Planning an Awesome Vacation to California

by Lily White
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California is the perfect state to visit for a vacation. One minute you could be shopping in well-known boutiques and stores, and the next minute you could be soaking up the sun on the beach. There is something that travelers of all ages can enjoy. California is such a large state, and no two places are the same. Investing your time in arranging where you want to go (and what you want to see) at this point will prove advantageous.

Plan Out Where You Want to Go

You know that you want to soak up all that California has to offer; however, do you know where you want to go and why. Going on vacation without really knowing where you will go can be disastrous, costly, and disappointing. So, for example, do you want to go to San Diego for a few days, or do you want to hit the stores in Los Angeles and perhaps do a bit of celebrity spotting while you are there? If you are traveling with friends or family members, then get their input about where they want to go.

Decide What Attractions You Want to See

After establishing the areas of California you want to visit, it is then time to decide which attractions you want to visit and why. For example, do you want to go to the zoo in San Diego to keep the smaller kids amused and entertained? If so, you will need to book San Diego zoo tickets as soon as possible to ensure you get the best deal possible. Or, do you fancy a day trip with the kids to Disneyland? Or is a visit to one of the many national parks on the cards? When you can decide what attractions you want to see and visit you can then start establishing how long your vacation will last.

Invest Time in Research

To get the most out of your vacation time, you want to invest your time and energy into researching what you will be doing and why. If you are traveling through various states and areas, then you may wish to get a map out and plan when you will visit an area and why. You may also want to start joining social media travel groups and groups from those that have explored California before. You can often get so much more out of any vacation when you utilize the support, knowledge, and guidance of others.

How Long Will Your Vacation Last

You now have a clearer idea of what you wish to see, and so it comes time to decide how long you want your vacation to last. Will you be traveling to California to soak up the sun for a short few days? Or are you after something a little longer? Perhaps looking to stay for 1-2 weeks. Thinking about who you will be traveling with and establishing how much time you need in each place will help you establish how long your vacation needs to last. However, you also need to consider how much you can afford too! You don’t want to find yourself in debt to be able to do everything on your wish list. If you can’t afford everything, start narrowing down your favorites to determine the length of time needed to do all these.

Break Down Each Day

After finding out how long you will be on vacation, it is then time to start breaking down each day. If you are moving around California, you will have to account for travel in your daily itinerary. No matter how many people you are traveling with, you will always find a breakdown for each day highly useful and beneficial. Taking the time to break down each day will give you the clarity and direction that you need for an awesome vacation. Working out how long you will need at an attraction or sightseeing venue will help you get further clarity on your itinerary. Remember, some things will require the entire day, whereas others may only take the morning or afternoon to explore.

Establish Your Budget

Having a healthy budget to travel to (and around) California gives you the freedom that you need to enjoy everything the state has to offer. When you are looking at a budget, you need to think about how many people are traveling. For example, if you are traveling as a family, your budget is going to be larger than that of those traveling as a couple. Also, look at those things that you need to include in your budget as essential and those that are luxuries. For instance, getting around the state independently is easier to do when you rent a vehicle. Vehicle rental can add 20 dollars to your budget each day (excluding fuel and insurance). So, carefully think about what you need to add to your budget and why.

Think About Transportation and Travel

If you are traveling around the state of California and stopping off at several locations, such as San Diego and Los Angeles, then you will need a vehicle. However, once you are in those areas, would you be better off using public transportation such as buses or rail connections? As well as thinking about your travel around California, you also have to think about how you will get there and back from your accommodation. Are you going to travel out of season and travel by airplane? Or are you going to travel via road (and enjoy the scenery along the way)? Traveling to and from California can be expensive if it is not planned, so think this through, as this will impact your budget.

The Time of Year You Will Visit

California often enjoys mild weather all year round, except for the summer seasons when the temperatures can peak. In the summer, the weather can be sticky, and you may find you are consumed by heat. Generally speaking, you may prefer to travel in the off-peak seasons (around fall or spring). Temperatures will be in the low to high 70s, and this can make exploration much more enjoyable and much more comfortable. In the off-peak seasons and months, you will also find that popular tourist attractions and sights are less busy. This may mean you can move about with ease.

Time to Enjoy the Beach

A big draw to the state of California is its many beaches and areas of beauty. No matter how long you are vacationing, it is important to soak up the atmosphere (and the weather) on one of the many beaches. Whether you fancy a trip to Malibu or you fancy heading to Laguna beach, it is nice to know that there are beautiful beaches at every turn. You will naturally find that some beaches are quieter than others, and you will find that some, such as Colorado beach, are full of families. When you head to the beach, it is always important to follow local safety advisories and guidelines. Always ensure the water is safe for you (and those you are traveling with).

Getting Your City Fix

California is diverse in terms of what each area has to offer and how each area feels to you and other travelers. For beach and nature lovers, you can head to San Diego. For those wanting a city fix, why not head to Los Angeles? Getting a taste for what each area is like is important. As California is one of the largest states, it is important to indulge in everything that it has to offer. A city fix will once again allow you to see California from a new perspective. Seeing a mix of the beach, nature, and the city will give you a whole new appreciation for how diverse and exciting the state is.

Carrying the Right Documentation

No matter how you decide to explore California, it is important to always carry the right documentation and information. Your passport and your ID document are a must. Proof of medical coverage is essential. Travel insurance may be something that you already hold (or you may be looking into). Credit cards and an emergency/contingency of cash are crucial, especially if you are using multiple transportation systems. Planning and preparing your trip will help you avoid uncertainty, but it is important to remember that emergencies still occur. Having everything you need accessible and on you (and, of course, making copies) will give you reassurance and peace of mind.

Packing Sensibly

As there is so much diversity and opportunity for exploration in the state of California, it is important to pack sensibly. Simply packing for a beach trip is not enough. Always have suitable walking shoes and clothes that you can layer for those cooler evenings or those mountain hikes. Also, ensure you carry with you chargers, contact information, and any medication you may need on your journey. Getting any medication out of state can be tedious, and it can add unnecessary stress to your vacation. When you are packing, think about the activities and places you want to visit to be sure you are packing everything you could need and want. For example, suntan lotion, bug spray, and a hat are the bare minimum you will need for a hike in the mountains or in one of the many national parks.


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