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  • Writer's pictureUrsula

Florida to Texas 15.03.-02.05.24

From Florida City, we visit the Everglades National Park. On the Anhinga Trail, we naturally find the blue-eyed darter (Anhinga) in the beautiful marshland alongside alligators and swamp chickens.

In the very south of the park we go on a leisurely boat trip and right next to the jetty many manatees frolic in the brown water, so that we only recognize them when they come to the surface to catch their breath.

We continue towards Naples where we book a propeller boat tour through the shallow waters on the way ...

... and make a worthwhile little detour through the Big Cypress Nature Reserve.

From Naples, we set off on another boat trip to the Ten Thousand Islands wildlife sanctuary, a labyrinth of mangrove islands. Our captain manages to lure the dolphins several times so that they start to show off in the stern wave.

We say goodbye to Naples and ...

... drive towards Matlacha where we stop on Sanibel Island on the way. At the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge we spot the pink spoonbills and photograph a large flock of white pelicans and some herons and anhingas.

Our next stop is Crystal River, where we have booked a snorkeling tour to see the manatees. We set off by boat through the mystical waterscape at 7 o'clock in the morning when it was around 7 degrees outside. Then into the 22 degree lake which is fed by a spring. After a short swim through a small channel, we find some manatees in the crystal-clear water. They are not beautiful animals, but they are very relaxed and almost come close enough to touch. An absolutely worthwhile excursion with completely new pictures.

Via Panacea and Panama City Beach we head to Pensacola Beach, often along the coast where almost every meter is built up with houses on stilts. Even the supposedly 'scenic route 30A' has not been spared from the building boom. In between, there is access to the public beach with its dazzling white sand and a few small dunes.

On the way to New Orleans, we stop at the Battleship Memorial Park in Mobile. In addition to the huge battleship USS ALABAMA and the submarine USS Drum, there is plenty of other decommissioned military technology to marvel at.

In New Orleans, we move into a cool apartment in a beautifully restored house just a few blocks from the French Quarter.

We stroll through the lively French Quarter again and again, where jazz music can be heard on every corner ...

 ... admire the beautiful houses with their differently decorated balconies...

... and photograph some of the many artists of life in New Orleans.

A visit to Louis Armstrong Park is also part of the city tour.

We take the old-fashioned streetcar to the Garden District where we stroll through the neighborhood and visit the lavish Southern-style villas.

We round off our stay in New Orleans with a boat trip on the paddle steamer 'Creole Queen' with jazz music.

We have booked a small house in Lavayette for two weeks and are enjoying the peace and quiet after the hustle and bustle of New Orleans. We have a lot to plan and organize for our car sale, the journey home and our stay in Switzerland until we can move back into Oberlunkhofen at the beginning of July.

We take a trip on a propeller boat into the Atchafalaya Basin. The water landscape with the swamp cypresses is absolutely gorgeous. And of course we find some alligators.

The highway from Baton Rouge to Lavayette runs on concrete stilts directly over the basin, which is also documented photographically from above and below.

In the evening, we go to 'Lousiana Crawfish Time' to try the famous crawfish from the bayou. The crabs are peeled by hand and we have to make the sauce ourselves with mayonnaise, ketchup, hot sauce with garlic and a Cajun spice mix. Delicious.

Because it was so beautiful, we book another boat tour, this time on Lake Martin. Simply fantastic.

We travel via Baytown to Houston where we wait until our car finally arrives from Montevideo. We use the time to immerse ourselves in the time of the successful and less successful moon landings at the Houston Space Center.

After the car arrives at the port, it takes a good week for unloading and customs formalities before we can finally take delivery of it. Despite all our fears, we were able to sell Cheetah on the same day for a very good price.

Now our great adventure on the Panamericana is over and we look back a little wistfully on these brilliant experiences. Nevertheless, we are very much looking forward to traveling back to Switzerland where we still have 2 months to explore our home country until we move back to Oberlunkhofen in July.

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