Plan for these three easy and COID-19 safe road trips; these towns throughout Southern California, ranging in distance and climate, are the perfect weekend getaways.
While international getaways remain challenging to the casual explorer, there are still abundant possibilities for experiencing the world around you. So if you have a car, the perfectly crafted road trip can be an adventure to remember. Pick a destination, grab those go-to road trip snacks, a book or two, some good music and get exploring!
Photo: Samantha Fortney on Unsplash
If you’re looking for a beachy escape, Ventura, California, located roughly 65 miles north of LA, is a quaint village replete with an outreaching wooden pier and the quintessential small town Main Street. Walk along the sandy shoreline, a cool breeze braiding your hair with salt and the taste of sunshine. Also home to Mission San Buenaventura, the town is brimming with beautiful architecture and some of the best restaurants around, including the celebrated Taco District.
For Thai food lovers, Rice by Mama serves mouth-watering fried rice and curry alike. Busy Bee Cafe offers traditional American food for those seeking a classic diner experience. Settled along the water and amid Southern California’s agriculture and wine country, Ventura diners experience local eats that are not only delicious, but cooked with fresh produce and seafood.
Lake Arrowhead, California
Photo: Steven Pahel on Unsplash
For those more comfortable in the mountains, Lake Arrowhead is a beautiful option to be amongst the pines. The small town is nestled 90 miles east of Los Angeles in the San Bernardino mountains. Sitting on Lake Arrowhead itself, the town offers a variety of nature activities, ranging from boating and swimming in the shining blue waters to backpacking or mountain biking along the rugged trails.
Come winter months, snow sports reign. The town is beautiful year-round and perhaps the closest and most rewarding access in Southern California to the so-called “seasons” of which LA is deprived. Lake Arrowhead sees golden red trees in autumn, a thick dusting of white in the winter months and rolling green slopes of pine in spring and summer.
Palm Springs, California
Southern California also boasts beautiful deserts, including the famous Coachella Valley, home to Palm Springs. This dry getaway is lined with palm trees and scrub, but overflowing with luxurious amenities such as crystal blue pools, sprawling golf courses and high-end shopping. Also located a 30-minute drive from Palm Springs is the sprawling boulders and grisled cacti of Joshua Tree National Park. Relax poolside with a book, stroll along El Paseo Shopping District or clamber among trails and mountainous rocks. The city holds promises of fun for travelers of every variety.
Photo: Cody Board on Unsplash
Where to stay
For those pursuing a weekend adventure, accommodations are understandably complicated in a pandemic. However, there are abundant options for traveling safely and consciously. Many listings on AirBnB offer contactless check-in and clean extensively between visitors. Hotels are also offering discounted rates due to the pandemic. For more outdoorsy folk, campsites are available in many locations to set up a tent or park a car. The program FreeRoam is a wonderful tool to find camping opportunities near your destination of choice.