Friday, July 18, 2008

Views from the Top

posted by Aunty Cindy

Yes, any Bandita will verify that yer olde Aunty is a gadabout. I love to travel just about anywhere, though in spite of rumors to the contrary, I have not quite been everywhere... YET! Destination doesn’t matter because I can always find something interesting and worthwhile where ever I go.

One of the things I really enjoy is a breath-taking view. I’m not quite sure how or when this started, but in thinking about topics for this post, I realized how many tall buildings and structures (natural and man-made) I have ascended. Whether it was the view of Honolulu from the top of the Aloha tower, St. Peter’s square from the cuppola of the basilica, or Seattle from the Space Needle, Aunty has been there and looked at that. Yes, I even have pictures of me on the roof of the Twin Towers circa 1996. I treasure those and will never forget the spectacular views in every direction.

Heights don’t normally bother me, but I will admit that I didn’t have the nerve to put on the helmet and ropes and climb to the top of the Sydney harbor bridge. And it was quite claustrophobic inside that St. Louis Arch, plus the windows were really small. I also prefer elevators or other mechanical conveyances, but if I have to take the stairs, I will.

So here then, are Aunty Cindy’s Top 10 best views:

1. Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower, especially at sunset. But for those of you who can’t hack being crowded into that glass elevator (and it was pretty scary), hop on the Metro or take a cab to Sacre Coeur. The view from the cathedral’s front steps is almost as amazing. And speaking of cathedrals…

2. Florence from the top of the Duomo. Yes, the stairs were endless, winding, narrow, and traffic flows both ways. You will be up close and rubbing body parts with way more tourists than you want to think about, and your feet will ache for days but che bella! The view is worth it!

3. Toronto including Lake Ontario from the observation platform of the CN Tower. Technically not a building, this is the tallest structure in North America. They have an interesting glass “window” in the floor that children were jumping and sprawling across, but was too spooky for Aunty to step on! And another tower…

4. The Centrepoint Tower in Sydney, which like the Space Needle and the CN Tower, has a revolving restaurant. Okay, so the view is undoubtedly better from the Harbor Bridge. The Tower has an elevator and you don’t need a safety harness for the winds.

5. The Leleiwi overlook at the crater of the extinct Haleakala volcano on Maui. Looking down on that dark barren landscape, you could be on the moon (except you can breathe, though at 10,000 feet flat-lander Aunty wheezed a lot!)

6. The Stratosphere in Las Vegas, another revolving restaurant, this one complete with a roller coaster outside. Nope, Aunty did NOT ride it! I’m not THAT foolhardy.

7. Lake Lure and Hickory Nut Gorge from the top of Chimney Rock. All right, I’ll confess, it was too hazy to see the lake the day I was there but it was still wonderful!

8. Chicago and Lake Michigan from the observation platform in the Hancock building. Yeah, yeah, I know the Sears Tower is taller but when Aunty was there, a Cheesecake Factory was on the ground floor of the Hancock. Priorities after all.

And finally, these last two Aunty has NOT personally visited to take in the view. Hey! A person needs goals.

9. The Mexican jungle from the top of the Mayan pyramid at Chichen Itza.

10. Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, currently the tallest buildings in the world. Now who could resist a view like that?

What are some of your favorite views? Maybe you've seen a few Aunty has not. Please do tell!

66 comments:

Jennifer Y. said...

OOOH...Muwahahaha

Jennifer Y. said...

Oh, I wish I had traveled as much as you. I rarely go anywhere though.

There is a lovely view from the top of Stone Mountain (my town's claim to fame)...at least there was many years ago when I actually climbed to the top.

The only other view I can think of that I have seen is Lookout Mountain.

Oh, and a few years ago we had an amazing sunset view from our hotel at the beach (it is the pic on my blog).

Other than that, I don't really get out much. LOL

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

My GOODNESS you were QUICK on the draw there, Jennifer!

I think you and the GR had this all planned out in advance!

Jennifer Y. said...

Actually, it was just luck...I was just about to shut the computer off because the Internet keeps going out on me. LOL But I decided one last attempt to peek at the blog wouldn't hurt me.

Plus, I thought I heard scratches at my door and a voice saying, "Let me in."

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Jennifer,
The sunset piccie on your blog is beautiful. I'd have loved to have been there for that lovely view.

The Trans-America pyramid in the financial district of San Francisco used to have an observation deck, but I'm not sure they allow tourists up there since 9/11. However, if you get a chance to go up to Coit Tower, the view of the Bay and both bridges is very nice.

AC

Nancy said...

Okay, Jennifer, this is beginning to look suspicious! *g* Congrats, though. I've been to the top of Stone Mountain, and it was way cool, but I went by tram.

