Have the Perfect Year in California With These Seasonal Destinations

People insist that California doesn’t experience all four seasons, but that’s silly. The weather is different, but each season is beautifully represented in typical West Coast style. Visit California in spring, summer, fall, and winter to see for yourself.

Watch the Wildflowers Blossom in Spring

Head inland in the springtime, away from the coast. Later in spring, wildflowers pop up along California’s sandy coastline, but as the season gets going, the greenery struggling to bloom again craves warmer temperatures. It’s cooler near the water, even in sunny California. During March and April, springtime explodes. There’s less fog, the hotel rates are lower, and the crowds are thin.

Yosemite is one of the best places to watch the flowers return to the landscape. Head to the north of San Diego and let the Carlsbad Flower Fields steal away your breath. In Huntington Garden, camellias reign supreme. Check out Mendocino, as well. The rhododendrons in the Coast Botanical Garden will make you feel brand new.

Welcome Sea Life in Summer

Along the coast of California, marine life joins the tourists in flocking to the shores in the summertime, although many of them come from the opposite direction. Along the beaches of La Jolla, the leopard sharks are the most welcomed guests. In spite of the name, these sharks are harmless. The big, brightly colored critters are personally responsible for drawing divers, kayakers, and snorkelers to La Jolla every summer. Their visit almost always begins in June, but they tend to hang around in July and August, as well. Consider taking a swim with them this year. Dive down and say hi.

Experience the Perfect Fall in SoCal

Southern California puts on a spectacular show every autumn. Visitors never expect it because the stereotype is that California has no seasons, but residents of LA know better. The air doesn’t have the same crisp nip you experience on the East Coast, and you can still swim as you bob for apples and plan your Halloween costume, but multiple fall-friendly activities are on offer.

Just as you can in nearly any New England town, you can go apple picking around Oak Glen. You can spend an hour or two in a pumpkin patch picking out the perfect jack-o-lantern. Lose your way in a corn maze, or desperately find your way out of a haunted house. A drive through Los Angeles will even reveal breathtaking fall foliage. Keep your eyes pointed toward the mountains, or peep at the gardens throughout the city.

Spend Winter in Big Bear Lake

Believe it or not, California is home to some exceptional skiing. It’s such a hot destination that you need to make reservations well ahead of time. Check out HotelPlanner to find Big Bear Lake hotels in November, December, or January. In addition to skiing, snowboarding, and sipping cocoa at the lodge, you can play in the powder, make snowmen, and experience winter in an entirely new climate.

Have you ever thought of taking a seasonal vacation? Where would you go?

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What to Do in the Poconos in Every Season

The Poconos region spans 2,400 square miles and is known for its mountainous peaks, abundant forests, waterfalls, wildlife, and ample opportunities to get out and explore the countryside. Indeed, one of the best things about this area is that you can visit any time of year and find something fun to do. Here’s a small fraction of what you can look forward to during each season in the Poconos.

Spring

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Image via Flickr by Alexander Day

Between the lows of winter and the highs of summer, spring is one of the best times to get outdoors and go hiking or biking in the Pocono Mountains. Plan a trip to one of these areas:

  • Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
  • Bushkill Falls
  • Dingmans Falls

You’ll find dozens of locations and trails to explore, but each of these will give you a look at the area’s best waterfalls. The tallest one at Bushkill towers at over 100 feet high.

One of the best things about exploring the state parks and nature areas in the Poconos is that the mountain range is a popular spot for discount hotels, luxury accommodations, and everything in between. Check out a Poconos hotel room from Hotel Planner in the area to enjoy proximity to these natural spots and all the other local attractions.

Summer

Summer in the Poconos is ideal for swimming and water sports. A visit to one of the waterfalls will cool you down, but you can also go swimming or camping at Worthington State Forest or Beltzville State Park. You’ll find beach areas at Delaware Water Gap Recreation Area and Gouldsboro State Park as well.

The area is also home to a couple of water parks that the whole family will love. Visit Camelbeach Waterpark, which features indoor and outdoor pools and slides, or go to Aquatopia, which has water slides, water rides, and a swim-up bar where you can order a cocktail and some bar food.

Fall

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Image via Flickr by Ravi_Shah

Poconos is in a northeastern part of the United States that ignites with color every fall. From September through November, you can visit locations throughout the states to see the changing leaves. If your priority is to see the rich fall foliage deep in the mountains, keep an eye on the color forecast throughout the year in order to plan a successful vacation. The color zones run through the Poconos, so you should have several weeks in the fall when you can visit and see this phenomenon.

Fall is also a popular season for festivals in the Poconos. If you’re visiting this time of year, attend the Apple Harvest & Timber Festivals, Black Bear Film Festival, or Pocono Food Truck & Art on the Mountain event.

