Posted by: RasmaSandra | October 15, 2018

Amazing Niagara Falls


Niagara Falls is a well-known and amazing waterfall and one of the most impressive and best-known waterfalls in the world. Niagara Falls is located in the extreme north-west of New York State forming the U.S. – Canadian border. Masses of water from Lake Erie come tumbling down creating an almost 200-foot drop which then flows into Lake Ontario.

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There are three waterfalls – Bridal Veil Falls,

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American Falls and

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the widest, Horseshoe Falls. Visitors can view the falls from dry land or take a boat trip which puts them right into the spray of the falls.

Once you have visited and viewed Niagara Falls there is plenty to see and do in the lovely upstate town.

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Niagara Falls State Park is New York’s oldest state park. It opened in 1885 and is home to the three impressive waterfalls and five islands on the Niagara River. The park offers nature and bike trails, picnic facilities and enjoyable scenery.

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The park’s main attraction is the Observation Tower from which you can get panoramic views of all three waterfalls.

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Sightseeing tours are available on the Maid of the Mist. The visitor center has historical exhibits, a gift shop, many restaurants, and the Adventure Theater. At night the falls are lit up and there are fireworks lighting the sky.

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On Goat Island

From Prospect Point there is a path that crosses a bridge on to little Green Island. This is in the middle of the rapids just above the American Falls. Then over another bridge to Goat Island, between the American Falls and the Horseshoe Falls. On Goat Island at the foot of the American Falls, you’ll find the entrance to the Cave of the Winds from where boardwalks lead to just under the falls.

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Before descending the 175-feet into the gorge visitors are given ponchos and souvenir sandals. It was named the “hurricane deck” due to constantly being in stormy conditions. The wooden platform stands only 20 feet from the tumbling waters of Bridal Veil Falls. Visitors can also get access to Luna Island by gangway from the northern tip of Goat Island and various walkways.

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When the river changes course three miles below the American Falls a whirlpool forms and these rapids are some of the world’s most dangerous as 100,000 cubic feet of water move through the narrow Whirlpool Gorge each second.

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From the New York side, visitors can hike down a series of paths and stairs to an observation point. Whirlpool Rapids Bridge is a popular way to view the falls from above. It spans the Niagara River between the U.S. and Canada.

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The Aquarium of Niagara has over 200 species of aquatic animals and 30-educational exhibits. Here you can see a sea lion show, harbor seal presentations, and penguin feeding.

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Visitors can have an animal encounter with a behind-the-scenes look at the care, training and social lives of seals and Humboldt penguins. The aquarium is also an animal rescue center for injured wildlife.

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The Castellani Art Museum was founded by the Castellani Family in 1976. The permanent collection includes over 5,600 works in a wide range of media dating back to the 1850s to the present. The collection consists of paintings, drawings, photos, and sculpture.

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A large part of the collection is focused on artwork created since the 1970s and features contemporary artists. The museum is located on the Niagara University campus.

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French Castle

Old Fort Niagara is one of the most important forts of the 18th century. It was prominent for protection and to maintain control of access to the Great Lakes during colonial wars. The restored original buildings include exhibits and artifacts. During the summer, living history interpreters demonstrate what daily life was like. Guided tours are available and the fort also hosts special events.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | October 11, 2018

Beautiful Buffalo


You’ll find the second most populated city in New York State Buffalo at the east end of Lake Erie. It is a city with lovely historic buildings and is a good place to stay if you are visiting Niagara Falls which is close-by.

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Darwin D. Martin House is one of the must-see attractions in Buffalo. It was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The house is located on the edge of Delaware Park. This complex includes six interconnected buildings and is a National Historic Landmark. A tour of this complex will introduce you to Frank Lloyd Wright’s innovative design concepts, defining his Prairie-style ideal.

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Delaware Park has wide open green spaces, tree-lined paths for walking or jogging and you can play tennis or golf. One of the main highlights here is the Buffalo Zoo.

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At the zoo, you can see a wide variety of animals from all over the world among them a

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gorilla troop, Indian rhinoceros, polar bears, tigers, and many other animals.

The New Delta Sonic Heritage Farm is a recreated 1850s farm with heritage breeds. You can get up close to the animals. There is also a collection of reptiles and amphibians. Altogether over 1,000 animals can be seen in their natural habitats.

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The Albright Knox Art Gallery is also located in Delaware Park. This is an impressive Greek Revival building. The gallery offers visitors a collection of modern and contemporary art.

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Canalside is a revitalized part of downtown which stretches along the canal. There are green spaces and places to relax. There is a lovely park with Adirondack chairs and benches that look out toward the canal. There is a walkway along the water’s edge and in the winter a large outdoor skating rink. In the summer there are a number of events held here.

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Alongside this area is Harborcenter with shops and restaurants. Behind it, you’ll find the KeyBank Center hockey arena.

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Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens – Olmsted’s 155-acre South Park was created in the late 1800s. It is home to over 2,000 plants and trees. In the park is an 1894 Victorian-style tri-domed glass conservatory building and is the centerpiece of the gardens. It was originally built for the 1900 Pan American Exposition. Its unusual glass, wood, and steel design was based on the famous Crystal Palace and Kew Gardens Palm House in England.

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The indoor gardens include a fully restored palm dome and a fern house. Among the year-round highlights are the orchid house, bromeliad house, herb collection, and waterfall. There are plants which are native to the area and those that are from tropical and subtropical regions all over the world.

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Forest Lawn is a large and very scenic cemetery that was founded in 1849. Even though tourists do not always prefer to visit cemeteries on vacation this one like many others that are worth the visit. This cemetery will make you feel like you are in a lovely park with its large trees, water features, and walking paths. It is especially beautiful in the autumn with the many changing colors.

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There is the amazing Blocher Memorial

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and the gravesite of the 13th President of the U.S. Millard Fillmore.

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Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park is located along the canal in downtown Buffalo. It is home to the guided missile cruiser USS Little Rock, destroyer USS The Sullivans and the submarine USS Croaker. You can tour these ships. The museum also displays aircraft and other artifacts.


Coca-Cola Field is home to the Buffalo Bisons a minor league baseball team. It was built in 1988 and is one of the largest in the minor league. Visitors can tour the stadium and the tours include a free game ticket.

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Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site this is the spot where the 26th President of the U.S. Theodore Roosevelt took the oath of office on September 14, 1901. The museum has displays that relate to the history of this moment and you can get a guided tour.

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Shea’s Performing Arts Center was built in 1926 in the Classic style with a neo-Spanish Baroque interior. Some of its most notable features are the ornate chandeliers and marble-lined grand lobby. It is now a National Historic Landmark. Tours are available. Among the great that have performed here are Frank Sinatra, the Marx Brothers and George Burns.

