You won’t believe the number of family-friendly activities on offer in California. To narrow down the endless options, we’ve selected the best things to do for whole-family fun during a week's holiday in San Diego and Los Angeles.

San Diego

Stay: The Manchester Grand Hyatt features a great pool and kids club that's perfect for families. It is also located at San Diego Bay, a picturesque position close to restaurants and local sights.

Experiences: San Diego is a great place to start your family holiday and the San Diego Zoo is definitely the first place to see while you’re there. The famous zoo is home to favourites like pandas and polar bears and is a great must-do family attraction. Make sure you get there in the morning to see the animals while they are more active as they tend to rest during the middle of the day.

Play: The next stop should be LEGOLAND, which is great for all ages. There is something for everyone, whether that’s rides, shows or attractions. Families with younger kids should combine a LEGOLAND pass with admission to the SEA LIFE Aquarium, which is extremely child-friendly and can be enjoyed within a couple of hours. On your last day, head out to some lesser-known attractions like the oceanside Belmont Amusement Park or Coronado Beach.

Los Angeles

Stay: Howard Johnson Anaheim is a great-value hotel five minutes' walk from Disneyland’s entrance. Some of the family-friendly amenities include a pirate water park for the kids, large rooms and a variety of restaurants in the hotel and nearby.

Experiences: Don’t waste any time in LA and head straight to Disneyland. Make sure you get a Disneyland hopper ticket so you jump between Disneyland and California Adventure Park. For an extra thrill, book a character meet and greet or even a character breakfast for your little ones. Don’t forget to bring an autograph book! One day won’t be enough to explore both parks, so head back again the next day.

Play: Your final days should be divided between Knott’s Berry Farm and Universal Studios. Knott’s Berry Farm has thrill rides, kids rides and live entertainment, while Universal Studios is sure to be a highlight for movie-loving families, especially fans of Harry Potter, with a new themed attraction opening next year.

Sarah Harrison, Travel Consultant, Flight Centre Caloundra 

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