BRUNO MICHEL Country Music Journalist
935 CR 4820
Kempner, TX 76539
Cell: (1) 254-554-1166
Mail: [email protected]



from Los Angeles, CA to Miami, FL

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again traveling across eight states: California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida

Tour Map 1996:

After primarily visiting nature sites in 1995, this year was more aligned to the interests of our son, Marc. It was the last year he joined us on our travels. So we made sure he had some fun along the way, visiting battle ships, submarines, theme parks and the space centers in Houston and Cape Canaveral.

The whole adventure started with a 12-hour delay of the flight from Zurich. We finally arrived at 1.30 a.m. in San Francisco.

Our rental car was a brandnew Buick with 9 Miles on the odometer.

At the bottom of Lombard Street it broke down with electrical damage.

The Rental company arrived with a spare car, but the trunk was too small for all our luggage. So we hiked to SFO and changed the car once more.

After our travel delay and two car changes, we could finally start enjoying our holiday. First stop after some days in San Francisco was in

Yosemite National Park

After crossing Yosemite, we arrived in Lee Vining for the night.

Enjoyed the shops in town and dined at Bodie Mike's Barbeque

We visited Victorville and Big Bear City

before we went on to Palm Springs

This retreat of celebrities is quite dead in summertime.It's simply too hot to stay out there. However, you can get very favorable rates in the great hotels in town.

We stayed at the Spa Resort Casino.

Into Arizona, we visited Quartzsite and the

Organ Pipe National Monument. From there, we went on to

Tucson. Some great spots to eat. Our favorite was the Silver Saddle Steakhouse.

Other places we saw were Old Tucson (closed after another fire) and the

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, where the people are behind fences

The famous town of Tombstone is still alive

whilst Gleeson, AZ and Steins, NM are ghost towns but still worth a visit.

It was also the time of our first visit to Texas, where friends of ours had recently bought some land. So we crossed the border to Texas, arriving in

El Paso. Shopped for a pair of new boots and visited Mexico across the Rio Grande.

The next day it was a 650-mile trip to Gatesville, to see our friends.

We spent a few days with them before heading on to Houston.

There, the Space Center is a must. Not only for children.

Visited Galveston, rode the old tram before we left Texas and entered Lousiana.

New Orleans was worth some days of our holiday.

We toured the Mississippi River on board the Natchez.

If you plan a swamp tour, don't get fooled by some tour operators close to New Orleans. They might well drive you along the old trade-waterways pretending that this is the swamp.

A good address is Cajun Jack. His swamp tours are fun.

Left Louisiana and drove along the shoreline to Long Beach, Mississippi.

The Battleship Memorial Park in Mobile, AL, was an interesting experience.

We then entered Florida, our last state on this vacation, where we

visited the Disney-MGM Studios and the

Kennedy Space Center

More quiet was a visit to Silver Springs in Ocala with many attractions

or the Florida Aquarium in Tampa.

Speaking of Tampa: We also visited Bush Gardens. By far the best combination of natural and technical wonders we have ever seen. Thrill rides and wild animals exist in friendly cooperation.

On our way to the Everglades we took an

Airboat Tour in Everglades City. Jungle Erv is a good address for this.

And finally, we drove US 1 down to

Key West

After a ride on the Conch Tour Train

it was time to enjoy the beautiful sunset, sitting on the patio of one of the many restaurants with a cool drink in our hand.

The next day it was back to Miami for our flight home.



© by Bruno Michel.
US Trip Photos by Bruno Michel or websites. Music photos by Bruno Michel, Artist Management or Griz Weimer (freelance photographer and editor of Hot Country News