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St. Joseph’s Cathedral was built in the Gothic Revival style in the mid-1800s. It is home to a Hook and Hastings Organ, It is an impressive building.

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The Liberty Building was built in 1925 in the neo-Classical style. It is the largest office tower in Buffalo. On the rooftop are two huge statues which are based on the Statue of Liberty.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | October 5, 2018

Exploring Rochester

Welcome to New York Sign

Our armchair travels have taken us to the northeastern U.S. state of New York. Whenever New York is mentioned many people don’t associate it with the whole state but first of all think of the popular city New York City. However, that is not all that there is to New York and considering all there is to do, see, and explore it would practically take forever to relate it all to you therefore, I have chosen to write as much as I can about the state of New York including this amazing city and I can tell you it is well worth it to make up a list of all you would want to do and see in the entire state.

New York State has a diverse geography. It is bordered by the states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south and the states of Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Vermont to the east. The state has a maritime border with Rhode Island, east of Long Island as well as an international border with the Canadian province of Quebec to the north and Ontario to the northwest.

The Atlantic Coastal Play makes up the southern part of the state and this includes Long Island, several smaller islands, as well as New York City and the lower Hudson River Valley. The Upstate New York regions consist of several ranges of the Appalachian Mountains and the Adirondack Mountains. There are two major river valleys – the north-south Hudson River Valley and the east-west Mohawk River Valley. Western New York is part of the Great Lakes Region and it borders Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, and Niagara Falls. The central part of the state is dominated by the Finger Lakes region which is a popular tourist and vacation destination.

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We will begin taking a look at the city of Rochester, New York which offers visitors 140 awesome festivals, has 60 golf courses and more than 12,000 acres of parkland.

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The Strong or once known as The Strong Museum of Play is known to be one of the most exciting children’s museums in the world. Here you’ll find 150,000 square feet of exhibit space all dedicated to toys, board games, dolls, video games, books, a century-old carousel,  and New York’s only indoor butterfly garden. The museum is also home to research facilities and libraries that are dedicated to play. It offers a wonderful adventure for the entire family.

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The Rochester Museum & Science Center is the place to get your imagination going. There are over 200 interactive exhibits, fantastic shows, and original collections. You can uncover the natural wonders of the region, the world and beyond that. Altogether the museum has 1.2 million items in various collections. There are such exciting things like Science on a Sphere that shows our planet in 3D just floating before your eyes. The museum, Strasenburgh Planetarium and Cumming Nature Center inspire children to want to become scientists.

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The RMSC Strasenburgh Planetarium puts on star shows with a star projector depicting the sun, planets and more than 8,000 stars as they would appear to the naked eye upon a clear night. They also have Saturday night laser shows with beams of light onto the indoor sky with music. There are hands-on space mission simulations, world exploration with films on giant screens and free public telescope viewing. It is open to the public, welcomes school visits and features shows for free as well as ticked events.

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The city of Rochester is the best place to stay when you want to explore the Finger Lakes Wine Country which produces some of the tastiest wines in the U.S. The Finger Lakes are eleven long, narrow, finger-like lakes in central New York. There are over 100 wineries in the region. Three well-organized wine trails help visitors see and be able to taste as much as possible. You can visit up to 35 wineries. The trails often also include wine and food pairing, barbecues, and festivals. The wine country also has great restaurants, markets, breweries, and distilleries.

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The George Eastman Museum is housed in an impressive Colonial Revival mansion once the home of George Eastman, the pioneer of modern photography. Upon his death, it was bequeathed to the University of Rochester. In turn, the university donated the mansion and property to the museum dedicated to the memory of Eastman and his work. It is the oldest museum of photography in the world and one of the oldest film archives.

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The original collection includes the historical collection of the Eastman Kodak Company, the Medicus collection of Alexander Gardner’s Civil War photos and the large Gabriel Cromer collection. The museum also has temporary exhibits and is home to the 500-seat Dryden Theater.

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Highland Park is spread over 150 acres consisting of valleys and hills. This world-class arboretum and landscape was designed by Frederick Law Olmstead. There are 1200 lilac shrubs, a collection of Japanese Maples, 35 kinds of magnolias, a collection of barberries, a rock garden with dwarf evergreens, over 700 varieties of azaleas and rhododendrons, Andromeda, mountain laurel, horse chestnuts, a profusion of spring bulbs and native wildflowers, and many exotic trees.

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Every year the park changes the pattern of the pansy bed with 10,000 plants.

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The park also includes such attractions as the Lamberton Conservatory,

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the Greater Rochester Vietnam Memorial,

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Warner Castle and the John Dunbar Memorial Pavilion.

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Seneca Park Zoo is an exciting place where you can see African elephants, white rhinos and Borneo orangutans.

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You can watch polar bears and sea lions swim. The zoo opened in 1893 and which time there was only an aviary with some birds and several species of deer.

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One of its latest exhibits opened in 1997. The Rocky Coasts is a state of the art habitat offering the zoo animals more spacious and natural homes.

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The National Susan B. Anthony Museum & House pays tribute to Susan B. Anthony the legendary American civil rights leader who fought for equal rights for women and their right to vote. The museum is in the house in which Susan spend her most active years. The house has a collection of research materials, artifacts, and memorabilia from her life. She died here after giving her famous speech in Baltimore, Maryland “Failure is Impossible”. The museum is also a learning center to challenge and inspire future generations to make a difference in their communities through a range of programs.

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The Memorial Art Gallery of Rochester City was founded in 1913 and has a permanent collection of more than 12,000 different objects on display. Artwork from contemporary movements to 21st Century artwork from all over the world. It is located on a 14-acre campus and hosts temporary exhibits, lectures, tours, and concerts.

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Seabreeze is one of the oldest amusement parks and family entertainment center in upstate and central New York. It opened in the summer of 1879. It offers over 70 attractions for all ages. There are thrill rides like the Revolution 360

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and a water park that has a Wave Pool. You can also enjoy great food and a pleasant time by Lake Ontario.

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Ontario Beach Park is a 39-acre park with natural sandy beaches on the shores of Lake Ontario. You can enjoy swimming, fishing, and boating. Other activities include six volleyball courts, basketball courts, and softball fields. The park has food stalls, picnic shelters, a bathhouse, and a performance pavilion.

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Durand Eastman Park spreads out along the Lake Ontario waterfront. It is known for its steep wooded slopes, large valleys, small lakes and fantastic autumn foliage and beauty in the summertime.

