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  #11  
Old 09-23-2009, 02:27 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

Hi Frances!

Lots of good suggestions so far. I would like to second the California coast from south of Big Sur to Monterrey. Then on to San Francisco and Napa/Sonoma. Over to Yosemite. Up to Tahoe and up the mountains to Crater Lake. (Note: I skip the upper California coast and go inland and do the Oregon coast). Down the Umpqua River (one of the most beautiful on earth) and on to the Oregon coast. Up the coast to about Newport and then to McMinnville for a the Willamette Valley. Eat at Nick's Italian Cafe. The Evergreen Flight Museum might appeal to your kids too - has the Spruce Goose (wooden seaplane as big as a 747). Then to Portland. Take the Interstate east to Hood River and stop on the way at Multnomah Falls! Go north out of Hood River to Mount St. Helens and Mt Ranier, to Seattle, to Vancouver, Victoria, etc. I highly recommend the Coopers Cove B&B in Sooke on Victoria Island.

I can make more detailed recommendations in many of those places (like specific wineries) but there should be an element of surprise as well!

Good Luck!
Jay

Last edited by texassourdough; 09-23-2009 at 02:29 PM.
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  #12  
Old 09-23-2009, 02:31 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

Hey thanks guys, just the kind of tips I was hoping for!
I'll make a long list before we go so that we can check out some of the places and eateries you suggest.

We'll be renting a mobile home and moving around as the mood takes us for six weeks, starting in San Fransisco, hopefully getting as far as Vancouver Island, and taking in Las Vegas and Los Angeles on the way back (as it were). Dates are the last week in June until the first week in August.

The highwy number 1 will deffinately feature on our itinary. Other than that... hmm lots of variety I should think. Our kids are pretty good with big cities, and hiking, too. So big city, country side, mountains, desert, ocean, all sound good to me.

Museums and wine tasting maybe not so much - we'll do our wine tasting in the evening after they've gone to bed - recomendations for local wines that we can buy in a store are welcome.

One thing the kids will probably want to see is something to do with native americans - only I would prefer to show them something authentic rather than a touristy make-believe whatever. Dunno, does that make sense? The subject is bound to come up though.

Just writing about it, I am so starting to look forward to this trip!!
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  #13  
Old 09-23-2009, 03:49 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

There are a number of good, although small, museums dedicated to Native Americans throughout the country, usually regional in focus. California is in the midst of trying to expand its State Indian Museum into a new larger facility, but the process is delayed by budget issues. The current State Indian Museum is located in Sacramento, just outside Sutter's Fort. There are also a number of tribal sites around the state, including a small but well-organized museum in Yosemite dedicated to the original occupants of the valley. One of my favorites is Indian Grinding Rock, which is about an hour east from Sacramento.

California has always been an extremely diverse place; apparently, that was true even before europeans arrived: from the wikipedia page on Native American languages- "North America is notable for its linguistic diversity, especially in California where it alone has 18 genetic units consisting of 74 languages (compared to the mere 3 genetic units in all of Europe: Basque, Indo-European, Uralic)." There are dozens of different tribes in California alone, literally hundreds of different tribes across the continent, each with its own unique culture and history.

I am excited for you- This sounds like it will be a great trip! When I was a kid, my family did a similar trip, traveling in a small motorhome along the California coast. This will probably be even more amazing for your kids, since not only will you be taking longer and covering more ground, it's in a whole new foreign place for them. Awesome!
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  #14  
Old 09-23-2009, 07:53 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

I loved Cali and was stationed there near San Fran and closer even to Napa Valley. (US Navy 1985-1991)

Google Eureka CA and you'll see that the costal areas are very nice country but truely out a ways from the main stream and if the kiddies don't like long road trips or get car sick kind of a windy ride up the coast north of the bay. Best motorcycle riding I ever did!!!

But a few days in the bay (Bring a jacket even in the summer) seeing (and eating ) up and down the coast. Muir Woods on the 1 up north over the Golden Gate is a great trip. Once you get up to Point Reyes your about as far out as a good day trip can run.

Muir Woods National Monument and Mount Tamalpais State Park

I got to spend about 9 months there and road 7500 miles or more on my motor cycle.

muir beach ca - Google Maps (turn on the satellite over lay)

From Bodega Bay in the North to Half Moon bay in the south along the coast is really nice. But if I were picking and choosing I'd see the City (china town too) , Ride the Trolly down to the warf, hit the north side of the bay after seeing the Golden Gate.

San Francisco Trolley Car Tours - San Francisco Hop On/Off Trolley Tours

Another great trip is out to Yosemite. Quiet a haul from the city, but if you stay out east of the bay you can day trip both.

Yosemite Valley Tunnel View Panorama

... did I mention Napa Valley

http://www.motorcycle-traveler.com/w...lley-roads.jpg


Man I could go on for days and Yes I live in Alabama and love it just as much alabama state parks - Google Images
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  #15  
Old 09-23-2009, 08:00 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

And to keep on topic

Wild Flour Bread Bakery - Wood Fired Brick Oven Baked Bread - Wildflour Freestone (about an hour north of the bay)

North Beach - Bakeries - Bay Area | Urbanspoon

You could do a wood fired oven tour and I bet there are some folks on FB that have built ovens that live in the area as well
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  #16  
Old 09-23-2009, 08:53 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

If you get to Santa Cruz (between Monterey and San Francisco), this is for kids of all ages: Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk - Millions of Memories at California's Beachfront Amusement Park
Ed
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  #17  
Old 09-24-2009, 12:32 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

Frances,
You can't tour British Columbia without exploring the Okanagan Valley: Okanagan Valley - Google Search. Wineries, aritisan food makers, various craftsmen and some of the nicest scenery in the country!
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  #18  
Old 09-26-2009, 03:53 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

Wow!!
Am I to understand that you will be driving a motor home from San Francisco to Canada and back? And taking half-a-summer to do it? 'Cause if so, that would be one of the funnest vacations imaginable. I live here, and I SO wish I could drive a motor home from here to Canada and back - and take my sweet time doing it! I am envious.
And everyone has given you such great advice. It's nice that you have lots of advance time to plan but be sure to leave some holes in your itinerary to simply "fart-around", as we say, when you find a place you especially enjoy.
There will be lots of them.
I sent you a message already, but didn't reallize the scope of your plan until I searched this thead. And again, WOW!!! How fun! Those are some lucky kids!

dusty

PS. I believe George is on that proposed route.
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  #19  
Old 09-26-2009, 03:59 PM
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

Hmm, where will you spend July 4th? May I recommend you try to get together with some friends for what ever constitutes a picnic in the area you will be. My family in Maryland often has a Crab Feast along with other great pot luck food. With a little effort I'm sure you could get an invitation to a comparable event! (or perhaps you already have!)
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  #20  
Old 09-27-2009, 03:34 AM
Frances's Avatar
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Default Re: West Coast from Los Angeles to Vancouver

The 4th of July? Hmm, I'd forgotten about that... Cool!

No idea where we'll be then though. Half way between SF and Vancouver maybe? Still, we don't have to plan everything right now. As Dusty pointed out, it'll be nice to stay spontaneous.

Thanks again for all the suggestions and links. Just now I'm having a blast, just surfing around and checking them all out!
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