As an Au Pair in the USA
, you will get at least one weekend off per month
. What better way to spend it than by exploring the amazing cities the United States have to offer? Here are 4 cities worth checking out on a free weekend!
Located at the shore of Lake Michigan, Chicago is surrounded by water. This makes it the perfect place to spend the day on a boat cruise. You could tour beautiful Lake Michigan or learn more about Chicago’s buildings during an Architecture River Cruise.
On a sunny day, you could also visit Navy Pier and take a ride on the Centennial Wheel. If the views you got from the top of the ferris wheel weren’t enough for you, head over to the John Hancock Observatory. Here you will get the best 360° view of the city.
Brave Au Pairs should visit the Skydeck, where you can step outside Chicago’s tallest building at 412 meters in the air. I know, this doesn’t sound too exciting yet, but here’s the fun part: you will be standing on a glass floor with nothing but the streets of Chicago beneath you.
Something Chicago is very famous for is the Cloud Gate, or the Bean as locals call it. Why do they call it the Bean? Because it literally looks like a giant kidney bean (the only difference is that the Cloud Gate is silver). It’s located in Millenium Park.
Seattle’s skyline is dominated by the Space Needle. It was originally built for the 1962 World’s Fair with the theme “The Age of Space”. This is why it kind of looks like an UFO.
Another famous sight to see is Pike Place Market. Here you can get anything and everything your heart desires. Whether you are looking for fresh fish or fruits and vegetables, Pike Place Market is the place to go.
If you’re already at Pike Place, you might also want to check out the Gum Wall. It’s a little disgusting, but also very funny to see. Hundreds of colorful chewing gums “decorate” this out-of-the-ordinary sight. You can even contribute to this sight: just take out your chewing gum and stick it to the wall.
Seattle is also very famous for its coffee, for one simple reason: it’s the birthplace of Starbucks! The first Starbucks café is still open and serving coffee near Pike Place.
If you are interested in American History, you should visit Philadelphia. Here, the American Declaration of Independence was signed. A historic event which two sights are dedicated to: the Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.
You might also want to stroll through the Old City and try a typical Philly Cheese Steak. Or visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Film buffs will probably recognize the stairs in front from the movie “Rocky”. They are also known as the “Rocky steps” and there’s even a Rocky statue at the bottom of the stairs.
A little outside of Philadelphia is Lancaster County. Here you can get insight to a lifestyle very different from the typical American way of life. It’s home to the Amish. The Amish are known for living without electricity, so they get around in horse carriages instead of cars. They live isolated from the modern world, but are very welcoming to visitors. Hop on to a horse carriage and explore the wide fields of Lancaster County.
In my article “How I spent my Travel Month
” I have already talked about Portland a little. Anyhow, Portland is not only a great destination for your Travel Month, but also ideal for a weekend trip. There’s lots and lots of food to enjoy, either from one of the many food carts
or from one of Portland’s famous restaurant like Voodoo Doughnuts.
Book lovers should visit Powell’s City of Books. It’s an enormous book shop with every book you could ever wish for. There’s also a little café inside, so you can start reading your newest purchase while enjoying a cup of coffee.
If you’re more of the outdoorsy type, you can take a bus to Multnomah Falls and hike to the top of waterfall.
Until next time,