Warning – this post contains a lot of holiday snaps ;) For the first half of our trip we stayed in Santa Monica, hust South of the Pier we were walking distance to 3rd Street Promenade and an abundance of restaurants. Although LA is vast, flat and hardly anything is on your doorstep, staying more central meant we were able to walk along the beach into town and could easily survive without a car.
If you do want to venture out further afield taxis will be your best friend, or Uber’s in our case! A quick drive depending on traffic will get you into downtown LA where we spent a day mooching around The Grove. A gorgeous outdoor shopping location you will find the Charlotte Tilbury stand here in Nordstorms alongside a whole host of restaurants including the Cheesecake Factory. Spend your dolla, catch a movie or relax on one of the rooftop bars.
Our second to last day we picked up a rental car in anticipation of our drive down to Huntington Beach. This also gave us the perfect excuse to drive up to Universal Studios Hollywood. To make the experience less stressful we opted for preferred parking that put us directly outside Universal City Walk. Upgrading to the front of the line tickets too meant that we could walk onto every ride without a queue – this is bliss when looking to avoid the long wait times in the blistering heat.
At Universal the best ride has to be the Simpsons, an immersive 3D experience you get all the thrills of being on a rollercoaster whilst knowing you are in the safety of a static car. We also tried out the new Minions ride which was bananalicious! Make sure you checkout the Studio Tour as well to get a glimpse of the Desperate Housewives set and also a cool look at the backlots. Considering we were there for four nights we packed a lot in and were ready for some pool days down by the coast.