Disneyland to Carlsbad to Palm Desert

Aug 9th, 2010, 01:28 PM
  #1  
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Disneyland to Carlsbad to Palm Desert

Right after Christmas, we'll be going to Disneyland for 6 nights (Candy Cane Inn)
with daughter, son in law and 3 children (5, 8 and 11) and then 8 nights in Carlsbad, then we have 3 days free prior to going to Palm Desert to visit friends. Because we have a gap (our friends in P.D. have friends staying over until the 14th), we are wondering if anyone could suggest somewhere for 2 or 3 nights that wouldn't be too far out of the way. Throughout our 8 day stay in Carlsbad, we plan to go to Legoland & San Diego Seaworld- our 'kids' will be leaving us after 4 nights in Carlsbad so we want to drive around the area. We're retiring within six months so would like to get a feel of the areas to see what we like. Thanks for anything you can help us with.
Micah3 is offline  
Aug 9th, 2010, 01:42 PM
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I was going to suggest that you just stay in Carlsbad and spend more time visiting San Diego but it looks like you will already have 4 days on your own in the area after the "kids" leave? Is that correct?

You mentioned getting ready to retire. Is there any specific area you are interested in? Beach, desert, city? Depending on where you are staying in Carlsbad, you could go to Orange County and stay along the beach in Laguna. Of course, it may not be beach weather but December is usually pretty nice.

You could also head on out to the desert and maybe stay a couple days in Palm Springs. It has a very different feel than Palm Desert. Don't know how long you will be staying in the desert with your friends so you could maybe see some sights before you visit with them.

Another choice would be to move to downtown San Diego for those few in between days. Even if you have been to San Diego for Sea World, etc., it's different staying there without kids.
paula1470 is offline  
Aug 9th, 2010, 02:11 PM
  #3  
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Thanks Paula for your input. My husband and I really do like the ocean so we like the idea of Southern California but we also have lots of friends that like Palm Desert. We're from Canada so anywhere warm is where we will want to be. It will be around January 12th by this time so hopefully weather will be nice. In what way is Palm Springs different from Palm Desert? I don't know how far away the two places are.
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Aug 9th, 2010, 02:22 PM
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Many people, particularly Europeans, enjoy the Idlywild area which includes Mt. San Gorgonio. It's on the way to Palm Desert and it (usually) gets less snow than the Big Bear area, just enough to look pretty and crisp. It is a nice drive up to Idlywild and on a clear day, you can see all the way out to Catalina Island. There are many day hiking trails, mom & pop restaurants, a few shops, and bed-n-breakfasts. It would be a decompressing visit, as there is significantly less to do than Disneyland or San Diego, but it is a lovely area. If you go, the Gastronome, Jan's Red Kettle, Cafe Aroma, Merkaba's Tea and Arriba's are favorites.
fairygemgirl is offline  
Aug 9th, 2010, 02:33 PM
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Palm Springs and Palm Desert are about 12 miles a part but they all run together with the other cities of Rancho Mirage and Catherdral City.

To me, Palm Springs has the feel of the old time desert resort and smaller vintage and boutique type hotels/resorts. There is a nice downtown that is walkable. Palm Desert has more of a suburban feel and is more upscale. There is El Paseo Drive that is walkable but the shops there are high end. Palm Desert has bigger resorts and to me feels more spread-out. I like both of them, they're just different and of course this is just my impression.
paula1470 is offline  
Aug 9th, 2010, 04:22 PM
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Another thought - I've wanted to see JERSEY BOYS in Vegas for so long but never seem to get there.we've only been to Vegas once but would it make sense to go to Vegas from Carlsbad, spend 3 nights there and then drive down to Palm Desert? How is the drive? Is it a tough drive? Thanks again!
baddeck is offline  
Aug 9th, 2010, 05:55 PM
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Not sure how much sense it would make to go to Las Vegas but it is certainly doable. The drive from Carlsbad to LV is about 5 hours and LV to Palm Desert about 4.5 hours. It's interstate all the way and rather boring. The thing to take into consideration is when you will be traveling. Interstate 15 out of LA into LV can be slow and backed up if it's the weekend. Friday nights going out and Sunday nights coming back can be torturous but if you are driving it on weekdays not a problem to do it in the time I mentioned.
paula1470 is offline  
Aug 10th, 2010, 09:11 AM
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If I were you, I'd move into San Diego city after "the kids" leave. A downtown base puts you close to a lot of interesting places. You could spend a day-or two- visiting the many museums in Balboa Park.

