Hibernation relief, better known as spring break is right around the corner for schools everywhere. To escape the cooler weather most “breakers” like to gravitate to warmer climates. The west coast will not disappoint with plenty of locations to choose from. Here are a list of my personal favorites.
Las Vegas: Nevada
What goes on in Vegas stays…you know. I don’t think there is a bad time to go to Las Vegas. It does get chilly during the winter with the highs in the upper 50’s, oh so cold. Like I said, I don’t think there is a bad time to go and spring break is no exception. The grandiose hotels offering everything you can imagine will always be a huge draw no matter the weather conditions. Of course the clubs, and pool parties are in access and plenty of shows to watch. Not only can you enjoy the strip and activities Las Vegas is 30-miles from the Hoover Dam and The Grand Canyon West, the Hualapai Tribal Lands are about 2-hours away. You can’t beat it. www.lasvegas.com
Palm Springs: California
Dessert, hot and dry is the formula most of the year. The area is a mix of ranch styled 1970’s homes and landscaping with a splash of modern. It is quite a change from LA and just a little under two-hours inland. And less than 40-miles from Joshua Tree National Park. No water, no problem, that’s what pools are for. And that’s what you do, lay out sip a beverage of choice and dip in and out of the pool to cool off. There are a good selection of boutique shops, restaurants to choose from and bars to accommodate partiers. You can bike ride, hike, golf and relax at a spa. It’s got that Coachcella vibe all year long, chill. www.visitpalmsprings.com
San Diego: California
This city in general is a treat, one of my favorite US cities. It’s coastal with great culture, diversity and the right amount of activity. It’s not too fast and not too slow. The Gas Lamp Quarter, an old Victorian part of town just off the San Diego bay is buzzing with plenty of restaurants, bars, lounges and shopping. Home of beautiful La Jolla Beach near Del Mar and Solana Beaches. It’s not too far from Carlsbad Beach, all must visits. Old town, the must authentic place in the city you don’t have to cross the boarder to enjoy pieces of Latin culture. Reminiscent of a Mexican town, enjoy the bazaars and shops, food and historic buildings that take you back in time. If you’d really like to go over the border, feeling a bit risky and have a passport cross the border to Tijuana. It’s only 20-miles from downtown SD. Take a few people with you and stay fairly sober. Either way this city is a true gem and Stacy approved. www.sandiego.org
Laguna Beach: California
Tucked in Orange County more than an hour outside of Los Angeles is Laguna Beach, you have to travel a bit to get to this beach. An artsy town sitting on the Pacific Coast Highway. There are more art galleries than clothing boutiques, my kind of town. There are plenty of options to eat, stay and stroll this small beach community. Surfers own one side of the beach, sandcastle makers the other. You can easily partake in some R&R at any number of the spa in the area. It’s a beach for everyone. www.visitlagunabeach.com
Santa Barbara: California
Oprah has a home here, need I say more about how wonderful this place is. But I will. It’s tiny, quaint, peaceful, artsy and serene all at the same time. The beach is a nice compliment to the mountains in the background with the pier, marina and access water activities in close proximity to the shore. Old town SB has a west coast charm and elegance. Talk about great restaurants, boutique shopping with a bit of major retail spots sprinkled in. And wine tasting locations on every block. It’s family friendly and romantic. A little more than 2-hours from good ole Los Angeles. Oh, how a trip here is worth it. www.santabarbaraca.com
I have to admit that the nature landscape on the west coast is to die for. It has some of the best sunsets I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing. In the battle of east coast vs. west coast I’d have to pick the west coast. The mix of beach, dessert, mountains and overall scenery surpass that of the east coast. If you haven’t made it out west do yourself a favor and go. Perhaps your spring break adventures will lead you to a west coast destination. Enjoy.