The Road to Adventure
If you’re interested in packing up the car and hitting the road for a summer adventure but aren’t quite sure on just where to set your sights, don’t fret! 92130 Magazine does the research for you and offers a detailed guide on potential destinations or pit stops for your 2015 road trip. Join us as we list the beaches, mountains, and lakes that are waiting to be explored.
When summer hits, the beach is definitely on everyone’s mind. The best part of living in 92130 is the ease of packing the car with beach gear and heading up or down the coast to your favorite “edge of the continent” bliss. From Santa Barbara to San Diego, each beach area along our coast has its very own charm. These beaches and their communities are varied enough to have appeal for just about everyone. We offer a unique perspective of what you, your family, or your friends have in store if you decide that the beach is the perfect destination or pit stop for your summer road trip.
Carpinteria is a small beach town between Santa Barbara and Ventura. The Carpinteria Beach, known as the “World’s Safest Beach,” has been rated the #1 swimming beach in California, due mostly to its Southern exposure and its protection by the Channel Islands.
Just 22 miles off the Southern California Coast is Catalina Island, a little haven for getting away from the masses. Shop for trinkets, snorkel, take a glass-bottom boat ride, camp, or just enjoy a good book on the beach.
The beach communities of Leucadia and Cardiff-by-the-Sea are included in the San Diego North County town of Encinitas, which boasts the beloved Moonlight Beach.
Laguna Beach is known for having the most beautiful beach coves on the Southern California coast. Laguna is also full of excellent and varied restaurants and art galleries. The annual art festivals draw art lovers from all over every summer. Check out the Sawdust Art & Craft Festival’s Annual Summer Show from June 26 through August 30.
North of San Diego is this jewel of the coast, La Jolla. There are gorgeous views everywhere you look and the weather is sublime. La Jolla Cove has boundless opportunities for sensational snorkeling while the Shores allow for surfing lessons and fun for all ages.
Long Beach has the Aquarium of the Pacific, the Queen Mary, Little Naples with its gondolas, ferries to Catalina, an art museum, and Rainbow Harbor with its waterfront restaurants.
Much of Malibu’s coastline is covered with the famed beach bungalows along with Zuma Beach, Paradise Cove, and Malibu Beach – to name a few of the well-known public beaches.
Manhattan Beach is in Los Angeles County near the LAX airport. The beach is wide and sandy and the boardwalk is full of joggers, bikers, and other beach-goers.
Oceanside has lots of beaches, more reasonably priced hotels, and a harbor for boating or waterfront dining.
San Clemente has a wonderful state campground and a small-town atmosphere near the beach. Trestles Trail is a must for the hiking enthusiast.
A cozy beach town beautifully nestled between the coast and the mountains. Visit the famed restaurants and take in the Spanish-Mediterranean architecture. As you wander down the streets of Santa Barbara you might bump into well known filmmaker Bruce Brown – whose cult classic, The Endless Summer, put surfing on the map – or 10-time world surfing champion Kelly Slater.
Santa Monica has beaches, an amusement pier, great shopping, world class hotels and restaurants, and close proximity to UCLA, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and LAX. Visit the Museum of Flying at the Santa Monica airport.
Ventura is a laid-back little beach town with a nice boating harbor and wide sandy beaches. Channel Island boat tours take off from Ventura. Marine Park is also a great place to bring kids and kites. The Ventura Beach pirate ship is a must!
Camping can offer you complete freedom when choosing a holiday. We spotlight some camp locations that are ideal for families, first timers, location seekers, and adventurers. You can get away to the beach, escape to the mountains, or take time out by the lake; there will always be a natural location to suit everyone. Forward-planning and gathering the necessary equipment will ensure that your trip is enjoyable. Visit www.reserveamerica.com and www.parks.ca.gov for tips and advice for your camping road trip.
Anderson Valley, CA
Hendy Woods State Park
In summer, kids spend whole days ankle deep in the Navarro River, which flows calmly over fist-size stones through a redwood grove. Gardens and picnic areas at the Anderson Valley wineries are a short drive away. Stop by the Philo Apple Farm for a wander in the orchard and some fresh juice from the honor stand.
Near Santa Barbara, CA
Carpinteria State Beach
Kids can’t object to a lack of TV if they’re plopped onto a mile-long beach. Reserve early (up to seven months ahead) for the popular Santa Rosa “beach row” sites, then spend the weekend swimming, surf fishing, and exploring tidepools.
Orange County, CA
Live Oak Grove Campground at Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park
Camp out under the oaks and sycamores in the Santa Ana Mountains without relinquishing life’s little necessities – like flush toilets. Get oriented to the great outdoors on the Sunday morning ranger walk. The 2.5-mile East Ridge Trail makes a great beginner’s hike.
