- Shabbat Dinner and Service at Temple Adat ShalomPosted 4 days ago
- Memorial Weekend Fustal Game to be Held at 4S Ranch Sports ParkPosted 6 days ago
- San Diego Rowdies Girls Fastpitch Travel Softball Tryouts 18UPosted 8 days ago
- San Diego Rowdies Girls Fastpitch Travel Softball Tryouts 18UPosted 8 days ago
- Scientists in the Making!Posted 9 days ago
- Sport Clips of 4S Ranch Village Gives BackPosted 11 days ago
- The Grauer School Presents “A Night on Broadway”Posted 12 days ago
- Northrop Grumman Receives Community Partner of the Year AwardPosted 12 days ago
- NBC 7’S Whitney Southwick to Emcee Taste of Our Towne IIPosted 12 days ago
- Nighthawks ForeverPosted 14 days ago
Road Trip 2012
Posted on July 1, 2012
photos by Spark Photography
Even if you’ve lived in Southern California your whole life, there’s a good chance you’ve only seen a small part of the state. When people travel, they typically skip the off-the-beaten-path destinations and head straight for metropolitan cities. By going on a road trip, you’re giving yourself an opportunity to say “Wow, I can’t believe this place actually exists!” We invite you to visit the beaches, campgrounds, mountains and lakes of California this summer. The apps, ABC’s of a California Adventure and games to play while driving to your destinations will have you prepared to get the car ready and inspired to go off the beaten path. Take our advice and think outside the box by experiencing the allure of the open road. Road Trip 2012 will be one for the books.
When we asked the Crisostomo family what they would be sure to remember when packing for a road trip, their response wasn’t typical. Rather, they were quick to say, “a positive attitude and imagination.” With this in mind, they have a few other helpful pointers for your summer road trip.
“Buckle up and no texting while driving. Make sure everything pertaining to car maintenance is done several days before. Pack your bags the day before. Carry enough of a variety of visual and audio aids (movies, CDs, video games) for the trip. Pack easily accessible snacks and drinks, including plenty of healthy options. Do not leave during rush hour. Stop every couple of hours to stretch. Take pictures at your rest stop. Bring a portable potty for the children. Pack the essentials (ie. 1st aid kit, wet wipes, sunscreen). And don’t forget the GPS.”
The ideal family road trip for Marc, Caresse and their three chidren (Lauren, Andrew and Ryan) would be a drive across country from San Diego, CA to Fort Washington, MD. “On the way, we would do some sightseeing and stop at the various historical landmarks. Our final destination would be to visit our relatives in Fort Washington, MD.” Their favorite family road trip, although it is a relatively short drive, are the many trips to Disneyland they take. “We do not tell the kids where we were going and when we get there, the looks on their faces are priceless,” said Caresse. If Marc and Caresse were venturing out on a couples road trip, they would take a drive up the Pacific Coast Highway; one of the most romantic drives in the US.
When summer hits, the beach is definitely on everyone’s mind. The best part of living in 92127 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 give you a bird’s eye view of starting at Santa Barbara beaches this summer and exploring the coast as you hop from beach to beach.
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.
Much of Malibu’s coastline is covered with the famed beach bungalows along with the Zuma, Paradise Cove and Malibu Beach; to name a few of the public famed beaches.
Manhattan Beach is in Los Angeles County near the airport LAX. The beach is wide and sandy and the boardwalk full of joggers, bikers and walkers.
Long Beach California has the aquarium, the Queen Mary, Little Naples with its gondolas, ferries to Catalina, an art museum and Rainbow Harbor with its waterfront restaurants.
North of San Diego is this jewel of the coast, La Jolla. 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.
Ventura California 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 a great place to bring kids and kites. The Ventura Beach pirate ship is a must!
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 infamous Moonlight Beach.
Have friends in Encinitas & Carlsbad? Tell them to catch 92024 Magazine, 92009 Magazine & 92011 Magazine, coming this summer!
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.
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.
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 Festival’s Annual Summer Show from June 29 through September 2, 2012
San Clemente has a wonderful State campground and a small town atmosphere near the beach. Trestels Trail is a must for the hiking enthusiast.
Oceanside has lots of beach, more reasonably priced hotels, and a harbor for boating or waterfront dining.
Don’t Leave Home Without your APPS!
Provides the latest gas prices, maps, directions, hotel details and bookings.
NATIONAL PARKS EXPLORER
Information from the National Park Service’s website, brochures, markers and other sources.
Hotels give last-minute deals on their unsold rooms, with discounts up to 70%. Book the deals easily and securely on your smartphone.
YPmobile® products turn your mobile device into a powerful local guide that brings you everyday savings.
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.
Find the cheapest gas on the go for free.
Listen to a best seller anytime, anywhere.
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.
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.
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.
Trapster® alerts you to police speed traps and other roadway hazards.
Camping can offer you complete freedom when choosing a holiday. You can get away to the beach, escape to the mountains, 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.
We spotlight some camp locations that are ideal for families, first timers, location seekers and adventurers.
Anderson Valley, CA
Hendy Woods State Park
In summer, kids spend whole day’s 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 7 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 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 at the Saturday night campfire talk or 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 3 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. Next morning, you’re set to explore the lakes and passes higher up the slope—and out of day-hiker range.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
MOUNTAIN & 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.
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 profound 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 Panoramoic Gondola tops at 11,053 feet for those who want to watch the ambitious bikers zoom down the slopes. Visit www.mammothmountain.com for summer time adventure guides, information on the July Food & Wine Experience or the popular Mammoth Festival that occurs in mid – August.
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. And, Big Bear is offering a solution for rising gas prices this summer. Visit www.bigbear.com for details on how to get up to a $100 gas card to put towards your road trip.
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.
Lake Tahoe is a popular summer refuge to 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 Gondola at Heavenly, go rafting on the Truckee, take in a boat cruise and check out the Tahoe Summer Music or Shakespeare Festivals.
Visit www.tahoesbest.com for a local connection with deals and packages.
CALIFORNIA ADVENTURES by letter
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 2012 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 US, 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 1930’s 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 a splash.
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 Sea Elephants 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 34th Annual Gilroy Garlic Festival.
View Laguna Beach’s famous Pageant of the Masters that runs July through early September.
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.