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Welk Resort Escondido, CA - What's your favorite activities?

Discussion in 'US - Western States Timesharing' started by Scuba Fletch, Mar 4, 2007.

  1. Scuba Fletch

    Scuba Fletch Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    We're heading out to the Welk Resort in Escondido this Saturday... and I'm working on a schedule. I hear great things about so many different activities, but I want to relax and enjoy the resort some, too. I really need to narrow it down to have a "balanced" vacation - so what are your top suggestions?

    Also, if you know of any special deals or coupons, etc. - that would be great, too!

    Here's some other info that may help:

    1. It's me, my hubby, my 9-yr. old son, and my 14-yr. old nephew. The 14-yr. old can watch our 9-yr. old if we want to do something alone...

    2. We're going to Orlando at the end of May - but if Disneyland is really worth it, please tell me. I know it's the first park and they have the new California Adventure... We've also been to Sea World in Orlando & San Antonio, TX - so that's not high priority.

    3. I've heard great stuff about the San Diego Zoo and the Wild Animal Park - which is better? Differences?

    4. Legoland - seems fun, but again, we're doing theme parks in May... If it's really unique, we might give it a shot.

    5. Wineries? Any you'd recommend? Is it worth it or is all the "good stuff" up in Napa?

    6. My husband and I are SCUBA divers and considering a dive day to the Kelp Forests. Any divers that would recommend a tour operator?

    Thanks fellow tuggers! I'm looking forward to seeing your responses!
    Susan :hi:
     
  2. brego

    brego TUG Member

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    We were at the Welk Resort in November with our 14 year old daughter and loved it! The club house facilities with billiards, etc. and the pools were so great we hated to leave the resort. However we did venture out and explored different areas. We took a day trip to Anza-Borrego Dessert where we went hiking and horseback riding. It was one of the high points of the trip (we really enjoy outdoor activities). Also enjoyed Torres Pines State Park just north of San Diego. We went to Old Town San Diego twice since we also like history. San Jaun Capistrano Mission was also enjoyable if you enjoy history. Laguna Beach and the village of Carlsbad were also fun. Great beaches, shops, restuarants. Enjoy!
     
  3. cmi

    cmi Guest

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    Hi,

    We too were at the welk resort not so long ago and found it hard to leave the relaxing atmosphere. Here are my suggestions:
    Carlsbad-Legoland is very nice. I recommend it for your 9 yr. old son and 14 yr. old nephew. Carlsbad downtown beach area is a very nice place to walk around and eat dinner.
    Wild Animal Park very close to resort so I'd recommend that over the Zoo. Plus it's a different kind of Zoo.
    Temecula Wineries are no Napa, but they are very nice. There may be a tour you and your husband can do.
    Also, the resort has some organized tours: One goes to Mexico, One goes to LA/hollywood, one I think goes to a nearby Casino (another fun thing for you and your husband). The only thing with tours is that there is a minimum participation requirement.
    The resort itself has lots of activities. Ice cream sundaes, hamburger/hotdog barbecue/game room/pool tables/ping pong tables/not to mention neat swimming pools.

    Oh and if you want to take in some shopping there is also a shopping center near by with a Nordstrom.

    I wish you the best weather southern california has to offer. I know you will have a great time.
     
  4. Scuba Fletch

    Scuba Fletch Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    What about Grocery shopping or Sam's Club / Costco?

    Wow, thanks so much for the great advise and suggestions.

    I think based on the proximity of the Wild Animal Park, that's the best option for us (...but you know - I keep remembering that intro to the sitcom "Three's Company" where they are at the San Diego Zoo :O) Ha ha!
    Love the ideas on winery, hiking, and I'm glad to know that LegoLand might be a good option for both kids, too. From what I understand, the pools are heated, so we're really looking forward to that.

    We will probably fix a lot of meals while we're there - so I'll need to go to a real grocery store, not just a small convenience store that I'm expecting at the resort. Is there a Sam's / Costco nearby? Or maybe a Wal-Mart or Target SuperCenter? We're flying into Orange County, so let me know if we're better off shopping there...

    Blessings!
    Susan
     
  5. TomF

    TomF TUG Member

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    Lawai Beach Resort | EVR-Lake Tahoe (sold)
    The kelp beds are a fantastic dive! Just like floating through a giant forest with lots of small fish around. I would recommend Lois Ann Dive Charters. We haven't dove in San Diego for a long time (got spoiled in Hawaii), but I used to dive with them quite a bit. Very friendly, very professional.

    Be aware that diving in San Diego even in the summer requires a 7mm wet suit. Right now the water temperature is in the low 50's.
     
  6. ricoba

    ricoba TUG Member

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    I think the closest grocery store is a Vons, that's about 20 minutes from Welk in Escondido.
     