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It is a great park in all seasons offering cross-country skiing, fishing, geocaching, hiking, golf, canoeing, snowshoeing and swimming. There are shelters for rent. If you enjoy walking or hiking there are three color marked trails that take you through rolling hills or along the lake shore.

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The High Falls Interpretive Center and Museum is an interactive museum that tells visitors about local history. It takes visitors through the pre-historic history of Rochester up to the 21st Century. There are multi-media displays and exhibits and photos and artwork. The museum also features special exhibits to promote new information.

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The Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse is the oldest active lighthouse on Lake Ontario. It was built in 1822 and restored in 2014. The tower is 40 feet high, with 12 feet for the height of the lantern room. There are 42 steps and an 11-step rung ladder that take you to the top of the tower. It is located in the former village of Charlotte in Rochester and offers tours and a membership for those interested in its history. It is open to the public but there are tower tours for those who want to get spectacular views. A lighthouse keeper’s house has a museum.

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Mount Hope Cemetery has guided walking tours and private guided walking tours for

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those who want to know its history. Self-guided tours are open to the public.

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The lovely grounds are popular and there are notable individuals buried here.

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Cobbs Hill Park offers lovely scenic trails. There are walking trails that provide some of the best views in the city. It is a popular destination for hikers.

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There is a large collection of lilacs and many large oak trees. There are tennis and basketball courts, a playground and a reservoir. You can fish and in the winter go cross-country skiing. Local softball leagues use the park for summer games and many people come to sunbathe. There are two cabins for rent for private use.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | October 1, 2018

New Jersey Off the Beaten Path

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High Point State Park in Sussex in the 1800s was a part of an elegant private resort. There was a carriage road leading up to High Point Inn. From there a short distance away was New Jersey’s highest peak from which guests could enjoy panoramic views of New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. Years later the inn was made into a smaller lodge and in the 1920s the property was given to the state of New Jersey and opened to the public.

The most prominent feature in the 14,000-acre park is the granite-faced obelisk that rises 220 ft. from the top of High Point. On the inside stairs lead up to the top of the monument from which you can see for some 40 miles. The park has forests, lakes, creeks, glens, swamps and old farm fields. Animals love the park there are white-tailed deer, some black bears and at times a bobcat may be sighted. Several species of hawks and other raptors fly about as well as bluebirds and the occasional wild turkey may be seen.

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Lake Marcia

Within the park are nine hiking trails and trail guides are available at the visitor center. The park’s day-use area has spring-fed Lake Marcia which has a beach for swimmers and tree-shaded picnic tables. At Sawmill Lake is a private retreat for campers. The lake is stocked with trout, bass, pickerel and on winter weekends one may come to enjoy ice fishing.

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Morristown National Historical Park – In the winter of 1779 General George Washington needed an encampment for the Continental Army from which a close eye could be kept on the British in New York City. This made Morristown a strategic location. Mrs. Jacob Ford, Jr. whose husband had died during one of the early campaigns offered the use of her home to General and Mrs. Washington. The Georgian style frame mansion is furnished about the same as it was in the general’s time. There are leaflets available for self-guiding tours through the rooms.

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About half an hour from the headquarters at the village of Jockey Hollow nearly 1,200 huts were constructed for the soldiers. Today this is a 1,800-acre park with woodlands, meadows, and brooks. The 26 miles of trails are used for hiking, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing. Behind the Jockey Hollow visitor’s center, one can find open fields, an old apple orchard, a recreation of an 18th-century farm garden and the Wick farmhouse where General Arthur St. Clair was headquartered. There is a park library and museum as well.

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Clinton Historical Museum Village – The buildings comprising this picturesque community date from the mid-18th century to the early 1900s. The Old Red Mill would grind whatever was profitable at the time. The one built in the 1760s ground flaxseed to make linseed oil. In later years grain was ground and then limestone. The mill was finally closed in1920. Today it is a museum on whose top floor is a working model of a typical mill. The other three floors have displays showing early-day life in this area. Visitors can also see an old schoolhouse, a blacksmith shop, a general store and post office, a log cabin and the stone crusher and kilns used to process limestone quarried from the cliffs.

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Sandy Hook Unit, Gateway National Recreation Area – For over 200 years this sandpit in lower New York Bay has been identified with military defense and the saving of lives at sea. In colonial times the shallows were known as a graveyard for ships. In 1764 a lighthouse was constructed that could cast a light visible for 15 miles. At the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, this light was of primary value to the British and the colonists tried to destroy it. However, the light was saved by the enemy. Now the lighthouse is maintained by the Coast Guard and is the oldest working lighthouse in the country. It has been designated as a national historic landmark. Located here is Fort Hancock built in the late 19th century and in operation until the 1970s. Now one can explore the barracks, mess halls, officers’ houses and the other buildings in this old army town.

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Sandy Hook also offers miles of ocean beach, dunes, and salt marsh home to egrets, ospreys and other protected birds. Trails lead through the dunes and to a unique holly forest on the bay side.

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Monmouth Battlefield State Park – The battle here during the American Revolution on June 28, 1778, enhanced the morale of the Continental Army. It was the first time that the colonials had engaged the British in open field combat and stood them off. At a critical point in the conflict Major General Charles Lee retreated instead of attacking as ordered, and the British, after a day of fighting, were able to move out under cover of darkness and safely make their way northward. General Lee was court-martialed. There is an illuminated diorama in the visitor center showing the sequence of the battle hour by hour. A reenactment of the Battle of Monmouth is an annual event at the park in late June.

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The center also provides information on historic Craig House and the Owl Haven Nature Center which can be reached by trails in the park. John Craig’s shingle and clapboard house on the battlefield has been restored. Craig was a paymaster for the local militia. The house which was built in 1710 has seven rooms, three fireplaces, a cold cellar and a sleeping area for slaves. The nature center displays live owls, reptiles, and amphibians as well as mounted birds and other nature-related specimens.

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Double Trouble State Park – There is a wilderness of woods and marsh in the Pine Barrens. The park’s history goes back to the late 18th century when a sawmill was built and a dam constructed for waterpower. When at the end of the 19th century there was a shortage of timber people started growing cranberries. The land was sold to the state in 1965 but the sawmill and cranberry operation are still in business.

Within the park’s 5,000 acres are a general store, cranberry packing house, one-room schoolhouse, migrants’ cottage, and other early day buildings. There is a self-guiding nature trail which crosses Cedar Creek. The water has a red tint which is caused by cedar bark and iron deposits. The air is filled with the scent of cedar and in season rhododendrons, mountain laurel, sweet bay, and fragrant honeysuckle bloom beneath sassafras trees, pitch pines and red maples. One can see great blue herons, egrets, pigeon hawks and quails. For fishing, there are pickerel and catfish. Cedar Creek is popular with canoeists and canoes can be rented here.

