The core elements of the American culture

Tour of the world is virtually a dream come true for any individual. It literally opens doors to new cultures, lifestyles and historic places and people. Nevertheless, due to limited time and resources, as well as due to a necessity to increase the efficiency of the trip, a detailed and well thought schedule is required.

North America

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The first days would be spent on the Northern part of the American continent, where I would visit American icons, such as the Statue of Liberty, Hollywood, the White House, the U.S. Capitol, the Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, the Niagara Falls, or the White House. While in New York, aside the Niagara Falls, I would also visit the Times Square, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Montauk Point State Park. Throughout the trip, I will engage in open discussions with as many individuals as possible. I will give attention to both native born Americans, as well as immigrants. I have for years been reading of the pros and cons of immigration, but the trip will offer the opportunity to first hand witness the features of immigration and the cultural diversity in the United States.

The trip within the United States would last for five days and would be taken by car; it would represent a reconnection with the core elements of the American culture — the ones which would make any individual proud to be an American.

South America

The first foreign destination to be visited is Mexico. The reasons as to why this country has been selected are numerous. On the one hand, there is the feeling that Mexico is the land of refuge for the Americans who escape the law, as they can here become lost in the crowds and live a peaceful life. While only limitedly relevant, this feature increases the curiosity of the average American. Secondly however, there is the beauty of the natural landscapes, namely the beaches. Attractions which will be visited include the Acapulco City (known for its aquatic activities), the Rocky Point, the Cancun Island and the Mayan Riviera, with its reef, which is in fact the largest coral reef in the western hemisphere (Mexico Maps). In Mexico, as in any other locations, the meals will consist of traditional foods, as the trip also offers the opportunity to explore the local cuisines.

The trip to Mexico will be followed by a trip to Brazil, which will last for three days. Two days will be allocated to sightseeing, and one exclusively for resting. The objectives to be visited in Brazil include indubitably Rio de Janeiro, the extremely popular home of carnivals, over which the enormous statue of Jesus presides, Brasilia, the country’s capital, or the Iguacu Falls.


I will then board on a cruise from Brazil to Nigeria, crossing the South Atlantic Ocean. Upon arrival in Nigeria, I will check in to a two start hotel and then commence sightseeing. I would begin with the Azumini Blue River in the Abia State, to continue with Yola (the capital city of the Adamawa State and recognized for its hill topography), the Ibeno Beach, the Ogbunike Cave and the Agbokim Waterfalls, to eventually complete the tour with a visit to the Oguta Lakes (Online Nigeria, 2009). A bus will then be taken from Nigeria to Egypt. This country is one with a strong historic resonance, and references to Cleopatra, the faros or pyramids rapidly capture the attention of the foreigner. The attractions to be visited include the banks of the river Nile, the Giza Pyramids, the city of Luxor, Cairo and Alexandria. From Egypt, a bus will be taken through Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The luxurious results of petrol abundance will be observed from the distance


A ship will then be taken to India, where the principal attraction will be constituted from the Taj Mahal. Additional destinations will include the Lotus Temple, the Golden Temple or the Ladak Monasteries. India is a mystic land, recognized for its passion, rich history and strong religious beliefs. The tour here will provide an opportunity to first hand experience the cultural strength. The stay in India will last for seven days, out of which 2 will be spent sightseeing, and 5 will be spent on a luxury train tour, the Deccan Odyssey Train Tour (Info India).


From India, the vacation will continue with a sea trip to Australia; the trip will be interrupted for two days, during which Indonesia will be visited. Once in Australia however, attention will be placed on the visiting of the well-known desert areas inhabited by kangaroos. Additionally, it will be interesting to see the Blue Mountains, the Great Barrier Reef or several of the country’s 500 national parks. One must nevertheless not neglect the “urban glory” (Sino, 2009), best represented by the Opera House in Sydney.


The world tour will continue with the purchasing of a plane ticket from Australia to Antarctica. This destination will probably be the saddest one of the whole trip as it will put a face on the threat of global warming. Discussions with the locals will reveal the melting of the glaciers, the increasing temperatures and the threats these pose on the species. Nevertheless, Antarctica will also offer pleasurable moments. Their search will be supported by visits to Fildes bay, the Presidente Frei Base, the Villa Las Extrellas or the Chile Bay (Enjoy Chile, 2009). I will not leave the continent until having taken a trip on a small boat to observe the penguins in their natural habitats.


The final part of the journey commences with a plane ticket from Antarctica to Rome, Italy. Generally associated with romance and passion, Italy is worth visiting for numerous other reasons. It for instance represents the remains of the Roman Empire, once the leader of the world. Through Vatican, it also represents the home of Catholicism, a leading religion at a global level. There are numerous locations which ought to be visited in this country, some of the most compelling ones including the Sistine Chapel, depicting the works of Michelangelo Buonarrotti, the Tower of Pisa or the Uffizi Gallery. When in Rome, it is imperative to visit the Colosseum, an immense construction dating back to 80 A.D., and climb the Spanish Steps. More than any other location, Rome is characterized by a sense of calmness, beauty and love, which are nurtured by local legends. One of these legends states that the individual who throws a coin in the Fontana di Trevi will one day return to the city (Vacation Idea). It will also be important to visit, at least briefly, other famous Italian cities, such as Florence or Venice.

