Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Wish I were here..... Los Angeles, California

This Wednesday I'm wishing I was in Los Angeles, California.  My mind has been thinking of the logistics of a family trip to Disneyland, along with seeing the sights of L.A.

I've been a couple of times, once when I was 16 and the other with Simon in our early 20's. Obviously before having the boys. I would love to take them as I know they would love it, and so would we!

I'd love to hire a car and explore up and down the coast. There really is so much to see and do, planning a trip there is quite overwhelming!

I'd love to hear some tips if you've been recently. Where did you stay? What did you do?
How long were you there for?

Any dream destinations on your mind at the moment?


  1. We're going in August, so I'll be following these comments! Will definitely post pics etc in late Aug if not too late ;)

  2. my passport is valid take meeeeeeee.....

  3. Hi Simone, I went in November last year with my husband and 6yr old son for Thanksgiving. Our itinerary included hiring a car through Alamo - a big Town and Country that had plenty of seats and luggage space (California laws state children 8yrs and under need to be in a car seat). We drove straight down to San Diego for a week and stayed at the Kona Kai Resort on Shelter Island. We loved being on the outskirts of the city, only took 10mins to drive along the waterfront to downtown. The resort had a nice pool and bar area that overlooked the Marina. They have fire pits on the sand that are lit nightly - great for having smores with the kids! From that base we went to San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld, Legoland, Old town San Diego, Seaport Village, Missouri War Ship, Gaslamp District & we even drove down to the USA/Mexico border as there are some good outlet shops there called Los Americas.

    We spent a couple of days at Portofino Yacht Club Resort in Redondo Beach which is just south of the LAX Airport. This is not a touristy area, but was sentimental for me as I lived there in my early 20's. We hired bikes and rode along the Strand up to Hermosa Beach and Manhattan Beach, very So Cal!!

  4. We stayed in Anaheim at the Sheraton Anaheim (the Tudor style one). We chose this hotel as the rooms are large, they have a nice pool, they have an foc shuttle to Disneyland. My inlaws joined us at this stage of the trip and it was easier to have a shuttle to take us straight home after long days rather than walking. If we could have afforded it, would love to have stayed at a Disney property as you get bonus hour early entry into Disneyland each morning. When at Disneyland, you really need to plan your days. They have fast passes where you can scan your entry ticket into a machine out the front of the ride and it gives you a time that you can go back to that ride and not have to queue. At the bottom of the Fast Pass printout that you get, it tells you the next available time that you can go and fast pass another ride! We hardly queued at all using this system.

    My little boy loves Star Wars - in fact it was you that go me onto a Star Wars print years ago that you had in one of your sons rooms! I remember emailing you and asking where you bought it from! They have a Jedi training academy in Disneyland where Jedi Knights come out and feel the force and choose young padawans from the crowd to participate in a light saber training course. They put a Jedi robe on the kids, teach them a light saber sequence .. and then all of a sudden, Darth Vader and Darth Maul appear and each child gets to have a saber fight with them. It was my 6yr olds idea of heaven!

    Universal Studios has had some well needed renovations lately and we had the best day there. If you visit on a weekend, it is so busy so I would recommend purchasing a front of line pass. You get access to priority seating for the shows, and no queueing on the rides (one go each). The Minions ride blew my mind, it was a virtual roller coaster!

    What time of year are you thinking of travelling? I would recommend October or November for a couple of reasons. We were originally booked to travel for Halloween however due to my father suddenly passing away, we cancelled our trip. Halloween is such a wonderful experience for children in the States. We had purchased tickets online in July to Mickeys Halloween Party at Disneyland. The crowds are less at this time, the weather is still comfortable - tshirts during the day and light jumper at night. If you do choose to go to San Diego, the city has run a promo for the last few years where children stay/play/eat for free. Im talking free access to most of the attractions based on one child per paying adult. It can save you hundreds of dollars!

    Disneyland is celebrating their 60th birthday this year and I think its from May onwards. They are currently updating many of the rides, shows and parades. You can go onto the Disney website and request a DVD planner be sent to you. Its kinda corny but will get the kids excited.

    I really have a passion for this area, it is a wonderful destination for families. I remember my parents taking my brother and I when we were little. We have told my son that he needs to continue the tradition and take his family one day!

  5. Oops, the San Diego freebies are for the month of October!

  6. Also, I follow Micechat on facebook and they publish regular Disneyland info on renovations, upcoming events and crowd estimates

  7. Im planning my honeymoon to the USA for September/October. We are going to hire a car from San Francisco and spend a few days driving down to Los Angeles stopping at the towns like Santa Barbara along the way, I hear there's a castle and a sea lion sanctuary to check out great for kids and big kids alike :) I'm going to save Disneyland until I have kids to take there with me!


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