Near Santa Cruz, CA
New Brighton State Beach
Set on a pine-shaded bluff above an endless white beach, New Brighton’s 100+ sites get snapped up by those itching for a beach weekend – without the expensive nightly tab. The beach is the real draw and the hot showers are inviting, but another bonus is that if you forget your matches or just don’t feel like cooking, you can easily grab takeout in town, a five-minute drive away.
Eastern Sierra, CA
Big Pine Creek Campground
With a postcard setting at the base of three mountains – the Thumb (13,356 feet), Middle Palisade (14,012 feet), and Norman Clyde Peak (13,855 feet) – this camp is an ideal hub for hikers and climbers. Experts head for the Palisade Glacier – the southernmost in the U.S. – while the less ambitious bask around the waterfalls and wildflowers close to camp and the series of glacial-blue lakes beyond.
Near Lake Tahoe, CA
Island Lake, Desolation Wilderness
A great choice for the first-time backpacker, with moderate effort required for spectacular views in the end. Pack your stuff in three miles to overnight at Island Lake beneath soaring Mt. Price. The dramatically stark granite terrain dotted with shock-blue lakes is the definition of high country. On the next morning, you’ll be set to explore the lakes and passes higher up the slope – and out of day-hiker range.
Mountain and Lake Adventure
If you’re like most American families, summer vacation usually means you’re heading to the beach,
amusement park, or maybe even a big-city adventure. But don’t overlook the fun waiting to be had at our local mountain and lakes. These family-friendly summer playground destinations are just a simple drive up north a bit.
Summertime in Big Bear often comes early and stays late. At 7,000 feet and bursting with sunshine, the warm and welcome mid-season rain showers and extraordinary nighttime skies are just some of the natural amenities of a road trip to Big Bear. The sunshine rays are more intense than at sea level, shining through the mountain’s clean, light air and low humidity in probable 80- to 90-degree daytime highs. Whether you’re looking for an adventure on a jet ski, family fun on the alpine slides, or just want to chill on a pontoon, Big Bear has it all. Visit www.bigbear.com for information on upcoming events such as the Old Miners Big Bear Heritage Parade on June 13.
Lake Tahoe is a popular refuge from summer heat and an enormous draw to boaters, fishermen, water skiers, and adventurers. The pleasant daytime temperatures and very relaxing and casual environment draws the summer crowd. With the infinite things to do during the summer, from basking on the beautiful beaches to hiking or camping within the Tahoe Basin, there is certainly something for everyone. Be sure to ride to the top of the mountain on the Heavenly Mountain Gondola, go rafting on the Truckee, take in a boat cruise, and check out the Lake Tahoe Summer Music or Shakespeare Festivals. Visit www.tahoesbest.com for a local connection with deals and packages.
In the winter Mammoth Lakes is the hot spot for the So Cal ski crowd. Skiers stake out a condo or hotel during the season to reap the rewards of abundant snowfall on the majestic mountain. But ask these same people if they’ve visited Mammoth during the summer and the answer will likely be “no.” And that is what makes Mammoth the perfect summer getaway, free from tourists and full of hiking, fishing, biking, and outdoor fun. Mammoth is a warm weather playground, with its nine profoundly blue lakes plus another 100 lakes covering the surrounding countryside. The Mammoth Mountain Ski Area becomes Mammoth Mountain Bike Park in the summer and boasts over 70 miles of trails with access to chairlifts and shuttles. The Panoramic Gondola tops at 11,053 feet for those who want to watch the ambitious bikers zoom down the slopes. Visit www.mammothmountain.com for summertime adventure guides, information on the Food & Wine Experience on June 26 and 27, or the popular Mammoth Festival of Beers & Bluesapalooza that occurs on July 30 through August 2.
One of America’s favorites, Yosemite Park is best known for its waterfalls, but within its nearly 1,200 square miles one can find grand meadows, deep valleys, gigantic ancient sequoias, a plethora of wilderness areas, and much more. The eastern entrance to Yosemite National Park at Tioga Pass (Hwy 120) is a quick 30-minute drive north of Mammoth on Highway 395. Visiting Yosemite National Park during the summer will guarantee access to the entire park via car, as the weather has warmed and snow has completely melted. Summer is the most popular time to visit the park, so be sure to scope out your park reservations well in advance of your trip. Plan your Yosemite road trip by visiting www.yosemitepark.com.
Road Trip Games
For generations of family travelers, playing 20 Questions and Geography is as much a part of a road trip as filling up the gas tank or stopping for treats. These top 10 road trip games will have you laughing and thinking while making the miles fly by and the “Are we there yet?” question asked a little less frequently.
One player thinks of a famous person, place, or thing. Everyone else gets to ask the player 20 questions, which must be answered “yes” or “no.” Whoever guesses correctly gets a turn to think up something.
A IS FOR ARMADILLO
Starting with A, each person tries to be the first to spot and name three items beginning with that letter. For example, the first to see and announce “armadillo, auto, and apple” gets to choose the next letter.
ARE WE THERE YET?
