California Must See and Activities
Known the world-over as the capital of luxury you’ll find everything one needs from exclusive boutiques to modern style. Home to Rodeo Drive, shoppers will find chic shops and designer labels. Stroll through Beverly Gardens Park or hop on the Trolley Tour. Your taste buds will savor the dining options including CUT, Spago, and Scarpetta. Take in the performing arts at Wallis Annenberg Center or visit the Paley Center for Media where you can select from a library with over 120,000 TV and radio programs.
Hollywood is often an essential part of any LA visit. Guests can experience Tinseltown at its finest at TCL Chinese Theatre, Hollywood Walk of Fame or any number of restaurants, boutiques, and bars frequented by the biggest names on the small and big screens. Grab a ticket for a tour (hiking, horseback, cycling, or busing). The bright white Hollywood sign and other iconic California images are yours for visiting. Guests will find expansive panoramic views of Los Angeles, Hollywood and the San Fernando Valley. Griffith Park, John Anson Ford Theater, Forest Lawn Memorial Park and Hollywood Reservoir are all available as well.
Visiting West Hollywood could offer you the opportunity to see some of the entertainment industry’s biggest names. WeHo is famous for rooftop pools and big breaks. The famous Sunset Strip runs right through this neighborhood offering numerous restaurants, bars, and comedy houses. Sunset Strip is also home to a world-famous LGBTQ+ community. The month of June is host to Southern California’s largest Gay Pride parade while October hosts the Halloween Costume Carnaval. The Abbey, House of Blues, Comedy Store, Saddle Ranch Chop House and Herringbone are all options within walking distance.
Malibu offers everything from beach to eats and everything in between. Zuma Beach is the largest beach around so it doesn’t seem crowded. Beachgoers will find everything from sand castles to boogie boarding. Visitors must stop and see The Malibu Pier, the most iconic landmark in the area. Since 1905, the pier has gone trough various renovations but kept it’s original design. The Malibu Pier is a fantastic destination for shopping, sightseeing, people watching and fishing. Diners will enjoy Malibu Farm, Paradise Cove Beach Café, or Lily’s and experience some fantastic seafood. Wine lovers will enjoy the Wine Safari touring the vineyards and Malibu Mountains. Tour Guest will not only get to taste locally produced wines, but also see Buffalo, camels, and giraffe while enjoying the beautiful scenery. Hikers will enjoy the Solstice Canyon Hike, Fido is even welcome on a leash. Many of Malibu’s hiking trails offer ocean, canyon and mountain views. Shoppers will delight in locally owned boutiques like Canvas. Shopping at the Country Mart of Lumber Yard will be a breeze.
When to Go
Much like most destinations, the best time to visit California depends on your plans. Best times to visit the beaches are from May – October; August/September are best for Southern California. Remember, the water may be cold even when the air temperatures are in the mid-high 70s. The best time to avoid crowds are during 2-3 weeks directly after Thanksgiving in late November/early December. If Disney Land is on your agenda, the best time to visit are weekdays in January, February, November and early December.
- California observes Pacific Time Zone.
- State tax is 7.5% with an additional local tax that adds as much a 1.5 to your bill.
- Smoking is legal for those 18 and over. However, it is illegal to smoke within 20 feet of most buildings.
- Pack and dress in layers. Temperatures can feel wildly different for guests from other parts of the world due to the constant ocean breezes.
- If you are heading to the theme parks, expect some admission discounts for those under 10 and adult prices for those 10 and over.
- If you plan on heading to a theme park, measure your kids beforehand to ensure they meet the height minimums before you arrive.
- If you visit a ski resort, check out the wide range of lessons and activities for guests of every age.
- If your family is planning a visit, check out local winery and brewery websites, many offer kid-friendly activities so the whole family is welcome.