From United States of America

“In God we trust”

Two Weeks in San Francisco

Golden Gate Bridge

Whilst I’d visited the east coast of the U.S. in the past I’d never been to the west coast until September when I spent two weeks in the Bay Area. Given that my whole career revolves around building digital products it was exciting to get a glimpse inside Willy Wonka’s factory. Read more

Georgia Aquarium

Georgia Aquarium

At the end of my visit to Atlanta (USA) I managed to find a couple of spare hours to visit Georgia Aquarium, which happens to be the world’s largest with more than 8.5 million gallons of water housing more than 120,000 animals of 500 different species. Read more

Sunset Over Atlanta Olympic Park

Atlanta Sunset

While in Atlanta last month I stayed at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center which had a balcony with wonderful views overlooking the Centennial Olympic Park. Even though I was jet lagged out of my 13-hour-difference mind I managed to stay awake long enough to grab some nice shots on two consecutive nights… Read more

Visiting CNN Center in Atlanta

CNN Center Atlanta Newsroom

I recently spent a week in Atlanta, Georgia (USA) while travelling for work and visited the enormous headquarters of CNN (Cable News Network) which broadcasts worldwide in over 200 countries. Founded by Ted Turner, upon its launch in 1980, CNN was the first channel to provide 24-hour television news coverage. Read more

Washington DC

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The political capital of the US, as you might imagine, is full of monuments and memorials to the past – whether they be former presidents, wars or fallen heros it’s all here. To me Washington had an almost sanitized feeling, it was clean, tidy and on the whole pretty efficient. Thats not to say I didn’t like it, it was just rather manicured!

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I arrived in Washington by train from Boston which was about a 7 hour journey. One thing to note is that from my experiences the US Amtrak trains were very good – plenty of space, comfortable seats, and as with everywhere else, air conditioned. A far cry from what we put up with in the UK…!

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Most of the sights in lie around the center of the city, focused around the Washington Monument. Starting from the White House (it’s smaller than it looks on TV!) I headed anti-clockwise from the monument down past the World War II Memorial, along side the Reflecting Pool to the Lincoln Memorial from where you can get a good view all the way back. From here I walked over the Arlington Memorial Bridge to the Arlington National Cemetery where over 290,000 servicemen and women are buried. The scale of it is quite staggering – over 600 acres of white granite graves protruding from the grassy hills.

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I then headed down to The Pentagon, home of DOD. Unfortunately because the building is so huge you don’t really get much sense of its shape at ground level! back over the Potomac River I ended up at the U.S. Capitol building which lies impressively at the east end of The Mall. Along The Mall are the various Smithsonian museums and galleries which are well worth a visit if you have time, especially as they are free!

More pics here!

Boston

The second stop on my US east-coast trip was Boston, Massachusetts. Boston is probably most famous for its historic sites, being the oldest city in America and home of the revolution which secured independence from the British!

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Boston has is fair share of skyscrapers but there any comparisons with New York end. Its leafy parks lofty academics (Harvard & MIT nearby) give it a very ‘middle class’ feeling, a world away from the hustle and bustle of NY. You can see all the historic sites on foot by way of the 4.8km Freedom Trail and a well clued-up traveller can explore Boston quite comfortably in a day.

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For cheap eats and wide variety make sure you drop by Quincy Market where you can find just about anything your stomach desires!!

More photos here!

NYC

Empire State Building at Dusk

Sufficed to say I had a great time in the US! My first stop was New York – it’s a pretty amazing city and certainly lives up to the stereotypes presented in many a film. Being submersed and surrounded by huge rectilinear buildings everywhere you go is such a different feeling to being somewhere like London. As the saying goes NY is truly “the city that never sleeps“.

Times Square

The weather was intensely hot during my stay but conversely I also experienced some of the most torrential (but brief) rain I have ever seen, luckily only for one morning! Because of its culturally diverse population, food wise, you can find just about anything from any cuisine (and budget) you fancy in NY. I tried quite a lot of different stuff but especially liked the US style sandwiches which you can get made to order cheaply and will fill a sizable hole at any time!

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Of course I did all the usual touristy stuff – went up the Empire State Building, visited the Statue of Liberty, walked around Central Park, etc. but one of the highlights had to be the 4th of July fireworks to mark Independence Day. A spectacular display was held on the East River which together with most of the population of Manhattan turning up made for a very special event!

NYPD Cops

Update (15/7): Photos now online, all 415 of them in glorious high resolution! Find them on my Flickr stream – go eat some bandwidth 😀

Au revoir

In a few hours I’ll be on a Boeing 777 bound for the Big Apple 😀

I’ll be offline till the 11th but be sure check back in around then for a tonne of pics (it’s about time I updated Photo.Wire) and irrelevant anecdotes! See you on the other side!

Update (8/7): I’m in Boston now – NY was great, off to Washington DC later today!

Update (11/7): Back home now – very tired but great holiday! Now sifting through 600 odd photos!