Float Like a Butterfly, Sting Like a Manta

Before leaving California, we returned to Sea World, San Diego for one last day of sea life and adventures. Manta, Sea World’s new mega-attraction, soars, dives, and twists like a ray while seamlessly transitioning you from the awe of watching rays in underwater flight to the sensation of actually being one.

Featuring a unique “launch station,” we started our Manta experience enclosed in a launch tunnel with larger-than-life images of rays projected on a 270-degree enveloping screen. This state-of-the-art projection system is the first of its kind in the United States. Continue reading

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“Feelin’ Christmas-Sea in Newport Beach!”

We joined over a million viewers as we watched beautifully decorated yachts, boats, kayaks, and canoes sail along the harbor in the 103rd Annual Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade. The Christmas Boat Parade is a magical holiday tradition for all ages. Many people view the Newport Beach Christmas boat parade from the shores lining Newport Bay. The parade is free, so viewing from the shoreline is both an entertaining and a cheap family holiday activity. Instead of standing along the shore and fighting for a spot, however, we participated in the actual Newport Harbor Christmas Boat Parade on a beautifully decorated Davey’s Locker cruise. Many people assume, like I did, that the popular Newport Harbor tours would suspend their operation while the large boat procession was in progress, but, that’s not the case. In fact, taking the harbor tour was the best way to see the boat parade. We were able to get up close and personal with the other boats, making it easier to see the details of the floats and snap photos. The unique experience of being on the water viewing what the New York Times stated as “one of the top 10 holiday happenings in the nation” made a unique, lasting Christmas memory for Darren and I. Continue reading

Davey’s Locker Excursion – More than a Whale of a Time

Every travel and tourism site on Orange County, Los Angeles, and California suggests a whale watching cruise where you can view giant blue whales during the summer and fall
months and the annual grey whale migration that brings tens of thousands of grey whales along the coast during the winter and spring months. Huge pods of several species of dolphin are very common during these excursions as are the resident sea lions, harbor seals, porpoises, and marine birds. With a 96% success rate, almost every cruise has many viewing opportunities. An added plus is picturesque coastal backdrops of Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, and Huntington Beach. It was advertising like this as well as recognition as one of the top whale watching destinations in the world that led me to include whale watching on my Yearly Bucket List. Davey’s Locker was my top choice because of their excellent, long-standing reputation, prices, and location. Continue reading

Fine Dining on Flagship’s Dinner Dance Cruise, San Diego

The San Diego bay breeze, a great dinner menu, and the superb seascapes are just three of many reasons why Darren and I chose the Flagship Dinner & Dance Cruise around San Diego Bay. It was the perfect way to enjoy a meal and see San Diego from a different perspective.

Our romantic getaway to Coronado was matched perfectly while enjoying the cruise. Sailing around San Diego Bay and underneath the Coronado Bridge was breathtaking. From Harbor and Shelter Islands to the U.S. Navy shipyards, our Flagship Tour covered it all. We relaxed comfortably seated next to each other and watched San Diego from luxury seats. Continue reading