California

Golden State Getaways!

Take a look at these stunning spots to make you feel like you've traveled overseas, for the fraction of the cost!

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  1. Old Town Orcutt in Santa Maria Valley for Spain - great for families or couples

This underrated region on the central coast of California is another hidden gem.

Things To Do:

  • Sand dunes (Oceano Dunes)
  • Miles of hiking trails (Oso Flaco)
  • Beaches
  • Stunning Wineries and Vineyards with rolling hills including Presquile, Riverbench, Bien Nacido
  • The famous Santa Maria style BBQ - Far Western Tavern is one of the most popular restaurants for this revered style of BBQ
  • Nearly three dozen local, ultra laid back wine tasting rooms and craft breweries.

2. Solvang for Denmark - Referred to as California’s Little Denmark - great for families or couples

One of the most charming villages in America, this beloved Danish town brims with Danish inspired architecture (including their famous windmills) and the scent of delectable baked goods (including their famous abelskiver pancakes) permeates the air.

Things To Do:

  • You may remember strolling the butter drenched quaint streets of Solvang as a kid, but this haven has also become quite the renowned culinary destination with many newer restaurants and Michelin Guide recognitions including Ramen Katori, Peasant’s Feast and Peasant’s Deli (next door to the deli is their new arcade too)
  • Stroll the tchotchke shops on Copenhagen Drive (the center of the village), while doing a tasting of the pastries and cookies at the many Danish bakeries including Danish Mill, Birkholms, Mortensen’s
  • Visit Jule Hus (means Christmas House) - It’s Christmas year-round at this festive ornament + gift shop
  • Wine Tasting Rooms - King’s Carey is one of the newest wine tasting rooms from winemaker James Sparks and Dana V. Wines has an expansive outdoor patio right next to Mortensen’s Bakery - Wine + Danish!
  • OstrichLand USA - Feeding these giant birds (along with the resident Emus) is a memorable adventure for the entire family
  • Santa Rita Hills Lavender Farm - Open for farm tours!
  • Hans Christian Andersen Park - There’s even a new Skatepark
  • Have lunch at Vega Vineyard and Farm and visit their resident farm animals. They also sell their fruits and vegetables at their Farm Stand
  • Elverhoj Museum of History & Art - Documents the history of Solvang and Danish culture. There is also a Henry Diltz photo exhibit thru mid Sept - legendary rock photographer and Grammy Winner who photographed The Eagles, Joni Mitchell, Paul McCartney, The Doors
  • Solvang Festival Theater
  • Around the corner is the Scarecrow Festival in October and Solvang Farmer Pumpkin Patch will open late September.

3. Laguna Beach for Cabo - great for families or couples

With its turquoise waters, palm trees and hidden coves, you’ll be instantly transported to Hawaii

Things To Do:

  • Laguna Art Museum
  • Set up your beach day at Goff Cove (best beach in Laguna), there are calm, turquoise waters and you may even spot seals - most beaches have metered parking
  • Paddle Boarding
  • Treasure Island Beach - just down from Goff Cove is a good spot to catch sea life in the tide pools - there are clean bathrooms nearby
  • Stroll the beach walk on the bluffs
  • Best sunset views (and they’re free too!) + lunch or drinks at Montage Hotel after a day of fun in the sun - the hotel sits right on top of Goff Cove (best beach in Laguna)

4. Napa Valley for Provence, France - great for couples

With its glorious topography and flora and fauna covered hillsides, you’ll swear you’re in Provence.

Things To Do:

  • Bike ride along the Napa Valley Vine Trail - 12.5 miles from Napa to Yountville
  • Hot Air Balloon ride
  • Have dinner in Yountville - the epicenter of culinary delights
  • Stroll the town of Saint Helena’s shops and restaurants and visit the Saint Helena Farmer’s Market on Fridays
  • Wine Tasting - Burgess (new vineyard and tasting room), Ashes & Diamonds, and Robert Mondavi just opened Arch & Tower in downtown Napa where you can indulge in wine tastings and delectable gourmet cuisine pairings
  • Drink in the best views in Napa from the mesmerizing deck of Auberge de Soleil - open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and drinks. Every bit of this property is reminiscent of Provence. There’s even a vast sculpture garden/art walk on property:
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