If you caught my last post about our first day in Hollywood, you know that I’ve got something awesome to share from our trip in today’s post. The highlight of our trip for both of us. We’ll get there:)
We got up early to get the day started- loading up the car yet again. Here we are outside our hotel, ready to go!
With us only staying one night in Hollywood, we would be in a new hotel that night. (A much nicer hotel, thank goodness.) We found the nearest grocery store, picked up something to munch on in the car for breakfast as well as a couple coffees.
We didn’t want to leave Hollywood without getting a good shot of the Hollywood sign, so we did something not super smart- but it’s at least funny to look back at now… We just drove. Yeah, we saw the sign, and just drove toward it. Want to know how that worked out for us? It took us straight up into the Hollywood hills, past tons of mansions and gated properties, until the road turned into one sharp corner after the other. We would have been screwed had we met another car on the road, it had gotten so narrow. When we made it up quite a ways the road basically stopped at a large gate, and suited gentlemen came up to our car and told us, “You can’t come up here.” We apologized and turned around to make the treacherous drive back down. Whoops.
By this time we were not satisfied with our lack of Hollywood sign views, so I typed in the next best thing into our GPS, and just like that- we were headed to the Griffith Observatory.
I love this place. I’ve been all three times I’ve been to Hollywood. It has spectacular views and the building itself is awesome, although I’ve never been inside. We walked all around and got some awesome pictures. Including one with the Hollywood sign:) Mission, complete!
With that done, we punched in our next location into the GPS: Burbank. Why the heck did we want to go to Burbank, you ask? Only for the highlight of our entire trip! Our Warner Bros Studio Tour!!! This was amazing. So worth the $50-$60 we spent to do it! We had read online that every tour is a little different, depending on what the group wants to do- so we actually called the place on our way to ask them if we would be guaranteed to see the Friends’ set- because that was honestly the only reason we wanted to go. We didn’t want to pay the money to go and not get to see it. The person on the phone was a little taken aback I think by our question and responded a tad uncertainly, “The tours are tailored to each group, so just make it known to your tour guide that that’s something you’re really interested in seeing, and it shouldn’t be a problem.” I’ll let you know now that I am a HUGE Friends fan. I own all ten seasons, I continually watch them over and over, and I can quote the show like it’s nobody’s business. Best. Show. Ever.
Here’s a little run-down of how the tour went, at least from what I can remember. We got to where we needed to go and purchased our tickets for the next tour. Before it started there was a little video we watched in a theater room that told you all about Warner Bros and the awesome movies and shows that were filmed there in Burbank. When the video was done, we were sectioned off and told who our tour guide was. I don’t remember the name of ours (this was 6 years ago!) but she was fabulous. Since Warner Bros Studios is actually quite large, we were driven around by our guide on big golf-carts. It was a beautiful day.
We of course let our tour guide know right away about our Friends obsession and how our lives would be made if we could see the set on our tour- but she didn’t seem too keen on letting us know of our plans exactly. We headed through some buildings, saw some Harry Potter memorabilia, and even the live set for Two and a Half Men. It was pretty cool to see the seating for the studio audience. We also walked by their dressing rooms. Unfortunately, we couldn’t take pictures in this part of the tour.
Next, our guide drove us to another building. As we were getting off the cart and heading in, our guide looks at Merry and I with a serious face and said, “You have a camera, right?!” I assured her I did, and we headed inside. From there we walked straight into CENTRAL PERK!!!!
I’m pretty sure Merry and I were squealing like complete idiots at this point, but we couldn’t help it! We were in CENTRAL PERK for crying out loud!!! THE Central Perk! At this point we were told that everyone would get a chance to get their picture taken on the iconic orange Friends’ couch and of course Merry and I were the first ones on it!
I couldn’t stop smiling. The set was actually a lot smaller than it looks on TV. I love how they kept the set together for crazy fans like myself to see all these years after the show was filmed:) Our vacation was pretty much made at this point.
After we (reluctantly) left Central Perk, we continued our tour by driving through a lot of the outdoor parts of the studio. A lot of the places I remember being used for different Friends’ scenes which was cool. Like this patchy grass area was used for a lot of Central Park scenes.
And here they were in the process of changing the leaves from Spring to Fall. How cool is that?
We learned a lot of really cool things on the tour too, a lot of which I don’t remember. I would absolutely do this tour again. It was really enjoyable. It was about two hours and fifteen minutes, and when it’s over you get dropped off at the gift shop area. We were given a coupon with our ticket for half off gelato at the little gelato shop in the gift shop area- so we had to order some of course. It was really good!
After that, we walked around the grounds a little bit, snapping some pictures here and there. Like this one of the famous WB water tower!
We couldn’t have asked for a better tour to do in the LA area. Totally worth it!
From Burbank we had about an our of driving before arriving at our next destination: Laguna Beach. Yes, that’s right! We were Laguna Beach fans when that show was on, and really wanted to check out the area that was so beautiful on TV. We actually stayed at a hotel that was outside of LB -I think it was in Mission Viejo- to save money. It was a standard hotel, but we thought it was pretty nice. We got checked in and got ourselves beach ready. We snapped some pics on our balcony first!
We drove to Laguna Beach so we could check out the town and have a little beach time. It was gorgeous. Such a nice place! Driving around we recognized a lot of places from the show. When we were trying to get to the beach, parking was a little intimidating, but we ended up finding a spot and walking a little ways to get down to the sand. The ocean looked amazing and the beach was really nice. We set up camp and relaxed in the sun.
We walked down the beach a little ways and basically stayed down there until the sun started to go down. We didn’t want to leave, but knew we couldn’t stay there forever so we reluctantly made our way back to the car.
When we got back to our hotel we swam in the pool a little bit. Love those hot summer evenings!
After, we showered and got ready for dinner, as we were pretty hungry at this point. We wanted to find a cute spot to eat in Laguna Beach, but it had gotten pretty late and a couple of the restaurants we tried calling were closing soon. We knew we were going to have to pick somewhere not local and decided on TGI Fridays. It may not have been a super fancy schmancy place, but we had our blue dresses on and made the most of it! Including jumping on the bed when we got home from dinner…
We hit the hay after a busy day, knowing we would be leaving California the next morning. *tear* Come back soon to read about the next day of our trip!