Category Archives: Travel

Travel to Nearby Idyllwild for a Weekend in the Wilderness

Idyllwild is a great place to escape to when you’re living in San Diego. Right at the foot of the San Jacinto mountains, the small town of Idyllwild offers the best of wilderness activities and charming attractions.

With the smell of cedar trees in the air and breath-taking nature views, you’ll feel worlds away from the busy lifestyle in San Diego. Here are a few attractions you must see during your weekend in Idyllwild:

Mount San Jacinto State Park

The Mount San Jacinto State Park spans 13,000 acres and offers its visitors roughly 50 miles of hiking trails to enjoy. Administered by the California State Parks and United States Forest Service rangers, Mount San Jacinto State Park is well maintained and offers some of the most beautiful scenery in Idyllwild. For a moderate hike, climb your way up to the top of Mt. San Jacinto, the views are spectacular!

Idyllwild Nature Center

If you want to view nature in detail, you have got to check out the Idyllwild Nature Center. With guided tours, field study trips, and educational programs, the Idyllwild Nature Center gives you the expertise on the Idyllwild community and the beauty of nature that’s found throughout the entire town.

Hiking

Hiking trails in Idyllwild are a dime a dozen. If you’re searching for a great introductory hike in Idyllwild, the Devils Slide to Saddle Junction is perfect for you. With picturesque views of the granite Suicide Rocks and pine shaded trails, this hike is just right for anyone looking to take in the beauty of Idyllwild.

Cycling

Rent some bikes and go cycling on any of Idyllwild’s numerous trails. The mountain biking trails of Idyllwild are some of the best in Southern California, you don’t want to miss out on the fun of Idyllwild’s number 1 sport! Visit Idyllwild Cycling for more information about the trails as well as bike rentals.

Rock Climbing

Another favorite amongst the locals is rock climbing. There are many great boulders and rocks to climb and many talented experts to lend you a helping hand. The famous Tahquitz and Suicide Rocks are perfect for beginners or advanced climbers. Head to the Vertical Adventures Rock Climbing School for lessons, gear, and climbing tips.

Café Aroma

For fun and funky dining in the Idyllwild area, Café Aroma is the place to be for lunch, dinner, or a hot cup of coffee. Café Aroma makes the best baked goods for breakfast as well as gourmet entrees for dinner. With free Wi-Fi and panoramic views of Tahquitz Peak, Café Aroma is a must for meals out in Idyllwild.

Idyll Awhile

Idyll Awhile is the only place to go in Idyllwild for a premium assortment of quality beers, local and imported wines, as well as fantastic food. Live entertainment is offered during the weekends and it really draws a crowd! Enjoy your weekend away with a beverage or two at Idyll Awhile, it’s a great way to end a weekend getaway.

Get a First-Class Ticket to San Luis Obispo & Experience Pure Happiness

Named the happiest city in America, San Luis Obispo promises that your trip up the coast will be the happiest one yet! Take a short vacation to San Luis Obispo and enjoy a plethora of great activities and fun things to do.

Watch the sunset on the beach, embark on an adventure through San Luis Obispo’s trails, and wine and dine at a number of unique wineries in town. Take a look at all the ways you can find pure happiness when you travel to the small town of San Luis Obispo!

Wineries around San Luis Obispo

If you’re interested in a glass of vino, the wineries and vineyards surrounding San Luis Obispo are phenomenal. Many of the wineries have their own unique style and personality so each one will be very different. Talley Vineyards offers the perfect spot for wine tasting with someone special. The intimate tasting room has panoramic views of the Rincon Vineyard and the Talley Farm fields.

Another fantastic winery is Chamisal Vineyards. These vineyards were the first to be planted in the Edna Valley and the distinctive characteristics of their wines are filled with Old World flavors. The tasting room is in a newly restored and incredibly charming rustic barn. The outdoor patio is the ideal place to sip their award-winning Pinot Noir.

If you’re looking to spend a day wine tasting with the kids along, Baileyana Vineyards has a well-rounded scope of things to do. The tasting room is in a restored schoolhouse surrounded by the Edna Valley vineyards and picnic areas and bocce ball courts are available for visitors to enjoy. Baileyana houses a large variety of wines under its roof so experiment and try as many as you would like!

