A Downtown Los Angeles Vacation

Los Angeles is full of exciting and wonderful things to see. You can explore the tall skyscrapers of downtown or head out to Hollywood and try to get a glimpse of the stars.

Lovers of the art scene can join up with the regular downtown art walk. It occurs every second Thursday and is a self-guided tour through many of the popular art exhibitions in the downtown area of Los Angeles. Downtown L.A. also holds the Museum of Contemporary Art and visitors can get in every Thursday free between the hours of 5 to 8 pm.

Olvera Street is one of the oldest parts of Los Angeles and is filled with restored and interesting architecture. It’s also filled with lots of artists and craftsmen and tourists can stroll through daily from 10 am to 7 pm and see the sights and purchase souvenirs though there is no requirement.

Science lover’s can take a look-see of the California Science Center in downtown Los Angeles where every day visitors can view the permanent exhibits for free. The Griffith Observatory planetarium is also free to visitors.

While you’re in Los Angeles you should certainly visit the Hollywood Walk of Fame and have pictures taken of yourself with the stars honoring some of Hollywood’s most famous. The La Brea tar pits are also along this famous walk and you should pass up the chance to take a look at some of prehistoric history of Los Angeles. The Hollywood Forever Memorial Park is on Santa Monica Boulevard and is the permanent resting place of several film and acting greats. Take some flowers and honor the gravesite of one of your favorite stars. The graveyard is filled with both outdoor graves and two huge indoor mausoleums, visitors can usually buy maps to the stars graves to assist them in their visit.

Downtown San Diego – Enjoying Downtown San Diego

San Diego is one of the most prominent cities in California. It is home to plenty of tourist attractions that will sure make your stay or visit worthwhile. You are sure to enjoy the scenic beauty of Bay Harbor, the gorgeous hotels, and plenty of parks and zoos. San Diego is the second largest city in California and the eighth in the entire United States. San Diego is home to miles and stretches of beaches, a mild Mediterranean climate, and sixteen military facilities hosting the United States Navy, the United States Coast Guard, and the United States Marine Corps. The main economy is largely composed of biotechnology/biosciences, electronics manufacturing, agriculture, computer sciences, financial and business telecommunications, defense-related manufacturing, and of course, tourism. One of the more outstanding places for tourists to visit is downtown San Diego.

Knowing Downtown San Diego

Ever since the early ’80s, downtown has been undergoing an important urban renovation. Most people and locals refer to downtown San Diego as the City Center. They began reconstruction with the opening of the Horton Plaza, the Gaslamp Quarter, and the construction of the San Diego Convention Center. The Center City Development Corporation (CCDC), which is San Diego’s downtown redevelopment agency, has pioneered this transformation. Downtown San Diego was largely an abandoned downtown, but now, with the makeover, it has turned into a glittering showcase of waterfront skyscrapers, expensive live-work loft developments, five-star hotels, and many caf├ęs, restaurants, and boutiques.

The Attractions Downtown

Gaslamp Quarter. This quaint area derived its name from old-fashioned gas lamps that lined the sidewalk in the earlier days. Even today, once you walk through these streets, you’ll feel that you’ve suddenly walked back in time because of the many historic buildings that line this street. This is also the mecca of bars and casinos as well as nightclubs, sidewalk cafes, and live theaters.

Horton Plaza Shopping Center. If you are looking for a place to shop, then you should be heading off to Horton Plaza. The building alone is an architectural marvel. It is a multilevel mall that houses numerous gift shops and boutiques. You can simply shop till you drop in this place.

Seaport Village. The place has more than fifty specialty shops. You can fine-dine at waterfront restaurants, and you can find a restored antique carousel here. You can savor the sumptuous seafood while watching the boats go by on the bay-an experience you will treasure forever. There is always something to do here from enjoying the weather or riding the carousel to listening to some live music shows by street art performers.

Museum of Contemporary Art. This museum recently added two new buildings to their campus. The expanded area allows the museum to hold more exhibitions and serve more visitors than before. The Museum of Contemporary Art holds TNT, which is an evening that’s purely dedicated to art, music, poetry, etc. So if you want to experience this and get in touch with your artistic side, you can head off to the museum, ideally on the first Thursdays of the month.

Learning is a Lot of Fun at Ft Lauderdale’s Museum of Discovery and Science

If there is anyone in your family who thinks that learning in general or science in particular, is tedious and boring, then they haven’t been to the Museum of Discovery and Science in Fort Lauderdale. This is a museum with more than 200 interactive exhibits and special shows that compete with the best of Florida’s tourist attractions.

Promoting lifelong learning in science for children and adults through exhibits and programs is the mission of this museum and they do it in flying colors.

An example of the novelty and inventiveness of this place is a special exhibit that they are currently running. “Grossology, the impolite science of the human body” uses animatronics and other high-tech interactive exhibits to let you discover, in a humorous way, everything about the human body including warts, pimples, farts, belches and the like.

The museum offers a mix of special exhibits, like Grossology that rotate during the months and some permanent exhibits as well. The permanent exhibits will also capture the imagination of young and old alike. For example the Runways to Rockets exhibit hall has a new 4,000 square foot aviation station where visitors will be able to learn how to fly by actually stepping into a simulated cockpit. You will even be able to put on personal wings and step into an air tunnel and feel what flying is all about.

Another stand-out exhibition is the Living in the Everglades section of the museum. Here you will find an 11,000 square foot outdoor trail that highlights the different ecosystems of Florida. The indoor exhibit has interactive kiosks showing the importance of the Everglades, the effect of humans on the Everglades and current efforts to restore this eco-system to a healthy condition.

The discovery center section of the museum was especially designed for children seven years old and younger. Here they can climb a tree, build a wall or hoist a sale and experience the fun of learning how the world is put together.

For older folks, the Gizmo City section explains how things work, and how technology affects our lives. The highlight here is the virtual volleyball game.

One of the big block-buster features of the Museum is an IMAX movie theater with five story-high screens. The screen is said to be the biggest in southern Florida and measures sixty by eighty feet. The sound experience is also spectacular with 42 speakers belting out 15,000 watts of digital surround sound.

You can even bring home some of the fun of this museum by shopping in their Explore Store where you will find games, toys, books and gifts that express the themes of the museum.

The Museum is located in the Arts and Science District, across from Riverwalk’s Esplanade Park and the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Fort Lauderdale. Admission prices are a modest $10 for adults (less for seniors and children) and a good buy is the $15 General admission ticket which gets you into the exhibits and one IMAX film show