Sunny California: A Local’s Guide to Our Place of the Month

California is one of the most beautiful places to visit in the United States and one of the best places to live. The average temperature in California is about 70 degrees near the coast and 80 degrees once you are inland.  You can experience anything from skiing in the mountains to surfing along the coast. Relaxing in this state is so easy, since there are plenty of museums, beaches, parks, hotels and landmarks.

California Does Things Big

When you think of sunny California, you may think of Los Angeles, San Diego and San Jose.  These three cities are among the biggest cities in the United States. We are known for doing things in a big way. Let’s start with “The Hollywood Bowl” which is the largest natural outdoor amphitheater in the country.  Pre-Covid, it was a place where you could watch legends perform and bring your own picnic basket, packed with goodies like: cheese, crackers, delicious fruit and your favorite beverage.  

Don’t Miss Wine Country

In this amazing state, you have the opportunity to enjoy wine tasting in Southern California including Temecula, where you can buy almond champagne at the local winery. You can also find yourself up North in wine country, Napa Valley.  Napa is in the San Francisco Bay area just 50 miles northeast of San Francisco.  It is one of  the world’s famous wine regions with stunning landscapes. While in Northern California you can also visit the Golden Gate Bridge . The iconic infrastructure was completed in 1937. The suspension bridge was considered an engineering marvel and the longest main suspension bridge span in the world.  The orange bridge is 1.7 miles long and connects San Francisco to Marin County. You can travel from the Bay Area to the City in minutes.

Make It a Road Trip

If you like driving, there is a breathtaking journey that you can go on taking the 101 highway or SR1 – Pacific Coast Highway (PCH).  PCH  is 1,675 miles from San Diego, California to Olympia, Washington. The best sites along the way include Monterey, Big Sur, Hearst Castle, Malibu, Santa Monica  Pier and San Diego. This drive is tranquil watching the waves in hopes that you will see a glimpse of dolphins off the coast of Malibu.

California’s Art and Architecture

If art and architecture  is what you love, the most breathtaking museum in Southern California is by far The Getty. The entire museum is  64 acres and sits on a hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean. This spectacular gift has two locations one in Los Angeles and the other in Malibu.  The Getty museum is one of my precious hide- a-ways, where I go to find peace. It has the Central Garden (134,000 sqft.), cafes and beautiful buildings made of  Italian travertine;  you feel like you are transported.

Don’t Forget Palm Springs

Coachella Valley-Palm Springs is normally hot with temperatures reaching above 100 degrees, but for some reason in May my daughter and I take the 2 hours drive to this posh place. We stay at a hotel with the mountain views and look forward to sitting by the pool during the day and enjoying the downtown nightlife in the evening. While there, you must go to Las Casuelas where they have live music and the best Mexican food in the area. Palm Springs has plenty of resorts just 20 minutes away from downtown for a more upscale stay. This is a great place for family vacations or girls’ trips.  

San Diego Is For Everyone!

Another destination that is perfect for a weekend trip with the girls, couples retreats, or a family vacation is San Diego. It is about a 2 hour drive from Los Angeles.  Many of us take day trips and drive south down the 5 freeway looking at the Pacific Ocean.  Once downtown you can take a 10 minute drive across the bridge to Coronado Island. My girls have celebrated birthdays and get-a-ways there.  San Diego is great for  fine dining and nightlife in the Gaslamp District.  Don’t forget to get the best pasta in San Diego in an area called Little Italy.

The Ultimate Californian Luxury Resort 

In California there is always luxury. You can stay at a 5 star, 5 diamond hotel in South Orange County where one night can set you back $500 per night . One of them is called Monarch Beach Resort which recently changed names to the Waldorf Astoria Monarch  Beach Resort. This gorgeous resort is located in Dana Point and has wellness center where you can practice yoga, get your hair done at the salon, or go to the private beach that is just minutes away. The resort is named after the monarch butterfly. These images are seen throughout the resort making it feel like you are part of nature. I was lucky enough to get a room at the resort complete with a view and a team of butlers ready to help make the experience memorable.

If you like 5 star hotels in Hollywood or 3-star hotels by the beach, California is the place to be. Come join us and experience whale watching, weddings, weekend trips, wet suit, skateboard, concerts, the magic of Disney and more.  

About the Author

Hi! My name is Linda and I have lived in Southern California all of my life. I have traveled the world and been to the champagne caves in Paris and the streets of Rio De Janeiro during carnival, but there is no place like home.

Linda Whiteman

Linda Whiteman