Road trips are one of our favourite things to do and after a successful road trip two years ago through the states, we decided that we would replicate it. However this time with a 10 month old that was teething and wasn’t sleeping – not to mention juggling a heavy work load on the road for the first 10 days.
Would we do it again? Absolutely, but not in the same time frame we attempted. We loved all the places we got to visit this time round, however we would just slow the pace next time, especially travelling with three kids.
First stop was Los Angels with the kids and we all had jet lag on epic levels this time around. We stayed at the super cool Freehand Hotel as apposed to Santa Monica. We love downtown LA and we loved our previous and short visit last time. Had we just been travelling with our 7 and a 10 year olds this would have been the perfect place to base ourselves. However the rooms were small and with a baby it was more on the difficult side. Plus, the car had to be parked in an offsite car park making it that bit more tricky with our little one. I guess I forgot how much the small things make life so much easier when travelling with a baby.
As far as location in downtown Los Angeles the Freehand Hotel was in the perfect position. So convenient being opposite the wholefoods and walking distance to everything we needed.
Wholefoods is the perfect place to stock up on baby food, nappies and wipes.
We went back and visited the Grand Central Market. This was a bit of a favourite last visit. The hustle and bustle, the good coffee (hello jet lag) and not to mention great for fruit or anything else you want to stock up on. It was an easy walk from the Freehand Hotel and our first stop after wholefoods.
We had a late lunch at the colourful Olvera Street, where we all had a taste of some great mexican. This place was like stepping into another world and seriously so hard to believe that we were still in Los Angeles. After filling our tummies with mexican, we headed back walking the streets of downtown and checking out all the cool and very amazing street art. The kids were blown away.
We had sunset drinks at the roof top bar at the Freehand Hotel, which is well worth a visit, but maybe without kids. We seriously felt a little uncool with kids in town but the views were well worth one drink and the kids loved the fact they got to have a drink around one very cool pool.
Day one is always a 'take it easy day' while we all battle with jet lag. I have to say the youngest member of our travelling crew seem to adapt the best out of all of us.
We headed into Santa Monica for a quick bite to eat at our favourite fish and chip place on the pier, the Albright. Their fish and chips is a must try and one of our favourites. No trip to Los Angeles is complete without a trip to the Pier. There is something magical about this beautiful lit pier at night. It really screams all kinds of kids magic and our kids certainly loved it.
We ate breakfast at the Freehand Hotel, who did amazing food and coffee and had a fantastic atmosphere that got us up and going and ready for the day.
We visited the Los Angeles zoo for the day. Our kids loved this zoo. It was one of their favourites and our 10 month old also loved the day seeing so many animals for the first time. As we have so many different age groups in our family this was a great day for everyone, even for the grown ups. It was set out well and it was a full day of walking and observing.
After the zoo we ducked up to the Griffith Park Observatory to witness the sunset and also see the famous Hollywood sign.
It was beautiful up on the observatory and we all enjoyed walking off the jet lag. Dinner was at a diner in Downtown LA before turning in for an early night.
We lost track of time and Mr T had headed out for breakfast when I got an alert to say that we needed to check out. We thought we had an extra day and jet lag was playing full havoc on all of us. We quickly threw our things together and the Freehand Hotel where super helpful letting us have an extra hour to get our things together and check out.
Jet lag had its full grip on us day four, however pushing through into routine was essential for bouncing back and bulletproof coffee from whole foods was on high rotation. My favourite places that we visited with the kids are listed below.
Things to see and do with the kids
We stayed at the
This hotel oozed coolness and the rooftop bar was great. However with small kids under 5 years I wouldn’t recommend this hotel. While super cool and the food onsite being amazing, the rooms are small and having to park off site makes unloading with a baby a lot more tricky in busy downtown LA.
Great Places to eat
Grand Central market that has so many great places to choose from.
Freehand Hotel for a great and substantial breakfast.
Olvera Street for great mexican food.
The Albright at Santa Monica pier for fish and chips.