California Adventure: Santa Monica & Hollywood Hills

Friday, 23 April 2010

Continuing our California adventure, we drove from Santa Barbara south towards LA. It was quite surreal to cruise through Malibu... aren't places you've always heard about but never seen in real life SO different to what you imagined?

The surf was awash against the lineup of gorgeous houses on the shoreline, but this was the only glimpse we could manage (above) before heading off for Santa Monica.

A friend had told me Santa Monica had a wonderful artsy vibe, and she was right - even in the height of winter, it was fun to cruise the streets and play on the pier where a retro collection of rides and games awaited. Loved Zoltar (below right) from the movie Big with Tom Hanks and especially loved the clown face game from the cover of our DVD set of Curb Your Enthusiasm (above). Wonderfully surreal!

The kids had a ball playing the parlour games and we took a ride on the mini Ferris wheel with spectacular views over Santa Monica and the bay. We even waved hello to Australia, way across the Pacific ocean miles.

After coming down from the Ferris wheel experience...

We posed for obligatory photos on the pier...

...before getting stuck into the rides and games again (warning: you need to walk back past all this to get off the pier - consider blindfolds and earplugs if you don't want to see more coinage evaporate).

Lunch was a picnic of delicious sandwiches at the Palisades Park overlooking the beach.

Even with a strong wind blowing, it was a divine afternoon, sitting under the palm trees and taking in the stunning ocean views.

It was then back in the car and into Los Angeles before the peak hour traffic set in. We had to, of course, wend our way up the Hollywood Hills to get as close as humanly possible to that Sign.

Warning: we packed the journey in three-quarters of the way up. It's quite a meandering journey through a maze of teensy lanes to get there... a journey that takes longer than you think - especially when you have two exhausted, hungry, Disneyland-desperate kids in the car and LA peak hour is looming.

Nonetheless, we made it close enough to get some shots of the sign, and then zipped back down the hill - destination: Anaheim...

...where we saw an evening glimpse... of some dreams that may come true...

Coming soon - Disneyland!

California Adventure: The Streets of San Francisco - Day One
California Adventure: The Streets of San Francisco - Day Two
California Adventure: The Streets of San Francisco - Day Three
California Adventure: The Streets of San Francisco - Day Four
California Adventure: Carmel-on-Sea
California Adventure: The Big Sur
California Adventure: Santa Barbara Day One
California Adventure: Santa Barbara Day Two


Posie Patchwork said...

Love this post & the last one on Santa Barbara - when you got there in the late afternoon with that fading light effect on the beach, gorgeous. Love Posie

Annette Piper said...

What wonderful photos, it looks like you had a fabulous, busy time!

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