As you probably already now, I am a travel enthusiast. Just a few days somewhere for a city trip or – yes I DID IT – travel for more than a year around the world. It’s no biggy for me, I simply love it!
This time I was in Cali -San Diego- for work and in my spare time I had to visit some of the places “on my wish list”. Because, every girl wants to have that picture of her with the Hollywood hills sign, right? Or just drive through Beverly Hills, strolling on the Walk of Fame or do some beach cruising from Santa Monica to Venice beach. Oh and by the way, I am a big big BIG fan of palm trees, lucky me I was in Cali. Palmsssssssssss everywhere!
Arriving on Sunday at LAX around 12 am after a flight of 11 hours, I suspected to be really tired. However I fell a sleep almost straight away when the plane took off in Amsterdam and slept for about 5 hours. Perfect, cause I wanted to stop in Hollywood before I had to go to San Diego for work. I rented a car at Hertz, which was arranged in advance and got a free upgrade to a white Jeep, a true beauty. Thanks Hertz! All set and done, I drove to the famous hills to finally see it with my own eyes (after watching tons of movies). Really impressive to see and of course I had to snap a pic of myself at this spot. I wanted to do the hike all the way up to the sign, but my energy level was still low from the flight, so I was ok with a view from a distance. Around 10 pm I arrived at the Radisson hotel in San Diego. Time for a quick shower, cause after such a long flight and intensive day of driving in and around LA and to San Diego, it was bedtime for me.
By coincidence I found out that a friend, whom I have known from when I was 5 years old, but haven’t seen for a while, was in Cali as well. So we met up at Newport Beach for dinner and drinks. How funny and cool to see each other after such a long time in such a nice area as Newport. Those Californian sunsets – with my sweeties (note: palm trees) – are magical.. simply love it!
I was told that La Jolla (pronounced as La Hoja) is a must see place when you visit San Diego. So there I went, after work, for some nice food and drinks with a colleague. And I have to agree, it’s a lovely place to spend the day at the beach and have some food and drinks at night. There is a nice street with a lot of boutiques and restaurants. One thingy..the sea is free-ee-eezing over there if I compare it to other beaches more up north. For one sec I imagined I was on the beach in Holland, brrrr.
Of course I had to shop while I was in Cali. So I decided to go to Fashion Valley, which is near San Diego City. What a cool place to shop. You can find both high as low end fashion and it has a really cozy appearance. I had to say ‘go easy’ to myself, cause I could literally buy a lot more than I did.
In the weekend I had a lot of spare time, so I went back to LA to enjoy myself. I started at the Walk of Fame in Hollywood. It was CRAZY over there. My o my, people were taking selfies with their face on the ground to be close to ‘their’ star. Can you believe that? Too funny! When I saw the King of Pop I wanted to have a picture with his star of course and the same with Marilyn Monroe.
Driving through Hollywood and Beverly Hills is already a really nice experience. So I went all the way up the hills, seen some a-ma-zing houses and views. After that I was ready for the busy areas of Beverly Hills, specifically one of the most famous shopping streets in the world, Rodeo Drive. Of course we all remember Julia in Pretty Woman, walking down the streets. After seeing that movie for –not kidding – 20 times, it was really something to walk there myself. Walking into a few shops of my favorite labels, I went to the Regent Beverly Wilshire hotel –just for the ladies room and a drink-, I ended up with of score of 0 bags. Dream on, dream on……… However it was a fun experience and really inspiring.
When in Cali, you have to go to the beach. And so I did (again). From Santa Monica I did some beach cruising to Venice via the Venice boardwalk. It is 10 dollars an hour to rent a beach cruiser or 25 dollars for the whole day. Really really cool and relaxing after all the commotion from the day before. Pretending I was a girl from Baywatch I took a quick dive in the Pacific Ocean to cool down a bit and then walked around Venice where I visited a few vintage stores to score some really cool vinyl for the boyfriend.
The workweek started again on Monday, which left me only some spare time in the evening. On Monday I went to Colorado beach for dinner. Colorado is almost an ‘island’ as there is just one bridge from San Diego to Colorado. Looks really cool. However, I couldn’t stop the car somewhere to snap the view and it was too crowded on the road to make some good drive by pictures. Bummer! Anyway, that night I enjoyed a big American Burger for the first time since I arrived in the US. Yummy!
And then it was my last evening. Since I’ve been going out of San Diego all the time, I decided that I couldn’t leave before I had seen San Diego downtown. So many restaurants with tables on the street, just like Holland. Really nice to walk around and have some food. One Indian restaurant got my attention when I walked by, it always smells so good. One Chicken Tikka Masala please!
My plane was leaving around 5pm, so I stopped at Long Beach in the morning to relax for a few hours before heading back home (knowing it was sh*tty weather in Holland). Even though I had not that much spare time I visited so many nice places, which made me conclude to come back to Cali really soon to see much much more.