  7. DKPerky

    DKPerky TUG Member

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    Costco

    There is a costco near by. From the resort take the 15 south and exit on the 78 west. Take the nordahl exit (1st exit after the interchange) and turn right. There is a costco in the shopping center on the left. It is about 15 or so miles.

    The weather is going to be great so the beach may be OK. I agree that Carlsbad beach is OK but if you want a very family beach go to Coronado. It will take about 35 minutes or so to get there (OK maybe a little longer) but it is really worth it!
     
  8. Scuba Fletch

    Scuba Fletch Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Yea! Costco! & Brrrr!

    Wow, thanks for the scoop. It sounds magnificent! It may have to wait 'til summer for a little warmer air temps, though... Brrrr! Glad to know that we'll need to be prepared with 7mm even then. I found the dive boat and inquired last night, but it's good to have a personal reference from someone who knows. Thanks so much.

    Yea! Costco! Great for fixing quick but yummy meals (and decent prices for wine - if it's a wet area). Also glad to know about Coronado - I've seen it featured on the Travel Channel "Best Beaches" - and I didn't think of going there since I'm not familiar with California geography, etc. Glad to know it's so close!

    Blessings,
    Susan
     
  9. McFail

    McFail TUG Member

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    A few years ago I dove out at some of the islands off SD in July and the water was still brisk. Nice dives, just need the right suit.
     
  10. SallyMagoo

    SallyMagoo TUG Member

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    If you want to go to Mexico, you may need passports for everyone to get back into the US. I'm not sure what the current regulations are, but you should check into it if you don't know.

    We were at the Lawrence Welk resort in March, 2004, and had our 12 year old with us. We couldn't go on the bus tour to Mexico because we had no official identification for her. A birth certificate would have been sufficient, but we hadn't thought to bring it. The people at Welk said they might not let her back in the country. We decided we liked keeping our daughter better than a day-trip to Mexico.

    I think passport regulations are different now.

    Just wanted to mention it in case you hadn't thought about it.

    Sally
     
  11. DKPerky

    DKPerky TUG Member

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    "and decent prices for wine - if it's a wet area".

    Ha, that's funny! You DONT have to worry about this!

    If you need anything else just let me know via Private Message. I grew up 10 miles from the resort and still live in SD.
     
  12. Fisch

    Fisch TUG Member

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    There is a WalMart next to the Costco that DKPerky gave directions to.

    There is also a Vons three exits South of the Resort. Less than 10 minutes away. Head on the 15 South, exit El Norte Pkwy, turn right. It's at the exit on the right hand side. El Norte Pkwy is about 8 miles south of Welk.

    I live off this exit, if you have any specific questions about this area while your in town, let me know.

    BTW, the weather is 80 degrees right now:) Bring your shorts, it's gonna be a warm week ahead.

    Al
     
  13. Dori

    Dori TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    Since you have a built-in babysitter, go to the Valley View Casino. It's about 20 minutes away. Even if you are not gamblers, sign up for the players card. We did and each got a free buffet dinner. You don't even have to gamble. The buffet dinner was excellent! One of the best we have ever had.

    Dori
     
  14. DKPerky

    DKPerky TUG Member

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    I'll second that dori! Great food. Also, like another said, it is going to be close to 90 out there at the resort so come prepared
     
  15. Fletcher921

    Fletcher921 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    We had lunch at the Thornton Winery - Cafe Champagne I think - it was lovely. It's not Napa - but still nice.
    http://www.thorntonwine.com/cafe.html

    As for the Zoo or the Park - I worked at the SD Zoo for years when I was younger - the two experiences are SO different - you could easily do both and not feel that you are repeating anything. The zoo has very natural exhibits with a phenomenal horticulture collection as well. The bus ride is great and full of information - but the entire property can be walked in a day if you have stamina and go at it with a ‘plan’. It helps to follow the bus tour on foot. You can still enjoy and listen to the commentaries. The Zoo is in Balboa park where you could easily spend a day exploring. Great museums and just a nice strolling area. Lunch at the Prado restaurant is nice there.

    The Wild Animal Park is much more spread out and you rely on a tram ride to see the main area. Looking at where you are staying, the Wild Animal Park would probably be a better choice.
     
  16. dschaefe

    dschaefe TUG Member

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    We went to the Wild Animal Park when we were at the Welk Resort a year and a half ago. It's great! We went to Balboa Park for a day, but did not go to the Zoo, since we went to the Animal Park. Don't miss Balboa Park. It is a wonderful setting with the gardens and the architecture of the buildings. There is also a good aviation museum and a model railroad museum, among other things. Google Balboa Park and get their website.

    Don S.
     
  17. Liz Wolf-Spada

    Liz Wolf-Spada Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    There is a Trader Joes not far in Escondido, also there is a large movie theater complex there, too and shopping. We like the Ruben Fleet Space Museum in Balboa Park. It is all hands on science and has a great museum store. Your kids will love it.
    Liz
     
  18. Scuba Fletch

    Scuba Fletch Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Thanks Tuggers!