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Wharton State Forest – can be found on Rte. 542 of the Garden State Parkway. This large forest has mostly pines, with some cedar and mixed hardwoods. Within the forest are Batsto and Mullica rivers, Atsion Lake, several streams, nature trails, a long hiking trail and a number of campgrounds.

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Mansion in Batsto

The major feature is the restored iron-making village of Batsto. The combination of iron ore from the local bogs and fuel from the dense forests led to the establishment of many small iron-producing centers in southern New Jersey in the late 18th century. Local forges made water pipes, stoves, firebacks, kettles, and other necessities during the Revolution and the War of 1812, they supplied firearms and ammunition. When coal from Pennsylvania became available, the wood-burning forges could not compete. In the mid-1800s glass factories were built but they also failed. Batsto may have disappeared as did similar villages if not for Joseph Wharton of Philadelphia. He bought the property and started redevelopment in 1976.

The 39 buildings include the ironmaster’s handsome mansion, the general store, the post office, sawmill, smithy, shops, barns, and ironworkers’ houses. During the summer various early American crafts are demonstrated in the village. Adjoining the village is a nature area and the 40-mile Batona Wilderness Trail.

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The Atsion Lake area is about a 20-minute drive from Batsto. There one can find a playground, picnic area, swimming beach, and canoes and boats for rent. The forest offers shelter for many birds and other wildlife. One can fish for pike, pickerel, perch, and bass. There are 500 miles of sandy roads in the forest for hiking, horseback riding, four-wheel drive vehicles, and snowmobiles in season.





Posted by: RasmaSandra | September 28, 2018

Enjoying New Jersey


Trenton the Capital

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The New Jersey Statehouse was built in 1792. It is the most historic site in the area and is one of the only working capitols in the U.S. Visitors can get guided tours. You can see the assembly chamber, the Senate conference room, the State House Annex and the plaza. The painted ceiling room shows an artistic interpretation of the history of New Jersey. There are stained-glass windows depicting former governors. On Monday or Thursday afternoons the legislative and committee meetings are open to the public and you can view government discussions and hear bills and public addresses being announced.

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The Lower Trenton Bridge is one of only three bridges in the U.S. that connects two different communities. This bridge connects Trenton, New Jersey with Morrisville, Pennsylvania. In 1806 this toll bridge became the first structure to span the Delaware River. The original bridge was built completely out of wood but a modern version using steel and iron fixtures was built in 1928. The bridge can be crossed by local traffic and interstate railroad traffic. You can see the colorful sign upon the bridge – Trenton Makes, the World Takes.

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The William Trent House Museum is housed in a home that once belonged to William Trent, a fur trader, and merchant. It became a historical museum in 1939. Beginning in 1742 it was made an official residence to all of the New Jersey governors. All through the American Revolution, it was used as a supply house for Washington’s army. The house is filled with history and has been recognized as a national landmark by the U.S. Congress.

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Arm and Hammer Park was originally known as Waterfront Park. It opened in 1994. At present, it is home to minor-league baseball, specifically for the Trenton Thunder Team. The park is located just off the highway so it is easy to gain access. There are concession stands and merchandise for fans. There are two electronic scoreboards and between inning contests. Families can enjoy a pleasant outing here and a great game of baseball.

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The Old Barracks Museum was originally built to house British soldiers in the French and Indian War. During the American Revolution, it was used as a military hospital. Afterward, for a while, it was a boarding school and became a museum in 1903. Today it stands as the last remaining British military barracks in North America. You can see reenactments of battles and interpretations of colonial life. You can see initials and words that were inscribed in the stone by the soldiers once housed here.

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Grounds for Sculpture is located in the very heart of Trenton and has over 270 sculptures. This is a lovely landscaped area with constantly changing sculptures. The artworks of up and coming artists and renowned artists are represented here. Visitors can enjoy moonlight tours and take part in sculpture classes. It is also possible to host a personal event on this site.

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The Sun National Bank Center is the greatest venue for events, games, and concerts. It has played host to Disney On Ice and concerts featuring Cher and Bruce Springsteen. It is also home to hockey tournaments and basketball games. This stadium incorporates three different levels of seating.  There are seven different concession stands, three bars, and two grill restaurants.

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Artworks is an open-minded, innovative visual arts center. The center includes a colorful gallery, offers art classes and has an open studio free for use by visitors. The center holds different showcases each year. It’s latest and most interactive is the Carnival of Shadows: Art of Darkness event with live music, art, a costume contest, silent horror films, and food and beverage.

Things to Do in New Jersey

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Atlantic City is one of the most popular coastal resort towns in New Jersey. It lies on the northeastern coast by the Atlantic Ocean.

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It is well-known for its famous Boardwalk a four-mile promenade, constructed in 1870.

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For carnival-style entertainment, there is the popular Steel Pier with amusement rides. The Entrance to the Stars has handprints of celebrities. The town is also home to several historic and cultural attractions like the Absecon Lighthouse. It is the original home to the Miss America pageants.

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Liberty State Park overlooks the Upper New York Bay, Liberty Island, and Ellis Island. The park has many of its own highlights like Communipaw Cove, a 36-acre tidal salt march which is now a nature preserve.

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The park also has some interesting memorials and monuments among them Liberation which is dedicated to the Holocaust,

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the Empty Sky, a memorial with two 210-foot long steel walls with the names of the victims of the tragic events of 9/11 who had ties to New Jersey. The park also has recreation facilities, picnic areas and visitors can fish, kayak or cycle.

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Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area covers over 70,000 acres on the border between New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Here you can see a fantastic 40-mile protected stretch of the Delaware River. It is serviced by two visitor centers –

Old barn and farm equipment at  Millbrook Village, at Delaware W

Millbrook Village a recreation of a 19th-century community and the Kittatinny Point Visitor Center with exhibits, great views and an access point to the Appalachian Trail. Other highlights here include the Minisink Archaeological Site with remnants from a 10,000-year-old settlement. Activities include canoeing, kayaking, swimming, fishing, and camping.



Princeton might be a small town but it is well=known for being home to the Princeton University. The university includes the Institute for Advanced Study where Albert Einstein carried out his final work. The university was established in 1756 and is a lovely place to explore. There are student-run tour programs.

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Visit the Princeton Battlefield State Park which was the location of the Battle of Princeton in 1777, resulting in Washington’s victory over the British.

The Ionic Colonnade and a memorial that marks the graves of both American and British soldiers.

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Clarke House Museum built in 1772 was used as a hospital for troops on both sides of the conflict.

