I love booking all kinds of holidays for you. Everyone has different tastes and that’s one of the pleasures of my role, in finding you the perfect holiday. However I love booking multi-centre holidays – whether it’s a multi-country trip or a trip in one country with lots of different destinations. The latter is ideal for an escorted tour where you get a taster of a variety of towns/cities/attractions. But if you’re up for a challenge on holiday as well – then a road trip is the one for you.
I love using maps, tourist office information and TripAdvisor to plot a route. I’ve just done this for a client travelling to California. I look at the distance between overnight stops, check how many stops you’ll need in order to see everything (within your budget and time constraints) and advise what there is to do en route. Here I was looking at the famous Highway 1 that takes you mainly along the coast of California from north to south. You pass through San Francisco going southwards, towards Monterey with Cannery Row (read some Steinbeck before you travel). Then south towards Carmel-by-the-Sea, a town full of boutiques and art galleries and where Clint Eastwood has served as Mayor.
Next stop is the Big Sur – with rocky cliffs, huge redwood trees and spectacular scenery. Here is a perfect place to spot seals on the rocky beaches. Moving south, you’ll drive alongside the coast – keep stopping to admire the view! Then drive into Santa Barbara (these days with famous residents, Prince Harry and his family). There are some historic Spanish colonial buildings still here – the Mission Santa Barbara especially. Take a stroll along the pier, enjoy the seafood and watch the sunset over the Pacific with a margarita.
Next stop is Ventura who advertise themselves as Southern California’s whispered secret! This part of the coast is home to surfers, kayakers and anyone who loves the beach-life. Next-door neighbour, Malibu is well-known for its beaches and celebrity inhabitants. (Tony Stark’s house in IronMan3 is on Malibu beach and gets destroyed, I must stress this was for the film and is not real!)
Moving on, you’ll quickly be swallowed up by Los Angeles. Stick to Highway 1 and you’ll pass through Santa Monica where Route 66 ends on the pier. Here hire a bike and ride along the Coastal Bike Trail, a paved, multi-use 22-mile path. Long Beach is home to the Queen Mary cruise liner, now somewhere you can stay overnight. Take a ferry to Santa Catalina Island for a perfect island retreat.
For fans of The O.C. on Channel 4, the next area is yours! Orange County is home to the rich and beautiful (according to the series’ blurb). It is also home to the first Disney theme park.
Finally the southernmost part of the route finishes in San Diego. Home to surfing dogs, theme parks, year-round sun and delicious food.
When do you want to drive the Highway? Let me help you plan and book it!