AC, one of my favorite views is from the porch of the National Gallery in London, looking down Whitehall toward Westminster Abbey. If you stand in the right place, you're looking past Nelson on his column in Trafalgar Square and down to Big Ben in the Houses of Parliament.

There's also a view I love in the mountains of Colorado, coming down the highway (I forget the number) toward Denver from Morrison. There's one spot where you come out of the mountain curves and see the the lights of Denver spread out before you. It's gorgeous. We made that drive one night as there was a lightning storm over Denver, and the view was spectacular.

Then there's a view of a totally different sort, of all the people in costume in the lobby of the Atlanta Hyatt or Marriott during DragonCon. That's an ever-changing panorama of the fantastic.

Donna MacMeans said...

Jennifer - congrats on the nabbing! That wasn't luck - it was destiny *g*.

AC - i haven't traveled as extensively as you. I've been to the top of the eiffel tower in Las Vegas - does that count? I've been to the Stratosphere, but had no desire to try the assortment of rooftop rides. Those people have a death wish! I've also been to the top of the Eiffel Tower at King's Island, an amusement park in Cincinnati. (I wonder how many Eiffel Towers there are in the US?)
I did the CN Tower and stood on the glass window. I saw the craters on Maui from the window of a helicopter flying to Hana, and I've been to the top of Hancock Tower a couple of times. I've stood at the top of a Mayan ruin, but not Chichen Itza.

I'd add the Washington Monument to your list. It's not the tallest structure, but it is inspiring - especially if you take the stairs and see all the state plaques. I'm not sure the stairs are open anymore due to vandalism of those plaques.

I'd also add the top of the Empire State Building. The view is okay, but it's just so symbolic *g*. I'm hoping that the Statue of Liberty will reopen one of these days so I can go up to the crown.
But I'll have to do it alone - the dh is not comfortable with heights.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

LOL Nancy, I'll bet that view at DragonCon is something to see all right!

The view driving through the Sierras on Hwy 50 when you first see Lake Tahoe is very special. Anytime we have out-of-area guests, we try to take them up there. In winter, the driving can be tricky, but all the snow and the blue blue lake are unbelievable.

I too suspect collusion betwixt Jennifer and the GR... very suspicious indeed!

Helen said...

Jennifer Jennifer you two must have something going he really likes your place.

Great post Aunty Cindy I am scared of heights so I love looking at the pictures of these places and know the views are fantastic I couldn't go to the top of any of them.

I haven't climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge but lots of my friends have and they tell me it is spectacular especially at sunset.
Centerpoint tower has added something else to the top and you can walk out and around it too scary for me.
I have been to the Blue mountains west af Sydney and the views from high up on the lookouts are beautiful I am OK there for some reason probably because I don't look down there is a great look out at the Three Sisters at Katoomba love it there. One of my daughters has been to the Eiffel Tower and says it is beautiful so I will take her word for it.

I wish I could see all of these places in person one day I will be able to travel and get to see the wonderful places in the world.
Thanks for the journey Aunty Cindy

Have Fun
Helen

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Donna,
I've been to the Vegas Eiffel Tower too, and the Venetian canal. :-) I had no idea there were so many Eiffels around.

I've been on the observation deck of the Empire State Building too and it is fun. DH climbed into Liberty's crown but I stayed at the top of the base coz my feet were killing me that day.

The Washington Monument was closed all 3 times we visited but the view from the Lincoln Memorial out toward the Capitol building is quite breath-taking.

You are a braver woman than I, stepping on that glass window!
AC

Jane said...

Congrats on the GR, Jennifer.

Hi Aunty Cindy,
I've been to the top of the Hancock building, too. The view is impressive. I've been to the Grand Canyon, Diamond Head and Mackinac Island. I've also witnessed lava flowing from Kilaleau. I know you've been to Turkey. I would love to visit the library at Ephesus and Hagia Sofia. You must take me with you next time. We can bring Eric Bana with us.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Helen,
I HAVE been to the Three Sisters at Katoomba! That was one of the highlights (and quite a happy "accident") of our 1999 trip DownUnder. The Blue Mountains are SPECTACULAR! Trish really needs to get over her fear of flying because she would LURVE the hiking there!

thanx for reminding me of that wonderful memory,
AC

Helen said...

Glad I reminded you Aunty Cindy The Blue Moutains has always been one of my favourite places to visit I used to love The Scenic Railway and the Skyway across I don't think I would be able to go over there now but I still like it around the the area I hope Trish gets to see it one day.

Have Fun
Helen

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Hi Jane!
I've also climbed those 99 steps on Diamond Head, and walked through that dark tunnel WITHOUT a flash light. GAH! I'd probably have never done it, but my (then) 15 yr old nephew was egging me on. The view WAS great! And I got the last laugh coz my nephew had his hair spiked up and he sunburned his scalp. :-P

The DH and I will be returning to Turkey at the end of Nov. Though your offer is so tempting, I may turn in his ticket and take you & EB instead! LOL!