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The Battleship New Jersey is the U.S. Navy’s most decorated vessel. It has now become a floating museum on the Delaware River. Among the highlights is a guided tour through this vessel. It is one of the largest battleships ever built. You can visit the bridge where Admiral Halsey commanded the Pacific Fleet and see the huge 16-inch guns. It is possible to spend a night aboard the ship or you can join one of its popular twilight tour packages.

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The Adventure Aquarium on the Delaware River in Camden is a popular family attraction.

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It is one of the best aquatic education facilities in the U.S. The two-million-gallon aquarium is home to over 8,500 marine animals among them sharks, sea turtles, penguins, and stingrays.

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Visitors have the possibility of getting close-up to African penguins, sea turtles and have in-water encounters with sharks and stingrays.

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Thomas Edison National Historic Park includes the former home and laboratory of Edison. You can see many of his inventions.

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Highlights include a look at the labs, vintage movies, and original artifacts. You can also tour Glenmont, Edison’s Queen Anne style home. The mansion has 29 rooms. There are guided and audio tours available.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | September 21, 2018

Charming Cape May

cape may

We have arrived in the northeastern U.S. state of New Jersey which offers some 130 miles of Atlantic coast. We begin our tour of this state in the charming seaside resort of Cape May.

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Cape May is located at the tip of southern New Jersey’s Cape May Peninsula.

Cape May is the place to go if you love beaches. It has some of the most beautiful East

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Coast beaches. Some of the beaches you’ll find are Higbee Beach which offers great views of the dunes,

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Poverty Beach with many food stalls, Steger Beach with volleyball nets and Sunset Beach offering awesome views of the sunset. Fishing is allowed on most of the beaches.

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The Cape May County Park & Zoo is both a park and wildlife center. Over 500 animals from more than 250 species call this their home. They live in environmentally-friendly and natural habitats. There are different exhibits such as a 57-acre African Savannah and a free-flight aviary.

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The zoo also has a Wildlife Carousel with 20 colorful animal-shaped seats and the Rock Climb Snow Leopard Mountain where you can try out your rock climbing skills. You can enjoy a ride through the park on the Hummingbird Express Train. Honey Bee Haven displays the life of the honeybee and the Penny Machines let you choose from pennies to take home as souvenirs.

The surrounding park has several playgrounds, picnic pavilions, a fishing pond and a beautiful gazebo for weddings. The Tree-to-Tree Aerial Obstacle Adventure Park offers exciting adventures for families.

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The Cape May Lighthouse dates back to 1839. Visitors can enjoy spectacular views of the sea and surrounding landscape.  You can learn about the history of the lighthouse. The Oil House has a Visitors Orientation Center and in the museum shop, you can see fascinating maritime items and other souvenirs.

cape may aviation

Naval Air Station Wildwood or NASW Aviation Museum is located inside the historic Hangar #1 at the Cape May Airport. During WW II NASW was an active dive-bomber squadron facility for training. The museum houses several aircraft, engines and has educational interactive displays introducing visitors to the history of WW II. Visitors can climb a real air traffic control tower, sit inside the cockpit of an aircraft, enjoy the flight simulator games and see 26 helicopters and planes on display.

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The Cape May Carriage Company was founded in 1983. You can take a ride in a vintage carriage pulled by horses through the streets of Cape May. Reservations are recommended for the tour.

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The Emlen Physick Estate is a lovely historic house museum from the Victorian era. There are fifteen restored rooms letting you see the lifestyle and culture of Cape May during the 1800s. The walls have several hangings and there is beautiful vintage furniture.

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The Washington Street Mall is an open air mall where you can browse through many different stores. You can relax on the benches and enjoy the fountains in the warm weather. There are several restaurants to choose from and live music on weekends.

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Fire Control Tower No. 23 was built in 1942 and is the only surviving WW II Tower that played an important role in coastal defenses. On the deck beside the base of the tower is

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the All Veteran Memorial, the Memorial Plaques in the tower and the Eternal Flame Monument. You can climb up the spiral staircase to the top. There are many exhibits and information about the history of the tower.

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Cold Springs Presbyterian Church

The Historic Cold Spring Village will give you a look into life in the 18th century. There are hands-on family activities and interaction with local residents. You can take a look around the grounds and learn about the farming heritage and visit 26 restored buildings.

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The Nature Center of Cape May is an award-winning environmental education campus. It was founded in 1992. It is located on the shores of Cape May Harbor. There is a three-level observation tower, exhibit aquaria, indoor observation hall, a gift shop, and a lovely multiple themed display garden. Visitors can enjoy taking a salt marsh boat tour, kayak nature tour, wildlife-friendly gardening programs, summer science day camps and cycling tours.

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South Cape May Meadows was established in 1981 and is a renowned birding spot. The land is the resting habitat for migrating birds along the Atlantic Flyway before they cross the Delaware Bay.

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There are freshwater wetlands, meadows, dunes, ponds and a stretch of protected beach. You can take the one-mile loop trail from the entrance to the beachfront and stop by the observation platform for terrific views.

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Memucan Huges family house features restored common and tea rooms, a tavern room and a Gallery Exhibit Room on the first floor. Huges was a famous patriot from the Revolutionary War. Other rooms include a colonial-era cooking/eating room, a bedroom, and an added research/exhibit room.

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The Cape May Whale Watch and Research Center offers seafaring safaris for people to explore the Atlantic Ocean 

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You can take whale-watching trips on the M/V American Star. You can get to see whales, dolphins, seals and pelagic birds in their natural habitats. The 90-foot boat can seat up to 150 passengers, has four restrooms and a full snack bar.

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Bay Springs Farms Alpacas is a small alpaca breeding farm. The farm is the oldest and largest alpaca breeder in Cape May Country. They specialize in show quality alpacas, Peruvian and Chilean huacayas.

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There are fine alpaca products from alpaca yarn like sweaters, throws, socks,  and other accessories.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | September 15, 2018

Touring Delaware


We have arrived in the small Mid-Atlantic U.S. state of Delaware. It is located on a peninsula with beaches that border the Atlantic Ocean, Delaware River, and Delaware Bay.

Wonderful Wilmington 

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Wilmington lies on the Christina and Delaware Rivers. 

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Old Swedes Church and Graveyard is a historic site. You can get tours and see the historic Hendrickson House Museum. You can find out what life was like in the New Sweden Colony under the Swedish, Dutch, English and American flags. Enjoy walking the labyrinth and churchyard paths and discover gravestones that relate four hundred years of American history.

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The Hagley Museum and Library is part of the site of the original du Pont gunpowder mills. Eleutherian Mills was the first du Pont family home in 1803. It overlooks the French-style garden created by E. I. du Pont. You can find out information about this family and estate in the visitor center and the library.

