Jennifer goes to San Francisco

I’m back to my vacation and the last stop on our tour of California – San Francisco.

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Vista along 17-Mile Drive

On the way to San Francisco, my husband and I stopped in Monterrey and drove the 17-Mile Drive. This picturesque road is not to be missed. It winds through Pacific Grove and Pebble Beach. We stopped several times on our drive to take in the beautiful vistas and to see the sea lions and otters.

San Francisco was just as I imagined it and was one of my favorite cities on our trip. The weather was nice, but cooler. If you go, take a light jacket because you’ll need it, especially with the breeze coming off the water.

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Coit Tower

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View from Telegraph Hill

In San Francisco, we saw the Painted Ladies and went up to Coit Tower, which is on Telegraph Hill. We also went to Alcatraz where Al Capone and Robert Stroud were once inmates.

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Painted Ladies

Most of our time was spent at Fisherman’s Wharf, which is huge and offers a variety of shops and dining options. The sea lions have their own dock. They are loud, but adorable.

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Fisherman’s Wharf

One of my favorite places was Ghirardelli Square.  We stopped in the Original Ghirardelli Ice Cream & Chocolate Shop and got hot fudge sundaes. We also sampled some of the chocolate. This was a highlight for me. It gets crowded — the line was out the door when we went — but it moves fast and is worth the visit.

 

 

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Sea lions on dock

Now, this leads me to what I believe is not worth the time — the cable car. My husband bought tickets for the cable car because it was the one thing he really wanted to do in San Francisco. The line was long, but according to the sign, the wait was supposed to be only an hour. I later found out that the wait can be over two hours in the summer. We waited about two and half hours and, when we finally got on, the cable broke down. No, I’m not joking. It was another half hour before the cable was back up and we got our ride. If, like my husband, the cable car is a must do, then be prepared to wait a long time. I don’t like long waits and, with so many other things to do in San Francisco, I don’t recommend a cable car ride.

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Golden Gate Bridge

You can take the time you don’t spend in line waiting for a cable car ride and go to the Golden Gate Bridge and Walt Disney Family Museum, which is what we did on our last day in San Francisco. I wish we’d planned for more time at the Walt Disney Family Museum. It is an interactive museum, which means you should plan two to three hours. We didn’t have that much time, but I still enjoyed learning about the Disney family and how Disneyland and Disney World came to be.

Have you been to San Francisco? If so, what was your favorite thing to do?

 

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Jennifer goes to Los Angeles

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Me with an Academy Award

A couple of weeks ago, I told you about my visit to Disneyland. After a couple of days at Disneyland, my husband and I hit the road again. Our next stop was Los Angeles.

Los Angeles was fun. In planning our trip, we scheduled a couple of studio tours. We went to Sony Pictures and Warner Bros. Sony is smaller than Warner Bros., but I would recommend doing both tours if you have the time. If you are fans of Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, they are taped at Sony. Wheel of Fortune wasn’t filming at the time, so they took us onto the set. Jeopardy was filming and my husband and I were lucky enough to get into the audience at the last minute.

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Sony Pictures

At Warner Bros., we were able to walk on the set of The Goldbergs and sit on the couch used in the scenes filmed at the Central Perk on Friends. Those were the highlights for me at Warner Bros. I love both of those shows. We had lots of fans of Pretty Little Liars on our tour and, after seeing where it’s filmed and hearing the rave reviews, I’ve decided I’m going to have to watch it. dsc03643

We also toured Dolby Theater, which is where the Academy Awards take place, and we went to the El Capitan Theater, which is Disney’s theater. Disney premieres their movies at that theater.

Of course, we saw the Hollywood sign, walked the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and TCL Chinese Theatre (formerly Grauman’s Chinese Theater). I had fun comparing my hands and feet to those of some of my favorite actresses. We also went to the La Brea Tar Pits where many fossils from the Ice Age have been excavated.dsc03190

Because we are amusement park people, we went to Universal Studios. It is much smaller than Universal Orlando, but I enjoyed it more. The rides were great, but the best part was the studio tour, which is included with the admission to the park. It is a huge tour because its part of the amusement park, but it’s still worth doing. They film a lot of current TV shows there, such as The Good Place.

One evening, we drove to Santa Monica Pier to watch the sunset. The pier is a popular place to watch the sunset and gets quite crowded. But if you’re looking to add a little romance to your trip, it’s worth the drive.

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Sunset at Santa Monica Pier

 

Have you been to Los Angeles? What was your favorite thing to do?

 

You can also find me here: Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Pinterest

Jennifer goes to San Diego

DSC02582Last week, I shared some details and photos from my time in Las Vegas. After a few days in Vegas, my husband and I hit the road and went to San Diego.

Over the years, I’ve met many people from San Diego and they have always commented on the weather and how wonderful it is. I now know why. I couldn’t have asked for better weather. If you like temperatures in the high 70s to low 80s and lots of sunshine, you’ll love San Diego.

I happened to be in San Diego at the same time as the MLB All-Star Game. My husband and I couldn’t get tickets for the game, but we got tickets for FanFest and had fun stealing bases, batting, and visiting the various vendors.

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Me on the Star of India

 

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Star of India at Maritime Museum of San Diego

We also walked through the Gaslamp Quarter and visited the Maritime Museum of San Diego. The most interesting ship at the museum is the Star of India, which is the world’s oldest sailing ship and the most haunted. I was fascinated by the tales of this ship and highly recommend that you speak to the person in the ticket booth if you go. I wouldn’t have known about the ghost stories without talking to the man in the ticket booth. He was chock full of stories about all of the ships. It was evening when we went and the ticket booth wasn’t that busy, which made it easier to ask questions.

Additionally, I recommend the B-39 submarine, if you can handle tight spaces. It has an interactive experience that will take you into the middle of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

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View of San Diego Zoo from Skyfari

The San Diego Zoo is a must see. Not only are there animals to see, but there are 4D theaters and shows. The zoo is celebrating its centennial and has some special events, including the Centennial Celebration Show. The Centennial Celebration Show is quite entertaining. I enjoyed walking all of the various paths to see the animals and riding the Skyfari.

 

 

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Koala at the San Diego Zoo

 

Have you been to San Diego? If so, what was your favorite thing to do?

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