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Half day in LA area with three girls ages 14, 12 and 10. Looking for a (small) final Californian experience. What to do?

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Jul 11th, 2005, 09:31 PM
  #1
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Half day in LA area with three girls ages 14, 12 and 10. Looking for a (small) final Californian experience. What to do?

I have seamlessly planned a 2 week trip for my family of 5 (3 girls ages 14, 12 and 10) through three national parks in AZ and UT and then on to La Jolla for 6 days but I can't seem to nail down our last day (and night for that matter.)

We are flying out of LAX so we will be driving up from LaJolla thru San Juan Capistrano with a stop in Venice Beach. It would make sense to stay in the Santa Monica/Hermosa Beach area. I haven't booked anything because for some reason I feel that we should have some final Californian experience but what?!

I do realize that I am obsessing. Please help!

Signed,
Desperate in Chicago
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Jul 12th, 2005, 03:15 AM
  #2
 
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Knott's Berry Farm has something for all ages and is on the way.

How about surfing lessons for all in Huntington Beach?

How about a half-day fishing boat out of Redondo Pier?

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Jul 12th, 2005, 05:40 AM
  #3
 
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I think your idea to spend the last night in Santa Monica is a good one. There is some fun shopping or the Getty Museum is nearby. They would probably enjoy breakfast at the Omelette Parlor.
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Jul 12th, 2005, 06:29 AM
  #4
DDA
 
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Staying in Santa Monica would give you easy access to the Promonade--also not too far to Melrose Ave. and Amoeba Records--two of our teenage daughter's favorites.
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Jul 12th, 2005, 06:31 AM
  #5
DDA
 
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Actually, it must be Amoeba Music--showing my age!
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Jul 12th, 2005, 08:34 AM
  #6
lvk
 
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I can't think of a better "California Experience" than taking a bike ride or skate along the Strand. You could either stay in Santa Monica or Hermosa and get that experience.

However, if you feel you'll get enough beach time in La Jolla, then a little tour of the Hollywood sites and shopping on Melrose might be just the thing for your girls.
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Jul 12th, 2005, 08:35 AM
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Don't neglect the drive north just to get to Santa Monica for the night. Lot's to see and enjoy on the way up from La Jolla....breakfast in Del Mar or Laguna, browsing the crafts booths in Dana Point.....a visit to San Juan Capistranooo....lunch near Hermosa Beach or Manhattan Beach maybe?
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Jul 12th, 2005, 08:38 AM
  #8
lvk
 
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Oops, posted too soon. Your girls are also old enough for the Warner Brothers Studio tour. It's about a 2 1/2 hour tour.
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Jul 12th, 2005, 08:39 AM
  #9
ceg
 
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I would recommend the Warner Brothers tour. It is 2/3 hours and my girls LOVED it (They were 16 and 13 at the time)as did my DH and myself. It was very interesting looking into the "magic" of film and television. If your girls are fans of the show, Gilmore Girls they would have a special treat as they take you a set of the show along with the exterior scene. (as long as no filming is going on) They also have exhibits dedicated to Harry Potter and Friends.
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Jul 12th, 2005, 08:57 AM
  #10
 
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Just spent a day in Santa Monica with my 18 year old. She loves 3rd Street Promenade for the people watching and shopping, restaurants. It is a fun place to stroll and walk around.

We ate lunch at Broadway Deli and had a celebrity sighting. Tim Matheson, and she thought that was pretty cool. You can also walk to the pier and enjoy that.

We met friends at the Viceroy for drinks. Beautiful hotel. Never seen anything like it. Or you can go to Toppers for lunch or a drink, at the top of the Huntly about 16 stories and you can see the most amazing views of the beach and LA. It is pretty awesome at night too, but more of the bar scene then.

We also shopped a bit at Fred Segal. Very fun place to look. Couldn't buy much, but very unique items.

The area just has about everything. We stayed at the Best Western Ocean View on Ocean and were happy with the hotel. Great location, in the middle of everything. You could also take a drive up to Malibu and back for the views. The options are endless...
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Jul 12th, 2005, 02:32 PM
  #11
 
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You already have the quintessential SoCal experience on your itinerary: Venice Beach. I think your kids will enjoy all the wacky people there, and the alternative lifestyles they display. There are playgrounds, rollerblades and bikes to rent, and of course the beach.
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Jul 12th, 2005, 03:22 PM
  #12
mdv
 
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Another vote for Venice Beach and the WB tour.

If they are movie fans, try a movie at the El Capitan theater in Hollywood. It's a Disney movie showcase and a beautiful old theater. There's always a floorshow.

Hollywood Bowl might be an evening option,also.
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