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  • USA > West Coast

    I'm planning for a trip to California (LA + SF) and Las Vegas early next year, maybe mid February 2006 and have no idea where should I start at! My friend suggests to start off at Vegas. We are catching O at Bellagio and then make our way up to LA and then SF. I know there are factory outlets for shopping and also mega stores around. I plan to go to Disneyland, Universal Studios, Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, Hollywood at LA. Fisherman's Wharf, Alcatraz, Golden Gate Bridge at SF. Other than that, what are the places worth looking at? There's Mdm Tussauds at both SF and LA, I wonder which one I should go to. I'd prefer meeting the wax figurines at SF though. How long should I stay in each city too? I plan to make it a 2 weeks' trip and wondering whether is 2 weeks enough? Taking into consideration the jet lag. Really appreciate any response.
    Last edited by artichoke; 28-08-2005, 06:14 PM.

  • #2
    I did this route before. I flew into LA, did the sightseeing stuff (e.g. Hollywood, Universal Studios, Disneyland, Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive, etc). You can plan 1 day for each theme park. Nothing much to shop in LA, unless you intend to splurge on designers stuff. You can take this local tour which will bring you to see the Hollywood Stars' homes, Hollywood Bowl and BH, Rodeo Drive.

    If you are driving, rent a car and drive to Vegas. Along the way, you can stop at Grand Canyon. I think it took about 4-6hrs to get into Vegas. This is where you can really shop, there are quite a few factory outlets and it will probably take a day to browse through all the shops at each outlet.

    From Vegas, you can drive to SF. If you like to break the journey, can go to Sacramento for a day or two. I like Old Sacramento, very interesting to see how they live in the old days. Nearby there is a Six Flags which is good if you are into theme park.

    You can probably stay for 4-5 days at SF to do the sightseeing. I think 2 weeks is quite ok for the 3 cities

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    • #3
      i travelled with my SO to those cities except SF in Feb this year. i started off my trip in Vegas which i spend 6 days there. Two of the days was spend at factory outlets, went to 2 of them and spend a day each there. Another day was spend going to Grand canyon, which I think is a must to go if you are going to Vegas. there were different travel agents arranging for such tours but i managed to find the cheapest one. the rest of the days were spend walking around the strip. if you are going around to many places in vegas, it will be better if you drive as the taxi are very expensive. i had spend quite alot on taxi fares.

      went to LA next by internal flight. their internal flights can be quite cheap if you book the tickets earlier, as the later you book the more expensive the price. i spend around 4 nights there, 1 and half days at disneyland and adventure theme park, a day at universal studio, 1 day shopping and going to hollywood area and another day stranded somewhere outskirt as our rented car broke down. we waited all the way from morning till late afternoon then they arranged for a change of car. another thing to note, if you are renting a car, go for full insurance. we were lucky that we got the full insurance for the car as we met with an accident in our next stop san diego, else cannot imagine how much we need to pay back the car rental company.

      after that i spend another 4 days at san diego, going to the seaworld, legoland and the san diego zoo. nothing much there except sightseeing but the tax is the lowest among the cities i went so i did some shopping there other than in vegas. LA's tax is the highest among these cities.

      i spend total of 3 weeks in US, as i went to the city that my SO was staying for a few days after touring. oops, such a long post. hehe.. but 2 weeks should be enough for your trip if you plan your travel itinerary well and i would suggest that you have an allowance of at least a day when you are back in SG as you will be having jet lag

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      • #4
        Thanks so much for your inputs. I haven't discuss with my friend where should we stay. I'd love to see the Grand Canyon. Any travel agents or companies in Vegas to recommend?

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        • #5
          i went for the grand canyon and hoover dam tour with this agent,

          http://www.grandtourslv.com/

          perhaps you would like to check out on their website

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          • #6
            silvercloud:which factory outlets did you go to in Las Vegas? I have a free day there so might want to check them out.. are they far from the strip?

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            • #7
              polka_dots: Sorry but I don't remember the name of the outlets now, but if you are driving, they are along the main Interstate highway (I15). There is one before entering Vegas (maybe 45mins to 1hr away). Leaving Vegas, there are a couple on the outskirts, around an hour drive or so.

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              • #8
                sigh.. its my first time to the US so mummy and i decided to go with tour.. guess we pretty much got to stay in the strips since its so faraway.. but can i still find VS, AE, A&F there? or do i wait till i go to SF's Union Square?