In the barn you can see a collection of vintage vehicles among them a Conestoga Wagon, used to transport black powder to the port of Wilmington. In the Science & Discovery Center, you can try on a space suit and learn how it was made out of du Pont materials.

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Nemours Mansion was built in the early 1900s. It was a gift from Alfred du Pont to his wife. This lovely 77-room house has the largest formal French gardens in North America.

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There are almost 200 acres of lawns, meadows, and woodlands. You can go along the Long Walk to the Reflecting Pool where streams of water shoot up into the air. In the Chauffer’s Garage is a collection of vintage automobiles.

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The Delaware Art Museum offers an art collection that highlights American Art of the 19th century through the 21st century and English Pre-Raphaelite Art of the mid 19th century. It is especially known for its collection of the works and papers of American artist Howard Pyle, who illustrated books written by Mark Twain and Robert Louis Stevenson.

You will also enjoy posters from American poster designers and jewelry and metalwork made by English craftsmen. When you get to the museum you’ll see the Dale Chihuly arrangement of brilliant glass flowers that is displayed in front of the large window.

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Outside you’ll find the Copeland Sculpture Garden displaying nine works that are highlighted by Tom Otterness’ 13-foot Crying Giant and Three Rectangles Horizontal Jointed Gyratory III by George Rickey.

Fall at Brandywine Creek

Brandywine Creek State Park is a special place for birds and other wildlife. The park has walking trails, a playground, and the Brandywine Zoo among other attractions. The two most popular trails are the Rocky Run Trail and the Greenways Trail. The Brandywine Creek is a popular fishing spot with plenty of bass and trout.

The Brandywine Creek Nature Center is an educational site for natural history and environmental features and offers programs, literature and interactive exhibits.

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The Brandywine Zoo is home to more than 150 species and is divided into three sections

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– the main zoo, the exotic animal house, and a petting zoo.

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Among the residents are red pandas, two toes sloths, and the capybara.

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The Grand Opera House is an 1871 Victorian theater with a cast-iron façade. It has hosted a variety of shows including vaudeville. Today you can hear classical concerts and see dance shows as well as other kinds of entertainment.

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The original Wilmington & Western Route stretched through downtown Wilmington in the 1870s. In the 1960s this became a tourist attraction and has become a great way to tour the surrounding area. The train hosts seasonal events and exhibits all year round and is available for personal rides, parties, and gatherings.

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Russell W. Peterson Wildlife Refuge is an environmental and visitor recreation center. It is located on Wilmington’s Riverfront and is one of the few urban wildlife zones in the country. The landscape provides both fish and other wildlife habitats along the waterfront and in the surrounding wetland marsh. There are raised wooden walkways, trails, and viewing platforms.

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The Delaware Children’s Museum offers children lots of exploration and discovery. Permanent exhibits and activity are based on topics like science, technology, arts, engineering, and math. There are many interactive exhibits to participate in. There are also traveling and temporary exhibits and seasonal events.

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Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts is the only contemporary art museum in the state. It was established in 1979 and displays the artwork of local and regional artists.  There are many artworks on display but no permanent collections. The center hosts a variety of workshops, classes, and camps for both artists and non-artists.

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The Bellevue State Park is located in the suburbs of Wilmington.

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It is on the grounds of Bellevue Hall which is a mansion once belonging to the du Pont family. Visitors can enjoy a recreational green space and take part in outdoor activities. There is a running track, a well-stocked fishing pond, hiking trails, cycling paths, and paved walking trails. There are picnic table inside and outside, tennis facilities and equestrian areas. The park hosts various seasonal events.

Dover, The Capital

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Dover International Speedway is a 135,000 seat racetrack. It was built in 1969 and is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the U.S.

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One of the attractions here is the giant mascot nicknamed “Monster Mile” NASCAR with a huge fan following is also featured here.

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Legislative Hall or State Capitol Building is a neo-Colonial building that was once home to the legislature and the Chambers of Dover. Today it is a museum where you can see some artwork and the former courtrooms and houses of the legislature.

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John Dickinson Plantation was the home of John Dickson who was known as the “Penman of the American Revolution”. He drafted the Articles of Confederation in 1778. The farm complex includes the brick home from the 1740s, outbuildings and slave/tenant house.

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The Delaware State House was built in Georgian-style and completed in 1792. It is home to the Governor’s presentation and ceremonial office and an 18th-century courtroom and legislative chambers on the first floor. On display, you’ll find building artifacts, historical photos, and documents.

Taking a Look at Delaware

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Winterthur Museum and Gardens in Winterthur. This museum was built as a showcase for the collections of Henry Francis du Pont. There are priceless antiques and artwork. The 175 rooms have been designed historically accurate with antique furniture, needlework, textiles, silver, glass, paintings, prints, and ceramics all pertaining to certain periods. This is considered to be America’s finest museum of decorative arts.

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Surrounding the house is a 1,000-acre park with a botanical garden of plants and trees from all over the world. There are fern-bounded woodland paths, grand lawns, and flower beds. The Enchanted Woods is a three-acre children’s garden.

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There are many white-sand beaches along Delaware’s Atlantic coastline. Rehobeth is the major resort with boutiques, restaurants and wide stretch of white sand.

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To the south is Dewey Beach, then

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the Delaware Seashore State Park which gives water access on the ocean side and the bay side.

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For families, there is Bethany Beach and Fenwick Island. North of Rehobeth you’ll find

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Cape Henlopen State Park and old-fashioned Lewes.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | September 10, 2018

Maryland Off the Beaten Path

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Swallow Falls State Park is a peaceful woodland park which is located on the rocky banks of the Youghiogheny River. This park is a favorite with campers. There is a plaque that marks the spot where John Burroughs, Thomas Edison, Harvey Firestone, and Henry Ford camped in 1948. The park has two large camping areas. There are hiking trails that run through a stand of 300-year-old virgin hemlocks which tower above the ferns, mountain laurel, and rhododendrons below.

Swallow Falls State Park is home to the oldest grove of white pine and eastern hemlock in Maryland with some trees over 360 years of age. The Canyon Trail is

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considered to be one of the most beautiful in the state and leads from Swallow Falls to

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Muddy Creek Falls. Another hiking trail crosses a swinging bridge which stretches above sparkling Muddy Creek Falls. This fall is the highest vertical waterfall in Maryland with a plunge of 53 feet. The water feeding the falls originates from the Cranesville Swamp in West Virginia and merges with the Youghiogheny River within the park.

Here one can observe deer, wild turkeys, beavers and occasionally a fox. Black bears also roam the forest. A favorite with fishermen is the Youghiogheny River which is stocked with trout several times a year.

