California’s Calling my Name

by Melissa on January 6, 2014 · 3 comments

I can see myself driving along California’s Pacific Coast Highway with the wind in my hair, the warm rays of the sun kissing my face.  I’d be cruising along those hairpin turns on the edge of a steep cliff, gazing at the blue waters of the Pacific Ocean hundreds of meters below.

California OR

I can see myself reliving my childhood – if only for a few moments- by feeling like I was in the middle of an episode of Full House as I gaze at San Francisco’s Painted Ladies – the Victorian row houses that have become icons for the city.

California OR

I can see myself dipping my toes in the cool waters of the Pacific Ocean, as I stroll along the beach by the iconic Santa Monica Pier.

California With all these visions of California running through my head, it’s pretty safe to say, California’s calling my name.  It has been for quite a while, and I’m finally doing something about it.  From Feb 22 – March 4, my boyfriend and I will be making our way from San Diego to San Francisco with stops in Palm Desert, Los Angeles and Napa Valley.

During our time in San Diego, I’m hoping that I’ll be able to catch up with my soul sister, the face of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, Stephanie Arne.  The last time we will have seen each other was 15 months ago, while I was visiting Hawaii and we did everything from a beach clean-up on the Big Island to explore the Honolulu Zoo.  Amongst my plans for this area: check out the San Diego Zoo, the Gaslamp district and the Hotel Del Coronado (of Some Like it Hot fame).

After 3 days, we will head to Palm Desert for 2 nights –where I hope to explore Joshua Tree National Park and just relax for a few days before our crazy road-trip up the coast.

Despite the boyfriend not been too keen on stopping through Los Angeles – there are a few things I would like to see- such as the Hollywood Sign, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica Pier- and since it’s on the way to Hwy 1 (the famous Pacific Coast Highway) I’m sure at the very least we’ll do a drive by and I’ll have the opportunity to take a few snapshots.

california 2010 Alfonso E. Perez-Gonzalez (Flickr Creative Commons)

The journey will then take a turn up the coast along the famous Pacific Coast Highway – and completing the 600km drive along the coast and winding up in San Francisco – a city that has fascinated me since my younger days of watching Full House during afternoons after school.  I have hopes of photographing the Golden Gate Bridge, seeing the fat California sea lions at Fisherman’s Wharf, and eating delectable dishes that this food-centric city has to offer.   I’ll wash all the good food down with a trip out to California’s Napa Valley – something that obviously can’t be missed, especially since I like to consider myself somewhat of a wino.

I’m hoping that my eleven-day California road trip will be complete with views like this:

California and this:

California and of course this:

California Best of all?  It will be a chance for me to escape the winter hell that we Canadians are so lucky to be subjected to for five to six months per year.  California… here I come!

Have you been to California?  What MUST I check out?

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Tom @ Waegook Tom January 6, 2014 at 7:59 pm

I had no idea that Hotel Del Coronado was in San Diego! Wasn’t the movie set in Miami? Or am I making that up? Anyway, I love Some Like It Hot, and San Diego is definitely on my list for when I return to the USA, which will be next year *hopefully*

For San Francisco, get some food at Mollie Stone’s, head to Alta Plaza Park, and have a picnic. Lovely. Head to The Castro, aka the Gaybourhood. Wander around Pacific Heights. Agh. I love that city so much and cannot wait to go back there!

As for LA, the only things I’d like to see there are really Hollywood and Beverly Hills. The city holds very little appeal for me otherwise. Oh and I’d totally see a drag show in WeHo, for sure.
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Georgie January 6, 2014 at 11:01 pm

My favourite thing to do with my friends in SF is get a bottle of wine and some snacks and go up twin peaks to watch the sun set over the city.

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Laura January 8, 2014 at 7:15 pm

This sounds like a fabulous road trip! The stretch of the PCH along the Central Coast around Big Sur is some of the most beautiful scenery I’ve ever encountered. Laguna Beach is a fun place to spend a few hours. Be sure to check out the elephant seals in San Simeon and there’s a place you can stay in a yurt around Big Sur. Monterey and Santa Cruz are beautiful places to stop, and Big Basin to see the redwoods if you can. Try to explore some tide pools! I’m heading to the Bay Area in a couple weeks so CA is on my mind. Have fun!
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