Taking your mom out to brunch on Mother's Day is the traditional go-to way to celebrate across the United States. But not every mom wants to focus on food. If that's your mom or if you want to do brunch and something else, check out these options in Los Angeles to make your mom feel special. (You can do this stuff on any day of the year to let your mom know how much you mean to her, every day.)
Your dad can get a babysitter and take your mom for a day of pampering; adult daughters can share a spa day with their mom, or you can give your mom a gift of a spa day with her girlfriends to take the waters and mud baths at Glen Ivy Hot Springs in Corona. Treatments are available, but you can enjoy the 10 pools, club mud, saunas, and classes included in the entrance fee without scheduling a treatment.
Even if you don't want to leave Los Angeles, you can treat your mom or your spouse to a relaxing spa treatment closer to home. Try a couples spa with great couples treatment rooms that work for mom and dad or mother and daughter.
Taking a bike ride along the beach bike path is a fun day for the whole family to share with your mom. If your mother isn't fond of bike seats, covered pedal surreys with bench seats are available for rent at several beach locations and can hold from two to eight people. Even your grandma can ride along. For the pedal-lazy, electric bikes are available at some locations.
You don't have to go to the Napa Valley to explore wine country. If all the kids are grown, take your mom on a wine country tour of Malibu vineyards north of LA or Temecula to the south. Let someone else do the driving with a variety of Malibu wine tours; some include animal sightings and filming locations. Or go vineyard hopping on a Temecula Valley wine tour.
Right in Los Angeles, you can pay a visit to the San Antonio Winery, a downtown Los Angeles staple since 1917. The vineyards are further afield, but you can tour the only producing winery in Los Angeles and taste the results. There is also a restaurant on-site.
If you have the budget, treat your mother to a top live theater performance at the Pantages Theatre or one of the stages at the LA Music Center for an unforgettable experience. But theater in Los Angeles is accessible on all budgets. If it's not an everyday occurrence, a night out to see a show in a small theater for $7 half-price tickets is just as much of a treat. Check Goldstar.com for discount tickets.
If your mom enjoys a good laugh, a visit to one of LA's top comedy clubs is another good option. Check Goldstar for discount comedy tickets as well.
If your mom is adventurous and enjoys the outdoors, a horseback ride through the Hollywood Hills with a view of the Hollywood sign or a ride through the hills of Malibu and a visit to the Old West Paramount Ranch would be a great change of pace. Both locations have options that can include a meal in the deal.
Cruising around the local waterways in a gondola makes any occasion seem special. Gondolas hold from four to 12 people depending on the boat and the company, so you can take the whole family, or your dad can sneak your mom away on her own for a romantic Mother's Day interlude. There are gondola companies from Marina Del Rey to Long Beach and Newport Beach.
More active moms might enjoy a kayaking sea life tour or a surfing or stand-up paddleboarding lesson.
If your mom would rather let someone else do all the work, a harbor tour of the LA or Long Beach Harbor, a sea life cruise from Marina Del Rey, San Pedro, Long Beach or Newport Beach, or a sail aboard a tall ship might be more her speed.
You could also rent an electric Duffy to cruise around Newport Beach marina with family and friends.
Spirit Cruises offers sea life and harbor tours from Long Beach and San Pedro, included in the Go Los Angeles Card.
OK, tea, in this instance, is food, but it's really more about the experience and the pomp and circumstance than the food itself. There are lots of places to enjoy a proper British afternoon tea in Los Angeles, including the grand Millenium Biltmore Hotel in Downtown LA, The London West Hollywood Hotel, and a myriad of tea shops, but the Rose Garden Tea Room and Cafe at the Huntington Library and Gardens in San Marino, next to Pasadena, is one of the most charming, and it comes with a whole day's worth of exploration of the library, art galleries, and vast botanical gardens. If tea with cucumber sandwiches and scones isn't your mom's thing, there are other options or you can have your own picnic just outside the garden gates. Tea and Tour packages are available for groups of four or more.
If your mother runs around all day and just needs some time to chill and relax, a day lounging at Los Angeles beaches might be just the thing. May weather at the beach can be unpredictable, ranging from 60 to 80 F, with the average being around 70. But even if it's not bikini weather, enjoying a good book within view and sound of the waves can be a great way to give your mom time to unwind. If it comes with an overnight at a beach hotel, even better, but for day trips, you can get beach butler service from Perry's at multiple Santa Monica beaches to provide beach chairs, umbrella, towels, sunscreen, and refreshments to the location of your choice.
Combine the over-water ferry excursion with an afternoon exploring Avalon, hiking, taking a Jeep eco-tour, snorkeling, or taking a glass-bottom boat tour on Catalina Island. Ferries depart from Marina Del Rey, San Pedro, Long Beach, and Newport Beach.
Whether you're just taking the day or can spare the whole weekend, give your mom a mini-vacation on a short road trip from LA, all within a three-hour drive of the City of Angels.