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LA with teens after Xmas

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Brisbane, Australia
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LA with teens after Xmas

We have 4 days and 3 nights in LA (Hollywood area) with two teens (15yrs girl, 17yrs boy). Not doing theme parks because going to Orlando later in trip. Wondering about the following rough itinerary items (no particular order!):

Day in LA tour (or HOHO bus)?

San Diego Zoo tour

Warner Brisbane studio tour

Some sort of movie star homes tour - unsure which one?

Perhaps wax museum at some stage

Some type of sporting match

Totally open to suggestions. Big on fun, adventure and activity.

Welcome your feedback and ideas :)

Santa Monica, CA
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1. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

When will you be here (time of year)? Are you renting a car?

San Diego is a terribly long drive - at least 2.5 hours' - from here and the zoo is not worth that kind of hassle. Is there something particularly special about that zoo, or do your kids like any zoo? If the latter, the LA Zoo is terrific. Free and plentiful parking, great location within Griffith Park, entrance fees are half of SD, and we've been pumping money into the zoo for 10 years, so it's modern and clean.

In addition to our cheerful zoo, Griffith Park is giant, has lots of hiking trails, the Griffith Observatory, horseback riding laparks.org/dos/…activities.htm

The nearby Santa Monica mountains have lots of great trails to hike. If you'd like to do some family hikes, you can Google "hiking Santa Monica mountains"

Malibu for a day is so fun - tidepools, sand dune to run down, access to those pretty Santa Monica mountains, tons of beaches, from easy to rugged, very scenic drive, too. You can visit the Malibu Country Mart and likely see celebrities running errands.

Santa Monica/Venice for a day is great fun as well. Rent bikes and ride any of the 26 mile bike path, enjoy the arcade, rides, and small aquarium at Santa Monica Pier. Young people love shopping and strolling the 3rd St. Promenade for people watching and shopping. In Venice are the Venice Canals, an interesting walk along the canals to see the swanky homes (that were pretty dilapidated 30 years ago).

Do a downtown LA walking tour and include the Grammy Museum.

Speaking of museums, we have some great ones that young people really enjoy:

LaBrea tarpits (George C Page Museum). This is quick and easy and very cool to see what they've dug up from that property.

California Science Center - home of the space shuttle Endeavor, there are lots of interesting things here. In the same area is

Natural History Museum - one of the best dinosaur exhibits I've ever seen.

By the Science Center and NHM is the beautiful Exposition Park Rose Gardens (good photo op).

I mentioned the Grammy Museum in downtown LA.

Petersen Automotive Museum

Autry Museum - Western USA history.

See a sporting event (that's why we need the time of year).

Take a day trip to Joshua Tree National Park out by Palm Springs. It is a long day, but that park is very cool and other-worldly looking. I would drive 3 hours to wilderness over 3 hours to a zoo!

Here's the link to Adventure Activities in LA. See if there's anything your family may enjoy:

tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g32655-Activitie…

Brisbane, Australia
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2. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

Arriving of 27 December and won't have a car. Thought the HOHO bus might be helpful in navigating some of the main tourist attractions. Love your idea of a bike ride if the weathers ok.

Santa Monica, CA
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3. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

Well, no car makes San Diego even less desireable! While the HOHO buses can get you to some places, others, like LA Zoo and Joshua Tree NP will be a bit tough to reach. Don't overlook public transportation, either.

http://socaltransport.org/tm_pub_start.php

San Diego
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4. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

San Diego is a separate city with lots to see/do besides the zoo. I would not take a tour from LA to go there !! It is not really a day trip sort of place and as mentioned the drive back and forth is 2hrs. with out traffic and can be much longer than that!!

Brisbane, Australia
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5. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

I absolutely love zoos which is why I want to make the trip. Given more time I'd love to stay in San Diego for a few days however just don't have the time. The kids are keen to do all the typical touristy LA things.

Santa Monica...
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6. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

Without a car, a day trip to San Diego is out of the question. Even with a car, it's not really a day trip, the traffic can turn it into a nightmare day.

Santa Monica is a full day, you need a car to get to Malibu. Where are you staying, exactly?

San Diego
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7. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

I love the San Diego zoo but I don't think you have time on this trip.

It will be one full day out of your short LA visit. IF you took the train it would take just under 3hrs. each way! A bus tour in traffic could take the same amount of drive time.

Do you really want to spend 6 hrs. on the road?

Brisbane, Australia
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8. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

Yup- I see your point. Was gonna take an organised bus day trip down there. Thought we could then sleep or read on the bus! Staying at the Hollywood orchid hotel. Definitely want to spend time at Venice beach even though it's the middle of winter! What sports would you suggest to see while in LA?

Manhattan Beach...
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9. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

How about the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach. It's at the end of the Metro Blue line. You might be able to get a harbor/whale watching tour nearby, or through the Aquarium.

Rancho Santa...
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10. Re: LA with teens after Xmas

Yes, SD is a bad idea.

For a sporting event, check out a Kings game at the Staples Center. They won the Stanley Cup again. Hockey is an excellent spectator sport. You can get here by taking the Red Line to 7th & Metro. Walk down Figueroa or Flower to Olympic.

Your kids might enjoy outdoor ice-skating at LA Live or Pershing Square. This is an LA tradition at Christmas where they put up outdoor rinks. LA Live's is larger and more expensive. I find it very Vegas like. Pershing Square is more cheesy and low-key and less expensive. I prefer it.

I'd skip the whole Hollywood Homes tour. Dull as ditchwater and expensive. If you're up for the wax museum, go for it. It is pricey. The California Science Center with the space shuttle and the Natural History Museum are beautiful venues. You can get here via the Expo Line.

Kids might like to check out Amoeba Music. They have everything.

tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g32655-d59…

HTH