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Washington Monument State Park and Appalachian Trail Crossing – In 1827, several hundred townspeople from Boonsboro, including three veterans of the Revolutionary War built a stone tower atop of nearby South Mountain in memory of George Washington. In 1882 the monument had to be restored. Finally, when the monument fell in disrepair the present 35-foot monument was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps and was dedicated on July 4, 1936.

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South Mountain

The tower can be reached by a steep trail lined with plaques highlighting George Washington’s life. Inside the monument is a winding staircase which leads to the top offering a spectacular view of the countryside to the northwest. The Appalachian Trail goes by the tower. The Cumberland Valley is on a major north-south flyway for migrating hawks and eagles, which can be seen from about the middle of September through November. The visitor center houses a small collection of firearms, Indian relics and Civil War memorabilia.

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Montpelier Mansion on Rte. 197, Laurel one can find this Georgian mansion which was built for Maj. Thomas Snowden just after the Revolutionary War. Its English boxwood gardens, planted in the 1700s are considered to be among the loveliest in America. When Major Snowden married Ann Ridgely in 1774 the vast plantation was named Montpelier in honor of his bride’s birthplace in Anne Arundel County. George and Martha Washington occasionally visited Montpelier. Another visitor was Abigail Adams who had nothing but praise for the plantation. Montpelier was acquired by the state in 1961.

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Port Tobacco – As early as 1608 an Indian settlement called Potopaco was shown on a map drawn by Captain John Smith. In the 1630s an English community was established and some 100 years later the town of Port Tobacco became the seat of the colonial government in Charles County. Planters profited from the tobacco trade and were able to build stately homes. Some have been restored and can be seen today around the village green and scattered through the town.

The reconstructed Old Courthouse now includes a 19th-century courtroom and a museum of Indian artifacts, Civil War relics, and local memorabilia. The canal and river that once provided access to the Potomac and the sea are now filled with slit. However, Port Tobacco still retains the quiet charm of an 18th-century seaport village and is worth a visit.

Port Tobacco Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places. Here you can see five surviving 18th and 19th-century buildings, four of which are single family residences.

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Two buildings the Chimney House and Stagg Hall are adjacent to one another at one corner of the town square.

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Crisfield – This large marina has a public boat landing, wholesale and retail fish markets, and numerous crab houses and restaurants. This waterside community is the southernmost town in Maryland and is located on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay.

Crisfield is famous for its seafood especially the Maryland blue crab. There are three small museums. One is the Ward Museum, a branch of the North American Wildfowl Art Museum, which displays decoys and related items. The famous decoy carvers The Ward brothers lived and worked in Crisfield.

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Jane’s Island State Park beach which is accessible by ferry offers swimming, crabbing, and fishing. The park campground is on the mainland side. Crisfield is also the point of departure for boat trips to nearby islands like Smith Island which has three quaint fishing villages. Tangier Island has a number of restaurants, craft shops, and guesthouses and can be toured by six-passenger beach buggies.

Posted by: RasmaSandra | September 7, 2018

Wonderful Maryland


The Capital Annapolis

Annapolis the capital of the U.S. state of Maryland is located on Chesapeake Bay. It is a wonderful city with scenic views over the ocean.

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William Paca House and Garden this is a grand Colonial-era home dating from 1765. It was the home of William Paca, a wealthy young planter. He too put his signature on the Declaration of Independence.

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The garden has five terraces, a pond, and a wilderness garden. Inside the house, you can see two floors of antique furnishings, the family silverware, and decorative arts. This property has been designated a National Historic Landmark.

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Annapolis is home to the U.S. Naval Academy where future officers are educated and trained. The lush grounds of the Academy reflect the beauty of Beaux Arts architecture and historical monuments which commemorate naval events. The Visitor Center offers guided walking and riding tours.

The U.S. Naval Academy Museum was established in 1845. On display, you’ll find exhibits that are related to naval history and the training of marines and sailors.

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The Maryland State House is the oldest state house that is still in legislative use. The construction began in 1772 and the building was completed seven years later. It has a wooden dome dating from 1794 which makes it the oldest and largest wooden dome of its kind in the U.S. The original interior was built with wood and plaster and the newest section has Italian marble and columns.

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Thurgood Marshall Memorial honors the first African American U.S. Supreme Court Justice. The statue of Marshall stands outside the State House.

Annapolis Maritime Museum, exterior

The Annapolis Maritime Museum sits on the shores of Black Creek. It has found its home in the last oyster-packing plant to operate in Annapolis. You can learn the history of boat building and the local oyster industry. Among the exhibits are maps, photos, and document which describe the business and culture of the area. There are special exhibits that feature topic related to local maritime history.

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The Government House has been the official residence of the Governors of Maryland since 1870. This is a Georgian-style country house and features the portraits of Charles Willson Peale, one of America’s foremost portrait painters. You can also see furnishings by Potthast, eminent Baltimore furniture makers of the 19th century.

Kunta Kinte Alex Haley Memorial

The Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley Memorial marks the arrival location of Haley’s African ancestor, Kunta Kinte as written in the book “Roots”. The memorial depicts a seated Haley reading a book to three children of different ethnic backgrounds.

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St. John’s College was once a traditional liberal arts college but changed to a classic based curriculum. It was chartered in 1784. It was housed in a building that was completed in 1789 and is now referred to as McDowell Hall which is the third oldest academic building that is still in continuous use.

Exploring Maryland

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Ocean City is among the most popular beaches on the mid-Atlantic coast. Here you’ll find ten miles of free public beach and a three-mile classic wooden boardwalk.

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There are shops, a Ferris Wheel, a roller coaster, a 1902 carousel and kiosks selling delicious food. A tram will take you to all the attractions. On the beach are free concerts, movies, and other evening activities. The Ocean City Life-Saving Station Museum has a saltwater tank where you can get a look at local sea creatures.

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Antietam National Battlefield was the scene of the bloodiest day’s battle in the Civil War. It happened on September 17, 1862, when the Union Army met the Confederates led by Robert E. Lee. In the resulting battle, nearly 23,000 men were killed, wounded or missing in action. Today this battlefield is open countryside with monuments to the regiments of both sides. There is an eight-mile, self-guided tour you can take on foot, on a bike or by car.

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Along the way, you can see the old Dunker Church where the first clash occurred, the Sunken Road

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and the Burnside Bridge where Union troops at great cost got to finally get General Lee to withdraw.

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The 1879 Hooper Strait Lighthouse in St. Michael’s is among the historic buildings and boats that illustrate the life and work on the Chesapeake Bay since the Native Americans hollowed out logs for canoes. In the Small Boat Shed, you’ll see working and recreational watercraft that has been used throughout the bay’s history. There are Native American canoes that were used for fishing and oystering.

