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Best Summertime Weekend Trips from Los Angeles

Many Angelenos are ready to start traveling again this summer — but we’re here to remind you that you don’t have to venture far for the perfect summertime getaway.

For those who don’t have the inclination to spend weeks away in exotic locales, Southern California has a beautiful variety of escapes that are the perfect distance away for a weekend trip. Here are some of our favorites.



Less than 4 hours from the heart of Los Angeles, Rosarito is a beachside city in Baja California, Mexico. It was originally known as a hideaway from Hollywood elites back during the Golden Age of Hollywood. Today, the Rosarito Beach Hotel still welcomes Angelenos for an exciting (or relaxing) getaway.

Many travelers come to Rosarito for sports, like surfing, motocross, jet skiing, dirt-biking, and kayaking. Others come to relax at the spas and enjoy the vibrant arts community, and others prefer the serenity of nature — scuba diving, hiking, and exploring the coastline of the nearby wild Los Coronados islands.

Driving distance from LA: 3-4 hours
Best place to stay: Las Rocas Resort and Spa

Best for: Water sports & nature


Catalina Island

Catalina Island is a 22-mile-long island off the coast of Los Angeles. With most visitors getting around entirely on foot or via a golf cart, the island is truly the perfect place to get away from the bustle of the city.

The island offers exciting water and nature-based adventures, like zip-lining, scuba diving, jeep tours, and more. But it also offers plenty of more relaxing activities for those who prefer people-watching to hiking. The town of Catalina has lots of charming restaurants, boutiques, and even an Art Deco movie theatre and casino.

Driving distance from LA: 1-hour ferry ride

Best place to stay: Mt. Ada Bed and Breakfast

Best for: Getting off the mainland


Paso Robles

Paso Robles is the nearest wine country for Angelenos. Located between LA and San Francisco, it’s about a 3 and half hour drive from the heart of LA. The main draw of Paso Robles is its 250+ wineries, which produce more than 60 grape varietals. Many of the wineries feature breathtaking views of the landscape.

But Paso Robles also boasts other attractions to explore in between wine tastings: hot springs, olive oil farms (and tastings!), horseback riding, and world-class golf courses. And Hearst Castle isn’t far away for those who want to do some more traditional sightseeing.

Driving distance from LA: 3 1⁄2 hours
Best place to stay: The Canyon Villa
Best for: A weekend wine country experience



Alisal is a “luxury California dude ranch,” located in Solvang, north of Santa Barbara. The resort is situated on 10,000 acres of trails, lakes, canyons, golf courses, and wineries — and you can ride horses through it all.

You’ll be paired with a horse that matches your level of equestrian experience, from complete newcomer to experienced rider. Horseback activities include leisurely rides through the scenic acres, rodeo classes (like barrel racing), grooming classes, and wrangling training. Many of these activities are kid-friendly!

For those who don’t want to ride, you can golf, cycle, take a guided fishing trip, learn to fly fish or practice archery.

Driving distance from LA: 3 hours
Best place to stay: The Alisal Guest Ranch and Resort
Best for: An adult “summer camp” experience & horseback riding


Summer in Southern California is best spent outside the city, exploring all the different landscapes and outdoor adventures it has to offer. Whether you love the beach or prefer wine tasting, enjoy sports or prefer relaxing… we hope you’ll take advantage of one of these weekend trip spots this summer!

About the Author

Ernie Carswell is one of the most accomplished and respected real estate agents in the industry today. With more than 25 years of experience in the business, Carswell’s extensive roster of satisfied clientele includes the likes of Fortune 500 CEOs, professional entertainers, top studio executives, leading attorneys, government officials, ambassadors, and foreign dignitaries.Carswell is one of the most admired names in luxury real estate and frequently receives accolades for his outstanding work in the press. He has been included in The Hollywood Reporter’s “Hollywood’s Top 25 Real Estate Agents” listing, in Variety’s feature on “Showbiz Real Estate Elite,” Billboard’s coverage of the “Top 15 Real Estate Agents Representing Musicians Today,” and was ranked in the top 100 Agents in the nation by the Wall Street Journal’s Real Trends.