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Southern California Staycation Ideas

Hollywood SignSpring break is coming up!  If you have kids and live in Southern California, here are a few ideas for a fun family staycation in Los Angeles.  It’s fun to play tourist in your own city and if you’re lucky enough to live in or near Los Angeles, there are seemingly endless activities, beaches, museums, parks and more to explore with your family.  Please comment at the end of this blog and add ideas of your own!  I’d love to hear from you.

1.  Check out the natural beauty of Malibu Creek State Park, 1925 Las Virgenes Road, Calabasas, CA 91302  (818) 880-0367 http://www.malibucreekstatepark.org/index.html  Bring a picnic and enjoy the outdoors!  Our family loves to hike and to spend time outside.  It’s a relaxing and fun way to spend an afternoon together.

2.  Have lunch at Coast Restaurant at Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica followed by an afternoon at the beach.  Coast is one of our family’s favorite restaurants and it’s casual enough to bring the kids along.  Everything on the menu is delicious but my personal favorite is the tortilla soup.  Shutters On The Beach, 1 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405  (310) 458-0030  http://www.shuttersonthebeach.com/santa-monica-beach-restaurants

3.  Plan a fun dinner date night with your kids!  Here’s a great article with fun restaurant suggestions in Red Tricycle, a great online resource for families.   http://redtri.com/los-angeles/dinner-dates-with-the-kids/

4.  Take the kids for a horseback riding lesson or trail ride.  Will Rogers State Park, 1501 Will Rogers Park Road, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272 (310) 454-8212 offers horseback riding.  The cost is $65 per rider for a 1 hour trail ride.  Minimum age is 8 years old. No riding experience is necessary. http://www.willrogerstrailrides.com

Or, if your child is 8 years old and up, consider taking a 1 or 2 hour guided tour through the hills of Griffith Park to see the Hollywood sign, the Griffith Observatory and views of Downtown Los Angeles.  http://www.sunsetranchhollywood.com/day-tours/

5.  See a show at the Planetarium at the Griffith Observatory.  http://www.griffithobservatory.org/psoplanet.html  We’ve taken our daughters to see the “Water is Life” show and we all really enjoyed it!  Children 5 and under are only admitted to the first show, Tuesday-Friday at 12:45pm and Saturday and Sunday at 10:45am.  Buy your tickets the day of the show at the planetarium.  Tickets for adults are $7, kids 5-12 years old are $3, kids under 5 are free so long as they sit on your lap.

6.  Take a train ride!  I took our daughters on a train trip from downtown Los Angeles (Union Station) to Ventura a few years ago on Spring Break and we had a great time!  It’s a short ride (under 2 hours) and the girls loved looking out the train windows at the beautiful scenery.  It’s a fun adventure and a easy day trip.  There’s a great beach park that you can walk to from the station in Ventura.  http://www.amtrak.com/pacific-surfliner-train

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