Winter

The area’s many ski resorts open their lifts and trails in the winter. These are a few of the areas where you can take the family for lessons, equipment rentals, and skiing and snowboarding fun:

  • Big Boulder Ski Area
  • Blue Mountain Resort
  • Camelback Mountain
  • Jack Frost Mountain
  • Shawnee Mountain Ski Area

Poconos promises tons of outdoor fun regardless of when you visit. Add these activities to your itinerary to make the most of your time in the Pennsylvania mountains.

 

Where to Enjoy a Great Meal With a Fabulous View on Jekyll Island

The proximity of the Atlantic Ocean and numerous small creeks make Jekyll Island an ideal spot for enjoying a tasty meal with a waterfront view. Whether you’re looking for a casual family spot or an upscale restaurant for date night, you’ll find the perfect place on Jekyll Island.

Beach House Restaurant and Tap Room

Eateries along Beachview Drive North offer waterfront views with tables mere feet from the beach. One local favorite, Beach House Restaurant and Tap Room, welcomes customers with outdoor oceanfront dining on a spacious patio. Tables include large umbrellas so you can enjoy eating near the beach on sunny days. The Beach House menu offers moderately priced options like sandwiches and pricier plates featuring fresh scallops, salmon, and marinated steaks. Pair your meal with a glass of wine or one of over 20 beers on tap daily.

The Reserve

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Image via Flickr by BSC Photography

 

Located in the Westin Hotel on the beach, The Reserve is an elegant restaurant with two outdoor dining options. Start your day with brunch or stop by for dinner and enjoy the sunset from a patio table. Enjoy the upscale atmosphere and a high-end meal like delectable fresh seafood or steak. After dinner, head up to Harry’s Lounge and watch the sunset from the rooftop deck. There are plenty of hotels to choose from on Beachview Drive, too. It’s easy to find a hotel convenient to restaurants featuring waterfront dining, especially if you use Hotel Planner to search for Jekyll Island hotels.

Tortuga Jacks

For family-friendly meals that will fit almost any travel budget, visit Tortuga Jacks. Kids will love this casual Mexican eatery. Choose from traditional beach tacos and burritos or beach-inspired fare including shrimp fajitas and fish tacos. Choose a table at the outdoor tiki bar to enjoy the sea air while you listen to live music from local bands.

The Wharf

Located on the Jekyll Island Historic Pier, The Wharf offers waterfront views along the serene Fancy Bluff Creek. Enjoy beautiful scenery in the dining room or out on the patio. The menu offers Southern favorites including shrimp and grits, fried chicken, and blackened swordfish. Expect to pay a little more to enjoy good food at this waterfront location. You can also listen to live music out on the deck every day of the week.

Zachry’s Riverhouse

There are plenty of burgers, sandwiches, and salads on the menu at Zachry’s Riverhouse. The restaurant offers a kids’ menu, too. Lunch or dinner can be easy on your wallet at this casual waterfront eatery. You can also spend a little extra on complete meals including crab cakes and fresh fish. You’ll find the restaurant is on Harbor Road. Dine inside or outside on the deck overlooking Fancy Bluff Creek.

When you visit Jekyll Island, make sure to visit a few restaurants with gorgeous views of the water. Several restaurants offer options fro breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Savor your meal while you enjoy ocean breezes, or views of the wildlife along the scenic local creeks.

 

Garberville, CA: Enjoying The Calm Side Of Californian Tourism

California is one of the most iconic destinations on the planet. The Golden State is a place that is visited by millions of Americans of each year, as well as millions of international guests. Most will take in the excitement San Francisco, LA, and San Diego. However, CA is also a place where you can enjoy a slice of tranquility and calm. Garberville is the ultimate place to do it.

The CDP in Humboldt County isn’t the most frequently visited destination in this part of the world. But it does still attract a lot of tourism given its tiny size. Here’s why it is the ultimate place for a few days of relaxation.

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Whether you’re a solo traveler or a family, there’s no doubt that the weather plays a big role. Garberville’s climate is pleasant and comfortable throughout the year. Aside from the heat, rainfall levels are fairly low during all months. This ultimately creates the perfect platform from which to build a relaxed few days in the sun.    

As a small location, Garberville isn’t exactly blessed with a plethora of accommodation options. However, the Best Western Plus Humboldt House Inn is set in the ideal location to enjoy the surrounding nature. Meanwhile, everything from the food to the rooms screams luxury and relaxation. This could either form a break during a tour of the area or become the central focus of the trip. Either way, you’ll be sure to enjoy those facilities.

