is so nice there, and the shops are amazing, and everything is open so late. I almost shed a single manly tear as I boarded the plane. I tried to use our 3 hour flight to knock over 3 blog posts of what we did in the last 3 days, I can report that I fell asleep about 10 minutes after we boarded the plane, I had a window seat – thanks Anna! I woke up and probably had around 1.5 hours left to go and started the Day 13 blog. Dedication. Delta is not too bad to fly with, complimentary drinks and stuff, free snacks – the Delta cookies are delicious! The flight was so so so packed, they were offering to check in luggage for free, and to give people free upgrades or $400 Delta Credit if they moved to the next flight!

Miami is so ridiculously humid, we’ve been keeping an eye out on the weather reports and it’s supposedly thundering and stuff, and hurricanes may come in the next 10 days – we will be outtttaaa here by then. The water is amazingly blue here, though the sand sucks, feels like I’m stepping on uneven cement that has been bashed by Thor’s hammer, I was wincing as I walked to the beach and some guy laughed at me while I yelped. The water is so warm and nice; supposedly it’s 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit, even at night! There are so many guys body building by the beach, they are all super tanned and well oiled!

We’re staying at Miami Hostel International; this place is known as a party hotel. I am too old for this now man, not really, I’m not old, but I do not have much party in me at all, give me a nice apartment any day! As I type this, music is blasting from the lobby (thank goodness I can sleep through almost anything, Anna can attest to that!); everyone has gone to the clubs and bar hopped since it is Wednesday. We are staying in an apartment for 6 girls and everyone is super nice, 2 girls are from Sweden and 2 from Switzerland – what a mix! Wi-Fi is retarded here, it is only meant to work in the lobby (I’m guessing it has a very limited range of like 10m), so once you enter your room, it starts dropping off and stuff, Anna can use the internet on one end of her bed, I am directly above her on a bunk bed and I cannot, so I’m sitting on the floor near the door as I type this! I am a classy girl.

The rooms are very clean, and have free lockers. The bathrooms are also quite clean, but the door doesn’t close – WHAT IS WITH OUR LUCK WITH BATHROOM DOORS?!! Our last apartment’s bathroom door was dodgy as hell too!

We’re going Sawgrass Mills for an entire day the day after I think, and we’re going to the Holocaust Memorial and Ocean Drive tomorrow… and then going for a dip in the beach, we only put our feet in today. Crossing my fingers that it does not rain/thunderstorm.

I’m getting so tanned, we only walked out for like 1hr and I can see the difference between my leg colour and where my shorts were… WHY? WHYYYYY? I am going to return to Australia as BBQ-Karen!

Anyway, I’m going to try and book Yosemite and Grand Canyon now. Apparently Las Vegas will be hitting 40-42 degrees Celsius, WHY?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?! You know what that means? We will be throwing money at Casinos!

Taken with Instagram at Miami Beach International Travelers Hostel

Taken with Instagram at Miami Beach International Travelers Hostel
Holy shit, look how tanned I am compared to Anna! DODO I TOLD YOU I TAN EASY! YOU DID NOT BELIEVE! ARE YOU A BELIEVER NOW? ARE YOU!?!?!?!?!?

Soooo nice (Taken with Instagram at South Beach | Miami Beach)

K.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,