TRAVEL
The California Bucket List: Your daily guide to the best adventures and experiences in the Golden State
TRAVEL

Weekend escapes for Southern Californians

Forty-eight hours of fun? You've got it. Here are weekend escapes that offer rest for the weary and restoration for the body and soul. Map

  • Have some pie, spend time with wolves and hike in the wilderness near Julian. Did I mention the pie?

    Have some pie, spend time with wolves and hike in the wilderness near Julian. Did I mention the pie?

    My housebound spouse was getting cranky; he clearly craved a breath of fresh mountain or desert air. I talked him into an ideal off-season combo for us: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, at the foot of the Cuyamaca mountains, paired with the wooded San Diego County hamlet of Julian. What I didn’t...

  • A wine lover's weekend escape in Paso Robles

    A wine lover's weekend escape in Paso Robles

    Last fall I craved Perugia’s peaceful tranquillity but I didn’t want the jet lag. What to do? Instead of a 12-hour flight to Italy I drove to Paso Robles in less than four. Just as Perugia is overshadowed by Tuscany, Paso Robles is eclipsed by Napa. A mammoth mistake for wine lovers. Downtown Paso...

  • A mystical weekend escape in New Mexico

    A mystical weekend escape in New Mexico

    “You must see Quarai,” said the friend we were visiting in Albuquerque. “It’s a mystical place.” Eager for a spiritual fix, my husband, Paul, and I drove southeast from the city to this Spanish mission ruin [122 Manzano Quarai Road, Mountainair, N.M.; (505) 847-2585, www.nps.gov/sapu], one of three...

  • Old and new mix on a weekend escape to Encinitas

    Old and new mix on a weekend escape to Encinitas

    My husband and I have been visiting downtown Encinitas, Calif., for years, drawn by its laid-back vibe and mix of beach bohemian and new-age spirituality. That counterculture feel is still there, but the times they are a changin’. We hit the streets to practice the Zen art of shopping, dining and...

  • A new excuse to escape this weekend to Catalina Island: blown-glass sculptures

    A new excuse to escape this weekend to Catalina Island: blown-glass sculptures

    Think "Catalina," and you picture blue sea, beaches and rugged backcountry. Now there's a new reason to hop on the Catalina Express to what William Wrigley Jr., the chewing gum tycoon who bought Santa Catalina in 1919, dubbed "the island of romance." The dazzling blown-glass sculptures of acclaimed...

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