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Santa Barbara beach, California, USA
USS Midway Museum
Joshua Tree National Park
Old Mission Santa Barbara
Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara Botanical Garden
Hollywood Walk of Fame
Departs: October 9th, 2021 Tour Dates & Pricing
When the skies are gray and sunshine is scarce, join us for a warm California getaway! Begin in sunny San Diego touring the city, visiting the USS Midway Museum, and taking a scenic ferry ride across the San Diego Bay. Arrive in Palm Springs where we learn how the rich and famous turned this desert oasis into a playground for the stars, and visit the rugged and cactus-speckled landscapes of Joshua Tree National Park. Learn about the Franciscan friars and pioneers at Old Mission Santa Barbara and enjoy time at leisure to take in its jaw-dropping scenery. Later we feel the splendor of Hollywood on a Warner Brothers Studio VIP tour, and visit Hollywood Boulevard with time to stroll the Hollywood Walk of Fame, see the Dolby and TLC Chinese Theaters, and the iconic Hollywood sign.
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Hosted By: John Marra
WSAZ NewsChannel 3 Home and Garden Expert
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Day 1 : Fly to California
We begin our adventure with a relaxing flight to sunny southern California and check-in to our accommodations in San Diego.
Day 2 : San Diego
A local guide joins us to explore the city. We drive by Petco Park, the home of the Padres baseball club, tour San Diego’s distinct neighborhoods, and visit the historic Gaslamp Quarter.
An included lunch at Peohe’s Restaurant on Coronado Island features a tropical interior with waterfalls and breathtaking views.
Following lunch, we board a ferry for a delightful crossing of the San Diego Bay.
Next we visit the USS Midway Museum. Spend time exploring this floating city and learn about the 225,000 sailors who have served on this vessel through the 60+ exhibits that bring the ship’s history to life.
Day 3 : Palm Springs
Enjoy a delicious included breakfast at the hotel before departing for Palm Springs.
Upon arrival, have lunch at “Palm Springs’ hippest restaurant,” Lulu California Bistro. You’ll love its stylish interior and delightful cuisine.
Next, explore the greater Palm Springs area with a local guide. During our tour we’re introduced to native geology, desert wildlife, and the role wind energy plays in this community. Discover how indigenous peoples and early settlers thrived on this desert floor, how the rich and famous transformed Palm Springs into a playground for the stars, and how this area became a home for aficionados of modern architecture.
We check-in to our Palm Springs hotel with the remainder of the evening at leisure.
Day 4 : Joshua Tree National Park
Today we visit Joshua Tree National Park. This unique park preserves nearly 1000 square miles of gnarled Joshua Trees which have adapted to the harsh desert climate. Watch for wildlife and migrant birds. Keys View lookout provides panoramic views of the Coachella Valley. On a clear day you may be able to see beyond the Salton Sea to Signal Mountain in Mexico.
Day 5 : Surf City
Tour the elegant Huntington estate in San Marino, now a library with botanical gardens and collections of fine art on display. This Georgian mansion was once the home of California railroad tycoon Henry Edwards Huntington, who was also a collector of 18th-century British portraits. Today the estate features over seven million items including 400,000 rare books and manuscripts from famous authors throughout history, photographs, prints, a hall of rotating exhibits, and much more.
Next we travel to Santa Barbara, popularly known as the "American Riviera" thanks to its Mediterranean-like climate. We check-in to our hotel and then depart for tonight’s included dinner.
Day 6 : Santa Barbara
Take in a guided tour of Old Mission Santa Barbara where we’ll learn about Franciscan friars and California’s Mission system. Explore the Sacred Garden, cemetery, church, and museum with artifacts and interpretive displays. See heirloom and historic plants that once grew during the Mission era at La Huerta Garden.
Break for lunch at the Santa Barbara Public Market. Located in the city’s vibrant performing and cultural arts district, this colorful marketplace is home to a wide range of local food vendors and other merchants in a friendly, spacious atmosphere.
The rest of the day is ours to enjoy at leisure. Stroll scenic Stearns Wharf, visit the Santa Barbara Zoo, the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden, or simply relax at our comfortable hotel.
Day 7 : Los Angeles
We arrive in Los Angeles and have lunch at the LA Farmers Market. Active since 1934, this marketplace has more than 100 shops and eateries to explore with plenty of outdoor seating.
Afternoon finds us at the Petersen Automotive Museum. Discover over 250 vehicles and learn about the automobile's impact on life and culture around the world, noting the importance of the automobile in Southern California with its expansive, sprawling highway system.
Later, we check-in to our Los Angeles hotel for a two-night stay.
Day 8 : Hollywood
Enjoy a Warner Brothers Studio VIP tour by tram with an expert guide as we go "behind the lens" visiting film sets and working soundstages on the studio lot. The tour continues with an immersive look at how the magic of Hollywood is made at Stage 48: Script to Screen. Here you can lounge on the Friends set couch, build your own costume at the interactive design station, or view authentic headshots and audition reels on the high-definition touch screen casting table.
This afternoon, explore Hollywood Boulevard with time to stroll the Hollywood Walk of Fame and see the TCL Chinese Theater, the Dolby Theater, and the Hollywood Sign.
Tonight we gather for a special Holiday Vacations Farewell Dinner, the perfect ending to our fabulous vacation.
Day 9 : Fly Home
We fly home from Los Angeles with special memories of our time in California.
October 9th, 2021 - October 17th, 2021
Price Per Person
Final Payment Date: 08/10/2021
WSAZ TV Pickup Locations:
Barboursville, WV - Walmart
Charleston, WV - Microtel Inn & Suites By Wyndam
Columbus, OH - Port Columbus International Airport
John is the retired Home and Garden Expert spending nearly 35 years at WSAZ. If it had anything to do with lawns, gardens, shrubs or trees, viewers could count on John to give them the latest technology
to solve their many landscaping needs.
John also retired from the West Virginia University Extension Service with the rank of Associate Professor.
While at WSAZ, John had his own TV show, The Saturday Report, where he interviewed many local agriculture experts. On Tuesday afternoons, he aired his Green Thumb segment to thousands of interested viewers. During the week, he also appeared on WSAZ Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays at noon answering viewers calls live on air and presenting timely gardening tips. John was also one of the main attractions at the very successful WSAZ Home and Garden Show which attracted tens of thousands of people at the local civic arena.
John has previously hosted several Holiday Vacation Tours to Alaska, Hawaii and the many National Parks in the West.
Join John and many other WSAZ viewers on this very exciting tour to beautiful Southern California.
Tour days tend to be shorter in length, at a relaxed pace, and include lots of unscheduled time for leisure. Expect standing and walking for extended periods of time on flat surfaces, mostly low altitudes, and consistent temperatures.
Tour days usually move at a leisurely pace. Some days’ scheduled activities last longer than others. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on occasionally uneven terrain. You may experience changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a consistent pace, and may include long travel days. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on uneven surfaces. Some destinations may have changes in altitude and/or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a brisk pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on uneven surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a vigorous pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on rough surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.