West Coast USA
Regional Focus
The West Coast of America is a hotspot location among students for exploration and has plenty of character to keep visitors absored, says Clarissa Waldron

Encompassing the coastal states of California, Oregon and Washington, the US West Coast is synonymous with road trips, enthralling adventures, glorious sunshine and a carefree, laid-back attitude.

Visitors should begin their trip in Tinseltown and pay a visit to the Hollywood Walk of Fame,  Grauman's Chinese Theatre and the Hollywood sign. Head south to Anaheim, the home of Disneyland, or north along the coast to Santa Monica. Take the new train line to explore surrounding areas, like Beverly Hills, Culver City and Westwood.

A trip east of California will take visitors to the glitzy Las Vegas or the Grand Canyon, where spectacular views of red rock can be seen from above in a helicopter tour.

Santa Barbara lies further north, the perfect spot to soak up the charm of the American Riviera before joining a hiking trail in the hills above the city.

On the way to soulful San Francisco, stop off and take in the beautiful surroundings of California's Yosemite National Park in the Sierra Nevada mountains and the natural wonders of nearby Death Valley. Don't forget to pay a visit to the Danish-style city of Solvang - a touch of Europe in the Santa Ynez Valley!

Cross over the state line into Oregon to experience its diverse landscape of forests, mountains, farms and beaches, as well as trendy and quirky Portland and steeped-in-history Salem.

Continue up along the West Coast to the state of Washington, home of the rugged Olympic National Park, with its wild Roosevelt Elk, alpine meadows and waterfalls. Its capital Seattle is famous for its jazz music scene and for kick-starting the careers of musicians Ray Charles and Quincy Jones. clarissa@studytravel.network




Things to do/see


Charlotte Siwers at OSA Soccer Academy highlights the Space Needle, Seattle's "iconic tower, which offers a breath taking 360 degree view of the city, lakes and nearby islands and mountains".



The Staples Center
"This is our state-of-the-art arena located in downtown Los Angeles," says Christopher Thebing at College of English Language www.englishcollege.com, and is home to numerous events.


San Diego Zoo
At University of San Diego English Language Academy www.sandiego.edu/EnglishLanguageAcademy, Francine Chemnick recommends a visit to the zoo and safari park.


Channel Islands National Park
"This encompasses five remarkable islands and their ocean environment, preserving and protecting a wealth of natural and cultural resources,"  says Dr Kim DeBacco, University of California, Santa Barbara Extension www.extension.ucsb.edu/st




Places to eat/drink



Miffy Yuan of San Diego State University's American Language Institute www.ali.sdsu.edu recommends a visit to the Convoy area to sample some oriental cuisine. "It's one of San Diego's most ethnically diverse neighbourhoods and known for the best Asian restaurants in town."

"The International District is full of authentic Asian restaurants, many very reasonably priced," advises Charlotte Siwers at OSA Soccer Academy www.osasoccergroup.com in Seattle, Washington. "There is also a growing food truck scene that travels to different areas in the city and features a large variety of foods."

"If you like seafood, Brophy Bros. Clam Bar & Restaurant is definitely one of the must-go places in town!" says Kim in Santa Barbara.


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