Our 2009 travels included 2 trips to California. We spent our Mardi Gras vacation following the Tour of California, a professional bicycle race, from northern California to southern California. Some of our favorite stops along the route were the Rose Bowl, Pebble Beach, and Sea World in San Diego.
I loved catching one of the stage winner's bouquets at the awards ceremony which ended at the Rose Bowl. Of course, it was made up of 18 long-stemmed red roses. Viewing the Rose Bowl Parade is on our bucket list.
A stop at Pebble Beach was a necessity while we were in the area. Once upon a time, playing a round at Pebble Beach was on my bucket list. Since I haven't played golf since the late 80's, I decided that actually playing Pebble Beach was no longer something I needed to do. Seeing it would fulfill the bucket list item.
Following the race finish in Escondido, we spent several days in San Diego. We visited Sea World. Although we enjoyed all the aquatic life, it was easier having our picture taken with one of the beautiful Clydesdales. I did pet the stingrays, but the horse appeared to enjoy being petted more than the stingrays.
Our summer trip to California took us to San Francisco. We love the city, but the hills are very intimidating for a bicycle rider from south Louisiana. We have to ride over an overpass many times to get any "hill training" in. A trip to Napa Valley was just the thing for these flatlanders. The scenery was beautiful. Our bucket list contains another bicycle trip to this area.
Yosemite National Park was also a fascinating trip. We had considered going during our February, but we don't own the warm clothes that would have been necessary in the winter. We took an all day bus trip arranged by the lodge and thoroughly enjoyed it. We enjoy taking tours like this because it gives my husband a chance to view all the scenery and take pictures without having to worry about driving. I think the saying "A picture is worth a thousand words" is approriate.
We returned to San Francisco at the end of the trip. I think my husband could eat at Boudin Bakery every meal. We discovered that Boudin is a family name and not the sausage popular in south Louisiana. We went to a Giants baseball game on Father's Day. We spent many Father's Days in baseball parks growing up and brought back many pleasant memories. That is something else on our bucket list....going to as many major league baseball parks as we can.
We are glad you enjoyed the "city by the bay" and Yosemite as well. California has a whole bunch of attractions and when you're in San Francisco you're only halfway up the state! The Redwood Empire and Mount Shasta are still there to see as you meander up 101 or zoom up the 5.
We love Yosemite too, and it's a cold place but navigable in Winter. This year to the north the Sierras are getting very deep snow (good for skiers and boarders) in record amounts, which will eventually help our water supply (always an issue).
Monterey, where we live, is also nice to visit. So come back and enjoy the Golden State. Happy New Year too. We'll get to Louisiana as soon as we can!