Tag Archives: USA

Jamaican Delicacies

Amazing Jamaican Delicacies

To most folk, Jamaica brings to mind beaches, rum and Reggae. But talk to anyone whos been there, and theyre bound to mention the food. Theres a staggering amount on offer; rich-tasting, diverse and well worth trying out. These are the five things you really should taste when visiting Jamaica.

Jerk

Jerk is a staple in Jamaican food, often sold by street vendors and at beachside huts, but as youll see its on offer in bars and restaurants too. Youll come across jerk chicken, pork, goat, beef or even jerk fish because “jerk” basically describes the method of cooking. Meat or fish is marinated in a special sauce. The sauce used includes pimento seeds, herbs, and peppers. After a very long marinade the meat is cooked slowly, normally over an open flame. Each cook is likely to have a slightly different take on what goes into his or her sauce, and with some its a closely guarded secret!

Patties

Patties are to Jamaica what burgers and hotdogs are in the USA. They are sold everywhere in Jamaica, and there are heated opinions about what and who makes the perfect patty. Patties are filled and fried pie. Whether they contain meat or vegetables, theyre a very tasty, rich and filling fast food. Find a busy patty stand and you know youre in for a treat.

Rundown

Rundown is normally served as a starter. Its a fish-based dish, and as youd expect the Jamaicans are experts at cooking seafood of all kinds. Prawns or fish are cooked in coconut milk and seasoned slowly for a long long time, until the flesh is so tender it can literally run down your face. Creamy and smooth, its a real taste of the Caribbean.

Escovitch Lobster

Another fish-based favourite, Escovitch Lobster should be tried at least once by everyone who visits Jamaica. Escovitch is probably best known as a lobster dish, but there are many seafood Escovitch versions. Describing it as fish cooked in vinegar and served with a vinegar sauce may be factual, but it really doesnt do the dish justice. Its a staple for restaurant menus for a very good reason. Fortunately that means that finding a place to sample it shouldnt be too difficult.

Dukunnu or Duckoono

Dukunnu (which is also called blue draws or tie-a-leaf) is served as a desert or a sweet snack. Coconut, grated yam or bananas, spices and cornmeal are mixed and tied up or wrapped in banana leaves. It is very rich, smooth, and very very tasty.

History of Road 66

Route 66

Route 66

Route 66 once stretched more than halfway across the United States. For nearly half a century, it was the chief commercial highway and main tourist artery to the West Coast. Over those years, Route 66 gained a certain mythical character that is still fondly remembered. Its days of glory are now faded and most of the old highway has disappeared; yet the nostalgic attraction of this road lives on.
The West Coast was once severely isolated

Prior to the twentieth century, the West Coast of the United States was severely isolated from the East and Midwest by great barriers of mountains, deserts and barren wastes. Until the transcontinental railroad was completed in 1867, it was quicker and easier to sail a ship around the southern tip of South America than to attempt a journey across our country.

At the beginning of the twentieth century, it was still difficult and often perilous to drive from coast to coast. Paved highways frequently ended in the Rocky Mountains or at the edge of the southern deserts. To travel further, often required navigating poorly marked unimproved roads or even dirt tracks. There were few facilities or traveler’s amenities along the way.
Route 66 in Hackberry, Arizona © Mike Leco / USATourist.com
Route 66 in Hackberry, Arizona
Route 66 connected Chicago with Los Angeles

Several businessmen from Oklahoma and Illinois decided that the USA needed an intercontinental highway connecting the East Coast with the West Coast. Naturally, they thought it should pass through their hometowns of Springfield Illinois and Oklahoma City. By 1926, they convinced the US government of the strategic value of such a road and construction was finally begun. The road was not fully paved until 1938. They called it Route 66.

Route 66 began along the shores of Lake Michigan in Chicago Illinois, that great metropolitan center at the northern extreme of the immense midwestern agricultural basin of the Mississippi River. Chicago was already well connected to the big cities on the East Coast. From there, the road headed south across Illinois, Missouri and the edge of Kansas. In Oklahoma, it turned due west across the panhandle of northern Texas, New Mexico and Arizona before finally entering California. Route 66 ended in Los Angeles at the beaches of Santa Monica.

The route was nearly 2,400 miles (4,000 km) long. It connected many major cities in the Midwest and the Southwest like Springfield Illinois, St. Louis Missouri, Oklahoma City, Amarillo Texas, Albuquerque New Mexico and Flagstaff Arizona. It also passed through many smaller towns and villages along the way.
It became the favorite East Coast to West Coast highway

Route 66 quickly became the favorite east-west corridor for commercial truck drivers as well as for tourists. It bypassed the high-mountain passes in the Rockies and followed a southern route that was passable all year round.

Area residents along the route soon realized that the incessant stream of motorists required gasoline, food, accommodations and diversions on their journey. Thousands of filling stations, restaurants, cafes, bars, grocery stores, and tourist attractions were erected along the road. Route 66 fostered the popularity of the “motorist hotel” or motel. Roadside attractions included souvenir shops, Indian trading posts, scenic viewpoints, zoos, museums, historical sites and displays of geological phenomena. It was common to see giant Indian tepees, huge cowboy statues and other oddly shaped structures designed to catch the eye of passing motorists along Route 66.

