Time for a Trip to LA? Here’s Your Guide

Planning your Trip to Los Angeles

If you’ve been to the typical vacation spots – Florida, Caribbean, Mexico, etc., it’s time to change it up and add a “new” destination to the mix. Los Angeles, California will give you a bit of everything you can want or need in a vacation – sights, beach, activities, food and more!

Plan your Trip to LA

A trip to LA gives you the chance to explore neighboring cities in southern California. Long Beach, Anaheim, Malibu, Santa Monica are all nearby and each have things to do. As a major city known for entertainment, LA always has a raft of upcoming events- special events, game, concert or festival. The chance to see a great show or band may help you settle on your travel dates.

LAX (Los Angeles Airport) is a very busy airport with lots of airline and flight choices so booking your flight is easy. While you could try getting around the LA area on public transit (subway, light rail or bus), taxi or Uber, it’s a lot easier to rent a car. Traffic in the LA area can be challenging and very busy so allowing extra travel time for traffic is a necessity.

With hundreds of Los Angeles area hotels, there’s no shortage of places to stay. Think of your hotel as your “home base” because your LA and area vacation will have you taking day trips in and around LA. For example, Disneyland is in Anaheim (southeast from LA); the Queen Mary ship is in Long Beach (south from LA). Santa Barbara is northwest from LA; Newport Beach is southeast from LA.

Where to Stay in LA

While you can, of course, stay anywhere you want in LA, there are some distinct areas to consider: Hollywood/Beverly Hills (movie history, studios, walk of fame, high-end shopping); Santa Monica/Malibu (beach, pier, dining, outdoors); Downtown LA (events, dining, nightlife) and Venice Beach (people-watching, boardwalk, boutique shops) among others. It’s a pretty good idea to figure out what you want to do and see (including distance, traffic and total time to get there) before you book your hotel.  Take a good look at the images, descriptions and reviews of Los Angeles hotels. There are hundreds of hotels to choose from based on our budget and preferences.

Photo by MarkTravel via Trover.com

Cool Things to see and do in LA

Los Angeles City Tour – To maximize your trip to LA, this is the way to go in one day. You’ll get the full LA experience including Santa Monica, Venice Beach, Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive, Hollywood Walk of Fame and more.

Hollywood Experience Tour – Your top choice, the immersive Hollywood experience, is right here. You’ll see the Hollywood sign, landmarks, celebrity homes and cruise Hollywood Boulevard. Last up, Paramount Studios, a busy and unique working studio. The odds are you will see familiar actors on the lot, and you will definitely see movie sets and props.

Photo by MarkTravel via Trover.com

The Getty Center – The building itself is an architectural masterpiece containing some of the finest art in the world. Visitors rave, and many recommend a tour. A private tour will get you past the lines and provide expert insight into this spectacular collection.

La Brea Tar Pits Tour by Segway– The Tar Pits contain hot bubbling tar and have been in existence for 40,000 years. The neighboring Page Museum contains tar pits artifacts and one of the world’s largest collections of Ice Age fossils. It’s hard to believe that this is in Los Angeles. This is a really different and unique experience!

Sunset Strip Walking Tour – It’s 1.5 miles of quintessential LA on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood. This stretch contains the Roxy Theatre, Whisky a Go Go, and the Comedy Store, plus shops, bars, and restaurants. This is the time to walk in LA and find out about the history of LA and the Sunset Strip!

With all there is to see and experience in Los Angeles, make your trip to LA a memorable one! Enjoy the California sunshine and plan your trip to see all that Los Angeles and area has to offer!

Vacation Escape to Marathon and the Florida Keys

The odds are very good that you’ve never heard of Marathon, Florida. Located in the middle of the Florida Keys (90 miles south of Miami and 45 miles north of Key West), Marathon is actually a collection of seven islands in a 10-mile long community. Marathon is known for its tropical climate and laid back lifestyle and is the boating and family destination of the Florida Keys.

If you are looking for your next beach getaway this is it – desirable beaches, seaside restaurants and a host of water activities including sailing, fishing, boating, wreck and reef diving, and more. And there are galleries, museums, parks, golf, shopping, and theaters for your time on dry land. The Florida Keys are unique and Marathon blends the laid back “Keys” lifestyle with lots of activities for vacationers.

Marathon1

Photo by Gillian Kniveton via Trover.com

Top Hotel Choices in Marathon, Florida

Like most beach destinations, there’s no shortage of motels and hotels in Marathon. But given how special vacation time is, it’s a good idea to take a close look at your hotel options and select the one that most suits you and your family. Here are some of the best family resorts in Marathon:

–          Tranquility Bay Beach House Resort: Perhaps the best resort in Marathon because of its all-Florida experience. This is a small resort with beach houses, award-winning cuisine and a private sandy beach on the Gulf of Mexico.

Marathon2

Photo by Ting Teng via Trover.com

–          Hawks Cay Florida Keys Resort: This resort has garnered a number of Oyster Awards including Best Value, Luxury and Kid-Friendly Hotel in the Florida Keys. With its calm beach and family-friendly features, it’s hard to go wrong staying here.

–          Hyatt Place Marathon Florida Keys: With a historic lighthouse on site, this property is centrally located and walking distance from attractions. It of course features Hyatt amenities and outstanding guest service.

Top Things to do in Marathon, Florida

On the “must do and try” list in Marathon is:

–          Fish Tales Market & Eatery: If you like to eat fish, this is the place. Freshly caught fish of all kinds, homemade soups and perhaps the best Key Lime Pie in the Keys!

–          Pigeon Key Helicopter Tour: Get a bird’s eye view of Marathon, the Florida Keys, and the area’s crystal clear waters and beaches. You’ll also see the historic Sombrero Lighthouse and marine wildlife which may include bull sharks, sea turtles, manatees, tarpon and dolphins.

–          Marathon Diving & Snorkeling: Marathon’s reefs offer coral and fish life plus modern and historical shipwrecks for an incredible underwater experience. There are five different dive areas including the traditional favorite – Sombrero Reef.

–          The Turtle Hospital: Since its opening in 1986, the Turtle Hospital has treated and released over 1500 sea turtles back to the ocean. Guided Educational Experiences are offered to the public seven days a week.

Marathon3
Photo by Turtles Travel via Trover.com

–          Crane Point Museum and Nature Center:  Crane Point Museum contains historic area artifacts dating back to prehistoric Indians. Crane Point sits on 64 acres of trees and vegetation and has walking trails that will take you on a hike through Florida’s nature and history.

It’s time to get back to Florida and discover Marathon and the Florida Keys!