AC

Tawny said...

YAY Jennifer :-) One would almost think you were tying that rooster up, he's spending so much time with you *beg*.

AC - I am so NOT into heights. Eeeek, scardy cat here. But my oldest daughter has ridden the roller coaster at the Stratosphere. She said it was freaky because the building sways as the roller coaster goes around.

flchen1 said...

Woohoo, Jennifer! How's the GR liking the view? :)

AC, you've seen some totally gorgeous views! But like Helen, I'm not fond of heights. I've been on that glass at the CN Tower, like Donna, and believe me, I couldn't get off fast enough! ;) In Hawaii, we took one of those helicopter tours over the island where you could see the waterfalls and the craters, and it WAS beautiful, what I could see between my squeezed-shut-tight eyelids!

Minna said...

Well, here are some of my favorites:
Helsinki:
http://eurobuildings.info/finland/helsinki/helsinki_s000.jpg
http://www.travelsignposts.com/Destination/d/11474-2/finland_0003.jpg

Savonlinna:
http://www.axis-of-aevil.net/photos/juhannus04/savonlinna-lomo.jpg

Anna Campbell said...

Oh, Jennifer! Congratulations AGAIN!!! Hey, did he enjoy his trip to the airport yesterday with Amy?

Cindy, what a great post. And would you believe I have been to hardly any of those places you've climbed? I'm not great on heights so I even if I've been to the locations, I haven't climbed the stairs, if you know what I mean. I have, however, been to the top of Centrepoint Tower and you're right, it's amazing! Actually I think one of my favorite views is from the Sydney Opera House. The north bar (yeah, it's that specific) looks out across the harbour and the heads and you can watch the boats on the water by day or night. It's absolutely enchanting to stand there with a glass of champagne in the interval of a great performance and just let your eyes rest on all that natural wonder! If ever my Bandita Buddies visit me, I promise you the experience!

Christine Wells said...

Wow, AC, I wish I'd seen as much of the world as you. I ate in the Sydney tower revolving restaurant a few months ago. It's a bit disconcerting at first--you come back from the toilets and your table isn't where you left it.

Love the view from the Eiffel Tower, of course and it's pretty spectacular in Eze where they make perfume down in the south of France, too, looking over the botanical gardens full of cacti and out over the Mediterranean. Love the view from Monaco, too.

And hey, I'm looking forward to a view of San Fran soon. Yay!

Congrats, Jennifer Y, on the Golden Heart!

Carol said...

Jennifer...the feathered friend has a crush on you...congrats!

One of my favourite views in the USA was looking up at the General Sherman Giant Sequoia Tree, Absolutely magnificent.
The tree is located in the Giant Forest of Sequoia National Park in the United States, east of Visalia, California. The tree is believed to be between 2,300 and 2,700 years old

http://www.sequoia.national-park.com/info.htm

In Australia one of my favourit views is The Murray River,the Narrows near the Barmah Lakes. Which is the largest Redgum forest in the world. http://www.wilderness.org.au/articles/red-gum-wetlands
I love trees...we have been around 1 second compared to trees!!
Cheers Carol

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I haven't traveled a lot but the views in WV are beautiful. Anywhere you want to turn you see mountains, in the summer lush and green, looking like tufted velvet with a mist lingering around the tops. In the fall multi-colored patchwork quilts as far as the eye can see.
Rivers, streams, and lakes sparkling green, water falls from the mountains to feed them.
Here are few pictures of a falls I find especially lovely.
http://hrdwrkdmom.com/Banditas/WVScenes.html

Buffie said...

I have not made it to any of those on your list, Aunty Cindy, but I have do have a great one that you should do sometime.

The country is Israel, and the location is Masada. Masada sits atop a mountain overlooking the beautiful Dead Sea. I could not believe the gorgeous view. You have to take a cable car to the top. The hubby hates cable cars so he didn't go up, but I told him there was no way that I would travel that far and not go up to the top. I think I spent about 2 hours up there. Beautiful, serene, just gorgeous.

p226 said...

The view from the top of Seneca Rocks here in WV is one of my favorites. I also like the view from the BOTTOM of the Grand Tetons. I'm sure the view on top is great too. But the way the Tetons just jut upwards out of nowhere is really impressive from below.

Another favorite view is from the bridge or communications tower/mast of a carrier. Jets, helicopters, and ocean.

Which reminds me of another view. The view from sea at the southeastern entrance to the Strait of Malacca with it's rocky spires marking each side of the horizon.

Christie Kelley said...

Wow, how I wish I had traveled to as many places as you, AC. But I'm keeping the Florence one in mind because dh and I are supposed to go to Italy for our 25th anniversary next year.

