Since writing my last post, burning my back on a beach in Florida, a week has flown by. This week we have travelled through Florida and Louisiana and are currently on the way into Texas. We spent about 5 days in Florida, beginning with Miami, through to Florida Key West, all the way up to Orlando and then across to Panama for two days.
The first day after lots of sunburn, we luckily had an 8 hour drive from Key West to Orlando. It meant I got a bit of shade and a little sleep in the van. After a few pit stops, we finally made it up to Orlando and had the pleasure of cabins for the two nights. The cabins were adorable little pastel wooden cabins and something straight out of Disney. They had 3 double beds which meant we all got a cosy nights sleep and a real bed for the night which is a luxury but not something I’m overly missing.
The next day we arose early and excited for a trip to Universal Studios. We got to choose which theme park we wanted to go along to, including Disney and the water parks. So, after lots of decision making, about 11 of us chose to go to Universal for the roller coasters. It was probably one of the best days so far but so exhausting. We went on 17 rides, including the new Harry Potter simulator ride which was easily my favourite. A cross between an indoor roller coaster and a simulator, where you play quidditch and escape from Voldemort in 3D. Amazing! However, if you’re thinking of going, you’ll be paying an arm for it. It cost us $250 for both Universal parks for the day including fast passes. So around £170 for the day and the same price as a festival ticket for a weekend. But oh well, when in Rome.
The next day we got back into the bus to Panama. Panama by far had the worst facilities we’ve had so far. The restrooms were about 100 degrees and comprised of two dirty showers and two toilets. Not the best when you’re in a group of 6 girls and up against the rest of a camp site. Yet luckily, the rain stayed away for the days we camped, as did the red fire ants. The first night we set up camp, me and the guys cooked bangers and mash and we all sat round playing drinking games. After a few rounds of a crude game of I never, we ended up hammered and slightly embarrassed. We all went down to the beach when the sun went down and skinny dipped until we began to sober up. Don’t worry, my bikini was kept well and truly fastened. Can’t say the same about the guys shorts though…
After another beach and pool chill out day the day after, we went along to a small amusement park nearby where I ended up winning a game of crazy golf, 42 points baby, and had a ride on the vortex go karts. Rickety course doesn’t really summarise it, but it was somewhat authentic.
The day after we got back on the bus for a 7.15 set off and drove for 6 hours towards Louisiana. We got out of the bus at a swamp and boarded a small boat onto the Bayou. For two hours, we gently sidled along the bayou, feeding the alligators and being swarmed by dragon flies. A few times we flew along the bayou to reach other alligator areas and it was amazing to get a quick breeze in your face after stagnant hot air. So that was another highlight so far. We got back into the bus and made it to New Orleans for a jazz night for one of the lads birthdays. We headed to a Cajun restaurant, Oceana, for some Louisiana cuisine before going out on the town. We first hit an authentic tiny jazz club with a live jazz band and couples dancing which was so quaint to watch. Something out of a film set. The next few bars weren’t quite as quaint and were much more tailored to partying tourists which I felt took away from the history and culture somewhat, but we still managed to have a brilliant night and get suitably drunk.
The next day was a chill day and a few of us ended up sightseeing in New Orleans, eating Beignets in Cafe Du Morde and chilling in diners to escape the heat. The evening saw us all staying in in our pyjamas, ordering pizza and watching Batman before an early night. So now I’m back on the bus after a quick stop off at the Tabasco factory after a hilarious speech about its origin.
Hope your summers are amazing so far. Follow my path around the U.S Coast on Instagram – @inthefrow and Vine – IntheFrow. For every section of these posts, you can find them in the Travelling Category :)