California – The Best Summer Vacation for the Whole Family
Southern California is well known for the large number of amusement parks which are located there. However, there are a number of fantastic new rides and attractions all around that will provide your family with a vacation that is more than a mere repeat of previous trips for seasoned visitors and provide additional surprises for first timers. There are even special events for adults who want a night to themselves.
Image by Dennis Vermesse Professional Illustrator – All Rights Reserved 2012
View Buena Vista Street as Walt Disney’s Would Have and Join Luigi for a Racing Good Time
Disney’s California Adventure Park has been completely remodeled and expanded to include two new “lands” that the entire family will enjoy. Scheduled to open June 15th just in time for summer vacation, your family can visit the old favorites but also the brand new Cars Land and Buena Vista Street.
Cars Land, a theme based 12 acre area, includes several great new rides including Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree, Luigi’s Flying Tires, and Radiator Springs Racers. When you get hungry there are several places to eat and afterwards you can wander through the stores including Radiator Springs Curios which sells specialty Cars Land items.
When you tire after riding all the adventure rides, relax and enjoy California as Walt Disney experienced it in the 1920’s. As soon as you step through the gates and onto Buena Vista Street, you’ll feel as if you’ve gone back in time. You’ll be enchanted as you view the art deco store fronts, intricate wrought- iron balconies and Spanish style buildings all surrounding glistening fountains and tree shaded avenues. View the shops and restaurants you’ll want to visit later from the red car trolley as well as a reproduction of the theater which premiered Walt Disney’s first animated feature, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
A newly designed World of Color can be seen after dark from the lagoons edge in Paradise Park. This amazing show entwines light, color, fire and water into a prism reflecting wondrous dream like fantasies igniting your imagination.
Underwater Fun at Sea World, San Diego
Sea World, San Diego has three new marine life attractions that will delight and thrill the whole family.
The newly constructed Turtle Reef allows you to get an up-close view of these large sea turtles as the glide through their underwater habitat, perhaps coming up to the see through partition to look you over. Then experience the journey and experiences in the life of one of these impressive creatures as you attempt to avoid hazards and swim safely from the depth of the ocean to the beach watching your progress on a wall size video screen. You can also watch ongoing efforts of a turtle rescue in real time and explore what it’s like to embark on your own rescue mission.
For excitement, visit the park’s favorite inhabitants, in the all new Shamu adventure show, One World. The entire outdoor theater has been refashioned for maximum affect and the large water arena enables these majestic killer whales to fully exhibit their abilities. Yet this show is not simply about putting the whales through their paces. You will quickly be absorbed into an educational and inspiring multi-media and multi-sensory narrative filled with graceful fountains, the underwater sound of the ocean’s rhythm and a multicolored display, all emphasizing the story of life beneath the sea.
For the excitement seekers in your family, try the newly opened Manta double projection roller coaster. Feel the heart pounding exhilaration as you soar through high bank turns, multiple twists and a 54 foot drop while suspended over a watery landscape where you can view the bat rays and fish which glide below you during your ride.
Indulge Your Inner Pirate at LEGOLAND Waterpark, San Diego
Anyone who has ever dreamed of being a pirate sailing on the high seas can indulge their fantasy beginning this summer at LEGOLAND Waterpark. A new ride, Pirate Reef, lets you rush down a wild waterway until you reach the other pirate ship which you immediately attack with your water cannons. Beware though as they will be firing back. Those who prefer to stay out of the fight can ride the buccaneer’s boat which shoots you through a flume heading straight for the two warring ships which you pass in between. Don’t expect to escape unscathed. Interactive areas including the water cannons, splash-bridge and building play area, make this ride an experience like no other.
Another expanded attraction is Star-Wars-Miniland which includes numerous new models as well as the never before seen LEGO STARWARS GALLERY.
Transformers Arrive at Universal Studios, Hollywood
The long awaited Transformer Ride-3D has opened at Universal Studios. Described as the ultimate thrill ride, Transformers immerses you in a total sensory experience, absorbing you into the story so you feel as if you’re part of it from the beginning. Utilizing the newest HD3D and flight simulation technology available, the action seems real and you feel as if you are flying directly into the heart of an intergalactic war. It is up to you to save the planet and all of mankind.
Where to Stay in California
With more than 10,000 people already scheduled to spend their summer vacation in California, it’s essential to book your hotel in advance. Make sure that the hotel you choose is centrally located to be convenient to numerous attractions and activities. The following two hotels are ideally situated in order to access a wide variety of popular destinations.
• Mission Valley Resort, San Diego – Located near LEGOLAND, SeaWorld, the San Diego Zoo, beaches, museums, bay fishing, golf, and a variety of unique shopping areas, this hotel provides access to both major attractions and more relaxing activities. Helpful to families who are already spending a great deal on their vacation, Mission Valley is priced economically and provides a AAA discount.
• Anaheim Express Inn Maingate – A short walk will have you at Disneyland or Downtown Disney shops and restaurants. You’ll also be near California Adventure Park, Adventure City, Flight Deck Air Combat Center, Universal Studios, Golf, Museums, and Beaches. This hotel is economically priced with families in mind and when you reserve online you will have access to additional discounts.
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