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  1. Default Grandmother + grandsons traveling end March

    What would be interesting and educational for two grandsons, 7 & 9 in Central California end of MARCH. Napa south to Santa Barbara/ from coast to eastern CA. We will be staying in motels. Thanks

  2. #2

    Default The Plain, The Plain.........

    Hello Nani,

    Having been trained as a geologist, I've had a decades-long fascination with California geology, and nowhere is the San Andreas Fault and the landforms created by it more dramatically displayed than within the Carrizo Plain National Monument. There is a dry lake (Soda Lake), the Wallace Creek geological exhibit (about a half mile loop, all in the open, where the fault itself and a number of landforms are quite evident, especially when one consults the downloadable brochure), the remains of a farmstead, and some wildlife exhibits.

    You'll find Carrizo Plain to be distant from motels, but it's an easy drive east from Paso Robles and CA 99 lies a fairly short drive further east, with Bakersfield not to far distant.

    There's a museum of the "boomtown" days of the California oil industry in Taft, CA. The West Kern Oil Museum is its name. They're not open 7 days a week, so consult their website before making plans for a visit.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Welcome to RTA!

    It would depend, of course, upon the interests of your grandsons. But off hand, the first thing that comes to mind is the Aquarium at Monterey, then the beaches, hiking in the Santa Ana mountains. The Hearst Castle might be of interest to some.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default An All Time Great Resource

    When I travel with my own two grandsons (who are about the same age) I make serious use of the National Park System. It's not just that the National Park System encompasses some of our most beautiful and historic locations, but the efforts they go to in order to make those places understandable. Most notable among these efforts, and too often overlooked, are Ranger led talks and the Junior Ranger Program. The talks are almost invariably free (and I only say 'almost invariably' because I don't want to speak for every talk in every park, but I've never been charged for one), and the Rangers do a great job of adjusting their talks to the interests and age of their audience. The Junior Ranger Program is specifically aimed at children about the age of your grandchildren and typically consists of a booklet outlining activities for them to perform while visiting the park. At the end of their visit they present their completed booklets, get sworn in as Junior Rangers, and receive a number of neat mementos, including (typically) a park specific badge.

    Just a few of the parks, monuments, etc within the area you'll be traveling through include Pinnacles National Monument, Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, Carrizo Plain National Monument, Mojave National Preserve, Death Valley National Park, Sequoia National Park, Kings Canyon National Park, Yosemite National Park, and the California National Historic Trail. And that doesn't include the places close to home. Another great one (with a tour) is Historic Monterey.


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