Throughout the 1930s when the great economic depression gripped our country, a drought descended on the Midwestern farming regions. The crops in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri died, and the parched earth turned to dust. The Mississippi basin became known as the “dust bowl”. Hundreds of thousands of farmers, in economic ruin, lost their homes, loaded their meager possessions on their cars or pickup trucks and headed west in search of employment. They were often called “Oakies” after their home state. Many towns along Route 66 created camping areas or motorist camps where the poor homeless travelers could sleep in their cars for free. Route 66 became the road to the Promised Land of endless sunshine, bountiful harvests and paying jobs in California. American author, John Steinbeck documented this migration in his novel “The Grapes of Wrath” and dubbed route 66 “the mother road”.
Route 66 in Williams, Arizona © Mike Leco / USATourist.com
Route 66 in Williams, Arizona
Bobby Troup wrote “Get your kicks on route 66”

During the Second World War, millions of young men and women traveled across the USA via route 66 as they were sent off to the European or the Pacific battlefields and when they returned home. One such traveler was Bobby Troup, former drummer with the Tommy Dorsey Band and a marine captain. He penned his now famous song “Get your kicks on route 66”. In the 1960s, it became the theme song for the immensely popular television series called “Route 66”. The mother road was portrayed in many motion pictures and television shows over the years and has earned its place in the history and culture of the USA.

Unfortunately, the mother road fell victim to progress. Superhighways and interstate roads that were bigger, straighter and faster began to replace sections of old route 66 from the mid 1950s onward. By October of 1984, the new interstate highway 40 replaced the last remaining section of route 66 near Williams Arizona. Today, only vestiges of the old mother road remain. You can still find small sections of the old highway all along the original route. The main streets in many small midwestern and southwestern towns are proudly emblazoned with “historic route 66” signs.
The highway fell victim to progress

The longest intact sections of the old road can be found in western Arizona and in eastern California. A 100-mile stretch of route 66 curves northwest from Seligman Arizona, through the Havasupai Indian Reservation at Peach Springs, then veers southwest to Kingman Arizona. Ninety miles to the west of Kingman, another 100-mile section of old 66 veers south of I-40 and curves through the Mojave desert through the tiny isolated community of Amboy California before it rejoins the new highway in Ludlow. If you want to sample the character of the old mother road, this is a good location to visit. The towns of Williams, Seligman, Peach Springs and the small city of Kingman have preserved or restored some of the nostalgic roadside attractions. You can still see abandoned tourist accommodations and attractions along the old highway.

If you want to follow the original path of route 66 from Chicago to LA, I suggest you purchase a good route 66 guidebook. Much of its 2400-mile original route is now difficult to find. You will likely find yourself jumping on and off of the newer interstate highways in search of small sections of the old road.

Note: I have been informed that a 110-mile section of original route 66 still exists between Tulsa and Oklahoma City in Oklahoma. The newer Turner Turnpike parallels it but the old mother road still exists.
Route 66 in Seligman, Arizona © Mike Leco / USATourist.com
Route 66 in Seligman, Arizona
The longest existing sections of 66 are in Arizona and California

I suggest you limit your exploration of route 66 to the stretch between Flagstaff Arizona and Los Angeles. Along that part, you will find the largest remaining sections of the original road with a lot of other scenic attractions in the near vicinity. The Grand Canyon, Sedona, Boulder Dam, Las Vegas, Barstow and the Mojave Desert are all close to old route 66. If you want to do it in style, rent a Corvette or a Harley Davidson motorcycle in Las Vegas, drive down to Kingman, and cruise along the old mother road.

Source : http://www.usatourist.com/english/destinations/arizona/route66/route-66-main.html

Affordable Holidays To Florida With Cheap All Inclusive Rates

Holidays to Florida are a sure fire way to please everybody on the trip with a wide selection of beautiful beaches, world-class theme park attractions, and outdoor recreation destinations across the Sunshine State. Easy to book and priced just right, Florida all inclusive holidays cut the budget down to size with rock bottom industry travel rates.

One of the most visited states in the USA, Florida welcomes visitors twelve months a year with a warm and inviting climate, casual atmosphere, and eclectic dining options from simple take away fare to intimate candlelit dinners from award-winning chefs. Seize the moment any way you see fit with a wide range of lodging options geared to meet and exceed most budgets.

The all inclusive Florida holiday plan takes care of everything so you can leave your money in your wallet and get down to business with the suntan. Voted the favorite mode of international travel, the all inclusive plan covers the airfare, round trip airport transfers, your choice of three, four or five star accommodation, most meals at your hotel’s sumptuous buffet, and admission tickets to select attractions. With all the major travel expenses rolled together at one great rate, your Florida holidays may be closer than you think.

Florida resorts and private villa packages offer optional full or half-day excursions to Key West, deep sea fishing tours, private yacht rentals in Miami Beach, and safe and sane biking trails through the rugged tropical terrain. In addition, visitors to south Florida may wish to book a two to fourteen day cruise heading for the Bahamas, Jamaica, Aruba and more. Cuba holidays, however, are not available for departure from the USA. Florida cruise ports operate convenient daily departures from Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and Tampa and may be easily reached from the inland city of Orlando.

Best value booking for all inclusive Florida holidays should be made early enough to take advantage of seasonal sales and deep discount deals. Early birds take first choice of sea view rooms at the beaches and the top Disney theme park hotels when you plan your work and work your plan. However, late travel deals abound year round for the travel bug that can leave on short notice. Florida knows how to treat its valued guests right with last chance bookings at best bargain deals.

Florida holidays are ideal for family travel, honeymoon packages and action packed sightseeing for the solo traveller. For quick warm weather breaks or comfortable long-term stays, Florida holidays have something for everyone at the budget crunching price you want to pay. No one can undercut the all inclusive holiday deal, making it the number one choice for fussy travelers on the go.