As far as my places, I have to agree with Donna on the Empire State Building but add one in NY that probably can't be seen any longer. When I worked for a financial company I used to have to travel to NY. Some people on the 45th floor overlooked Battery Park and the Statue of Liberty. Absolutely amazing views and they saw them everyday.

Another wonderful view, the top of Pike's Peak in June when there is still snow flying about.

Beth said...

AC, some of my favorite views are close to home *g* I live surrounded by rolling hills so we have plenty of great scenery.

And since I agree that a person should have goals, I'm putting all the places you mentioned on my To Visit list :-)

Gannon Carr said...

Jennifer, what are you and that naughty GR up to?!

Great post, AC. I'm lucky enough to live in the High Country of NC, so I can enjoy those beautiful views anytime. My family laughs at me when we are looking at a spectacular vista of the Blue Ridge, I say "cue the Last of the Mohicans music". Mmmm, love me some Daniel Day Lewis in that movie!

The view from the top of the Eiffel Tower is indeed amazing. I'll add the view from any town on the Amalfi Coast or hiking the Cinque Terre on the Italian Riviera. Absolutely breathtaking!

One of my favorite places in Italy is a tiny town in Tuscany called Pienza. Truly one of the most charming towns and the view of the country side from the town wall---stunning! Interesting tidbit, they filmed much of Franco Zeferelli's, Romeo and Juliet there because they thought it resembled medieval Verona more than Verona itself!

Monica McCabe said...

OOOHHH, nice topic! I'm thrilled to say that I've been to the top of the Mayan Pyramid at Chichen Itza and yes, the view of the surrounding jungle is spectacular.

My next fav view is from Alaska. Denali is awesome, but then again, so are the fjords on the inside passage.

And next year I'm going to add some Italian vistas! Can't wait!

jo robertson said...

Great post, Cindy! You've visited so many interesting places and personally I'm awed by how you remember such details about the sites.

While in the Middle East, many, many moons ago, I climbed to the top of Mt. Sinai -- beautiful, stark desert view, but I was mostly impressed that I could make the climb at all. But I was a young chick then!

Congrats on the rooster, Jennifer, you're on quite a roll.

jo robertson said...

Nancy, personally I think Jennifer and the GR are involved in an international conspiracy!

Terry Odell said...

View from the top of Ayers Rock in Australia. Not that the view was THAT spectacular, but the fact that I made it to the top sure was!

Louisa Cornell said...

It is OFFICIAL! Jennifer and the GR are an ITEM!! I mean if they were both celebrities outside of this blog, they would have paparazzi camped out on the lawn by now. Or would that be bwakarazzi?

AC, you globe-trotting gal, I am so jealous. You have seen some gorgeous views!

The view from the Eiffel Tower is gorgeous. I recommend the view from the St. Louis Arch at sunset, really inspiring.

Sacre Coeur and Il Duomo have great views as well.

A view I will NEVER forget is the view from Anne Frank's tiny window in the Anne Frank house. There was something about it that resonates in me still. A writer who never gave up.

The view from the top of Edinburgh Castle is pretty spectacular. I don't know if you can still do it, but we climbed to the top of the dome in St. Paul's Cathedral to look at London! Glorious!!

Hey, I've been to the top of Stone Mountain and Lookout Mountain and the views are amazing!!

Joan said...

Heights and Joanie T...they do not mix.

Picture this. Sicily ...no wait. That's Sophia from "The Golden Girls"

No, I firmly believe my height aversion began on my first trip at age 12 to King's Island's Eiffel Tower Donna mentioned. THEN the only rail was flimsy rod iron one that came barely to your waist.

The elevator door opened, the wind was gusting and I immediately glued myself to the wall. A security guard kept trying to entice me over but my terror was so great my Mom had to chase him off.


But...I have been able to enjoy fantastic views since then.

Picture this. Ireland. ANY point on that isle will give you breathtaking, history rich, mystical connected views. Ahhhhh...Ireland.

terrio said...

Sadly, I haven't been to any of these places. Not much traveling for me. Not yet anyway. But it's on the agenda for someday.

I have seen Niagara Falls. I was about 8 or 9 and I still remember the lights dancing on the water. I used to live on Mt. Washington in Pittsburgh and would often enjoy the overlook. Once stayed in a condo in Gatlinburg that looked over the town. It was October and the colors were gorgeous.

Went up in the Washington Monument when in HS and just remember the thing swaying in the wind. I think that does it. Oh, if you ever get a chance to see Biltmore from any angle, I'd do it. It's like stepping back in time.

Sophie Renwick said...

Great topic!
I'm an arm chair traveler mostly. I've just recently returned from Tuscany where I 'virtually' researched for my sexy chef book. I'm sure it wasn't half as inspiring as actually being there, but the cheap airfare was amazing! lol!
I've been to the UK numerous times, my parents are Scottish. If you're looking for atmosphere and inspiration try Fort William in the highlands of Scotland on a grey, foggy misty day. I can't imagine there is a more hauntingly beautiful place then there.
I went on such a day and was so inspired. I actually believe that Fort William in the sunshine couldn't be half as lovely as in the drizzling rain.

