Oh my word this is overdue! I have a few California Travel Guides coming your way in the near future, but I’ll start with L.A.!
We came out to California because I was gifted a Beachbody Leadership Conference, but since I was 28 Weeks Pregnant at the time, we decided to make a little Baby-moon out of it by going out earlier and staying later.
This was only our second time out to California, and we weren’t in L.A. for an incredibly long time, but I figured I’d share what we did in case any of you are traveling there in the near future.
As far as accommodations go, I always seek out Boutique or unique places to stay. I honestly can’t stand staying in large hotel chains that have no character or quirks. Whether I’m traveling for business or pleasure – I want my hotel to be really cool, even though I might not be there that often.
I choose to stay at the Farmer’s Daughter Hotel, which was located right across the street from The Grove.
The Grove is essentially like an outside mall, if you haven’t heard of it. There is a gigantic Farmer’s Market with numerous options to eat. There is also a Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods within walking distance as well.
We had various things we wanted to do and different neighborhoods to visit, which is why I chose this location over others. Everything is a “couple of miles” away, but it takes literally 45 minutes to go ANYWHERE at any time, so plan accordingly.
The hotel met all of our expectations with a cute pool, a great restaurant and plenty of things to do in the neighborhood. The bartender even made me some awesome Mocktails at Tart.
We definitely wouldn’t hesitate to stay here again if we were visiting! It’s still so weird to look back and see how pregnant I was in these photos!
One of the things on our L.A. Bucket List was Griffith Observatory. We went right before sunset on our first day and it honestly wasn’t as crowded as it could have been. There was plenty of parking, although we had to walk a bit (but I did it pretty pregnant so it wasn’t horrible).
This was a way for us to kill two birds with one stone. If I wasn’t pregnant, I would have wanted to do the hike behind the Hollywood sign, but because I didn’t want to take any chances. I also wanted to go up into one of the high rises to get a view of the city since we do that back at home in New York. This was the perfect way to get the best of both worlds with a breeze and less people!
The views were stunning and it was such a gorgeous night out! You can see all of L.A. and get some really nice photos too!
We did find this little tiny hike underneath the Observatory. Leave it to me to go hiking in a dress, flip flops and pregnant!
The next morning we drove through Beverly Hills. I have always wanted to simply “see” what kind of world was like. It is just as grand as you might expect from what you’ve seen on TV. I’ve never seen so many rare luxury cars in my life and all of the palm trees are perfectly perfect. I even stopped for that one cheesy cliché Beverly Hills photo in front of the sign.
In the afternoon, we took a trip to Santa Monica to see the infamous Pier. I have to be honest guys – I could have done without all of it. Santa Monica was honestly so busy and kind of grimy (hate to say it). It was crowded, hot and extremely touristy. I’m happy I can say that I saw it, but definitely not somewhere I would ever choose to go again.
Later that night, we had our Maternity Photoshoot by Miranda North Photography I did a whole Blog Post on Maternity Photos, but it was truly the best I ever felt pregnant. A lot of you asked me where I found them, the dresses etc, and honestly – I always look for local photographers on Instagram when I travel. I love taking photos myself, but it really is important to me to make memories last forever, so I never mind investing in things like this. Becky did our photos and they provided all the “looks” which took the hassle our of everything! I am so happy I looked into doing this and now our maternity photos have a unique memory attached to them.
It was finally dinner time and I had a list of places I wanted to try for a meal. We ended up visiting Venice, since it was the only town we had yet to visit on our L.A. list. We ended up at a place called Gjusta. The food was so good guys! Very unique and well crafted deli favorites with a twist!
This place is a foodie dream for sure and I would definitely recommend checking it out!
The next day we headed into the actual “city” of L.A. for the Beachbody Conference I told you guys about earlier. I plan on sharing all of our experiences from that trip in a separate Blog Post, as well as our trip down to Newport Beach, Laguna Beach and San Diego to come!