Tag: family vacation

A Night In San Francisco

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When traveling to most cities of the world, finding discount accommodations when arriving to your destination is always a possibility. Not so in the diverse and complex city of San Francisco. From the hills of Daly City to the plains of Berkeley, the environments and people are so diverse that your vacation could with one dial of the phone be a paradise made in heaven or an inferno designed in, well you know, that other place.

Families making their hotel reservations at the smaller hotels that dot the periphery of San Francisco might be able to land a bargain, but find they may find themselves sharing accommodations with other crawling critters that would make even the toughest among us parents squirm.

I did this once. I came to San Francisco on a budget and thinking to wing my accommodations; I found a phonebook and booked a motel for $59 a night. Well, the minute I saw the hotel along a poorly lit side street I knew we were in trouble. This hotel was something I would expect to see in medieval Europe, not in actuality. But it was late and we succumbed to our basal instincts for sleep and it was ‘just one night.’ But the bed was so grimy we actually slept on the floor, and the occasional voices we heard in the alleys were so hair razing I don’t think sleep was an option for any of us – and we were in their ‘best room!’

The next day I called numerous hotels in San Francisco city proper. You know, where the Trolley Cars roam and the street performers perform. I found a number of places, ranging from the low 100’s and going up to the high 600’s. We got in our car to make our investigation and inspected one hotel after the other, some dark and dank and some bright and classic. We settled on the Grant Plaza Hotel at $180 a night. We had a rollaway brought for my two children and spent the rest of the day recuperating for our previous nightmare.

That evening, we ventured out to walk around the Streets of San Francisco and I must tell you it was scary. There were destitute people lurking at every doorway, down every alley, sleeping above the street vents for warmth. This was a haven for the homeless and I am not sure where the tourist fits in. It was both sad and a frightening, especially since coming from an isolated small town in Minnesota. I passed out quarters to those asking as if I were passing out flyers for a corner store.

We eventually found a Starbuck near Union Square and quickly ducked in. After a family meeting to discuss our situation, we decided to catch a trolley car and make a dash to the famous Fisherman’s Wharf and Ghirardelli’s Square. We scampered out of Starbucks and caught the next trolley. It was a wild ride straight up and straight down a city built on a mountain. We all screamed with joy. We spent an enchanting evening among all the tourist shops, street performers and family attractions that populate Fisherman’s Wharf. We bought a big pound of fudge at a fudge shop and drank coke and champagne until late in the evening.

Our lesson from all this, at least regarding San Francisco hotel reservations, make your hotel reservations in advance. Don’t waste time looking for a hotel room when you get there, the city is just too big. Since writing this, we went to San Diego. I booked all our accommodations off the Internet which featured discount hotel reservations with pictures and prices clearly explained. Welcome to the 21st century.

A Christmas Vacation for the Family (Ideal Places to Go To)

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Christmas Vacation Ideas for the Work at Home Dad

In countries like the Philippines, the yuletide season extends from the beginning of October all the way to January the following year. Quite different from western traditions, don’t you think so? But no matter which part of the world you are, if you believe in Christmas, then you know that this is perhaps one of the most celebrated holidays in the world of Christianity.

Well, the way people celebrate this holiday season may vary between each family and individual. This doesn’t mean, though, that we can’t get excited this early for the coming of the most wonderful time of the year! Christmas is really fast approaching when October sets in and November is just around the corner.

With Christmas about to knock on our doors, I am fairly certain that there are some of you who are already cooking up plans for the coming holidays. Having said that, there are amazing vacation destinations that you may want to consider for your family. Depending on your budget, there are specific locations that are perfect for a family vacation that you certainly won’t soon forget, whether you and your family are aiming for a tropical or a white Christmas.

If you and your family are accustomed to a snowy white Christmas, then it would be perfectly logical to seek a more tropical theme this time around, don’t you agree? Tropical family vacation destinations are quite popular these days, especially among those who are tired of the stereotypical white Christmas that the late Bing Crosby made famous in his hit single of the same name. You can forget about wearing winter clothes, mittens, wooly scarves and bonnets, and go instead for your shades, sunscreen, and snorkeling gear.

Tropical destinations that are close to the coastlines are popular among many vacationers who are looking for that beautiful beach ambiance. The world class beaches and resorts in Australia, Florida, Hawaii, and the Caribbean are particularly among the favorites.

They offer affordable packages that include first-rate hotels and lodging, fine dining and exotic restaurants, as well as memorable and fun activities that you and your family will definitely enjoy. If you think about it, getting this family vacation package is actually an awesome Christmas present, and one that you all absolutely deserve.

On the other side of the isle, people who have been spending a winterless Christmas for the most part of their lives may want to consider a white Christmas themselves. You can book a trip for your family to stay in mountainous vacation spots for the holiday season, where the stimulating aroma of pine trees, the serene view of white capped mountains, and the crackling sound of the fireplace will engulf you in white Christmas bliss.

You, your spouse, and the kids can enjoy a day of skiing, snowboarding, and snowmobile riding. And if you want a more intimate holiday experience with your family, you can choose to rent cabins where you can share hot cocoa and slightly burnt marshmallows. It would be nice to be free of all the electronic gadgets, wireless communications devices and entertainment consoles that take up most of our time, don’t you think so?

If you are on a tight budget, getting a family vacation for the yuletide season doesn’t have to be an all-out spending spectacle. If you want to experience a white Christmas, you can swap houses, or trade places, with close friends or relatives who want to experience a sunny Christmas of their own.

You do not have to spend much to experience a memorable Christmas. The most important thing is that you are spending it with family and friends. That we can all agree on, right?

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