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Los Angeles travel guide
Aug 6, 2018
3-Day Los Angeles Trip-Planning Tips
Kids have little patience for history and art unless they’re
inclined or are on a field trip with their friends. With their family
members, wires short circuit a little faster. As much as LA is about
glitzy Hollywood destinations, splashy nightclubs, sprawling beaches
and unique cultural hotspots, there are also many kid-friendly
attractions for the little ones!
So, where do we begin? Let’s start with putting together a simple,
doable, budget-friendly 3-day trip that will keep the kids engaged and
adults sane. The secret is in slotting in an activity or two during the
day...or night, depending on what you like... into the schedule. You
could pencil it in between their naps on the rented charter bus or find
a place where there’s something for them to do while YOU explore.
With the all-year
amazing weather in Los Angeles, it means ANY TIME
of the year is a good time to visit. Avoiding big summer crowds and
paying exorbitant prices for admission is possible. So, without further
ado, let’s get started with a mind-blowing Day One in LA.
LA Trip Plan for Day One:
Whipping Everyone into High Gear
Universal Studios Hollywood
100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City, CA 91608
The child in you will smile your way through the door and you can
easily spend the entire day going from ride to ride to ride. The lines
can be grueling, so, if you’re celebrating a birthday or giving the
tickets away as gifts, it pays to get
the VIP Pass or Express Pass.
This way, you can indulge in Harry
Potter rides and simulations, Flight of the Hippogriff,
Fast and Furious,
King Kong 360 3D,
Kung Fu Panda,
The Walking Dead,
and Revenge of The Mummy.
Otherwise, there are other fun attractions like The Universal's Animal Actors,
WaterWorld, Character Sightings,
Silly Swirly Fun Rides,
Special Effects Studio,
Super Silly Fun Land
and The World Famous
The Exclusive or Limited VIP Experience is for those who would like to
start their day off bright and early with a light breakfast. After
that, you'd be escorted through popular themed rides, enjoy exclusive
park benefits like special seats, savor delicious lunch courtesy of the
Universal’s very own executive chefs, and enjoy VIP entry into the
park. It’s basically celebrity
treatment at the heart of Hollywood. It’s hard to beat.
- Come early!
- If you can afford it, purchase the VIP Pass
- Sunscreen. Need we say more?
- Hydrate and wear the right footwear
- Get ready to spend the entire day at the park
- Start the day off with the Studio Tour FIRST to
get the basic idea of what you can expect
- Bring a change of clothes for the kids.
- Parking is expensive. So, it encourages groups
to pool money together and get their own charter buses for the trip. It
will be worth the headache.
Be Awed with the Awesomeness of Sunset Boulevard
We think you can only pack so much thrill into one day so,
to take things down a notch, how about a cool view of the sun setting
in the horizon, dream-like drives away from urban turbulence, and a
host of restaurants, pubs, and quaint food outlets to chill out with
the kids in?
And remember us talking about how to strike a balance between getting
what your kids want and what YOU
want out of the trip? Well, this is one. Sunset Boulevard was
once known for its active nightlife in the 1950s and a street
prostitution hub. It is now a known home to landmarks like Nickelodeon on Sunset,
Crossroads of the World,
Hollywood Athletic Club,
Book Soup, UCLA, Rock Wall, Beverly Hills Hotel,
and the Directors Guild
of America headquarters.
Tease your palates with tantalizing dishes (costly as the experience
may be) at the Wolfgang
Puck restaurant, Spago, if your budget allows for it. To
sample true blue Old
Hollywood-style glamor, either stay or eat at Chateau Marmont Hotel.
As it regained its reputation as an LA iconic landmark, the hotel was
featured briefly in the 2016 hit film, La La Land. The
hotel bar is open from 12am - 7am so, if you want to chill till late,
that would be no problem at all!
