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.

  • Weekend Escape: Royal Peacock Mine, Nev.
    Weekend Escape: Royal Peacock Mine, Nev.

    How cool would it be to escape for a few days for free, without being hustled to buy a timeshare? The Wilson family won't promise your trip to their Royal Peacock mine will pay for itself, but it's possible your discovery will more than pay the cost of getting to northwest Nevada,...

  • Weekend Escape: Imperial Beach buffs up its image
    Weekend Escape: Imperial Beach buffs up its image

    Imperial Beach, at the southwest corner of the United States and a short hop from Tijuana, is the poor cousin of Southern California beach towns. Dicey areas have detracted from attractive, sandy beaches and good surfing, so the city is trying to burnish its image. My husband and I enjoyed...

  • Channel Islands National Park: Kayak thrills, foxy neighbors
    Channel Islands National Park: Kayak thrills, foxy neighbors

    The four main islands of Channel Islands National Park (www.nps.gov/chis) are as close as 13 miles off Ventura County's coast, yet neither my husband, Michael, nor I had been there. In May, we decided to check out Santa Cruz, the largest island, for a long weekend of camping, hiking,...

  • Plenty new to enjoy in Oceanside, Calif.
    Plenty new to enjoy in Oceanside, Calif.

    Oceanside boasts all the trappings of a seaside town: good surfing, a pier and shopping. Add to that a new ocean-view hotel, fresh eateries and a secret garden. Take the train there and enjoy.

  • An obstacle course of chowder, sweets and mud
    An obstacle course of chowder, sweets and mud

    Marathons and 10K races are so last year. Obstacle races are the craze among fitness buffs, combining trail running with obstacles such as 8-foot walls, barbed wire, monkey bars and tractor tires. Plus, mud — big pits of gritty, sticky mud that clings for days to your clothes and hair. Three...

  • In Alpine, Calif., visit wild animals during day, poker table at night
    In Alpine, Calif., visit wild animals during day, poker table at night

    The hilly scrublands of the Cleveland National Forest, just east of San Diego, are home to the Lions, Tigers & Bears rescue sanctuary. Its 1 1/2-hour tour, by appointment only, is a well-spent $32 for adults and $17 for kids 12 and younger ([800] 979-3370, www.zerve.com/LionsTigers)....

  • Templeton, Calif.: A different way to roll in a rustic haven
    Templeton, Calif.: A different way to roll in a rustic haven

    The unincorporated community of Templeton, Calif., just south of Paso Robles, is a secret worth discovering. Templeton was established in the late 1880s as the southern terminus of the Southern Pacific Railroad and has had several iterations over the years: first as a railroad town, then as...

  • A plunge into fun at San Diego's Mission Beach
    A plunge into fun at San Diego's Mission Beach

    Surfing, gawking and a ride on the Giant Dipper — all this and more await at San Diego's centennial-celebrating Mission Beach. Walk, skate or bike — it's the best way to get around.

  • Old West lives in Pioneertown
    Old West lives in Pioneertown

    Weekend Escape: The former western movie set near Joshua Tree has rustic charms while remaining peacefully disconnected from online world.

  • Palm Springs parties in the street at VillageFest
    Palm Springs parties in the street at VillageFest

    Weekend Escape: Grab some kettle corn or a gyro. Listen to music. Pet a pig. That and much more is part of the weekly Thursday evening event that draws throngs to Palm Canyon Drive.

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