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Southern California

Balboa Park San Diego Photos

If you would ask where to find truly glamorous sun-kissed paradise, the answer would be simple – in Southern California. Nowhere else you will be able to find a forever summer kind of place where you would rather keep your surfing and swimming gear handy all the time. Moreover, it is the place where International Surfing Museum is to be found at Huntington Beach, which is considered to be the “Surf City USA”. Where else will you find so many Jags and Hummers gliding along scenic Pacific Coast Highway, where drivers would slow down to gawk at another breathtaking view of the boats sailing along Newport Beach as well as wet-suited surfers and spouting whales off Dana Point.

The coastal territory South from Newport Beach and Laguna Beach offers an idyllic setting for a sun-sprinkled weekend of relaxation and indulgence fun. This 11-mile stretch of coastal land between the two cities boasts both rugged windswept cliffs and amazingly beautiful wide sandy beaches. Luxurious hotels offer their guests opulent accommodations with gorgeous ocean views, exquisite dining and world class amenities.

Cultural attractions can be found all over Orange County, from the Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa to historic Mission San Juan Capistrano, the Bowers Museum of Cultural Art in Santa Ana and the artists’ community in Laguna Beach. Orange County Museum of Art in Newport Beach will demonstrate to the art aficionados the West Coast contemporary art, including performance, pop and video art.

Orange County is no doubt considered to be the California Golf coast and the most entertaining golf destination, offering majestic green carpets with exciting landscaping views. Monarch Beach Golf Links, San Juan Hills Golf Club, Coyote Hills Golf Courses and a lot of others are inviting to relax in the tasteful uncluttered environment.

Bordered on the East by the magnificent Cuyamaca Mountains and blessed with the bounty of natural riches, San Diego County has to offer more than 70 miles of walkable beaches and picturesque bays to its residents and guests. As if it weren’t enough, it enjoys perfect climate nearly all year round and easy access to well-maintained beaches for swimming, surfing and diving as well as underwater parks for snorkeling. With miles of single-track trails for mountain biking, plenty of verdant golf courses in the North region of the county and one of the most diverse recreational parks in the country at Mission Bay, no wonder, San Diego County attracts millions of people every year.

San Diego boasts a profusion of perfect coastal beaches with scenic ocean views and a bunch of top surf spots. There is hardly a better place for picnicking and surfing than Del Mar City Beach. Rugged and invigorating, La Jolla coast offers a plethora of opportunities for family outing. The San Diego - La Jolla Underwater Park, which is a protected zone with a variety of marine life, kelp forests as well as interesting reefs and canyons, lures scuba divers and snorkelers. Surfing is a primary reason for most of the visitors with the best place to surf and see surfers at Windansea Beach.

Wildlife is also a big part of the county allure. Meet playful Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, sea lions and stingrays which you can even feed by hand at designated times at SeaWorld Adventure Park. The park features a 4-D movie and the Seasame Street Bay of Play, an interactive play area with family friendly rides. If traveling with children, take them to LEGOLAND California Resort in Carlsbad. Here, in the new Land of Adventure they could check out the 16-foot-tall Pharaoh and temples which are all made of plastic bricks. Another reason to visit LEGOLAND is the new SEALIFE Aquarium next door.

Southern California is also home to Disneyland where you can feel the magic of the land of Mickey Mouse, especially at night when it lights up with parades and fireworks. Next door at Disney’s California Adventures soar over California in a simulated hang glider tour or pump the adrenalin when riding The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Don’t miss Knott's Berry Farm in Buena with 160 acres of rides and thrilling attractions for all ages including Camp Snoopy where Peanut characters come to life.

Just East of Los Angeles is a stretch of California heartland – Inland Empire. It is the place where mountains and deserts are in unison with Old West history and Hollywood hideaways. Riverside County and neighboring San Bernardino Country are the gateways to Southern California deserts and mountains. To the North are the alpine communities of Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear Lake where you can ski and snowboard in winter and fish and boat in summer. Located nearby the pristine lake, first-class golf resorts and charming mountain village, Big Bear Resort is the perfect choice for those who are eager to experience the abundant adventure of this singular destination. This place offers numerous opportunities for a wide range of outdoor activities, including hiking and biking over splendid mountainside trails, horseback riding, parasailing, four-wheeling, boating and fishing on Big Bear Lake, seasonal skiing and snowboarding at Bear Mountain and Snow Summit, boutique shopping and dining in Big Bear Village.

With vast and varied landscape, rugged mountain ranges scraping the sky, wild beaches and immense deserts, Southern California is appealing to hideout getaway seekers. With award-winning luxurious hotels and spa resorts, high-end restaurants and world-class golf and tennis, not to mention fabulous shopping, Southern California remains a fashionable retreat and a popular vacation destination for visitors from the whole world. Enjoying perfect weather all year round, no wonder, it is the best place to indulge and reinvigorate oneself.