3 Hidden Gems in LA and Essential Safety Tips Everyone Should Know When Traveling

3 Hidden Gems in LA and Essential Safety Tips Everyone Should Know When Traveling


*This blog post is sponsored by Uber

Sometimes the schedule will take me out of the usual locations for meetings, and it’s on these little trips I often find that I discover some fun places  I bookmark to come back and explore a little further. Some are great for kids, and some are just interesting and fun no matter your age.

Here are 3 hidden gems that I have come across recently that you can bookmark to visit or check out when you are in the LA area:

The Sweet Laurel Bakery: Tucked away over in the Pacific Palisades, this delicious discovery is one that you will probably want to come back to over and over. Their gluten free and vegan desserts are some of the best that I have tasted, gluten free or not. Their cakes have become a favorite with the kids for birthdays. You’ll want to reserve ahead of time though as they often sell out of their whole cakes.  

The Centennial Square Pasadena: On a recent trip, my destination took me over to Pasadena. While exploring the area I ran into the Centennial Square area, and I was really surprised. First with the beautiful architecture of the City Hall and the surrounding buildings, but also in the wide collection of fun cafes, restaurants, shops, and places to see and explore. The other thing that I love is that during the summer season they do an outdoor cinema. Definitely one to come back to next year with the kids.

Tacos Tu Madre: If you are ever in the mood for some Mexican food, this little taco shop is one that I came across and just fell in love with it. I think we got a little carried away last time because the kids and I just couldn’t decide on what we wanted, so we ordered several different things. They really know what they are doing when it comes to flavorful and tasty food, but be sure to come a bit early to get your order in. It gets very busy after 7. While you are there you can also stop by the Pink Orchid Cafe for a little dessert. This little bakery/cafe with a Persian influence is definitely a favorite now.

Now, let’s talk about safety for when you are traveling, especially when it is in an unfamiliar location. I usually travel nearby with the team together, but there are those times when I need to get somewhere myself, and I don’t want to bother with the hassle of driving. This is where riding with Uber really comes in as a convenient way to travel and the safety features help make me feel safe.

Honestly, I do love these times because I can get away and just focus on creating, and writing without any interruptions. As much as it melts my heart when a little face peeks around the desk to check on me while I work, there are times when I need to focus and just be by myself.

Another benefit to these out of town trips as I shared above are the fun places I discover, but there are also chances to capture some beautiful cityscapes, especially when it is getting dark. I don’t always shoot at night, but when the right opportunity comes around, I love to take advantage of it.

One reassuring thing with these trips is that I will generally be able to ride with Uber to get there. I’ve often found that to be the case in almost all the areas where I go for meetings or events, I can count that Uber will be available, and even though I’m not driving around in the area I’m used to, I know that Uber keeps the same screening standards for their drivers no matter where you ride. They have also updated their protocols for drivers so that background checks are done on all drivers annually. It really helps to know that you can trust the drivers even when it is getting dark, as many of the meetings and events I go to happen late in the day. (Learn more about what Uber is doing to strengthen driver screening at https://www.uber.com/newsroom/getting-serious-safety/ )

In the new Uber Rider App they have also added special Safety Tools to make your trip more reassuring. They now have tips and tools for safety all in one place. Here you can add Trusted Contacts to share your trips with, get information about your driver, and the 911 Button is a great way to get emergency assistance. Also, The ability to share your ride with others helps to let others know where you are just in case there is a problem.

What do you think about the new safety features that Uber has put in place? I’d love to hear if you think it helps to be safer and feel safer when you ride.

P.S. Don’t you love the city shots? If you want to see more, I’ll be sure to include more as I travel, and if you know about a fun place I should see when I travel I’d love know about it.


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