I'm hoping to go back to the UK on a research trip, and I'm trying to talk hubby into a trip to Istanbul. I'm dying to see the Blue Mosque and bazaars.

Jennifer Y. said...

Jennifer - congrats on the nabbing! That wasn't luck - it was destiny *g*.

OOOH...you should use that in a book. Well, maybe not the nabbing part.

YAY Jennifer :-) One would almost think you were tying that rooster up, he's spending so much time with you *beg*.

Shhh...you'll give away all my secrets ;o) LOLOLOL

Woohoo, Jennifer! How's the GR liking the view? :)

He seems to be enjoying the view from the top of the bookcase...his favorite spot now (I think he is hiding...from the cat, probably).

Oh, Jennifer! Congratulations AGAIN!!! Hey, did he enjoy his trip to the airport yesterday with Amy?

He was shaking and mumbling something about being frisked by security...I think that was why he was so eager to get back here. His feathers are all ruffled. *g*

It is OFFICIAL! Jennifer and the GR are an ITEM!! I mean if they were both celebrities outside of this blog, they would have paparazzi camped out on the lawn by now. Or would that be bwakarazzi?

LOL...well, we do have some pictures...not those kind people!!! Ooh, do we get one of those celebrity couple nicknames like TomKat and Bennifer...hmm...ours could be...Roostifer...or Jennster. But *sigh* our romance is just a publicity stunt...LOL...his heart really belongs to someone else here in the lair...but the GR's not talking. *looks around at the candidates*

Picture this. Sicily ...no wait. That's Sophia from "The Golden Girls"

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL...I love that show.

Oh, and I just rememebered another view I loved...mostly because I was proud of myself for making the climb...last year I climbed to the top of the lighthouse in St. Augustine. Lovely view...and I didn't see a single ghost despite the fact that the lighthouse is supposed to be haunted *sigh*

And I went to DC almost 10 years ago and loved some of the scenery and views there.

Amazing what you remember after you've had some sleep. LOL

And don't let the GR know this, but I am really on your side. I am trying to figure out what he knows and keep him from gleaning more info about all of you that could be used for nefarious purposes. That's why I keep getting him to come here. I lead a boring life so there's not much he can share or blackmail me with. But he's a slippery little bird and I keep losing him every couple of days. I doubt that I'll be able to hang on to him for much longer...so get ready folks. That bird is sneaky.

Kirsten said...

AC, you have been to amazing places! I'm with all the folks who mentioned the great outdoors for their views -- I remember best the views from the tops (and bottoms!) of the mountains and rocks I've climbed.

Mt. Washington (NH) is one of my favorites, Yosemite Falls is extraordinary, there was a waterfall I hiked to in Glacier Natl Park that was unbelievable, and a mountain in Baja Mexico that I hiked up in the dark so I could watch the sunrise from it -- that was an unbelievable experience. It was the tallest peak in Baja, and from the top, you could see the Sea of Cortez on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other. El Diablo, I think it's called. **Happy Sigh**

My other favorite memory is hiking up Devil's Courthouse in Pisgah Natl Forest in NC. Gannon, have you been there? You can drive to it, it's pretty, but the amazing part for me was getting lost with my backpacking crew trying to find it and spending twelve hours bushwacking (that's making your own trail up a mountain while carrying a 60-pound pack) up a steep ravine through dense rhodo forests and mud unsure if we'd ever get to the top...ah, NC. And then collapsing when we finally did reach the top and eating the perfect orange. Yum.

jennybrat said...

My dream is to go up the Eiffel Tower someday. I've visited the Petronas Towers but I didn't actually go to the top, more's the pity.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Morning Everyone!
It is still morning isn't it? (Aunty rubs eyes and yawns.) I see the cabana boys did a good job on their clean-up duty, and I'm sure that's because Joanie dropped in last night and "encouraged" them. WTG, Joan!

Tawny, your daughter MUST have a death wish! NO WAY would I ride that Stratosphere coaster. I'm not too keen on ANY roller coaster, but that one is for the truly insane. :-P

LOL Fedora, I've never taken one of those helo-tours because the second time we were in Hawaii one went down and killed all the passengers. ACK! The road to Hana is really FUN (as long as you are not driving, which is why I bring the DH) and has some spectacular views! It is on Aunty's extended list.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Jennybrat, you MUST tell more about the Petrona Towers! Do they still let tourists go up? And did you have fun in Kuala Lumpur?