Give each kid 10 coins before the trip. Each time they ask “Are we there yet?” they have to pay the grown-ups a coin. They can earn coins back if they do something nice, such as letting their sibling sit where he or she wants.
Play as individuals or teams. First decide on a destination where you will stop counting. Then, count the cows on your side of the road. The goal is to have the highest number when the destination is reached. Pass a cemetery on your side and you have to start over again. If there aren’t any cows on your route, try counting red cars, mailboxes, or phone booths.
Start with any place in the world – Kansas, for example. The next person has to think of a place that begins with the last letter of “Kansas,” such as “South Africa.” Whoever goes next needs a place that starts with an A.
Someone says “I spy with my little eye something green.” Whoever guesses correctly goes next. You could limit the items to what’s in the vehicle. Or, you could get tricky and play I Spied, selecting items that you’ve already passed.
LICENSE PLATE ID
See how many different states you can identify on license plates.
LICENSE PLATE LINGO
The goal of this game is to come up with a phrase using the letters on another car’s plate. So if you see the plate LMT 823, the first person to call out a somewhat logical phrase such as “Love me tender” or “Lost my tooth” earns a point.
Make a list of 20 things you will probably see along your trip before you head out, give everyone a copy and see who can find the items first. Winner gets to pick where to stop for lunch.
THE CAR NEXT DOOR
Invent stories about people in the car next to yours. What do you think they do for work? What’s their favorite food? Where do they go on vacation? Get into lots of details, such as whether they snore loudly or are afraid of spiders. Give them names, hobbies, pets, and so on.
Don’t Leave Home Without Your APPS
Provides the latest gas prices, maps, directions, hotel details, and bookings.
Listen to a best seller anytime, anywhere.
Find the cheapest gas on the go for free.
Hotels give last-minute deals on their unsold rooms with discounts up to 70%. Book the deals easily and securely on your smartphone.
iEXIT INTERSTATE EXIT GUIDE
iExit tells you what’s coming up in real time when driving on the interstate. Select your favorite chains and it will tell you which upcoming exits have them. Select the Deals tab and see which upcoming exits have chains currently running promotions.
LICENSE PLATE TRAVEL GAME
With this app, you can play continuously throughout your trip, as the app logs all your finds and keeps score – one point for plates already found and two for new plates.
NATIONAL PARKS EXPLORER
Information from the National Park Service’s website, brochures, markers, and other sources.
ROAD TRIP BINGO HD
The app features more than 40 colorful road trip-themed bingo squares, including road signs, animals, vehicles, street marks, and mountains.
No need to burn dozens of CDs or deliberate over the perfect iPod playlist. With Spotify, you have an infinite jukebox at your fingertips. You can search as you go, make playlists beforehand, or snag other Spotify members’ playlists.
YPmobile products turn your mobile device into a powerful local guide that brings you everyday savings.
California Adventure by Letters
Appreciate the museums Balboa Park has to offer.
Be a tourist at the California State Capitol Building in Sacramento.
Climb Mt. Whitney, the highest summit in the contiguous United States with an elevation of 14,505 feet.
Drive the 17-Mile Drive of coastal paradise and stay for a while in Monterey.
Experience old-fashioned fun at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.
Find seashells while walking along our local beaches. Make a Summer 2015 Seashell Jar.
Go 282-feet below sea level by
visiting Badwater Basin, the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere.
Hollywood Bowl, one of the largest outdoor amphitheaters in the U.S., invites you to take in the sounds throughout their Summer Concert Series.
It’s not just for the kids. Take a turn going down the waterslide or hopping off a diving board this summer.
Journey back in time and enjoy the authentic experience of staying aboard The Queen Mary, a one-of-a-kind 1930s transatlantic ocean liner docked in Long Beach.
Kick up your feet and relax while
being completely unplugged.
Lake Tahoe is the largest freshwater lake of the Sierras. Go make
Make an appointment for surf lessons – and keep the appointment.
Navigate your way in a kayak through the La Jolla Caves or on a sailboat in Mission Bay.
Order a sensational breakfast while dining on the patio at The Cottage, one of La Jolla’s famed restaurants.
Pop up a tent in your own backyard for a backyard campout.
Quickly put your bathing suit on and head to the beach.
Ride the Santa Monica Pier Carousel that dates back to 1922.
Snap some photos of the elephants seals after visiting Hearst Castle and San Simeon Beach.
Take the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway for a one-of-a-kind experience.
Ultimate Summer Food Fair can be experienced the last week of July at the 37th Annual Gilroy Garlic Festival.
View Laguna Beach’s famous Pageant of the Masters that runs from July through the end of August.
Wine-taste your way through Temecula, Paso Robles, and Napa Valley. Keep a log of your favorites.
XM Satellite Radio has well priced subscriptions this summer. Join today to keep up on music, news, sports, and entertainment during your road trip.
Yell and scream while riding on one of Six Flags Magic Mountain’s 16 roller coasters.
Zip-line down Big Bear Mountain on one of their nine runs.