NaturePlayTrips's Passport
 

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Member since:
22 September 2010

Icon_superoo_orangeSuperoo '12, '13

Icon_pictureBeen to 248 Attractions
Icon_star112 Reviews
Icon_star177 First to Review
Icon_camera2149 Photos
Icon_thumbsup66 Helpful Votes
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About Me & My Family

We like exploring nature and playgrounds wherever we go. We tend to avoid crowds and visit places that might be less well-known. We promote play on our FunOrangeCountyParks.com Play Blog (part community service, part travel agent).
Our Family's Travel Personality
curious, simple, independent, spontaneous, easy_going
We Just Got Back From
Alaska
Our Favorite Vacation Spot
Anywhere in nature
A Place We'd Love To Visit
Mt. Rushmore
Websites I Like:
Nature Play Trips by FunOrangeCountyParks.com

Reviews & Photos

112 Reviews


December 11 2014
2 families found this helpful
IlluminOcean Dana Point Harbor - DISCONTINUED | kids travel, kids activities
IlluminOcean Dana Point Harbor - DISCONTINUED
34624 Golden Lantern St,
Dana Point,
California 92629
"Surprised at the light tunnels"
I knew IlluminOcean was at Dana Point Harbor, but couldn't really wrap my head around what it would look like. My little ones are bigger now, but I can imagine that when they were little their minds would have been BLOWN by the light tunnels that move to the time of Christmas music with a surf music sound. We didn't even have the glasses and I felt like a kid with "oohs" and "aaahs." Plus, it's free so I didn't have high expectations at all.

I would definitely start at the Harbor Village area and move out on foot from there. We drove in from the Ocean Institute side and things were pretty sparse coming in from that way.

We didn't do the map or the shuttle or even the 3-D glasses. We just went for dinner and enjoyed the lights afterwards. Coffee Importers has yummy cocoa - and even ice cream - so I could see making a whole outing out of just the light tunnels. Make it super-fun and surprise the kids by getting them all ready for bed and then bringing them in their pajamas!

I'd recommend coming early or late to avoid the parking crunch that can happen on weekends or when they are having a big event at the harbor. I wrote a review and shared videos on my blog:
 
 
May 04 2014
0 families found this helpful
University of Alaska Museum Of The North | kids travel, kids activities
University of Alaska Museum Of The North
907 Yukon Drive,
Fairbanks,
Alaska
"Better for older kids"
The architecture of the museum is a sight to see, even if you never go inside. It's on the campus of the University of Alaska at Fairbanks. The do have a "Family Room" with puzzles and things for kids to touch, but the museum is more of a look but don't touch experience. My kids enjoyed a scavenger hunt where they had to look up answers to questions in the different exhibits. But it was designed more for 3rd grade and up.
 
 
May 04 2014
0 families found this helpful
Anchorage Museum and Imaginarium | kids travel, kids activities
Anchorage Museum and Imaginarium
Rasmuson Center,
625 C Street,
Anchorage,
Alaska
"A cross between a children's museum, a natural history museum, and an art museum"
The youngest of kids will enjoy the main level hands-on science exhibits where you can play with bubbles, earthquake machines, pulleys & levers, and interact with a kluge. My kids loved the exhibit where they could record stop-motion animation and where they could jump and it would record them in slow motion for playback.

The artwork by Alaskan artists and the cultural exhibits. The sheer depth of exhibits was truly jaw-dropping in the Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center.

Younger kids will want to stick to the science center and planetarium. Older visitors from out-of-state will want to wanter the other floors and exhibits. The restaurant "Muse" had very good food with kids options, although there was a wait.

Backpacks must be stored in a locker.
 
 
May 04 2014
0 families found this helpful
Independence Mine State Historical Park | kids travel, kids activities
Independence Mine State Historical Park
Hatcher Pass Road,
Wasilla,
Alaska
"The short way to get here"
There's a long and scenic way to get here. And there's a short and sensible way to get here. Since we visited at the end of June the route over Hatcher Pass Road was just opening to drivers. We drove up from Palmer along Fishhook-Willow Road and it was very beautiful, but not as lengthy as we heard about along Hatcher Pass.

Once there, the Visitor Center had lots of exhibits and we happened to arrive at the time of a tour by a volunteer geologist. It was a little long, but we could have jumped off the tour at any time. It's just interesting to be up there and explore the area. There are many trails to take and views to photograph. You can even check out pans for gold if you give them your driver's license and try your hand in the stream.
 
 
May 04 2014
0 families found this helpful
Angel Island & Tiburon Ferry | kids travel, kids activities
Angel Island & Tiburon Ferry
21 Main Street ,
Tiburon,
California 94920
"Super quick ride"
I had no idea how long it was going to take to get to Angel Island, but once we boarded it was only about 10 minutes. If you are prone to seasickness, sit outdoors on the 2nd level. Downstairs is louder, but you don't get as wind-blown. Some families brought their bikes and there is room to store them down below. I heard from the ranger that the visitors increase exponentially in summer, but there were very few tourists in April (perfect for Spring Break!). You pay as you board and they accept major credit cards. Just don't lose your ticket for the return trip while you are on the island.