Hiking Trails

If you’re looking to get in a good workout while on vacation or you would like to see another side of San Luis Obispo, there are many trails to go hiking and biking in this happy city! Valencia Peak Trail is a beautiful trail that ends with a beautiful peak overlooking all of California’s central coast!

Another popular trail is a hit with the locals, Bishop Peak is a tough hike but the most rewarding feeling is when you make it to the top! The best days to hike the notorious Bishop Peak are when it’s a bit cloudy. The cool breeze is so comforting as you make your way to the peak of this mountain! Breath-taking views from Bishop Peak are everywhere, great for taking photos and making wonderful memories!

Performing Arts Center

Perpare to be amazed by the lovely Performing Arts Center of San Luis Obispo! This incredibly gorgeous venue has many talented performers grace its stages offering fantastic shows to its audience. Located on the campus grounds of California Polytechnic State University or Cal Poly, the Performing Arts Center combines two major venues, the Christopher Cohan Center including the 1,289-seat Sidney Harman Hall and the 180-seat classroom of Philips Hall in addition to a multi-purpose Pavilion and the 498-seat Alex & Faye Spanos Theatre. If you’re a theater enthusiast or would like to see a big part of Cal Poly’s campus, stop by the Performing Arts Center! You will fall in love with the gorgeous ambiance and unbelievable performances!

Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa

San Luis Obispo has one of the most exquisite missions in California. Founded in 1772 by Father Junipero Serra, the unique Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa combines multiple architectural styles and many distinct features like it’s “L-shaped” design and secondary nave. The mission still serves as a church so you will be able to attend it you would like to experience a California mission service.

Dallidet Adobe and Gardens

San Luis Obispo has a long and colorful past. Dive into the old story of a local family, their house, and how they lived back in the late 1800’s in addition to the stunning gardens that encompass the entire yard of their old property. You’ll be so happy you visited this little sparkle in San Luis Obispo’s history! The Dallidet Adobe and Gardens is open everyday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

When you travel to San Luis Obispo, you’ll never run out of things to do! Be truly happy with the fun, excitement, and romance that this fun city called SLO has to offer.

Have a Blast in Newport Beach: A Great Beach Town for a Weekend of Fun

Newport Beach is the perfect destination for a long weekend if you’re looking to have some fun. Located in Orange County, Newport Beach is notorious for its pristine houses and immaculate residential areas, funky shopping districts, and exciting attractions.

It’s just a short trip from San Diego by car and the drive will be well worth it. Stay for the weekend and enjoy the picturesque beaches, huge harbor area, and many great things to do. Here are some of the highlights in Newport Beach attractions, these are places you MUST see!

Balboa Island

Balboa Island is my favorite place in Newport Beach. The main street called Marine Avenue has great shops and boutiques, restaurants, and art galleries. It’s the perfect place to window shop! Walk around the neighborhoods and you’ll see unique homes with pristine gardens in the front yard.

“The Island” is actually a series of three islands (Balboa Island, Little Balboa Island, and Collins Island). To get here from Newport Beach, it’s fun to ride on the Balboa Island Ferry, the ferry has been in service since 1919!

Newport Beach

Newport Beach is so popular with tourists and locals alike. Check out their one-of-a-kind beach culture and unbelievable surf during the day and come back at night to walk down the long pier. Newport Pier has lots of great restaurants, shops, and little boutiques along the way, the pier is one of the best places to hang out on a Friday night.

Fashion Island

Fashion Island is THE ultimate shopping experience for the diehard fashionista. As Southern California’s most luxurious shopping destination, Fashion Island has all the best luxury, designer, and high-fashion stores and boutiques like Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, and Bloomingdale’s. Fashion Island also has incredible restaurants for you to try when you need a break from shopping.

Crystal Cove State Park

Crystal Cove State Park is a historical part of Newport Beach. Made up of 3.2 miles of beaches and 2,400 acres of protected backcountry, Crystal Cove State Park offers a variety of fun activities like hiking, biking, swimming, surfing, scuba diving, and horseback riding. You can also stay at Crystal Cove State Park, there are over a dozen restored cottages from the 1930s that are great for a vacation rental.

Places to Sleep & Places to Eat

Newport Beach has a lot of excellent hotels and accommodations that will please any visitor. Depending on where you would like to spend the majority of your time, use this Newport Beach hotel finder to locate your ideal “home” while in Newport Beach.