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                • #9
                  Hi gals!
                  I was just back from the states last week. The factory outlets are amazing. I think i chalked up a US$1K bill just there alone. I just shopped & shopped like crazy. Coach is cheap over there too. Las vegas shopping is wonderful, but abit on the ex side. They have $8.99 buffets all over the place too. Been up to LV, LA, SF & took a long boring drive up to see the Grand Canyon, which is spectacular. Personally, except for the theme parks, there's nothing much to do in L.A. San Francisco is lovely, with the clam chowder at Fisherman's Wharf (a must try), & the 17 miles drive to see the rows of beautiful houses along the beach. I like Las Vegas for its vibrant nightlife, & all the shopping & night shows. Its also pretty safe in Vegas. U can stay out as late as 3-4am & there will be throngs of ppl ard. In SF, its a diff story. The streets are emptied once the sun goes down at 7-8pm. It gets pretty eerie.

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                  • #10
                    polka_dots,
                    If im not wong, the best factory outlets to go are Tanger & Primm. DONT EVER go to the barstow factory outlet. Most of the shops there has moved out & its a ghost town, absoulutely nothing to buy there. Tanger & Primm are the best. I cant rem which one is better, but either one of them has this long row of shops selling Guess?, Coach. Polo Ralph Lauren, J West shoes, etc & i went crazy there buying up everything. Gosh, i miss US already. Think will make a trip back next year.

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                    • #11
                      Cirque du Soleil has a few shows in different casinos in Vegas. Can surf up their site. I find www.about.com very useful as well.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by glitzy
                        great! i'm looking forward to factory outlet shopping too... need to save up now.. looking forward to Vegas.. dior addict, did you watch any shows at Vegas? Which are the better shows/attractions in your opinion?? TIA!
                        Hi glitzy!
                        Alot of the shows are all free, & they are all along the strip. Each of them is unique, some are outdoors, some indoors. My favourite is the Treasure Island show, they even have a mini fireworks at the end of the show. Shall not reveal more otherwise it will spoil the fun for u.
                        The bellagio water fountain display is also worth seeing, very pretty. I even went to downtown las vegas to catch the laser show. But that is optional, if u have time, can go & see. If not, u arent missing that much too.
                        Last edited by dior_addict; 02-11-2005, 12:32 PM.

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                        • #13
                          Attn to all goin to USA...spend like u never spend before!!!!...thats what i did...
                          Was enjoyin myself tremendously during my 3 months(May-Aug 05) in the West Coast ( SF,LA & LV)..
                          I luv SF the best!...cos theres Union Sq, Chinatown & Fishermen's Wharf...
                          A mus do in LA are the theme parks( DisneyLand,California Adventure,Universal Studios)...one day for each theme park is not enough!!...
                          Jus a sidenote...for all A&F fans...they have an outlet outside Universal Studio...=)
                          YEs yeS...watch the fabulous FREE show outside T.I......simply amazing....*** catch any of the paid shows thou...but do beware..cos my fren caught one...paid quite alot for that show..and it turned out to be a disappointment...
                          Oh and if you are huge M&M or Coca Cola fan...dont miss the megastores there!!
                          well i guess the only bad thing about goin to LA & LV during the summer is the HOT HOT HOT weather...

                          I miss shopping in USA terribly.....when theres a SALE...they really mean it!!!...cheap & good stuf...nothin compared to the lousy sales in spore!!!!

                          and YES!!! COACH!!!...

                          dont worry about burning a hole in your pocket.....SPLURGE IT!!!!

                          one last thing....take a one month trip( 2 weeks is not enough!!!)....rent a car....its the best way to tour US!!!!!....

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by glitzy
                            thanks dior_addict!

                            artichoke, i know that cirque de soleil has their shows.. but the tickets are so exxx...in fact they have a new show at vegas now.. "KA"... but i will see if i've the budget and review the shows when i'm back!
                            Oh yes, sweetie, Forgot to tell u to look out for the Victoria Secret mega stores at Vegas. When i go in, its one hr of blissful shopping therapy for me. Check out their body moisturisers too, smells really lovely & not very ex too.

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                            • #15
                              KA is a direct adaptation of I La Galigo, an Indonesian epic. Not too sure what kind of circus 'stunts' are there but the story is the typical mythology kind.

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