Garberville is also home to an incredible golf course. For many people, this is the ultimate form of relaxation. While it is frequently used, it doesn’t tend to get so busy that it becomes a struggle to play. So, with a little practice before you go, this could be one of the most enjoyable rounds of your life. For casual golfers and passionate ones alike, this is a noteworthy selling point.

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The area’s Richardson Grove Park is another fantastic place to enjoy natural beauty. This is the perfect location for a scenic drive through the Redwoods or can alternatively be an ideal spot for hikes or camping. Frankly, anyone visiting this part of the world would be advised to grab hold of this opportunity. It truly is an opportunity to break away from the hectic nature of modern life. Just remember to take a camera with you as a few hours of snapping photos will allow those memories to last a lifetime.

Locals enjoy a relaxed culture, and that spreads to all visitors. This comes as no surprise given that there are only around 1,000 residents. There is still room for business, great health care and good school facilities. Nonetheless, it’s a far cry from San Francisco 200km to the South. Once again, this is simply a perfect place to break away from the rat race. As a family trip or a chance to recharge the batteries, you will not find any better.

And if you do wish to visit the exciting cities or even head up to Oregon, this can still be done too. For most visitors, though, Garberville is a hidden gem.

 

Winter Wonderland in Leavenworth, WA

Visiting Leavenworth in Washington was on our list for a while, especially around the Christmas/holiday time. This town brought back some sweet memories of small villages of Europe because of its charms and cozy setups.

Leavenworth, WA

Leavenworth, WA

Leavenworth is German village at the foothill of the Cascades. Its Bavarian style half-timbered colorful houses give this town an enchanting look. Shops and cafes along the road-sides and round the year activities attract thousands of visitors each year. Leavenworth is a popular getaway in Pacific Northwest because of magical Christmas lighting and other winter activities/sports.

Christmas lighting in Leavenworth, WA

If you are planning to stay in Leavenworth during summer break or winter holiday season, be sure to book your hotel ahead of time (way ahead maybe). We stayed in Ellensburg, WA, which was about an hour away from Leavenworth.

Artistic places of Leavenworth in Washington

Artistic places of Leavenworth in Washington

If you are planning to have either lunch or dinner in Downtown Leavenworth, try to make a reservation at a restaurant or cafe in at least couple hours before you are ready to eat. During lunch or dinner time, it gets pretty crazy with long lines, and waiting time in restaurants were at least 2 hours. We ended up having some pretzels and danishes at a bakery. Then made an early reservation at a Mongolian place, called Wok About Grill for dinner. But if time and energy allow, do try some Bavarian style food here, like schnitzel and brats and etc. One final tip about visiting Leavenworth in December is that, make sure to wear few layers of clothes with heavy jacket with other winter gears. It came down to 8 or 9 degree Fahrenheit when we were there.

Bavarian style houses in Leavenworth, WA

Bavarian style houses in Leavenworth, WA

We spent only few hours in the heart of Leavenworth to go around and to enjoy the Christmas lighting and festive atmosphere the town has to offer. I do plan to go back there during summer sometime soon. For now, these are the few places we’ve visited in Leavenworth.

  1. Downtown: This is the heart and soul of Leavenworth. Laced by lots of boutique stores and gourmet restaurants, downtown is the place where the stunning holiday lighting takes place every year. All the cafes and shops will catch your eyes with its decorations or names or their unique products. If you don’t want to be trapped by the crowd near the stores, enjoy the kids sledding on snow from a tiny hill near the gazebo or just sit down with a cup of hot chocolate to enjoy all the alpine beauties all around the city.

Christmas lighting in Downtown Leavenworth, WA

2. Nutcracker Museum: This is one of the coolest and fun museums we’ve been to. With more than 6,000 nut cracking devices, some dating back from the Roman time, this place will definitely make its guests excited.

The Nutcracker Museum in Leavenworth, WA

The Nutcracker Museum in Leavenworth, WA

The museum won’t take more an hour to visit and the ticket is only $5 per person. Watch the video before the tour to know more about the nutcrackers and its amazing history. Also, check out the souvenir shop before leaving which has some pre-owned and new nutcrackers from Germany and China. These nutcrackers come in different shapes, sizes, and colors…have fun choosing one for you or the loved ones.

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3. Waterfront Park: This is probably not very popular place to visit in December. We took a little walk along the Wenatchee River. It is probably one of the best kept secrets of this town.

Waterfront Park in Leavenworth, WA

Waterfront Park in Leavenworth, WA

Only few minutes from the main streets in downtown, this Waterfront Park is a quiet place with few trails and a bridge. I can imagine this place in summer time with incredible sceneries and fun outdoor activities.

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