Got your seat belts fastened?
Got snacks, water bottles and most important, iPads to keep the kids amused?
The vast majority of us still vacation with our kids on road trips, AAA says.
Why Southern California is a great road trip bet: The distance isn’t too great and the trip has got everything you need for fun in the sun from great eats—got to try a fish taco!-- beaches to theme parks to museums.
San Diego is home, of course to the World Famous San Diego Zoo, Sea World and in nearby Carlsbad, LEGOLAND and the just-opened LEGOLAND Hotel that will be a hit for kids 10 and under who are LEGO lovers and Balboa Park that is home to 15 museums and performing arts venues as well as the San Diego Zoo. Here’s what I recently wrote about a visit there. (If you plan to hit major Southern California attractions, consider CityPASS that affords you discounted admission to four theme park, the San Diego Zoo and enables you to bypass admission lines.)
Next stop:Anaheim with Disneyland and California Adventure. (Your little princesses will love the new Fantasy Faire where they can meet their favorite princesses while everyone who is a fan of the "Cars" movies will love visiting Radiator Springs at California Adventure’s Cars Land.)
After all those museums, attractions and theme parks, Santa Monica is a good bet for some R&R with its famous pier (ride the Ferris wheel or go fishing) miles of beach, the chance to practice gymnastics right in the sand and shop till you drop on the pedestrian-only 3d Street Promenade where you might spy a celebrity or two. Visit The Getty Villa in Malibu(free) with its ancient art and terrific kids programs. ( I loved the Loews Santa Monica for its beach front local a short walk from the Pier and its Loews Loves Kids and Loews Loves Pets programs,
Final Stop: Los Angeles and Hollywood. You might want to park and take public transportation cabs to avoid the maddening traffic! Take your pick: Take in a baseball game, stroll down Rodeo Drive ( I recently stayed in the Montage Beverly Hills, where there’s a great view from where you’ll eat breakfast) compare your handprints to those of movie stars at TCL Chinese Theatre and then see how movie magic is made on the famous Studio Tour at Universal Studios Hollywood, Star gaze at different kinds of stars at the world-famous Griffith Observatory and take in all of the art at LACMA, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Have a taco for me.
Eileen Ogintz is the creator of the syndicated column and website Taking the Kids. She is also the author of the ten-book Kid’s Guide series to major American cities and the Great Smoky Mountains. The third-edition of the Kid’s Guide to NYC has just been released.