The Eiffel Tower (in Paris) is actually a bit scary to reach the top. The elevator is like a big glass cage and they really pack you in. Since the tower itself is all open framework it is a weird feeling going up and seeing through it, esp. at the beginning when the elevator goes up one of the tower legs at an angle. But the view is TOTALLY WORTH IT! :-)

LOL on losing your table in the revolving restaurant, Christine! The exact same thing happened to me in the Seattle Needle. Even though it revolves slowly, when I came out of the loo I was completely disoriented. I have a feeling we are not unique in this.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Hey Carol, would you like to tell me where Visalia is?!?!?! Actually I KNOW because I had a friend in college from there. :-P

I went to the Sequoias as a kid and remember being stunned at the size of those trees! Ditto on the redwoods, which I did not see until I was an adult. Now I have 2 redwoods growing right outside my patio gate. These are only babies, around 20--30 feet (8 or 9 meters?)tall, but squirrels nest in one of them and drive my poor dog bonkers.

Did someone mention Yosemite? The drive over the pass on the east side of the park is on Aunty's extended list.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Morning Dianna!
On my first flight across country (and I was 23 before I ever rode in a plane...yes, I made up for lost time!) I was amazed that the fields really did look like patchwork quilts! And I LOVE the seasons you all get in other states. California is pretty much either hot or cold in the North. One continuous temp. in the South. One of the reasons I chose to live so long in Sac is because we actually have fall colors with all our trees. It doesn't last long and plays havoc with the storm drains, but those yellow, orange, and red leaves are beautiful!

limecello said...

Hm... I'm so jealous of all the places you've been! the only "good"/"famous" views I've been - well, of course the Empire State Building. A lot of places in southern Taiwan - it's a bit less developed there. Of course, the Taipei skyline is impressive [although I don't like 101 really.]
One of my favorite views, however, is looking across the National Mall from the Capitol building. There's a really nice view from the Speaker of the House's balcony - but it takes some finangling to get there.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

OOOO, Buffie!
Masada is on my "bucket list" along with Petra and the Pyramids in Egypt. No, Aunty hasn't seen them yet... I KNOW!(said with Craig Ferguson intonation)

Did you mean like a ski lift when you said cable car? As in suspended below a cable? I'm not keen on those either.

I prefer a funicular -- more like an elevator on a track. They have one in Ketchican Alaska that takes you up to a hotel with a wonderful view. We also went on one in Hallstat Austria, a tiny town next to a lake, surrounded by the Alps. AWE INSPIRING! That one is on Aunty's extended list too!

Tawny said...

Tawny, your daughter MUST have a death wish! NO WAY would I ride that Stratosphere coaster. I'm not too keen on ANY roller coaster, but that one is for the truly insane. :-P

LOL - nope. She and her Grampa rode every coaster in Vegas a couple years ago. There are actually a LOT of them.

Did anyone ride in the glass elevator up that tower at the conference last year? I assume that had a nice view, although Beth and I called it the elevator of death. Scared the living bejeebers out of me!!!

Joan said...

Did anyone ride in the glass elevator up that tower at the conference last year? I assume that had a nice view, although Beth and I called it the elevator of death. Scared the living bejeebers out of me!!!

LOL, I did...a lot! For some reason that didn't scare me. I would face the glass back wall and as it hurtled down to the bar...er, the mezzanine I would let the power ripple through me...

Ok, maybe that happened AFTER I'd left the bar :-)

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

p226, you are right about the Tetons! The view of them from Jackson Hole is pretty special! However, Aunty is not really into mountain climbing. If there's a road, or a railway (see comment about Austria) then I'm THERE! Otherwise, I leave the trekking to the more adventurous Banditas like Kristen or Posh.

The view from atop a ship can be SPECTACULAR! Like the top deck of a cruise ship, libation of choice in hand... Right Jo-Mama?!?! Seeing Lands End at Cabo from either Kristen's mountain or my cruise ship is not-to-be-forgotten!

The Strait of Malacca sounds fab, and reminds Aunty of another view on her extended list -- the view from the top of the Rock of Gibraltar. Just watch out for amorous apes! Aunty had a too close encounter with one there.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Christie, be prepared for VERY SORE FEET after climbing the Duomo. I soaked mine in the bidet afterward! :-P But SOOOO worth it!

Who mentioned the Amalfi Coast? Ah, Gannon! Like the road to Hana, that one is hair-raising, but well worth it! And I LURVE the Cinque Terra! We've stayed in Vernazza twice. HIGHLY recommended!

Limecello said: There's a really nice view from the Speaker of the House's balcony - but it takes some finangling to get there.
DETAILS on that finangling, girlfriend! How can Aunty get a gander at that view?
:-)

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

OOOO Monica, I'm jealous that you've been to Chichen Itza! And you will LURVE Italy! Aunty would go there tomorrow except for this tiny little detail called cash. LOL!

