Monday, 5 June 2017

West Coast

So, full disclosure – it’s going to be a long one.

It's taken me a while to write this one, so apologies. We actually got back in May but jet-lag and holiday blues took over. 
I had been relentlessly hounding Ben to book the trip since last summer and he finally caved in January. We book our flights on Jan 28th and we flew to LAX on April 12th.
Standard Alyce, I was freaking out before we left like full on airport break-down. I don’t mind flying at all, but my biggest fear is having a panic attack on a plane. I have no idea why.
Fortunately, it didn’t happen, instead I watched binged on New Girl, Moana, and 101 Dalmatians.
We flew with Air New Zealand and they were amazing everything from the welcoming safety video to the attendants letting me get my yoga on at the back of the plane.
After queuing for almost two hours at the airport our first hotel was, The Line on Wilshire Blvd. We stayed here for five nights and it was amazing.
Nothing is better than floor to ceiling windows especially when the sun’s shining. The first morning we were awake at 5am and we spent, a good hour opening and closing the blinds from our bed.
We picked up the car and headed to Warner Studios, after grabbing food from a truck outside. omg. 
Universal was an actual dream. Harry Potter heaven.
Just quickly – the queue was four hours to go on the ride – absolutely worth it. The queue for Olivanders was also pretty huge but definitely worth it (the wand picks you).
We spent the rest of the week eating fruit at Venice Beach, hot dogs at Santa Monica Pier, and shoving through the crowds at Griffith Observatory and Melrose.
à San Francisco
It took around six hours to drive from LA which was pretty good timing. We stayed at The Good Hotel which was cute but a little rickety. Our suitcases would slide from one side of the room to the other.
First day we headed to Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park, which took us three hours to walk around - we didn't know about the free shuttle bus. Alcatraz was bloody incredible, make sure it's top of your list.   China Town, Lombard Street, Clarion Alley, Pier 39 and the Exploratorium.
If you have a spare day that you’re happy to lose in the most awesome place ever, go to the Exploratorium at Pier 15.
We booked last minute tickets to the NBA playoffs, I have never seen anything like it. If you really want to experience American culture, go to a sport game.
Before we flew out, we booked tickets to see Skepta on our last night, which was the best decision. Although I did feel bad for Ben because we didn't leave the venue until 4am and we had to check out and drive back to LA the next morning. 
Turned out to be nothing a large iced coffee and a Five Guys couldn't fix. 
Next stop à LA
We drove back to LA on the Friday and checked into Mama Shelter, Selma Ave. This was our favourite hotel.
The decor is super simple but cool, the lamps are covered with Star Wars masks and they leave out movie scripts for late night reading.
This time we hit up Disney, spent a day watching the skaters at Venice and a lot of shopping. 
à Las Vegas
We stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel, which was fun. The hotel is set a little bit further back from the strip, so it was a short bus ride or a 10-minute walk to the madness.
We sat out for a couple of hours our first morning and then Ben got sunstroke about 10 minutes into the Cirque de Soleil, later that evening, so ended up camping out in the hotel for a couple of days. Fortunately hotels in Vegas are made so you never have to leave.
We took a gondola ride in Venice, we stopped off in Fremont Street, watched the Bellagio fountains and went to Sephora for the 2354567 time.
à Joshua Tree
This place is unbelievable. We stayed in the most delightful cabin (Joshua Tree 1954 Homestead Cabin) hot tubs and hammocks galore.
After panicking for the first two hours about all the creature warnings in the Welcome pack we decided it was dark enough for the hot tubbing to commence.
I will honestly never get the image of the sky out of my head. It was fascinating. There's no light pollution so the sky is jam packed with stars. We also had the biggest, yummiest pizza ever.
If you are planning a trip to Cali, and you can only spare one night, spend it here. 
à LA
This is when panic set in that it was almost time to leave.
We drove back to LA and stopped off in a motel. There wasn’t much time to do anything between packing up all of the stuff we had gathered along the way so we headed to the grove for the last supper and one last look in Sephora.
I woke up at 2am that night with food poisoning and spent the entire morning throwing up before we flew home at 5pm, haha.
Nevertheless, it was the trip of a lifetime. Cant wait to go back.
I know it was a monster post, so thanks for reading and if you skipped to the pictures no hard feelings I would have done the same.
If you guys have any America or holiday related questions leave them below.

Nothing in this post is an Ad. 




If you know Ben and I you will understand how accurate these are



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