At Waterman’s Wharf are hands-on and audio exhibits that will take you into the world of oystermen and crabbers in a typical shanty and onboard an oystering skipjack.

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Take the time to see the former home of Eliza Bailey Mitchell, sister of the abolitionist Frederick Douglass and an Heirloom Garden with kitchen and medicinal plants that have been cultivated along the bay since Native Americans lived here. A working boatyard continues to boat building and repair traditions and a staff maintains the museum’s Floating Fleet.

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Chesapeake Bay Bridge

Chesapeake Bay is one of the world’s great bird migrations where huge flocks of water, shore, and songbirds find shelter in its shoreline marshes every spring and autumn.

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Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park the C&O Canal was in operation from 1828 – 1924 and was used as a transportation route for hauling coal along the Potomac River to Georgetown. Today there are still hundreds of locks, lock houses and aqueducts standing. It followed the route of the Potomac River from Washington D.C. to Cumberland, MD.

This route is now a park and the old towpath along which mules and horses pulled barges is a place for walking and cycling. There are parts where you can go horseback riding. In places, it is shaded by trees and you can get fantastic views of the Potomac River.

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The highlight here is the Monocacy Aqueduct, a seven-arched stone bridge that once carried the canal across the Monocacy River.

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Assateague State Park is located on Assateague Island. This is a barrier island on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. On the east side of the island is the Atlantic Ocean with a long stretch of beach popular for swimming and surfing. On the bayside people enjoy fishing and kayaking.

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This island has wildlife and is best known for feral horses. In the park, you’ll find campsites, picnic tables, a camp store, and snack bar.

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The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge is 12 miles south of Cambridge also on the Eastern Shore.

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Here are 26,000 acres of marshes, ponds, and forest.

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It is a habitat for migratory birds and a great place for birdwatchers.

Endangered white squirrel ~ Delmarva Fox Squirrel

It is home to the rare Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel. It is loveliest in the spring and autumn. A visitor center provides information about the wetlands. Visitors enjoy walking along the trails.

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Posted by: RasmaSandra | September 2, 2018

Beautiful Baltimore


Our armchair travels have taken us to the U.S. state of Maryland. It is a mid-Atlantic state that has many waterways and coastlines on the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.

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Our first stop will be the largest city and major seaport, Baltimore.

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Baltimore is known for being the home to one of America’s foremost historical site, Fort McHenry built between 1798 and 1803 to guard the entrance to the harbor. It is the place which inspired the U.S. National Anthem “The Star Spangled Banner”.

The fort withstood a 24-hour bombardment during the Battle of Baltimore in 1814 by a British fleet of 10 warships, five bomb ketches, and a rocket vessel. The visitor center has displays and a film of the history of this fort. You can take a tour of the casements and grounds and learn more through living history demonstrations. The original U.S. flag inspiring the National Anthem now hangs in the Museum of American History in Washington D.C.

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The Walters Art Museum is located in the Mount Vernon Cultural District. This is known as one of the few museums all over the world that offers a comprehensive history of art from the third millennium BC to the early 20th century. In this outstanding collection, you’ll find jewelry, enamels, bronzes, and ivories. There is a large reserve of illuminated manuscripts and rare books. You’ll find art collections of Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Ethiopian and Western Medieval Art. There are impressive French paintings. The museum has made its exhibits and collections accessible to children with special activities, puzzles, treasure hunts and other ways to make it seem engaging to them.

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The National Aquarium is a most visited attraction. It is housed in an impressive building overlooking the Inner Harbor. You can explore the Atlantic and Pacific coral reefs, the open ocean environments, a kelp forest, Amazon river forests, hidden sea life, seashore life, Australian aquatic life and so much more.

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One of the highlights is the Tropical Rain Forest which is a complete environment five stories high and visitors can tour from the forest floor to the treetop canopy. There are birds, frogs and a variety of larger mammals like sloths and monkeys. At the Atlantic Coral Reef Exhibit, you can meet sharks and dolphins and many exotic species.

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The American Visionary Art Museum is a most unusual museum. It displays the artwork of self-taught artists from all over the world. There are paintings and drawings and exhibits keep changing offering creative sculptures and even embroidered costumes.

The main building has impressive architecture which has won international and national awards. In the sculpture barn, you can see huge exhibits like an entire dragon from a Chinese New Year parade. The museum shop offers unique souvenirs.

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The Baltimore Museum of Art is the largest museum in Maryland. Its permanent collection includes the largest collection of artworks by Matisse in the world. You can see modern art and one of the nation’s most important African collections. There are great exhibits of American painting, sculpture, and decorative arts. In the sculpture garden, you can see modern and contemporary artworks.

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The Inner Harbor area has many attractions and popular things to do for visitors. One of the highlights is the collection of historic vessels which are all open for tours. The oldest is the sloop-of-war the USS Constellation.

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This is a sailing ship with three masts and was active in the Civil War. You can also tour the submarine USS Torsk, a US Coast Guard Cutter and the Lightship Chesapeake.

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Harborplace is a modern complex with two glass-enclosed pavilions. It is a shopping center and market. Street artists display their artwork in the Amphitheater on the Promenade.

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Oriole Park at Camden Yards is the place for baseball fans. It is the official home of the Baltimore Orioles, the city’s Major League baseball team. This one-time railroad center is located only two blocks from the birthplace of the legendary hero of baseball fame, Babe Ruth.  You can get a tour and see the press box, club levels, and dugout.

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Fell’s Point is a historic area along the waterfront. It offers visitors many places for entertainment. There are restaurants, cafes, and shops. In the market building, stalls sell local food and you’ll find water taxis to connect you with Fell’s Point and the Inner Harbor.

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The Maryland Science Center can be found at the southwest corner of the Inner Harbor. It also has a planetarium. Three floors offer scientific displays. In the Dinosaur Mysteries exhibit children can become paleontologists in the dig pits, field tab and excavation sites. A Baltimore-inspired “street” of brick row-house storefronts offers interactive challenges.

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The Basilica of the Assumption is the oldest Roman Catholic cathedral in the U.S. This has become a National Historic Landmark.

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The Washington Monument, surmounted by a statue of the nation’s first President, George Washington has become a landmark of the Mount Vernon neighborhood. A 228-foot spiral stairway leads to the top of the monument where you can get spectacular views through the observation windows. On the ground floor is a museum that has displays on George Washington and the monument. You’ll enjoy exploring the neighborhood which has the former mansions of Baltimore’s 19th-century industrialists. These grand homes now house museums, shops, and galleries.

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