As a Los Angeles native and long time city dweller, Long Beach holds a special place in my heart. I've visited this beach town many times in my childhood and adulthood and I have loved bringing my own kids back. Every time I visit, I am stricken by the realization that Long Beach is a quintessential beach town, the type of beach town people envision when they dream about Los Angeles beaches.
Whether you're looking for stuff to do in Long Beach as part of a longer trip to Los Angeles, planning a day trip to Long Beach or hoping to spend the weekend, you can have an amazing time no matter how short or long your visits is. Read more to learn about my favorite Long Beach family activities and things to do in Long Beach.
If you are planning to spend winter in New York, a trip to the ice rink under the sparkly lights may be on your bucket list. My mom has been talking about ice skating at the Rockefeller Center for years so we added it to our itinerary during our most recent girls' trip to New York in mid-November 2023.
We stopped at the Rockefeller Center before the tree was revealed and we found it to be a lackluster. The area around the rink looked like a construction zone. Instead, we decided to go ice skating at Bryant Park. The Bryant Park Winter Village was already in full swing, making it a fun, memorable experience.
If you're wondering where to go ice skating in New York, let me help you weigh the pros and cons between Rockefeller Center and Bryant Park:
I haven't heard or read much about whether Portland, Oregon, is a family-friendly city. But we decided to visit Portland with kids and realized that Portland is weird and kids are weird. It’s a match made in travel heaven!
During a recent summer break with our 3 and 5 year old kids, we contemplated several locations for a week-long family trip from Los Angeles. The contenders were Hawaii, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Portland. We landed on Portland for several reasons: it’s a short flight from Los Angeles (and a great introductory flight for my daughter’s first plane ride), the hotels, flights and rental car are more affordable than other locations and there are lots of activities to keep us all entertained for a week.
In this comprehensive week-long family-friendly Portland itinerary, we'll guide you through our carefully curated selection of attractions and experiences which were fun for both children and adults in our family. You won’t find too many of the usual items on other travel guides because we generally like to avoid overly touristy activities and I hope you will learn about a new restaurant or experience to add to your Portland must-do list that you didn’t know about before.
When most people think of visiting Oregon, spending time in the state's abundant and great outdoors is usually top of the list. There are dozens of waterfalls near Portland specifically, but some of the most well-known ones are in the Columbia River Gorge. Originally, I had included this as a section in my Portland Itinerary but it felt deserving of its own post. If you're planning a trip to Portland soon and want to venture out on a waterfall trek or two, read this first:
Have you been hiking in Columbia River Gorge? What are your favorite trails and falls to see?
When people think of family-friendly vacations, Las Vegas is probably quite low on that list. Sin City doesn't necessarily scream, "BRING YOUR KIDS!", but our most recent trip to Las Vegas proved to be more family-friendly than I was expecting.
I have been coming to Las Vegas with my own parents since I was a kid and have many fond memories at the arcades at Circus Circus, Luxor and Treasure Island, spending hours on the water slides at the Flamingo hotel and the lazy river at Mandalay Bay, watching the fountain show at Bellagio and going back for thirds at buffets for every meal. As a young adult, I returned with my girlfriends to explore the nightlife, learn how to play craps (and lose track of time on the craps tables with $1 beers), and discover some of my favorite restaurants in Las Vegas.
I've been to Vegas dozens of times over the last three decades and have never had a bad trip. While a lot has changed since COVID (the arcades, Rio carnivale, pirate shows and many of the buffets are gone), there is still a lot to love and a lot of fun to be had when visiting Vegas as a family.
It's a very exciting day--the lineup for BottleRock Napa Valley has been announced! Three day tickets are already sold out and one-day tickets go on sale on 1/12/2023 at noon.
When my husband and I went to BottleRock Napa in 2017, we were thrilled to see the number of children in attendance. While we didn't have kids of our own yet, we knew that we would want to start building our family soon. It was fun to imagine one day returning to BottleRock Napa with kids of our own.
Many people are surprised to learn just how family-friendly music festivals are. In fact, we took our son when he was one year old to Coachella and wrote a post about it called, "Take Your Baby: Music Festivals." At Coachella, other parents were happy to see our baby and told us that we inspired them to bring their own children to music festivals in the future.
Now, with our three-year-old daughter and five-year-old son, we are planning to head to BottleRock Napa for a single day. Because the atmosphere of BottleRock is more laidback, relaxed and spread out, it is the perfect first music festival for little ones. If you are contemplating taking your children to BottleRock, here is some important information to know:
The thing I hear the most from people and read frequently on forums when I'm planning my trips is, "Don't take your baby!" Babies are often seen as pariahs, especially when it comes to fine dining.
What's a parent to do when they want to experience the wonders of the world but they've also decided to have a family? Must they relegate themselves and their offspring to hotel rooms and not share a unique dining experience with other humans?
When I was planning my latest trip through Europe with my youngster in tow, I had so many questions: Are babies allowed at Michelin-starred restaurants? Can I bring my infant to afternoon tea? Wine tasting with a little one--yay or nay? Though the rest of the internet may have you believe that you cannot under any circumstances enjoy such splendors with your tot, I'm here with facts based on experience (and not baby-ism).
Japan in 8 Days
Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden
In November 2016, my husband and I found a Black Friday flight deal to Tokyo from LAX on Singapore Airlines for under $500 round trip and we couldn't resist. We then had to wait the nine months to our travel day and managed to get pregnant along the way. Luckily for us, Japan is the perfect destination for a babymoon. In recent months, many of my friends, colleagues and acquaintances have been planning their own trips to this amazing country and have asked me for advice on where to go, what to eat and what to do. Japan has been my favorite country to visit so reminiscing about my time there was a special treat. My husband and I spent eight nights in Japan, split between Tokyo, Hakone and Kyoto in September 2017 and loved every minute of it. The following is our itinerary with specific information on the restaurants we enjoyed and the accommodations we stayed in plus tips on what I wish I had known before my trip.