    You are right Sally - you do need a passport now from what I understand - as of January 2007 for Mexico... Thanks for the reminder.

    Yippee! It's been beautifull all week in Dallas, too, but I hear it's supposed to rain this weekend when we leave for California... Glad to know it's warm - because the kids are so excited about swimming. From what I read, the pools are heated (or at least some of them), but the warm weather helps...

    That's great advise - and I can play some video poker or blackjack, too ;)

    This sounds perfect - and the zoo info was helpful, too.

    Sounds perfect for all of us camera bugs - I can easily blow several hours if I have some great gardens & architecture :O)

    Trader Joes! I keep hearing, but have never been... I am so glad that you mentioned this!

    Y'all are all so great for helping me narrow it down. We're looking forward to just getting away as life gets so crazy here :whoopie: I'm still learning how to raise a teenager since my nephew has been with us since July - wow, do I have a lot to learn! :eek:

    Thanks again,
    Susan
     
  19. califgal

    califgal Guest

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    We like the San Diego Zoo much better than the Wild Animal Park, much more interesting. We haven't been to Legoland for a couple of years, and I know they've added another more"wild" ride or two, but there are lot sof kiddie rides. If you find a good discount cupon, then go.

    If you like some nice shops go to Solana Beach to their "Design District" it's a fun street if you like interesting shops. There's furniture stores, gift shops and clothing stores and some restaurants. The name of the street escapes me now but it's easy to find.
     
  20. Fletcher921

    Fletcher921 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    The street is Cedros - and it is wonderful...

    http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=....268968&spn=0.017171,0.043259&om=1&iwloc=addr
     
  21. Fisch

    Fisch TUG Member

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    You don't need a passport unless traveling by air. I copied this:

    http://travel.state.gov/travel/cbpmc/cbpmc_2223.html

    Under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI)

    The proposed implementation timeline has two phases:

    Beginning January 23, 2007, ALL persons, including U.S. citizens, traveling by air between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and Bermuda will be required to present a valid passport, Air NEXUS card, or U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Document, or an Alien Registration Card, Form I-551, if applicable.

    As early as January 1, 2008, ALL persons, including U.S. citizens, traveling between the U.S. and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and Bermuda by land or sea (including ferries), may be required to present a valid passport or other documents as determined by the Department of Homeland Security. While recent legislative changes permit a later deadline, the Departments of State and Homeland Security are working to meet all requirements as soon as possible. Ample advance notice will be provided to enable the public to obtain passports or passport cards for land/sea entries.
     
  22. carpediem

    carpediem TUG Member

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    Your nine year old will probably love Legoland (if he plays with legos now). The 14 year old will be a bit bored. There are no really adult rides but my children - 10, 8 and 5 at the time - loved it. They still talk about Legoland.

    We were there in 2005 for a week and did all three - Legoland, San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park. If I were you I would only do two of the three. We were pretty beat after the week plus visiting friends and a weekend in Los Angeles.

    In my opinion there are no real bad choices.

    Enjoy!
     
  23. Scuba Fletch

    Scuba Fletch Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I'm packing today, Leaving tomorrow... Printing thread tonight :O)

    Y'all are so wonderful! I'll print off the comments tonight as we're leaving tomorrow. We actually spend Friday night at the Embassy Suites close to the Orange County Airport and then check in on Saturday...

    Glad to know about the passport requirement - it's a consideration, but not sure if we'll bother unless it's really worth it to go across the border. I've been to a few Mexican border towns since we live in Texas, but just never from California. We've also spent time in several timeshares in Cabo, PV, etc. And even if we brought tequila back across, we can't carry it on now... we'd have to pack it... too risky.

    I think we'll try to enjoy the resort as much as we can and blow off Legoland this time - since the boys both LOVE the water and we're going to Disney in late May (3BR @ SeaWorld HGVC!). The shops @ Solana Beach sound wonderful - We'll also plan to explore Coronado Beach and a winery, then possibly a state park, Old San Diego, casino. Balboa Park may lure me to the Zoo, but we still haven't decided - all of the gardens, museums, etc. We have a wild animal park in TX called Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose: http://www.fossilrim.com/ and it's wonderful. In the same city is Dinosaur Valley State Park http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/findadest/parks/dinosaur_valley/ and it's a great place to view some of the most well-preserved dinosaur footprints in the world, as well as enjoy the countryside, hiking, etc. (you have to call ahead to check river conditions, as the footprints are in the riverbed).

    :bawl: My hubby has to come back to Dallas and work next week Tues-Fri. He's been out there all week in Irvine. We'll have to prioritize activities Fri-Mon according his interests and then do the others after he leaves... There's just so much to do! Just another reason to come back.

    Thanks again!
    Susan
     

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