Address: 8221 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90046
8866 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Hours: Mon to Thur 12pm - 3pm, 6pm - 11pm; Fri 12pm - 3pm, 6pm - 12am;
Sat 6pm - 12am; Sun 6pm - 11pm
Kitchen & Wine
8868 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Hours: Daily 5.20pm - 10pm
8351 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90069
Hours: Sun to Thur 11am - 2am; Fri and Sat 11am - 3am
7986 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90046
Hours: Mon and Tues 12.30pm - 11pm; Closed on Wed; Thur and Fri 12.30pm
- 11pm; Sat and Sun 4pm - 11pm
3508 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
Hours: Daily 11am - 10pm; Closed on Monday
2148 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
Hours: Mon to Thur 12pm - 10pm; Fri 12pm - 12am; Sat 11.30am - 12am;
Sun 11.30am - 10pm
5541 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028
Hours: Daily 11am - 12am
5216 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027
Hours: Daily 7.30am - 8pm
LA Trip Plan for Day Two:
Being a Beach Bum in Santa Monica
If Santa Monica was known for just one thing, it would have to be its beaches.
Stretches upon stretches of beautiful white, sandy beaches are open but
the Santa Monica State
Beach is best for families because of its cleanliness,
sheer size and strategic location to other fun attractions. When you’re
done with the beach and its pier, street performers put on street shows
right outside. Always a walk away from the beach, there are
kid-friendly restaurants, bars, and clubs to hop into.
You can zip your way around the beachside with a rented scooter, walk
or jog along the 3-mile iconic shoreline, enjoy skateboarding, bike
riding and in-line skating at The
Cove Skatepark, take wonderful pictures at the 3 community gardens
a stone’s throw away from the beach, sign up for cultural and art
programs with The Camera
Obscura Art Lab, or enjoy world-class performances at the
historic Miles Memorial
Spend a few hours swimming, playing volleyball, building sandcastles,
surfing or sunbathing along the beaches and then head over to a
neighboring cafe or restaurant to fill up.
Experienced, professionally-trained lifeguards man on the beach and
there are modern amenities like bathrooms and shower stations
throughout it so you don't have to scuttle around looking for them.
People love the beach so much that they go out of their way to ensure
that visitors respect the grounds as much as THEY
do...and that’s a cool thing to do!
Hitting the Santa Monica State Beach
Pacific Coast Hwy, Santa Monica, CA 90401
If you’re hitting the beach, keep the following numbers handy, for both
information and emergencies.
- (310) 394-3261
- (310) 458-8491
- (310) 458-8695
The Cove State
Park allows for bicycle riding, skateboarding, in-line
skating with full amenities of bowls, ramps, stairs, pool with tile
coping and more. Registration of $10 for Youth (6 - 17), $15 for Santa
Monica Residents, $16.50 for Non-Residents and protective gear (for
everyone) is required. They do not permit those age 6 and younger into
the park while those under the age of 12 must have an accompanying
adult too. Other non-permitted items include food, drinks, glass
bottles, and pets. Please check its official website for more
information before making your way there.
The three community
gardens are romantic and educational for people of all
ages. It’s, after all, a unique learning garden, with throngs of people
coming from all over Santa Monica into the gardens to start their own
patches of plants, shrubs, flowers, fruits, and vegetables.
The Camera Obscura Art Lab
is all about hands-on activities related to the local art and cultural
scene. In the meantime, it is always curtain call time at The Miles Memorial Playhouse.
Located 8 blocks away from the main beach area, the playhouse has been
providing its community with affordable, experimental and mind-blowing
entertainment since 1929. Programs like Downbeat 720, the Santa Monica International Teen
Film Festival, Fireside
at the Miles and its hosting of dance and theatrical
events from all around the country is well known.
Restaurants, cafes and quaint diners to check out around Santa Monica:
2627 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90403
Hours: Daily 6pm - 11pm
5487, 1213 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90403
220 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Hours: Monday to Sat 11am - 8.30pm' Sun 11am - 7.30pm
3321 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405
Hours: Mon to Thur 11.30am - 3pm, 5pm - 10pm; Fri 11.30am - 3pm, 5pm -
11pm; Sat 5pm - 11pm; Sun 5pm - 9pm
Misfit Restaurant and Bar
25 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Hours: Mon, Tue and Wed 12pm - 12am; Thur, Fri and Sat 12pm - 1am; Sun
10.30am - 11pm
814 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Hours: Daily 8am - 1am
1652 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Hours: Mon to Sat 11.30am - 10.30pm; Sun 4pm - 10.30pm
LA Trip Plan for Day Three:
Slaying The Third Day with Maximum Throttle
Being the final day of the short LA trip, we think you
should fill it up with as many memorable things to do as possible. It’s
time to hop on the rented charter bus and head out to iconic landmarks,
historic sites and, if time permits, some museums. And here are a few
options to choose from.