http://www.balboapark.org/

You might like to visit the USS Midway Museum on the Embarcadero:

http://www.midway.org/

Also, a drive out to Point Loma and the Cabrillo National Monument is almost mandatory!

http://www.nps.gov/cabr/

Old Town San Diego is also interesting, the site of the first Spanish settlement in what is now California.

http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=663

You can certainly visit all these places, and more, from Carlsbad, but it would involve a lot of freeway driving on a very busy freeway.
Barbara is offline  
Aug 10th, 2010, 09:27 AM
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Thanks everyone for your guidance. I think I'll let the Las Vegas thing go, it would be too much driving in the car plus there's lots of things to do and see in the area where we will be. I'm interested in the Temecula/Ilywyld area, maybe it would be nice to do a 3-day bed & breakfast thing that would give us time to do wine touring, hiking, tourist type of things, it looks like a pretty area. Does anyone have any thoughts on this - accommodation, wine tours, etc. Thanks!!
Micah3 is offline  
Aug 10th, 2010, 10:30 AM
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I think it's smart to give up Las Vegas. The wineries in Temecula are nice (I live 15 min from there) but it's a small region and you could see most of what you want in a day. You could probably spread it to 2 days since there are newer wineries on De Portola Rd. Idyllwild is pretty. They do get snow on occasion in the winter and it gets down into the 20's at night. So you would take a gamble on doing hiking there.

I like Barbara's idea of staying down in San Diego after the kids leave. I guess it depends on how many of those sights you have already seen with the rest of the family. Barbara, Sunday night I was at a friend's apartment in Little Italy. Remember the apartment Patrick rented the time we meet him for dinner? Well my friend's place is right by that building. We stood out and looked at the amazing views and lights of the city. Really made we want to stay downtown for a weekend even though I live relatively close.
paula1470 is offline  
Aug 10th, 2010, 10:31 AM
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OOPS meant to say really made ME want to stay downtown.
paula1470 is offline  
Aug 10th, 2010, 10:44 AM
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Paula, I know what you mean. I've had that same thought! That apartment that Patrick had was really nice.
Barbara is offline  
Aug 10th, 2010, 11:23 AM
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As a regular visitor to San Diego(son and 4 grandchildren), I would throw in my 2 cents as follows:
Without kids: Temecula (one night stay max); Laguna Beach and Newport Beach (one night stay)-- at Laguna get to Las Brisas for sunset and cocktails if not lunch/dinner; Coronado w/ tour of the HotelDel Coronado (1/2 day incl. lunch or dinner); if sunny and warmish, a ferry ride over to Catalina for lunch and same day return (kids might enjoy this too)
With kids: Aquarium in La Jolla; children's museum downtown SD (it is interactive and excellent.
aliced is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 01:05 PM
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Now I've changed my plan somewhat. After our time around Carlsbad (including day trips to San Diego, Temecula, etc) we are going to Santa Barbara for 4 days prior to driving to Palm Desert. We found a lovely place in Solvang called Hadston House and it is very reasonable for that time of year. We will take a day trip to Santa Barbara from there but we do want to do a couple wine tours and that area is supposed to be lovely. My biggest problem right now is this: we leave Carlsbad on the morning of Jan. 10th to drive to Santa Barbara/Solvang. Would it be advisable to stay one night in Santa Barbara and then go on to Solvang or ---just go straight to Solvang and commute from there? I'm unsure of the drive, so wonder if it would be good to just stay a day in santa Barbara - any thoughts?
Micah3 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 01:54 PM
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I'm not sure why you'd want to stay in Solvang necesssarily, but it's only 33 miles from Santa Barbara to Solvang, so I also think it would be kind of silly to change hotels. Can you not stay in Santa Barbara (much nicer town) instead? (Solvang is fine, but the sole reason it exists is tourists)
sf7307 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 02:24 PM
  #16  
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This is a bit of a problem for me at the moment because Santa Barbara looks beautiful and really - that is where I want to be. BUT - the prices for places are very high - the place I am looking at in Solvang is only $89 a night and it looks great ($250 per night in summer/fall) and it has really wonderful write ups under trip advisor. So - it's really a matter of finances - 3 nights @$89 vs 3 nights @ $250 per night. I'm really waffling about this, but I'm thinking a half hour drive isn't that bad if it's just a nice highway.
Thanks again
Micah3 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2010, 02:44 PM
  #17  
 
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Well, $89 a night is a great deal!
sf7307 is offline  

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