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RiverCat Journal : Favorite Big Cities

Posted by on July 1, 2014

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Current Venue: Las Vegas, NV
Campground: Thousand Trails


As there is little new to report here in Las Vegas, I thought I might share some of my Top Ten Lists compiled from my years of traveling the country.  The first one is my favorite big cities.  Over the years I’ve spent time in pretty much every metropolitan area except Buffalo and Houston — and I hear nobody like Houston.  So here goes:

(Least Favorite : Detroit, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Washington DC)

10.  Seattle.
 This is the one I wrestled with the most.  This was #1 on my big city bucket list for the longest time because I love rain.  But when I went there for a week-long business trip, it was clear and sunny.  Additionally, I was a fish out of water having to stay downtown at an expensive hotel with no parking.  Parking would be a huge issue the entire trip, never having an easy or economic time with it.  However, I did get to explore a couple islands in Puget Sound and a couple casinos.  I really want to try Seattle again — next time as an RVer.

9.  TIE : Chicago, St. Louis, and Kansas City.  I’m just lumping together my favorite midwestern big cities.  I could flip-flop the rankings quite a bit depending on what (sports) season it is.  Chicago gets a nod for it’s nice downtown, parks, museums, and The Bulls (I sorta’ like the Cubs, too).  St. Louis gets the nod for my favorite sports team, The St.Louis Cardinals.  It’s also one of my favorite river towns and has an abundance of casinos.  But I also like sprawling Kansas City because it feels the most like a true midwestern city and has two more of my favorite teams, The Royals and The Chiefs.

8.  Orlando.  Half the big cities on my list I visited during my years living in motels.    Orlando may be the best city in America as far as low-budget resorts.  Before Hurricane Charlie, I stayed at one with 3 heated swimming pools, a rec hall, and a lake with a tiki bar on a a little island — for $30 per night!  There’s also a million tourist traps and attractions besides Disney World.  If traffic weren’t so dreadful, it would be higher on my list.

7.  Philadelphia.  I had a surprisingly wonderful time here.  Independence hall, the liberty bell, and PIZZA.  Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise — Philadelphia has the best pizza in America — especially if you like thin crust, good cheese, and a little spice.

6.  Charlotte.  I have this one on the list because it’s such a great place to live.  Not only is it a beautiful city with it’s lush greenery, but it’s in nice proximity to the Appalachian Mountains, the Atlantic Ocean, and fun places to see any direction you go.  The climate is mild and offers a nice mix of everything.  And the women are absolutely spectacular!  I would definitely like to try an extended stay here as an RVer.

5,  Boston.  I have to admit I did not get much of an opportunity to see the sights here.  Me and the ex spent much of our time looking for Cheers and, after we found the replicated Cheers we sought out the “real” Cheers sign that the show was based on.  (And then we got in a huge fight and spent most of our time in the hotel room).  This one deserves another look-see just for it’s architecture alone.

4.  San Antonio.  I camped north of town for two months and fell in love with it for several reasons : Texas pride, San Antonio Spurs, Hill Country, RiverWalk, Downtown.  I could easily live here for 3 years and never get tired of exploring the area.  Surprisingly, I really enjoyed the weather even despite the humidity.  This is just one of those places that has a great “feel” to it.

3.  New Orleans.  Fun, festive, and the best food ANYWHERE!  Beautiful architecture and lots of great sightseeing opportunities (I recommend a swamp tour).  I love river towns.  New Orleans gives you the best of both worlds — the Mississippi River and the Gulf of Mexico.  And, if you don’t feel like playing poker at the local casinos, Biloxi is only a few minutes away!

2.  Las Vegas.  This is my land of opportunity and ultimate playground — it’s also my new residence for awhile.  While my Vegas Adventure won’t really begin for a few weeks (when my financial situation stabilizes), I should ultimately prosper here and have a good time doing it!  And it’s not just for the poker enthusiast.  Each resort is like another city, another entertainment complex.  And the ever-changing history of Las Vegas is simply fascinating.

1.  New York City.  I can’t remember a day in Manhattan that I didn’t have an absolute blast!  There is such diversity and so many different things to do there, you can practically enjoy a completely different paradigm on a daily basis.  My fantastic idea is to someday hop around to a different coffee shop every day to write my bestselling novel.  And the holidays?  You can’t beat Christmastime in New York City!

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