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There are many ways to explore a place. Our take is almost always individualized immersion, slow travel, handcrafted experiences and off the beaten path destinations.
With California all this came very easy. It is a huge state with tremendous diversity but an important starting point is to assume that it is impossible to see everything, there will be always more to come back for.
During our last trip we rented a car and we drove from Los Angeles International Airport to Sonoma Wine Country and we did a lot of exploration in between.
It is a huge city and traffic can be hectic, but architecture and food brings excellent excuses to see it. We saw in the downtown the Catholic Cathedral, the Music center; we hung out in LA live and saw the sunset in Santa Monica Beach after enjoying unique food in the original Farmers Market.
An unknown destination, a town in the middle of nowhere. It takes only one hour (with good traffic) but the drive is worthwhile; one enjoys beautiful canyons, breathtaking views of the mountains and the Angels forest. Once in Palmdale it is nice to hike around and to be absorbed in the immensity and the mystery of the desert.
It is hard to choose from so many gorgeous towns but our first wine stop was in Santa Maria. We participated in wine tastings and brought our own food to enjoy picnics at the vineyards, this is a beautiful tradition in Cali, anyone is welcome to bring their own food and sit at the patios in the wineries.
Los Olivos is one of the most charming little towns in the central coast, there are many wine tasting rooms and the drive around brings panoramas of hilly roads worthy of movie scenes.
Any trip that includes the North demands an stop in Sanfra. It is so clean and so organized, it looks like the perfect city where everything makes up the scenery with the golden gate and the surrounding national parks as the crowning jewel.
Arriving to Sonoma Wine country is arriving to high class and good taste, tastings bring super premium wines, beautiful architecture in the vineyards and ever green mountains with dramatic backdrop scenes of the Pacific ocean. Santa Rosa, Napa, Sonoma all these names are synonym of amazing exploration and wanderlust.
Driving back to Los Angeles Airport gave us the opportunity to visit charming towns such as Monterey with their impressive Catholic mission complex and historic downtown. Los Gatos in Santa Cruz Mountains is excellent to relax at very small vineyards mostly run by familes that offers supreme quality wine. Everything is especial in this area but Paso Robles is one of my favorites, so we needed one last stop this time at Villa San Juliette in San Miguel, it confirmed that when one believes that they have seen every beautiful place, something even more beautiful is still waiting.
As we said we are big fans of personal slow travel, California is best seen by car, but internal flights are possible as well. If you want to do a trip like this and don’t know where to start just contact us. Here in traveladept we are always happy to inspire your travels, and if you need more help contact George who is a great personal travel advisor.