View Full Version : First DL trip from UK - please help with itinerary
07-18-2001, 09:28 AM
I have a few more days to finalise our first trip from the UK to California before I book and wonder if anyone tell me if my itinerary and choice of hotels is OK?
The Grand Plan is:
San Francisco 5 nights at Holiday Inn Express Fisherman's Wharf
Do Alcatraz, fire engine tour, Pacific Heights Victorian Houses, Sausalito, Build a Bear (for DD!), cable car and anything else we can cram in! We are going to be there for Fleet Week, which sounds great with the Blue Angels Display Team.
Hire car and drive to Monterey for 2 nights at Embassy Suites at Seaside
Tour Monterey, Carmel inc 17 mile drive, Big Sur
Drive to San Jose airport, drop off hire car and catch connecting flight to LA (flights cheaper from San Jose than Monterey airport for some reason)
SuperShuttle from LA to Long Beach staying 2 nights at Hyatt Long Beach or possibly Westcoast Long Beach.
Tour area using the passport shuttle - shoreline village, Queen Mary, naples etc
Cataline Express ferry for a day in Catalina Island
Taxi from Long Beach (anyone any idea what that might cost?) to Anaheim for 5 nights at West Coast Anaheim
3 day pass for Disneyland/California Adventure
One day in Universal Studios using coach from Anaheim area
Transfer to LAX for return flight to UK
This is a rough outline so things may change slight regarding number of nights before I book. What do you think of the timescale for each area? Long enough or too long? And the hotels are they OK? If anyone has any tips or advice it would be great so I can make changes within the next week before I go ahead and book! Sorry for so many questions but it's my first trip to the area and I really want to get it perfect :D
Thanks in advance :D
07-18-2001, 12:30 PM
Take WARM clothes for San Francisco. I returned from there yesterday and it was freezing! I had to buy a fleece. There were even people wearing gloves. It is however a beautiful place to visit. If you don`t have your trip to Alcatraz pre booked do it as soon as you arrive. It is very popular and sells out fast. We did a combination tour for Alcatraz, going to Angel Island first. Well worth it. Also went to Sausalito which was nice. Get a pass for the cable cars. We had a three day pass which cost $10 per person. A one way trip is $2.
We also had the three day pass for Disney which was great because you can park hop with it. Hope you have a great time. We did!
07-18-2001, 01:15 PM
http://www.wdwinfo.com/sites/family/flowerface.GIF <font face="Comic Sans MS"><font color=navy>If you have time when you're in San Francisco, take a trip to Napa Valley & tour one of the wineries there - it is very nice, and you can get some delicious California wine from the source. I think I stayed at that same Holiday Inn back in '98. If it's the same one, you can walk to Ghiradelli Square (famous chocolate), and the beginning of the cable car line. Also, the famous Pier 39 is within walking distance. Another couple of things, if you're driving - make sure you go down the crookedest street in the world - I had my Spanish cousin do it, and we got some fun pictures. We also drove over the Golden Gate bridge, visited the park on that side, then drove north, along the coast, saw some great sights, and drove back over the Oakland Bay bridge, and another loooonnnng one that was right on the water.
In Monterey, be sure to visit Cannery Row/Fisherman's Wharf on the same day that you do the 17 mile drive. If you have time, visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium. We were there for 4 hours, and could have stayed longer. They have these "phones" geared for children also, so your dd can get a child's explanation for the various exhibits.
Your trip is going to be busy, but you're going to have a lot of fun doing it all. :sunny:
07-18-2001, 01:38 PM
Your plans and timing sound excellent! I'm sure you'll have a lovely time.
Since I am a resident of San Diego, I do wish you were visiting our fair city to enjoy the beaches, Sea World and the world-class San Diego Zoo, but as that would add several days to your itinerary, I'll forgive you this time. ;-)
There is a lot to see on Catalina Island -- perhaps consider spending a night there. Long Beach is really not that interesting, except for the Queen Mary, and parts of the city are downright seedy and disreputable.
For your transfer from Long Beach to Anaheim, you might consider using XpressShuttle. It serves the Long Beach Airport- Disneyland routes and would be considerably less expensive than a cab. They have a web site -- www.xpresshuttle.com
For the Anaheim to LAX return, the best rates for transfers would be on AirportBus - www.airportbus.com
Lastly, I have never heard of West Coast Anaheim, nor could I find it on an admittedly sketchy web search. There are many reasonably priced accommodations in Anaheim within just a short distance from DL that you might consider. A lot of people like the Candy Cane Inn, across the street from DL. I have personally stayed at the Doubletree Anaheim/Orange County, which is not in Anaheim but quite close by and has shuttle service. It's a very nice hotel and I've paid as little as $78 per night there.
Hope you have a delightful trip.
07-18-2001, 09:52 PM
Here are some reviews of Westcoast Anaheim Hotel:
Your trip sounds wonderful!
07-19-2001, 08:43 AM
Your plans sound great!
Also, Build a Bear is opening a store in Downtown Disney.
07-19-2001, 02:06 PM
Thanks so much everybody for your replies :D
Tartan Tigger - thanks for the advice, I will remember to take my gloves as I am know to feel the cold!
MaryJo, yes it sounds like the same Holiday Inn, very near Ghiradelli Square. Thanks for the info about the Monterey Aquarium, but I have a fish phobia, so better skip that one I guess ;)
Mary , I'm a bit concerned about you saying parts of Long Beach are seedy, as it looks such a nice place to visit on the may! Is it safe to walk around there, on Shoreline Village etc? Don't want any nasty surprises! Hadn't thought of staying on Catalina, I will have a look at accommodation there, it might be a good alternative to Long Beach.
TigerBear thanks so much for the hotel reviews, very helpful :D
Miss Jasmine, do you know know when the Build a Bear is due to open? I take it you mean Downtown Disney in California???? We are also visiting WDW at Xmas, wonder if you know if there are any plans for a Build a Bear at Downtown Disney in WDW? DD is very keen to see one of these shops :D
07-19-2001, 02:18 PM
Mazzy, re: Long Beach, as long as you stay in the "touristy" areas and avoid walking alone at night, I'm sure you'll be fine. Like any good-sized city, there are some undesireable areas... not likely you'd visit them except by accident! Don't worry.
07-19-2001, 03:33 PM
Hi Mazzy;) ,
I have booked our trip for California for next October,including the last 3 nights where we will stay at the Grand Californian.So I am gradually asking the folks over here things.
There is a build-a-bear in the Florida Mall in Orlando I'm sure I've read on DIS?
I'll e-mail you with my itinerary and we can compare notes.I'm really worried my itinerary includes too much travelling and is too ambitious.
07-19-2001, 04:16 PM
You can check locations of Build a Bear on their website (I think buildabear.com). You can also acess them through Mall.com. They also list locations that are coming soon.
There are several Build A Bear's in the DisneyLand area. The closet being Newport Beach. I can't remember the name of the shopping center though.
Build a Bear is a great way to bring home a memory, at a very reasonable price.
(who should be packing!)
07-19-2001, 08:36 PM
Build-A-Bear is at Fashion Island in Newport Beach. It's a very nice open-air center with some excellent stores and restaurants. The website is www.buildabear.com
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