Terry, I'm jealous of you too! Ayers Rock is also on my bucket list. Haven't made it there yet either. Nor Machu Picchu though, alas, my doctor says if I could barely hack Haleakala, I probably shouldn't attempt MP. :-(

Louisa, the one and only time I was in Edinburgh it was so foggy I couldn't see the street from atop the castle. :-(

And ROFLOL! Bwakarazzi!!!

Nancy said...

Donna, tall rides that involve anything fast are not my cup of tea. I worked at an amusement park one summer and never set foot in an actual roller coaster car. Rumor has it the Park Service is looking into reopening the crown of the Statue of Liberty, with the main sticking point being a way to evacuate fast if need be.

Yes, AC, the DragonCon view is really something. Intriguing though not exactly scenic. :-) Although the guys dressed up like Spartans from 300 last year were pretty scenic, I must admit. They could give the cabana boys a run for their money.

Helen and AC, I love mountain vistas. You never know what you're going to see around the next curve. There are some beautiful views from the Blue Ridge Parkway near Asheville. Years ago, I drove through Dianna's WV moutains, and they really were gorgeous.

Tawny, a solidly anchored roller coaster is too much for me. They can forget the swaying! We once rode the Nickelodeon ferris wheel in the Times Square Toys R Us, and it sways, too. A lot. For that, once was enoough.

Carol, I've always wanted to see the giant sequoias. I'm thinking I won't have time on this jaunt to San Francisco, though. I think the forest scenes in Return of the Jedi were filmed in that forest.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Joanie, you're right about the views in Ireland -- nary a bad one in the lot! Didn't you tell me you went to the Cliffs of Moher? The one time I managed to get there is was too foggy to see anything. :-( And I have never made it out to the Aran Islands, so I'm VERY JEALOUS of you!

Louisa, I AGREE about the Anne Frank house. Everyone, writer or not, should go there! And the view of Amsterdam from a cruise on a canal boat gives you a whole different perspective of the city.

Nancy said...

Jo, I think there's somethin' goin' on with Jennifer and the GR, too, though I'm cautiously noting her disclaimer. We're going to have to be on our toes in San Francisco. We may even need to form recon teams to watch out for him. Unless AC and I can find that nice, sturdy box we were thinking about.

Louisa--bwakarazzi!? ROFL!

p226, all of those sound beautiful. Both my parents were in the navy, though not on carriers, and I'd love to see that view someday.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Sorry Nancy,
The Sequoias are about a 5 hour drive from SF. :-( And I THINK they filmed those scenes in Jedi in the Muir Woods redwoods just north of SF in Marin county.

Kristen, you are WAAAAY more athletic and adventurous than her olde Aunty ever was. But Going-to-the-Sun Highway through Glacier Park is on Aunty's extended list. BEAUTIFUL!

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Ahoy Terrio!
Niagara Falls is definitely on Aunty's extended list! And all the tacky little gift shops are fun too. ;-)

Welcome back Sophie! I'm jealous of you too because I've never been in the Scottish Highlands! (Aunty covers her ears against the gasps of horror) But the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul is truly bizarre! And the Blue Mosque is FANTASTIC!

So sorry, but Aunty has an appointment. I WILL be back in a few hours and I have LOVED all the wonderful views you've all been sharing! KEEP EM COMING!

AC

Susan Seyfarth said...

AC--I stand in awe of your travels. I would love to travel more but it'll have to wait until the young'ums are a little more self-sufficient. Or at least until they travel better. For now, family vacations mean renting a cabin on a lake somewhere & letting the kids swim until they're pruney. :-)

But I used to travel. And I'm with Joanie T. For my money, the most gorgeous place I ever saw was Ventry Beach in Ireland's Dingle Peninsula. (I think it was in the Dingle Peninsula, at least. Somewhere out west.) Green, lush, rolling land meets harsh unforgiving ocean & I stood there for hours just watching them duke it out. And thinking about the fact that they'd been at it for hundreds of thousands of years & would be at it probably twice that long. It was gorgeous.

Kate Carlisle said...

Great post, Aunty! You are the blog queen this week!!

Er, does it count if the view is from the BAR? I've done a bit of traveling but I always seem to wind up in the bar. What can I say? All that traveling makes me thirsty!

I love the view from the bar at the middle platform of the Eiffel Tower. I could sit there all day. Wait, I've done that!

I agree with you about the World Trade Center. I had cocktails at the bar at the top and it was breathtaking.

The view from the restaurant platform at the top of Rigi in the Swiss Alps is unbelievably gorgeous.

Likewise, the view from the top of Victoria Peak in Hong Kong is spectacular.

I love to hear about your adventures, Aunty! Thanks for sharing!

Jennifer, people are starting to talk. Just sayin'... :-)

Anna Campbell said...

