If you love animals or wildlife parks, then Bearizona is for you. We traveled to Williams, Arizona where just outside this small town is a self-driving wildlife park featuring roaming black bears, wolves, deers, bisons, and so many more wildlife in an open environment. You must keep your windows shut and car doors locked especially in the bear and wolves area. The experience is amazing to see the animals in a more natural habitat, playing, climbing trees, and sometimes fighting amongst themselves.
Every time you drive through it is a different experience. Sometimes the animals can be lazy, other times playful, and sometimes mischievous. This is a completely unique experience compared to your standard zoo. They also offer a guided tour bus at no additional fee that has open air windows and a guide talking and feeding animals along the way.
They even have a separate walking area that features smaller animals like the bear cubs, foxes, white peacocks, and jaguars. Another highlight was their Bird of Prey show in which various owls and hawks fly just inches above the audiences head. They have added a huge new gift shop and indoor restaurant that is beautifully decorated like the caverns of the Grand Canyon.
Bearizona is truly a gem and we drove specifically from California to spend 2 days there. We went on the tour of the park numerous times each day and we never knew what to expect. Great for kids and worth the price.
One of our favorite places to visit while in Orlando, Florida is Gatorland. We returned for our second visit and it delivered again. Some newly added features were the feeding of the smaller gators with a pole. Similar to fishing they would attach the fish to a string on a stick and would untie once the young gators took a hard enough bite and pull.
The gator wrestling was enjoyable as an audience member picked a feisty one named Shrek that gave the wrangler all that he could handle. Once again to see these creatures so up close is always exciting and awe-inspiring. Don’t forget to journey beyond the breeding grounds to see the deers, nile crocodiles, and many other assortments of gators.
We took a Carnival cruise and journeyed to Nassau Island in the Bahamas, there we visited the world famous Atlantis Resort and Waterpark. Among the most popular and scariest waterslides is the Leap of Faith, which is a 6 story drop that ends in a tube through a shark lagoon. My 2 kids age 12 and 13 took the leap and had a blast!
For those who are looking for a less extreme version, you can go on the Serpent Slide which requires 1 or 2 passengers to sit on an inflatable tube and go through a dark windy slide that ends with floating through the shark lagoon where you can take time to enjoy the sharks swimming all around your view.
Atlantis is filled with many other pools and slides of various shapes and sizes and includes a younger kid waterpark. Another hidden gem is the adjacent beach which features white sands and clear aqua blue waters. Life vest are provided here and if you have snorkeling masks you will be able to spot tropical fish in the waters too.
Tip: the admission price is expensive if you are not staying at the hotel, but you can look for some 3rd party vendors who sell the tickets online for a discounted price.
World famous chef, Gordon Ramsay, has just opened up a Hell’s Kitchen themed restaurant modeled after his reality TV show. This is a restaurant that plays upon the success of his hit show and designed with Red vs Blue kitchen and decor inspired by the studio set. As a family, we have been long time fans and was surprised to see it open just outside Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. We were able to just walk in and dine as it was a week before the official Grand opening.
Recommend making reservations as we heard that they already had over 12,000 reservations made in advance. The food itself was amazing as I got the chef meal for $60 which included the Pumpkin Soup, Ramsay’s signature Beef Wellington, and Sticky Toffee Pudding for dessert. FYI, they don’t actually film the show here so you can expect professional chefs and service. Overall, a fun and entertaining meal for the whole family located right in the middle of the Las Vegas strip.
Seems everyone loves Mermaids. While in Las Vegas you can swing by the Silverton Casino where there aquarium features a free live mermaid showing at specified times throughout the day. While swimming they interact with the children and audience making heart bubbles and other fun tricks. Also they have the Bass Pro Shop adjacent to the aquarium so it is a great way to keep the kids busy in Vegas on a budget.
Over the summer took my kids to SeaWorld in San Diego and it was a blast. So many interactive shows and exhibits, my kids really enjoyed feeding the batrays, seals, and flamingos. There is an additional cost to purchase the food. The shows were great as well including the Orca Encounters show and Dolphin Days show that will get you soaked if you are sitting in the soak zone.
Other shows include the Sealion and Otter comedy show which was funny and entertaining, but this past summer they had the Cirque Electrique show that was amazing. Only showing at night, these acts performed in the amphitheater that faced the bay and the performers had incredible circus stunts over the water.
Tips: We purchased the weekday ticket to save money and avoid the crowds. We also got the All You Can Eat dining pass, which allows you to get an entree, dessert, and drink once every hour.
Hey everybody, try our new game to play with your family or friends when sharing a computer. It is simple and features some of our pop culture scenes and called GIF Wars.
At our port stop on the Carnival Cruise in Ensenada, Mexico, we went to the Las Canadas Canopy Tour that included ziplines and hanging bridges. There are 5 ziplines and 5 hanging bridges and take about a little over an hour depending on your pace. Some of the bridges are surprisingly difficult, especially the single boards which require quite a bit of balance. Also, what they may not tell you is that it requires a manual switch of your carabiners in the middle of the bridge, if done incorrectly you put yourself at a very high risk.
Overall, this was definitely one of the highlights of our visit to Mexico. Fun and challenging experience with an affordable price. We ended up paying $55/person which included the tour of La Bufadora, the zipline/hanging bridges at Las Canadas Campgrounds, and transportation to and from downtown Ensenada. Definitely worth the price and highly recommended.
If you live in Southern California, the Aquarium of the Pacific inn Long Beach has to be one of the best deals for your family. The annual membership pass gives you plenty of time to enjoy all that the Aquarium offers throughout the year. Their exhibits ranges from Sharks, Sealions, Otters, Penguins, Rays, and so much more. We have been members for numerous years and they often offer exclusive member events like Adult Prom which is a dress up evening event for Adults only.
Tip: Lorikeet birds cost an additional fee, but if you go at 10am when that part of the exhibit opens, you will be swarmed by flocks of hungry Lorikeet parakeets. Fun and a little bit scary…enjoy!
We went to the La Jolla Cave beach and was surprised by sea lions so nearby on the beach. They swim just off the shore and relax on nearby rocks. Be careful as the waves and rocks can be dangerous for swimming so if you want to go snorkeling you will need to move just a little bit off to the side where the rocks are less of a concern. Sea lions appear playful and cute but keep your distance as they are wild animals and are not meant to be touched or petted.