Los Angeles Hotels Blog

July 18, 2010

Los Angeles For The Whole Family

When people think of visiting Southern California with their kids, they automatically think of Disneyland. And, while Disneyland and The California Adventure are great places to visit, you might want to check out some of the other kid-friendly spots in the greater Los Angeles area as well.

Santa Monica Pier

Beaches are always a family favorite, and the Los Angeles area certainly has a number that appeal to families with kids. One beach always fun for families to visit is Santa Monica Beach and Pier. Aside from a fun day at the beach playing on the sand, swimming in the ocean, or watching surfers, the Santa Monica Pier has many different attractions which will keep your family busy during the day and night, with parking only $7 to $8 for an entire day, depending on the time of year you visit.

Always a favorite with the kids is the Playland Arcade, with redemption games where you can redeem winning coupons for prizes. You have your choice of pinball machines, skeeball, Pac Man, and numerous other video games. There are over 200 games in the Playland Arcade.

Another Pier favorite is Pacific Park, a small amusement park with 12 rides. Entrance to Pacific Park is free, while the individual rides charge a fee. You can buy a wrist band for unlimited rides for $16.95 for adults and $8.95 for children. There are 6 adult rides and 6 rides geared for children. Adult rides include a roller coaster, Ferris wheel, and, a crowd favorite, the bumper cars.

Want a little education with your fun? Take the kids to the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium, located at Santa Monica Pier. Exhibits on display include the kelp forest tank, the octopus tank, shark and ray tanks, and the touch tanks, where the kids can touch such sea creatures like sea stars, crabs, sea urchins, snails, kelp and sea cucumbers.

Hollywood and Highland

Located, where else, but at the corner of Hollywood and Highland in Hollywood, Hollywood and Highland is a collection of theaters, shops, restaurants and, yes, even an upscale bowling alley. You’ll want to visit Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, where you can see and touch the handprints and footprints of the stars.

If you’re into movie stars and other celebrities, you might want to go across the street from Hollywood and Highland Center and visit the Hollywood Wax Museum, a cheesy wax museum which immortalizes such stars and characters as Clint Eastwood, Elton John, Elvis, Dracula, Harry Potter, Lucy Lawless, John Travolta and Uma Thurman from “Pulp Fiction,” and, of course, the cast of “Baywatch.”

Knott’s Berry Farm

Knott’s Berry Farm, located in Buena Park in Orange County, is a theme park with a large number of roller coaster and other thrill rides, including GhostRider, one of the longest and tallest wooden roller coasters in the world, with a 108-foot drop G-forces of 3.14! Not thrilling enough for you? How about the Perilous Plunge, a water thrill ride, which sends boats down a 115-foot water chute, which is just 34 feet shorter than Niagara Falls. For the younger set, there’s Camp Snoopy with tamer rides, including a roller coaster designed just for kids.

Universal Studios Hollywood – Studio Tour

While visiting Los Angeles, take a tour of what makes Los Angeles famous – movies and television shows. While visiting Universal Studios Hollywood be sure to take the Studio Tour where you tour the backlot and visit the sets where movies and television shows have been filmed and are currently in production. Rides at Universal Studios Hollywood include Back to the Future flight simulator ride, the Jurassic Park raft ride and the Revenge of the Mummy roller coaster.

Free Television Show Tapings

A Studio Tour at Universal Studios Hollywood isn’t free, but there are plenty of television tapings you can get free tickets to while visiting Los Angeles. There are tickets to game shows such as Deal or No Deal, as well as to shows like Jeopardy and Dr. Phil. A good website to order tickets is www.tvtix.com.

As you can see, visiting Los Angeles gives your family a vacation filled with sun, sand, thrilling rides, Hollywood, and, yes, there’s still always Disneyland.

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