Place:San Elijo State Beach
Why it's hot in 2009: On a sun-splashed beach north of San Diego, California state park officials in 2005 launched the nation's largest deployment of Wi-Fi access for park visitors, adding to the ever-growing outdoor trend known as "glamping" or "glamour camping."
But wireless Internet service is not the only comfort from home offered to campers at San Elijo State Beach, about 40 miles north of San Diego. This 171-site park is one of the state's most well-appointed camp sites, with real flush toilets, hot showers, pay telephones, laundry facilities and a camp store where visitors can buy groceries, firewood and ice.
Roughing it? Hardly.
As a generation of American's raised on iPods, Nintendo Wii and Guitar Hero reaches adulthood, the "glamping" trend is expected to grow, according to many trend watchers, including the giant New York-based ad agency, JWT.
The scenario goes like this: Members of the pampered, digital generation will camp more next year to try to save on travel expenses to cope with the worsening economic crisis, but they will refuse to do without all of those conveniences from home. Thus the rise of "glamping" and the growing popularity of parks such as San Elijo State Beach. (You can see a list of state parks that offer wireless Internet at www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=23780.)
Information: (760) 753-5091, www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=662