If you like seafood, then you are in for a treat! Newport Beach is a fishing town and the seafood at Bear Flag Fish Company is the best place to get fresh seafood with exceptional service as well. The modern atmosphere is fun for an afternoon of fish tacos or a more elaborate dinner.

For the coffee junkies and breakfast lovers, Pain du Monde is a quaint café that serves privately roasted coffee and espresso, homemade bakery, and savory breakfast options. Start your day in Newport Beach at Pain du Monde and you’ll be ready for anything.

A Road Trip to San Clemente is the Perfect Way to Spend the Day

San Diego tripsTake a trip to the carefree surf town of Orange County. Pack up the car and head north on the I-5… just before L.A., you’ll find the gorgeous surf town of San Clemente. San Clemente is known for its beautiful beaches, breath-taking sandstone cliffs, and laidback small town culture.

San Clemente is called The Spanish Village by the Sea because of its inspiring Mediterranean style and curvy streets lined with white stucco homes and terracotta tile roofs. If you’re looking for the perfect place to spend the day, come to San Clemente, here are just a few places to go when you take a trip to The Spanish Village by the Sea:

San Clemente Pier

The San Clemente Pier stretches out into the ocean 1,300 feet! The long fishing pier offers free fishing and has an indoor/outdoor diner located on it that’s perfect for watching the surfers or the happenings on the beach. Take a stroll down the pier for a great view of San Clemente’s coastline!

Casa Romantica Cultural Center and Gardens

Casa Romantica is a Spanish Colonial Revival Home that was built in 1927 by the founder of San Clemente, Ole Hanson. The estate has fantastic views and outstanding garden rooms with unique horticulture twists. Stop by during the afternoon and appreciate this masterpiece of a home and the beautiful gardens surrounding the Casa Romantica Cultural Center and Gardens.

San Clemente State Beach

There’s a beach trifecta going on in San Clemente. If you want to spend the day at the beach, you have three options. San Clemente State Beach is the largest beach of all three offering calm waves for swimmers and bodyboarders. It’s a great beach to take kids or just for lounging around. Calafia is dramatically different than San Clemente State Beach. With steep sandstone cliffs, Calafia marks a great surf spot and sunbathing sanctuary. Lobeiro Park is connected to Calafia and is full of grassy areas. Take a picnic to enjoy as you admire the beautiful ocean view.

La Casa Verde de Granada

If you’re in the mood to shop, San Clemente has this really cool store called La Casa Verde de Granada. With quirky gifts and vintage pieces galore, you will definitely find something original and handmade to take home with you. The store is a combination of antique shop meets artist studio, you never know what treasures you’ll find here!

San Clemente Wine Company

If you can truly appreciate a fine wine, you must stop by the San Clemente Wine Company. With a vast selection of wines from all over the world and beautiful tasting rooms, San Clemente Wine Company should be a high priority of things to do while in San Clemente. End the day on a high note with a glass of wine at this cool shop.

Day Tripper: Spend a Day in Temecula’s Wineries

Temecula is a combination of nature, old history, and new beginnings. To name just a few of the attractions in Temecula you can go hiking, horseback riding, catch a hot-air balloon ride, visit the award-winning wineries, or indulge in guilt-free shopping. The drive from San Diego to Temecula is just shy of 60 miles so why not have some fun for the day and head up to Temecula to see what Riverside county’s new-world wines are all about.

If you come earlier in the day, a hot-air balloon ride or bi-plane adventure would be amazing! The fantastic weather gives you a smooth ride and allows you to enjoy the Temecula vineyards from a whole new perspective… from above! Some great air balloon companies to check out are California Dreamin’ and Sunrise Balloon.

The main attraction of Temecula has to be the vineyards. I can’t even begin to mention all the marvelous wineries that are packed into this town. For a better description of wine tours, self-guided tours, and more, visit the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association for their list of wineries to visit depending on the type of wines you like and the length of time you’ll be in Temecula.

Other activities that are over-the-top in Temecula are the perfect golf courses and romantic horseback riding lessons. But that’s not all, the Old Town Temecula is crawling with historic facts and fun shops. If you need a nice souvenir, Old Town would be the place to get it.

Temecula is a place that everyone should visit… with the wine, golf, hot-air balloons, and more, I don’t know if I’d ever come back!