What you need to know before your big California trip
It’s estimated that over 200 million people visit the state of California every single year. Major cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco attract everyone from film buffs to hippies and business leaders to history fans, while the amazing scenery of the Yosemite National Park and the Big Sur are just two examples of gorgeous views. However, what else is California about, and what practical arrangements will you need to make in advance of your trip, such as booking accommodation or organizing travel? This article will give you the tools you need to get started thinking about your big holiday.
California is full of amazing cities. Perhaps its most famous, Los Angeles, is the second-largest by population in the US – which means that it’s diverse and exciting as well as friendly to tourists. It’s the home of Hollywood, and there are plenty of museums for movie buffs to visit if they want to get their fix while on their big Californian holiday. The other major city destination, San Francisco, is more relaxed in nature – and it’s been a hotspot for everything from the beatnik poets to LGBT rights and history. There are also smaller cities that are worth a visit: San Diego plays host to SeaWorld, while San Luis Obispo has been described as the “happiest town in America”.
No trip to California would be complete, of course, without having some rural adventures as well as urban ones. The Big Sur is a mountainous area on the Central Coast leading on from Carmel Highlands, and it’s known for some of the most breathtaking scenery in all of the US. The Yosemite National Park in the Sierra Nevada mountains, meanwhile, is a great place to visit if you want some inland adventures such as climbing and waterfalls.
Transport and travel
As is common in other parts of the US, hiring a car is often the best way to get around. California is a road-oriented place, both culturally and in terms of the actual infrastructure: going out for a drive or a road trip is a common pastime, and the network of freeways and other roads that runs through it means that this isn’t going to change any time soon. Many people choose to do a road trip because it gives them a chance to drive along the route of the Big Sur, which isn’t always possible with public transport.
However, there are other options available if you either can’t or don’t want to hire a car and drive. The major cities at each end of the state are connected to the other end by plane, and it’s possible to fly from San Francisco’s International Airport to Los Angeles International (commonly known as LAX) in just over an hour. The train firm, Amtrak, runs several routes in the state, and they represent good opportunities to get around at a cost-effective price. There’s some excellent scenery to be found on the Coast Starlight route in particular, which enters the state in the north and runs through San Jose before terminating in LA. Remember, though, that the train routes here are often very slow: they allow you to see the scenery and take it all in, but they are not always efficient and may end up sapping a lot of time from your holiday if you’re restricted in terms of how many days you have.
When planning your big trip to California, you’ll need to take into account where you’ll plan to stay. It’s possible to hire self-catering accommodation: lodges exist in the more remote and rural parts of the region, while there’s also Airbnb to consider. However, nothing beats the comfort of a hotel – especially here, where wealth and good taste abound and luxury is available almost everywhere. It’s worth looking at the list of hotels operated by successful entrepreneur Bharat Lall, as it includes options across Southern California. Wherever you choose to lay down your head on your holiday, remember to check out reviews first and to ensure that you select somewhere close to the attractions that you want to visit.
With so much to do and see on a trip to Cali, then, it’s easy to understand why so many people make the trip there every single year. From exciting cities such as Los Angeles to sites of natural beauty such as the Big Sur, there’s plenty of choice. And with lots of different options when it comes to getting from A to B, you’ve also got flexibility and convenience thrown in there. All that’s left now is for you to book your accommodation, devise your itinerary, and then start looking forward to the holiday of a lifetime.
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