It’s not like there isn’t a lot to do in Los Angeles, but sometimes you need to get out, even if it is just for a day. Luckily, there are many different destinations with beautiful views, landscapes, and beaches, all within a couple of hours. If you’re looking for a getaway, but don’t have the time or money for a full weekend trip away, here are a few of our favorite day trips.
- Temecula – 1hr 30mins by car
Instead of traveling all the way north to Napa or Sonoma, take an easy hour and a half drive on down to TEMECULA. This is should be your first choice if you love wine tasting. You can also stomp grapes and visit Old Town TEMECULA where you can take a historical walking tour at the Temecula Valley Museum. The heart of TEMECULA has over 30 different wineries, which you can hop around between or take a guided tour. You can finish off the day by experiencing a magnificent view of the wineries and sunset from inside a hot air balloon.
2. Solvang – 2 hrs by car
A small town that was founded after the Danish left the midwest and headed for the west, SOLVANG doesn’t have many Danes anymore. Today, you can find wooden windmills, rural houses, and a replica of Copenhagen’s Round Tower. In these charming homes, you can find Christmas shops, Hans Christian Andersen, the Little Mermaid trinkets, and Danish bakeries. SOLVANG also has many breweries and pancake cottages. If you want history, make sure you stop by the Elverhol Museum. For a more off the beaten path experience, check out the outskirts of SOLVANG where you can visit OstrichLand, the Jurassic Park for ostriches.
3. Santa Barbara – 1hr 50min
SANTA BARBARA is a worldwide destination and we’re lucky enough it close enough for a day trip. Head to Stearns Wharf where you’ll have fabulous views of the pacific with State Street nearby filled shops. You can also enjoy the ocean at a nearly private beach at Butterfly Beach, next to the Four Seasons Biltmore Hotel. Grab lunch at Julia Child’s favorite eatery, La Super Rica Taqueria. Want to go wine tasting? Try one of the many tasting rooms along the Urban Wine Trail in downtown Santa Barbara.
- Coronado – 2 hrs
CORONADO has topped the list of best beaches in the country for years. With its wide shores, it feels like it’s never crowded and with its soft, fine-grained sand it makes for a perfect walk in any weather. It’s just a ferry ride or a short drive over the bridge from San Diego. Even if you can’t afford the $300+ a night at the Hotel del Coronado, it’s worth checking out. With many different options for eating, you’ll find great food, coffee, and frozen treats at every turn. CORONADO also houses a nice sized naval base in which you can watch fighter jets take off and land.