Best 5 weekend getaways from LA

Best 5 Weekend Getaways from Los Angeles: Explore Beaches, Mountains, Deserts, and More!

Is your kids board in weekend? Looking for the perfect escape from LA? Discover the top 5 weekend getaways, from the coastal charm of Santa Barbara to the desert oasis of Palm Springs. Enjoy wine tasting, beach relaxation, outdoor adventures, and unique experiences just hours away from Los Angeles. Click now to explore the best weekend destinations and start planning your unforgettable getaway

1. Santa Barbara

East Beach is popular for volleyball and picnics, while Butterfly Beach offers spectacular sunsets.

  • What’s Special: Known as the “American Riviera,” Santa Barbara boasts beautiful beaches, exquisite Spanish architecture, renowned vineyards, and vibrant arts.
  • Activities: Enjoy wine tasting in Santa Ynez Valley, explore the historic Santa Barbara Mission, take a stroll down State Street, and relax on Butterfly Beach.
  • Accommodation Options: From luxury resorts to charming bed and breakfasts.
  • Travel Time: Approximately 2 hours by car from LA.
  • Wine Tasting: Over 200 wineries in Santa Ynez Valley provide a plethora of tasting options.
  • Culture & History: Explore the Santa Barbara Museum of Art and the historic Santa Barbara Mission.
  • Outdoor Activities: Try surfing, biking, or a coastal hike.
  • Dining: Savor local seafood and international cuisines at waterfront restaurants.

santa barbara

santa barbara photo

2. Palm Springs

  • What’s Special: Palm Springs is a desert oasis famous for its mid-century modern architecture, hot springs, and stunning desert landscapes.
  • Activities: Explore the Palm Springs Art Museum, take a tram ride up San Jacinto Mountains, visit the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, or simply lounge by a pool.
  • Accommodation Options: Chic boutique hotels, classic resorts, and vacation rentals.
  • Travel Time: Approximately 2 hours by car from LA.
  • Architecture: Famous for mid-century modern designs, take an architectural tour.
  • Outdoor Activities: Golf, hike in Indian Canyons, or ride the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway.
  • Spa Retreats: Pamper yourself with mineral-rich hot spring spas.
  • Events: Visit during the Palm Springs International Film Festival or Modernism Week.
  • Dining: Experience fine dining or trendy cafés.

palm springs

palm springs photo


3. Catalina Island

  • What’s Special: Accessible only by ferry or helicopter, Catalina Island offers an island getaway with outdoor activities and breathtaking ocean views.
  • Activities: Snorkeling, kayaking, hiking the Trans-Catalina Trail, exploring the picturesque town of Avalon.
  • Accommodation Options: Quaint hotels, inns, and vacation rentals.
  • Travel Time: 1 hour by ferry from Long Beach, San Pedro, or Dana Point.
  • Water Sports: Enjoy snorkeling, scuba diving, and glass-bottom boat tours.
  • Land Activities: Rent a bike or golf cart, hike the Trans-Catalina Trail.
  • Wildlife: Encounter bison or take a dolphin/whale-watching tour.
  • Events: Attend the Catalina Island JazzTrax Festival or Catalina Film Festival.
  • Dining: Waterfront dining with fresh seafood specialties.


calalina photo

4. Big Bear Lake

  • What’s Special: Big Bear Lake offers a mountain retreat with opportunities for skiing, snowboarding, hiking, and fishing, depending on the season.
  • Activities: Hit the slopes in winter, hike various trails, enjoy water sports, and explore the Alpine Zoo.
  • Accommodation Options: Cabins, lodges, and vacation rentals.
  • Travel Time: Approximately 2-3 hours by car from LA, depending on traffic.
  • Winter Sports: Skiing and snowboarding at Snow Summit and Bear Mountain.
  • Summer Activities: Kayaking, fishing, hiking, and mountain biking.
  • Family Fun: Visit the Alpine Slide, Big Bear Alpine Zoo, or take a pirate ship tour.
  • Events: Participate in Oktoberfest or the Big Bear Lake Fishing Derby.
  • Dining: Cozy mountain eateries offering comfort food.

big bear

big bear photo

5. San Diego

  • What’s Special: San Diego offers a blend of urban excitement and relaxed beach town vibes with a rich naval history, a world-famous zoo, and stunning beaches.
  • Activities: Visit Balboa Park, explore the Gaslamp Quarter, enjoy SeaWorld or the San Diego Zoo, and relax on the beaches of La Jolla.
  • Accommodation Options: Wide range of hotels, hostels, and vacation rentals.
  • Travel Time: Approximately 2-3 hours by car from LA, or take the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner.
  • Cultural Attractions: Explore Balboa Park, Old Town, and USS Midway Museum.
  • Beaches: Surf at Ocean Beach, or sunbathe at La Jolla Shores.
  • Family Entertainment: San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld, and LEGOLAND California.
  • Events: Comic-Con International, San Diego Restaurant Week.
  • Dining: Diverse culinary scene, including farm-to-table and international options.



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