The visit to Europe will continue with a train trip to France and then to Spain. Even more so than Rome, Paris is perceived as the international capital of love, passion and romance. The primary attractions to be visited here are the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre museum, the Notre Dame Cathedral (made ever so popular by Hugo’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame), the Champs Elysees, the most popular and expensive street in Europe, the Sacre Coer basilica, or the Palace at Versailles. France is also extremely popular for its wines, meaning that the country cannot be left before visiting the Bordeaux region.

From France, a train will be taken to the Netherlands, or Holland. This country is extremely interesting. Small in size, it is one of the most economically developed states. Interestingly enough, about two thirds of the country’s territory is located under the sea level, meaning then that the country is drained, and crossed by numerous water canals — these canals are even common in Amsterdam, the country’s capital, which hosts the annual gay parades, which are in fact held on water canals. Despite the reduced sizes of the country, the Netherlands presents the tourist with a multitude of attractions. For instance, there is the parliament’s building in The Hague, the Escher museum, the Rotterdam port (the second largest in the world), the immense zoological garden with its walk-in aquarium, or the infamous Red Light District.

The trip to Europe, and for that matter to the world, will come to an end with the United Kingdom. Here, I will visit the Piccadilly Square, the original Madam Tussauds’ Wax Museum, the Buckingham Palace and the Big Ben. I will then book a flight from the Heathrow Airport back home.

Time details and budget

(*) Two days in New York — $350, out of which $200 would be spent on the motel room and the remaining $150 would be divided among the gas money ($50), eating ($50) and sightseeing fares and souvenirs ($50)

(*) Three other days in the U.S. — $525, out of which $300 would be spent on room and boarding in motels, and the remaining $225 would be used for food, gas, sightseeing fares and souvenirs.

(*) Three days in Mexico, on a budget of $525, or 6,774.36 Mexican pesos. $150, 1,934.86 pesos, will be spent on boarding in a bed and breakfast. The morning meal will be included in this fare, with $100 being spent on the necessary six other meals of the three day stay. $175, 3,542.89 MXN, is allocated to transportation, sightseeing fares, souvenirs (compulsory sombrero) and the exploration of the night life; $100 is saved (all the money saved in one location is used to pay the counter value of the larger expenses, such as a cruise to Africa).

(*) Three days in Brazil — a budget of $525 (925.755 Brazil reais, at an exchange rate of 1 USD = 1.76 BRL); $300, or 529.01 BRL will be spent on boarding within a three start hotel; $50 will be saved and $125 will be spent on bus transportation, sightseeing fares and food.

(*) Estimated cost of the trip from Brazil to Nigeria – $400

(*) Three days in Nigeria — $180 per hotel room (26,865 Nigerian naira, at an exchange rate of 1 USD = 149.25 NGN); $100 for food; $100 for transportation (regular buses as well as organized tourist trips) and $45 for other expenses, such as sightseeing costs or the purchase of souvenirs; $100 is saved

(*) The hotel fares for the five days in Egypt are of $550 (3,015 Egyptian pounds, exchanged at a rate of 5.48 EGP for 1 UDS). The remaining $250 will be spent on food and sightseeing, with $85 being saved

(*) For the seven days in India, $280 (13,053.36 Indian rupees, at an exchange rate of 46.62 INR per 1 USD) will be spent on room and board within a hotel, with the rest of $845 being spent on food, traveling and sightseeing; $100 will be saved

(*) The trip to Australia will last for five days and will consume the sum of $875 (or 954.49 Australian dollars), out of which $600 will be spent on room and board and the rest of $275 will be spent on food and sightseeing costs

(*) The visit to Antarctica will last for four days, and will be allocated a budget of $600, which will be divided between $300 for room and board and the rest of $300 for sightseeing, tourist tours, food, souvenirs and other expenses

(*) The stay in Italy will be of five days, during which time $500 will be spent on room and board; the remaining $375 will be spent on food, traveling and other sightseeing expenses. Italy’s national currency is the euro, the official currency of the European Union, which is being currently traded at a value of 1.47 United States dollars; the total value of the stay in Italy will then be of 593.56 euros.

(*) The visit of France will last for five days, during which $100 will be spent on five nights at a hostel. The remaining money will be used for food, sightseeing (the visits to museums will probably occupy a larger portion than in other countries) and souvenirs.

(*) The visit to the Netherlands will last for three days, and will consume the sum of $525, out of which $200 will be spent on room and board and the rest of $325 will be used for transportation, sightseeing and food; prices in the Netherlands are often affordable, yet dining out is a highly costly leisure activity

(*) The stay in Great Britain will expand throughout the duration of three days, during which time I will be hosted at a hostel, for the approximate sum of $200; the rest of the money will be used for sightseeing, eating, souvenir purchasing and the booking of a flight back home. The money to be spent in the UK, $525, is the equivalent of 321 sterling pounds (1 GDP = 1.63 USD); the country has not yet adopted the currency of the EU.


Antarctica, Enjoy Chile, last accessed on December 10, 2009

Australia Tourist Guides, Sino, 2009, last accessed on December 10, 2009

India Tourist Attractions, Info India, last accessed on December 10, 2009

Italy Tourist Attractions, Vacation Idea, 2009, last accessed on December 10, 2009

Mexico Tourist Attractions, Mexico Maps, / last accessed on December 10, 2009

70 Exciting Tourist Destinations in Nigeria, Online Nigeria, 2009, / last accessed on December 10, 2009

XE Currency Converter, last accessed on December 10, 2009

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