I know, it took me forever to write about our trip to California. After our return to Utah I had a hard time with nausea and fatigue from the first trimester of my pregnancy and I was obligated to take some time off from blogging for three months. I am 26 weeks pregnant now and things feel much easier than before. Now it’s time to tell you a bit of all the fun we had there and some places to visit in California that might interest you for your next trip. First, I have to say that I intend to create a series of posts themed with our trip to California as I have so many things I want to share with you.
If you have read my blog anytime before than you may know that I was born in Brazil. My state has “only” 300 beaches and I lived not very far away from one of the most incredible paradise on Earth called Farol da Barra, so now you probably know how excited I was to see the beach again, since I’ve been living in US for the last eight years.
Getting a Toddler Ready for a Very Early Flight
Our flight was scheduled super early at 6 am and we had to leave our house at 4am in order to get a shuttle from my husband’s work to the airport. First, we thought this would be a problem for little Marie who hates to be awake. However, I planned to put her to bed at 7pm in the prior day to our trip with help of my good friend chamomile tea and full of hope that this would make her to wake up happy and rested and this was what really happened. At 4am we drove to the airport and she was full of smiles. The trip was short, no more than two hours and Marie behaved very well. I used some mom tricks to keep her quiet and distracted her while flying, and I will share with you soon in another post.
Plan Ahead To Pay For Expensive Parking Fees
You have to keep in mind however if you are planning a trip to California be ready to pay some exorbitant fees for parking spaces. Frustrating to say that our first appointment was at the Brazilian Consulate, which costed us $20 for only 2 hours parking and this is a pattern in the whole state, I guess. There’s not such thing as free or cheap parking spaces. The best deal we got there when it comes to this subject was in Laguna Beach, where we paid $15 for 4 hours parking in the street. When we were planning our trip we didn’t count in our budget parking fees, maybe because we are just poorly accustomed with how things are in Utah.
Places To Visit In California
The Aquarium Of Pacific
After our visit to the Brazilian Consulate, we arrived to the hotel with plenty of time to rest before our first appointment in our itinerary at the Aquarium of Pacific. We had much fun seeing all of those exotic marine creatures. Some really surprised us for being incredibly big and hard to believe they are real. The good thing about visiting this place is not only the beautiful animals but, also the price. They have something called “After Hours Tickets” that allows you to pay half of the price that you would normally do during the day. Kids under age of three don’t pay.
A Short Walk Through The Rainbow Harbor
After visiting the aquarium we took a refreshing walk through the Rainbow Harbor, which has a beautiful architecture as if was just a little pier forgotten by time with its vintage houses made mostly of restaurants and local stores.
The Queen Mary
Our second day in California was filled with two activities. We went first to visit the Queen Mary that had a cool exposition of the Princess Diana Dresses. We were impressed by the beautiful and well conserved architecture of the ship. To our surprise we could also see a Russian submarine birthed right in front the Queen Mary called the Scorpion, a Soviet-built vessel that is an aging reminder of the Cold War. Unfortunately, it wasn’t open to the public and I am not sure if it ever was.
After that we head off to Newport for the Whale Watching with Davey’s Locker. That cost us only $10 per adult through Travelzoo. Kids under 3 are free. Newport is a cute city nearby the beach that is full of life and activities. Once there, you will feel like you are in one of those small country coast cities where the progress of big buildings did not arrive yet.
The beachfront at Newport is filled with little stores, restaurants and an amusement park. We had much fun there. While in the boat we saw a wedding party happening on a Yacht passing by but, unfortunately our sight seeing for whales failed. All we were able to see was a big shadow of one of those submarine monsters passing right under our boat. Frustrating, I know. But, don’t get impressed by our bad luck and still include this activity in your list of places to visit in California if you are planing your next vacation to there.
Instead of whales we could see the beauty and sympathy of Dolphins that weren’t shy at all to jump for us. I had never seen so many at once. Seemed like they were trying to do their best to compensate our frustration for not being able to see a whale.
The next day we went to visit Hollywood and this is the biggest story to tell about our trip. But, I will save all the gossips for the next post as I don’t want to make this one a boring long reading.