Portland is located in the State of Oregon which is adjacent to the State of Washington on north.
Portland has about the same population as Seattle which is about three hours away by car. The city is located basically at the end of historical Oregon Trail. This trail was a relatively frequent communication connecting the Midwest and the East Coast with the Pacific Northwest.
“Settlers” usually from the east part of the United States travelled along this trail to find new home or fortune. Quotation marks here are used deliberately as we can’t forget that white settlers were rather intruders in this area for they had negative impact on Native American settlement.
Fate of immigrants often depended on help of local Native Americans that provided them with food, advice and they traded with them. Often you can read about Indian raids on peaceful white expedition. What is usually forgotten to be mentioned, are massacres of Indians by the whites.
Anyway, settlers came to the Pacific Northwest in large numbers. They often spoke about abundant natural resources and beautiful landscape. It was sure a real difference compared to thousands of kilometers of monotonous plains of the Midwest.
There was a gold rush in the Northwest during the 19th century and it produced many towns that grew fast but with gold being depleted they soon decayed and transformed to the so-called ghost towns. But almost none of them is a real ghost town as few inhabitant are usually still living there.
Soon Portland became a significant center of this region and remains it until the present. Only about eight hundred people lived there in the middle of the 19th century. Thirty years later it was already almost 18 thousand.
The historical center is relatively small, red brick buildings there will remind you of English town. Still, it is worth taking a walk there and making few pictures. For example of the Steel Bridge over the Willamette river. It was built in 1912. It is 64 meters long, 22 meters wide. It is the second oldest bridge of its kind in America.
However, there are ten other bridges crossing the Willamette like Sellwood Bridge, Marquam Bridge or Ross Island Brdige. Other three bridges are over the Columbia river.
There are lots of skyscrapers in the city creating a classic American panorama. There are many shops there, coffee bars and life there is very busy. When you wander among them do not forget to visit Pioneer Courthouse Square. The square is covered with red bricks and there are often events. Also you can find there an info center, they are very helpful there.
Text: Maxim Kucer
Photo: Wikipedia.org: Steve Morgan, Steve Morgan (2), Cacophony, Cacophony (2), Cacophony (3), Fcb981
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New York is known as the City that never sleeps or the Big Apple. It is the largest city in the United States that is also the world center for commerce and finances, and has a significant influence in fashion, education, politics or art.
From inglorious Compton with high levels of criminality (decreasing) we move to the place well-known to everyone – Hollywood.
As you may know from previous part of our story, San Francisco is a tourist friendly city. There are enough attractions and sights to keep you occupied at least for a week without you slipping into boredom.
In the last article devoted to the United States we have learned something about Alcatraz, a former maximum security prison. Now we move from the Rock and have a glimpse at one of the most distinct cities in the US.
There are places that you probably voluntarily nevypravili. One of them will surely prison. Among the best known in America is clearly Alcatraz. His name is not well known outside the country.
The EMP museum is a great experience. The building captivates your attention and lures you to explore it closer. There are many exhibitions telling about the cultural character of the city and also showing more general trends of American popular culture.
Last week, we were over to Hollywood. It is a place that is in some ways perhaps overrated.
New York consists of five parts – Bronx, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. Only one of them, Bronx, is located on mainland. Other districts are situated on islands; Manhattan and Staten Islands are on individual islands. Queens and Brooklyn are located on one common island. The city districts are separated with water crossed by about 60 bridges.
Last time I concluded my story with a theory of what is a real car for the Americans.
I mentioned affordability of consumer goods in the United States in the last part.
Previous articles had to demonstrate you the atmosphere a visitor can feel in the United States. Today we will hit the streets of the most important city in the Pacific Northwest.
Europeans are close to the United States and whole North America and South America in a way. It is because they afflicted both continents irreversibly.
Next day morning we set out to explore Lombard Street, a street that is world famous for its zigzag character. And really, houses are built to allow everyone who live there to drive in or out on this steep hill.
When you hear Boston you think of a rich history and picturesque streets with brick houses. However, there are other sights in the city you won’t forget. It wouldn’t be always a pleasant experience but they are worth seeing.
I had visited Washington D. C. during my two-year stay in the US. I had spent there three days for I considered it a duty to visit the city not only for it is the US capital but also for its vicinity. It is about 250 miles/400 kilometers from New York.
A trip long trip abroad means rises one significant question – what I should pack with me? I wouldn’t describe here the whole list what I put into my luggage, of course. There weren’t many things. Important is to not forget important documents.
I decided to spent part of Christmas in the former capital of the State of Pennsylvania and the whole United States. During my introductory au-pair course I met a Czech with whom I still stay in touch, she invited me to her home in Philadelphia.
I started my two-year stay in the US in Pittsburgh. I had stayed there for four mostly summer months. There I had first experiences of living in a foreign country, adapting to new habits, food, people and I also tried to overcome the language barrier.
After visiting the EMP museum, where I enjoyed the most famous music stars who were born in Seattle and refresh your memory with icons of sci-fi and horror was time to go on.
There are not just historical houses made of red bricks, or tower blocks in Boston but there is also modern architecture such as the building hosting the J.F. Kennedy museum and library, or a controversial Boston city hall or a new center of modern art in Boston.
Boston, the capital of Massachusetts and a center of New England, has played a crucial role in the US history. It was founded in 1630 and the key event leading to the American Revolution happened there – the Boston tea party. Being is the city like living the American history itself, this is also due to the fact that Boston boasts with many firsts.
When you walk around in downtown you would definitely notice City Hall built in an Empire style, on the top there is a statue of the founder of Pennsylvania, William Penn. There is also Independence Hall in the center, the building is included in the UNESCO’s World Heritage lists and also the already-mentioned Declaration of Independence was signed there.
I went to a trip to Niagara Falls together with my three au-pair colleagues near the end of my two-year stay in the US. It is an unwritten tradition to visit the Niagaras if you are an au-pair in New York. I haven’t met anyone who didn’t visit the falls or at least wasn’t going to.
There are many natural parks in the United States. Maybe you think of Yosmite, Wrangell-St.Elias (the largest US park) or Denali.
Almost two years while I was working as an au-pair I had lived in suburbia of the center of the whole globe. To describe every attraction worth visiting would take several articles. New York is the most monumental symbol of level of the world civilization. It consists of five districts - Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island.
Historical landmarks make Boston interesting, indeed, but there are other places one shouldn’t miss. Only then his/her visit will be complete. These places are charming and have their unique atmosphere. Despite thousands of tourists visit them every year, everyone can enjoy them.
I gave myself a four-day vacation in San Francisco in the middle of my two-year au-pair stay in the US. Everyone, who ever was there, never said anything except superlatives and mentioned the difference between east coast and west coast cities.
Today in our article we would like to present you few interesting sites you shouldn’t miss during your visit in New York.