As I am suffering from a serious wanderlust feeling right now, I thought I’d share with you last years Roadtrip along the US Westcoast. Today I am starting with the first part of our trip. The route led us from San Diego via Huntington and Newport Beach to Los Angeles.
1. San Diego
The starting point of our roadtrip was San Diego. As I was in the happy place having a friend here, the search for a place to stay was needless. 🙂 Unluckily, the weather was not on our side the three days we stayed there. Nevertheless San Diego has lots of cute corners and things to discover. In my opinion, the best part of SD were the beaches around La Jolla and Pacific Beach.
Things to do:
- Drive over the breathtaking Coronado Bridge
- Take a walk at La Jolla (Beach) and watch the seals & seagulls
- Explore the film-set of “Some like it hot” and feel like Marilyn Monroe at Hotel del Coronado
- Tanning and relaxing at Pacific Beach
- Walk through historic Gaslamp quarter
2. Newport Beach & Huntington Beach
Starting from San Diego, we first took the train to Newport Beach. The train ride takes only around 1.5 hours and is pretty cheap. Plus, the car rental in Newport cost also less than in SD. Newport Beach itself is a lovely quiet beach town. That dreamy atmosphere immediately reminded me of the US-series O.C. California. 😉 Therefore you will find lots of families and couples that are looking for relaxation here.
Huntington Beach is just around the corner and famous for its surfers. Therefore you can imagine that the beach is really beautiful. So we stayed for a whole day tanning and relaxing. 🙂 Also you’ll find lots of surfer shops and cute souvenirs here. In addition there are the footprints of lots of surfer celebrities like Kelly Slater. So if you ever wanted to feel like a total beach babe – this is the place!
Things to do:
- Have a big ass burger after a long beach day at Crow Burger (Newport)
- Step into Kelly Slaters footprints (Huntington)
- Get that O.C. California feeling exploring Newport (Laguna Beach is also around the corner)
- Walk over the beautiful pier of Huntington Beach and watch the surfers
3. Los Angeles (L.A.)
From Huntington it’s only a one-hour trip to L.A. by car. It felt kind of overwhelming coming from these relaxed surfer-cities driving into the gigantic buzz that is going around in L.A. We booked an Airbnb apartment in West Hollywood. In fact, the location was quite ok, as we were not too far from the city centre. But despite that, Los Angeles is a city where you’ll need a car. (Well not only L.A., we all know that the US is literally addicted to cars right?! 😉 )
I had quite big expectations coming to L.A. But to be honest they were not all met… . Of course it is a city of superlatives and I was mesmerized by all that Hollywood glamour. But you will also see negative superlatives like many poor and homeless people or neighborhoods were you’ll feel unsafe. Furthermore Venice Beach was kind of cool (especially the venetian canals), but at the same time really crowded & felt a bit like “Ballermann” for me.
In conclusion it was kind of a rollercoaster ride. On the one hand I did like the vintage and second-hand shops and the beautiful beaches of Santa Monica, Malibu and Manhattan Beach. I also admired the old Bates Motel, which has been painted all-white and felt really ghostly. And most of all, I was so surprised about all the fancy food, cute coffee shops and ice cream stores. But at the same time, I didn’t fell in love with L.A. as I thought I would be…
What to do:
- Walk along Hollywood Boulevard
- Climb up to the Griffith Observatory to take your picture with the Hollywood sign
- Eat a Bacon-Donut at California Donuts
- Explore the all-white (spooky) Bates Motel
- Enjoy the promenade and go shopping in Santa Monica
- Have an ice cream at Sprinkles
- Window shopping in Beverly Hills
- Coffee at Alfreds Coffee (you know- the famous “But first, Coffee”-Cups! 🙂 )
- Beach day in Manhattan Beach
- Go to In-N-Out-Burgers (of course!)
- Take a look at the freaking expensive villas in Malibu