Anaheim - Disney but Not Disney
Truth be told, Anaheim
is the kind of shopping destination, dining haven and entertainment
paradise that deserves an entire day on its own. With
kids, we’d say you should spend at least 3 to 5 hours touring the
sprawling city. Located smack in the middle of Disney resort, it is
fondly nicknamed “shoppertainment
center”. As it should!
The main reason for its construction in 2001 was to provide a break
from thrilling rides and let visitors continue to enjoy the countless
Disney-themed outlets without stacking it too high. It’s a place to
slow down after a trip to Disneyland, enjoy a meal or beer in an
open-air cafe, find a place to people-watch or take pictures. It has
many outlets for souvenir shopping for your friends back home. Since
we’ve excluded Disneyland
for this trip-planning article, we assume you’d like to shop for
something “Disney” to mark your trip to LA.
And if you’re not keen to watch a movie while on a holiday (there’s Netflix everywhere
you go and you can watch a movie any other time, anyway), the
entertainers roaming along the streets will have you in stitches.
Santa Monica Pier
Monica Pier A, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Opens 24 hours a day
is a word that would summarily define the experience at Santa Monica Pier.
It gives your mind a quick brush stroke of what the city of Santa
Monica is like from a historical and modern perspective.
There's the one-of-a-kind, family-friendly Pacific Park,
carousels hippodrome from the 1920s, the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium,
shops, Playland Arcade
with over 200 types of games, a trapeze school, an over-the-water Ferris Wheel,
restaurants, cafes, bakeries and restaurants of all kinds to enjoy. In
summer, families head out for weekly outdoor concerts, movies, and kid
activities. So popular is the pier, it was featured in films like Charlie's Angels, South Park, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,
The Mod Squad,
24, 90210, Keeping Up with the Kardashians,
just to name a few.
The historic landmark of LA is the perfect place for a romantic walk, a
weekend outing and celebratory night-out with friends. The timeless
100-year-old wooden wharf serves as an entertainment and cultural hub
for both tourists and locals alike.
Whichever way you wish to spend the last day of your vacation in LA, to
either live it up till the wee hours of the morning or to spend an hour
having lunch with your family, the decision is yours to make. But one
thing is for sure - it will be unforgettable. And don’t forget, this is
also where modern fads are often created so, you might experience the
next “viral thing” on the internet before it hits the internet. Charge your smartphone.
California Science Center
Exposition Park Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90037
Admission: No fee for entrance into the center's permanent exhibits and
galleries. Additional fees required for special events, exhibits, and
Hours: Daily 10am - 5pm
There’s nothing to complain about this place! It’s free, it’s fun, it’s awesomely
huge, it’s always changing,
the people are friendly, there are hundreds of animals and plants to
explore and learn about, there’s an IMAX
(which is NOT
free, by the way) and it’s an amazing experience for both kids and
adults alike. The science center is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums,
the Association of Zoos
and Aquariums, is affiliated with the Smithsonian Affiliations Program,
and is a member of the Association
of Science and Technology Centers. It’s got an iron-clad
backing, as you can see.
With over 100 permanent exhibits like Ecosystems, Creative World, World of Life, Air and Space Exhibits,
Aircraft, Human Spacecraft,
and Robotic Spacecraft,
the California Science
Center is the West Coast’s largest science center. It is
also home to the largest (at the point of writing this article - it’s
LA, you’ll never know when things change) IMAX screen in all of LA, measuring up to 7-stories high.