Oh, Gannon, Pienza sounds gorgeous! I loved that Romeo and Juliet - I'm sure you've seen me say that Verity in CTC was based on Olivia Hussey in that film. I thought she was just beautiful (he was pretty too, LOL!). Just saw Under the Tuscan Sun and going through a major pine for that sort of landscape!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Terry, you've been to Oz? Cool bananas!

Sophie, around Fort William, what about the view up Glencoe? It's creepy but it's amazingly beautiful! Haunting is exactly the word I'd use! Actually while I'm on Scotland, the view from the ferry from Oban to Mull. You look back across the misty mountains to Ben Nevis and Fort William and then you look across the sea and the islands to the hills of Mull. Just gorgeous! Sigh. Now I want some Hebrides to go with my Tuscany.

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, AC, I've been to Hallstatt! Amazing! And I'm so excited that I'm going to Yosemite in a week or so!!! Whoo-hoo!

Oh, and the Dingle Peninsula is to die for too. Too many places! Not enough cash! Sigh.

Terry Odell said...

Yep, DH had a conference in Sydney, so we toured half the continent prior to his meeting. A lifetime dream of mine. Didn't get to see everything, but we had a nice sampler platter. Melbourne, Alice Springs, Ayers Rock, Gold Coast, Great Barrier Reef, Brisbane, and Syndey.

I worked in Yosemite two summers when I was in college. Great fun. Gorgeous scenery. That was a very long time ago. I'd be afraid to go back and see what they've done to it.

Anna Campbell said...

Terry, that's a pretty good sampler. I live on the Sunshine Coast which is sort of the bookend to the Gold Coast on the northern side of Brisbane. Less developed but still with the gorgeous beaches.

I'm so excited about the Yosemite visit. When I was in first year uni, Time magazine did a feature on Ansell Adams. I'd never heard of him before but I stuck those photos all over my room in college and used to just drool about those landscapes. Can hardly believe I'm actually going there. It really is a lifetime dream coming true for me.

Terry Odell said...

Anna, that's how I felt about Australia. (And we might have stopped for lunch somewhere in the Sunshine Coast. Some of the days blur; it was a long time ago. But I still have a wall of photos I took.)

I can remember being parked at night and looking at half dome and El Cap in the moonlight. Ansel Adams was the master. I took a bunch of photography classes, but my work was pure 'snapshot' compared to his.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Aunty is baaack!

Thanx a bunch everyone for dropping by and sharing some truly beautiful views!

Let's see, Aunty's extended list now includes: Going-to-the-Sun Hwy in Glacier Park, the top of the Rock of Gibraltar (without ape), Niagara falls, the road to Hana, Yosemite Pass, the 3 Sisters at Katoomba, and the Dingle Penninsula.

Plus, you have all given me some GREAT suggestions from Finland to Masada! I can't wait to take in more beautiful views!

AC

Darcy Burke said...

I'm afraid of heights (which is why my favorite Twin Towers pic is me lying on the ground snapping a photo looking up between the two), but I have been to Haleakala and that view is absolutely breathtaking. And yes, it looks exactly how I'd expect the moon to look if it had pretty colors. Aunty, Your list of "been theres" is impressive!

Pat Cochran said...

Travel has not been very high on our list of things to do! As a teenager, my favorite view was
from the deck atop of the San Jacinto Monument outside Houston. This world's tallest war memorial now looks out upon the USS Texas, which was the first battleship to launch an airplane from its decks.

Another favorite view is from the McDonald Observatory at the top
of Mt. Locke in the Davis Mtns.
of West Texas. I've never seen a darker night than when driving in that area! (or brighter stars!!)

My favorite views in the whole
wide world (other than my babies
and grandbabies' faces!) were in Venice. On our first morning there,
we stepped out onto the rooftop
terrace of the Danieli Hotel to a
most glorious sight! Rays of
sunshine were breaking through
the clouds onto St. Mark's Basin.
Water taxis were darting about
and the gondolas were moving
slowly and majestically into the
Grand Canal. It took my breath
away and brought tears to my eyes!

The second Venetian view was a
more playful, laughter-filled
scene. We walked into the Piazza
San Marco, looking towards the
Basilica, then started towards
the center of the Square, when
we were suddenly surrounded by
clouds of pigeons! We hadn't
noticed them until they were all
around us! It was just like the
famous movie scenes!!

Pat Cochran

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Hi Darcy!
I'm still working on my "List of Places to See Before I Die" but I have made a considerable dent in it. :-)

Pat, Venice is incredible! The view from the top of the Campanile is wonderful. Those pigeons however, can be menaces, and I think you know what I mean...

AC

Kirsten said...

AC, having grown up in Buffalo, NY, I can tell you this about Niagara Falls -- go to the Canadian side. The American falls are barely worth it. ;-)

Darcy, hi! I will have to take you rock climbing with me some time. You'd be surprised how much less afraid of heights you are when you actually have a rock under you. :-)