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Visit Sacramento -- it's a tranquil place. I suggest enjoying a delicious coffee in the naked lounge -- it's great!
I've been to a lot of beach towns, but Myrtle Beach is one of the best for the younger crowd. Everyone is friendly and people actually talk to other people, unlike most beaches.
Eugene is a great city, filled with personality. The hippy-ness gets to me a little sometimes, but other than that, I have a wonderful time in Eugene.
Syracuse is a very upbeat, small city with lots of young entrepreneur energy and vision. There a great potential here for innovative city-center redevelopment and interaction with the many colleges and universities nearby.
Gainesville is mostly a college town, so if you're there you're probably there to do something related to the university, such as going to a game.
Madison is a great city with friendly people. Other than being the state capital, it's mostly a university town. State Street, running between the university and the capitol building, is the center of all downtown activity.
Minneapolis is a great city with a lot of diversity and lots of Swedish Americans. The people are very nice and the city is beautiful. Set on 10 or so lakes, it is a perfect summertime get away.
Miami Beach has great nightclubs that are open late. I didn't get much sleep but had fun!
Monroe is a beautiful little town full of friendly people. I would love to visit there again very soon
I think Houston is a great city. It may not be the most exciting place to visit, but hell that doesn't matter. It's one of the greatest cities in the world.
Buffalo is a weird town, not much going on. It seemed strangely deserted when we arrived on a Saturday night. But I would recommend a stay in the Buffalo hostel if visiting Niagara Falls (a short bus ride away).
Everyone thinks of Orlando as the city with a lot of amusement parks, but actually the amusement parks are all located south of the city (mostly around Kissimmee). The city itself has a great downtown with a lot going on and it's worth checking out.
Portland... it isn't a big tourist destination really, but there may be no better example of the ideal small American city. It's a young town and the locals are some of the most genuinely friendly people you'll find anywhere. It has a lively downtown and nightlife. And it's surrounded on all sides by great outdoor hiking areas, including the spectacular Columbia River Gorge. Mt. St. Helens is a short drive away, and if you're into skiing, check out nearby Mt. Hood. It's the only mountain in North America with year-round snow skiing.
There is a Farmers Market festival every Thursday in Fullerton, with music and lots of food. Great location for Disneyland, Knox Berry Farm, California Adventure, and other scenic adventures.
If you are only going to be visiting San Francisco I would advise that you stay in San Francisco. Being in Oakland and having to travel to San Francisco would take an hour or more. Also if you go out at night in the city you would not have to worry about making it back to Oakland.
I lived in Austin for nine years. Austin is very cool, except that it's so darned hot in the summer. Check out Barton Springs pool in Zilker park, an enormous spring-fed pool, always seventy degrees, perfect for a scorching day. A music reviewer for the Austin paper once wrote "Who's playing this weekend? Ho, hum, the usual embarassment of riches." No kidding. You can find live music any night of the week. Halloween in Austin is a sight to behold, thousands of people partying downtown.
Provincetown is a nightmare. Why is it that every hotel/motel/guesthouse/hostel makes you rent for minimum two nights? Want to pass through P-town for a nice overnight trip? Good luck.
Of course most visitors to Berkeley go to Telegraph to shop, but there are plenty of other areas that offer a completely different type of shopping experience, if the begging teenager/dirty hippie scene isn't your thing. Try College Ave (go several blocks past the dorms) and Fourth Street. Fourth Street is a bit trendier, but both are pleasant, though too yuppie-ish for some.
Pack a sweater! Because Santa Cruz is in California and a beach town, many people think it will be warm and sunny. Actually, it can get surprisingly cold. Also, don't count on swimming in the ocean, unless you wear a wetsuit. As with most of Northern California beaches, the water is freezing.
VIVA Las Vegas!!! Las Vegas rocks. We only slept at the hostel 5 hours daily, we were out on the Strip in the casinos, or at the titty bars or out hiking at the Grand Canyon. Hoover Dam rocks too! You either love or hate this town, and I LOVE IT!!


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