We know the kids are on a break but fun, relatable interactive learning
WHILE on a break can’t be a bad thing. And if time permits, there are
other interesting attractions within an earshot from the science
center, namely The
African American Museum, The Rose Garden with
its beautiful fountain and restaurants to patronize.
visiting the California
- Arrive as early as possible during weekends but
after 1pm (after grabbing lunch) on weekdays of fall, winter, and spring
- Grab advanced tickets online for Special
Exhibits, IMAX and Endeavour
- Check social media, the website or the
Information Counter to get an overview of the day's events
- Don't miss Creative World, Ecosystems, World of
Life if you're visiting with kids age 7 or younger
- Expect to crowd-wrestle during weekends with
throngs of tourists and other vacationing families
- They no longer hand out single-use plastics as a
roll-out of their environmentally friendly new practices. It helps keep
fishes and marine animals safe, so, let’s be a part of that positive
- Wear the right footwear because there will be a
lot of legwork.
African American Museum
600 State Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90037
Hours: Daily 10am - 5pm; Closed on Monday
3911 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles, CA 90037
2284 S Figueroa St, Los Angeles, CA 90007-2049
514 W Adams Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90007-2616
Awareness Labyrinth and Gardens
3500 W Adams Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90018-1822
Hours: Tue, Wed, Thur, Fri and Sun 12pm - 4pm; Closed on Sat and Mon
800 W Olympic Blvd, L.A. Live, Los Angeles, CA 90015-1360
2800 E Observatory Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90027
Hours: Tue to Friday 12pm - 10pm; Sat and Sun 10am - 10pm; Closed on
Admission: $7 for Adults, $5 for Students with ID and Seniors, $3 for
Children (5 - 12); Free Admission for Children age 5 and under
The best time to visit
the observatory is towards evening, just before the sun
goes down. With sunlight still streaming in, you’ll get to see the
beautiful park for what it is, instead of having to poke around the
park in the dark (the park is open as usual until 10pm but normal sight
is admittedly a little underwhelming in the dark).
No admission fee
is required for entrance into Griffith Park. The reason people advise
you to visit just before sundown is that the 4,100-acre natural
chaparral-covered, landscaped municipal parkland is also a popular
picnic spot in the United States. At the elevation level of between 400
and 1,600 feet above sea level, it offers a refreshing
vantage point and is an amazing way to cap off your trip, complete with
postcard-ready pictures of the Hollywood
Sign, the cityscape of LA, mountain ranges, sun, and sky.
You can find and join interactive programs, explore indoor and outdoor
exhibits which include the Gunther
Depths of Space, and other new exhibits on its lawn and
terraces. Free telescopes, in the meantime, are strewn throughout its
property for free use. Their website and social media are updated with
details related to their monthly youth programs if you're
Conclusion of your 3-Day Family Trip to Los Angeles
There’s only so much you can pack into three days but we
trust we’ve got the top attractions covered. It will be fun for BOTH kids and adults
alike! The kiddos will have fun playing at a theme park
while getting lots of opportunities for Instagram pictures
with their favorite TV or movie characters. We also snuck in a few
hours of peace and tranquility at a garden or park, and then you can
upend everything about the "vacation"
by letting them learn about nature and science outside of a classroom!
All of this while pigging out at wonderful diners, packing in the night
with a trip to a chic wine bar, and then wake up to a full day of
events like an "escapade"
to an Escape Room
and then a trip to Disney-themed
Rent an Affordable, Private Charter Bus for a
Tour of Los Angeles is Your Best Bet
Getting a personalized
charter bus tour around Los Angeles based on your own
personal preferences, the age of your children), people in your group
and special requirements will make a world of difference. Most
organized tours are pretty rushed although there’s nothing wrong about
joining them if you’re trying to get the best bang for the buck.
Sometimes, however, the charter bus
tour can be tailor-made
to suit your own terms. This list is not an end-all,
be-all. You’re free to add and remove as you wish while surfing the
internet and organizing your itinerary. Bus Charter LA
is the ground transportation company you’d want to get in touch with if
you're looking for a reliable
charter bus company in Los Angeles. When you contact us,
and a free quote
are based on what you need for ground transportation. Call 1-800-304-1993
right now or complete this online form and submit it and we’ll get back
to you with an absolutely obligation-free quote right away!
We hope to hear from you soon!
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