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Southern California has no shortage of umbrella-studded white sand beaches and bustling boardwalks. But if you’re looking for something a little more rugged and secluded, these beaches strung along Pacific Coast Highway make great picnic spots — and you could argue that the oceanside drive along the California Highway 1 is worth the trip alone. Here, three beaches near Malibu will that give the more popular Venice and Santa Monica hotspots a run for their money:
What’s your preferred stress-buster: pampering at the spa, or hopping on a pair of skis or surfboard? With this year’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, we say you’ll afford to do both. We found deals for surfing in Southern California, skiing in Telluride, spa-ing in the Arizona desert — and even for luxury touring in Chile.
Take a minute and ask yourself which of the following two activities you did on your most recent trip: checked out a new art exhibit, or went shopping at the mall? I’m embarrassed to admit the latter. Not that I go out of my way to find the malls, mind you. It’s an unfortunate truth that shopping malls, souvenir kiosks, and multiplex cinemas often make themselves more available to tourists than museums, art galleries, and other cultural institutions. Like any traveler, I want to feel enriched by my trip, no matter where the destination, but sometimes the familiar allure of chain department stores, air-conditioned food courts, and gliding escalators just proves too strong.
Summer and fall are the best seasons to pick up a good book and hit the open road. Whether you’re in search of quirky roadside attractions, on the hunt for the best leaf peeping locales, or are just looking to get away for a weekend, road trips offer a great trip even if you’re working with a small budget. And what’s better than a great read to accompany your days on the road? We’ve taken three recently released travelogues and paired them with a relevant road trip, so you can explore America from the comfort of your favorite chair, the driver’s seat, or both. Read more
Los Angeles is such a sprawling patchwork of neighborhoods – from haute Beverly Hills to shabby-chic Venice Beach – that choosing where to stay during a leisure visit can be a bit perplexing. I like to suggest that couples consider Santa Monica, a beachside community that offers a bit of everything, from eclectic dining (such as The Misfit for a terrific small-plate menu and neighborhood happy hour ambiance) and shopping (along the pedestrian-only Third Street Promenade and in the new Santa Monica Place mall with its rooftop dining deck) to walking/jogging/biking (on the paved beachfront path that runs to neighboring Venice Beach) and even kitschy fun on the world’s only solar-powered Ferris wheel (at Pacific Park atop the historic Santa Monica Pier, shown above at left). Plus, the sunsets from the cliff-top park that spans Ocean Avenue are always spectacular. I recently toured four hotels in Santa Monica, each offering a very different style and all worthy of a stay during your next visit.
History buffs rejoice: these 10 historic American hotels offer a lot more than just a place to rest your head. Retrace the steps of storied guests at resorts counting Hollywood celebs, U.S. presidents, and international royalty on their lengthy rosters of legendary one-time lodgers. Or, opt to admire some of the richest architectural ambience and decadent design in the nation, with styles ranging from Art Deco to Mediterranean Revival (and many others in between). Choose from a quintet of history-steeped, sun-drenched gems in Florida and California; celebrated central-city quarters in Boston, Chicago, or N.Y.C.; a preserved piece of the Old South in New Orleans; or a legendary Grand Canyon lodge that helped to forever redefine “roughing it.” Happily, like an aged wine, these hotels of yesteryear have gotten only better with time, with careful preservation efforts ensuring that much of their rich history remains to be written.
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