Travel

La La Land | America 2014

Following our adventures in San Francisco, the Wild Western Contiki Tour continued back down the California coast to Los Angeles. We made stops at the beautiful beaches of Santa Barbara and Santa Monica on our way, before arriving in the heart of Hollywood.

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We all said a sad goodbye and went our separate ways once in Hollywood. But the fun and adventures didn’t end there. I’m not going to bore you with the daily rundown of everything that happened in LA, but I will share with you some of the absolute highlights of my time there!

First up, Universal Studios! It was awesome! I had an incredible day at this theme park, beginning with the dramatic movie music I heard on my way in (I’m a sucker for thematic music) and ending with my second round on the Studio Tour because I just couldn’t get enough. I filled my day with absolutely everything the park had to offer. My favourites were definitely the Transformers 3D ride as well as The Mummy, and the Minion Mayhem and just about everything else!

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The next day, I ventured up to Burbank to do the Warner Bros Studio Tour and this has been my favourite experience by far! Nearly all of the television shows that I love am obsessed with are produced by Warners Bros.

Friends, Gilmore Girls, The Big Bang Theory, The Ellen DeGeneres Show are just a couple of my favourites, so you can imagine how excited I was to be in the very place these shows were being made. Not to mention I was lucky enough to sit in the Stars Hollow gazebo, take photos on the famous Friends couch in Central Perk and wander around Ellen’s sound stage where they film the show! Yes, I sat in her audience chairs! My ultimate fan girl moment was getting way too excited seeing the cars of The Big Bang Theory cast parked outside their sound stage as they were inside rehearsing.

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Later that same evening as I wandered out of the Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, I ran into a lot of commotion on Hollywood Boulevard. After a little while pushing through the crowds I saw that the premiere for The Expendables 3 was taking place and celebrities were arriving every few minutes. My second fan girl moment of the day came when I saw in the flesh… Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, Mel Gibson, Jason Statham AND Kellan Lutz! I quite proud that I was able to experience the craziness that is Hollywood, standing on a crowded sidewalk on my tip toes hoping to catch a glimpse of someone ‘famous’. Who knows when I’ll ever get that experience again?

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The next adventure on my California list was of course, the happiest place on earth, Disneyland! I started my Disney experience with California Adventures and had a fantastic day going on rides and exploring the park. The highlights were definitely World of Colour which was so much more than what I expected it to be and also the live production of Aladdin, which was especially moving in the wake of the news of Robin Williams passing away only two days before.

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Disneyland was amazing and I want to go back! Not only were the rides great, but also the live shows! I had photos with Mickey and Minnie Mouse, explored Aurora’s castle and just had a really great day!

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When I tell people that I went to Disneyland on my own, I often get the response, “Oh I couldn’t do that.” But the one thing I will share with anyone reading this, is don’t let being alone stop you from doing what you want to do. In fact, you may have an even better time travelling alone, I know I have! It forces you out of your comfort zone, you learn more about yourself and your capabilities, you will meet a lot more people and you get to do exactly what you want to do! Not to mention Single Rider Lines at theme parks, I’m pretty sure I did not wait any longer than 15 minutes for a ride that whole three days I was at Disney and Universal and that’s pretty satisfying.

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My last night in LA was spent the best way possible, cheering on the LA Dodgers! It was my first American baseball game and American’s know how to do sport. The passion, the support and love for their team is incredible and it was a Stars Wars themed night, how cool is that?! To the guy that was sitting next to Alice and I during the game, thanks for answering all of our questions about what was going on! By the 6th innings I had definitely started to understand most of what was happening and although the Dodgers didn’t get the win, it was a great night!

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The next stop on my American adventure is the beautiful town of Chapel Hill in North Carolina, where I will be spending the next 4 months, and I already have so much to share!

Thanks for sticking with me and I hope you’re enjoying reading my American adventures. Stay tuned for another post, hopefully very soon!

Christiarne

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