6 Easy Weekend Getaways from Los Angeles

When you’ve had enough of L.A.’s extremely frustrating rush hour traffic, escape for a revitalizing weekend at one of these conveniently located destinations—no flight necessary. Read below.

Encinitas, CA

Nestled amidst San Diego’s North County, flanked by Solana Beach and Carlsbad, Encinitas emerges as more than a typical surfer haven, albeit boasting some pretty sweet wave breaks at Moonlight State Beach. Head to downtown Encinitas, where you can daydream about being a regular hang 10-er browsing Hansen Surfboards or admire ocean-inspired artistry at Bliss 101’s gallery and gift shop instead. Locals rave about the Fish Shop’s award-winning fish tacos and the freshest seafood, making it their go-to spot for a delicious meal. 

A two-hour drive from L.A.

Where to Stay: A yogi and wellness guru’s sanctuary occupying a refurbished 1958 home turned holistic inn, Encinitas’ Twelve Senses Retreat is a modern bohemian B&B stay that stands as a hymn to sustainability, mindfulness, and natural luxury.

Solvang, CA

Solvang, situated in SoCal’s Santa Ynez Valley, appears as though it was plucked from Denmark and plopped down in California: its shops are clad in traditional Danish-inspired architecture and serve Nordic-influenced goods to boot. Savor Denmark’s rendition of the donut hole, called aebleskivers, at Solvang Bakery or Solvang Restaurant. If you’re feeling out of sorts, embrace the region’s Old West heritage with a hearty American breakfast of eggs, bacon, and flapjacks at Alisal Ranch

Credit: Nomada Hotel Group

A two-and-a-half-hour drive from L.A.

Where to Stay: Hotel Ynez, just a short bike ride away from downtown Solvang, offers a relaxed yet sophisticated garden oasis with 22 guestrooms, each outfitted in minimalist, earth-toned decor.

Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico

Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico’s renowned wine country in Baja California, is just a stone’s throw from the San Diego-Tijuana border. The renowned viticulture landscape of Valle de Guadalupe abounds with vineyards, including the artistic Bruma Vincola winery and Casa Frida, which transforms from a polished tasting room into a buzzy nightclub scene. Dining at Fauna, an innovative Mexican restaurant, is a necessary establishment to stop by while here. 

A four-hour drive from L.A.

Where to Stay: Campera Hotel offers a high-end glamping experience across Mexico with transparent tented bubbles for accommodations—a truly one-of-a-kind and unforgettable stay.

Jacumba Hot Springs, CA

Once upon a time, Jacumba Hot Springs was a famed hideout for 1920s film stars, a site for natural mineral pools, and home to the legendary Impossible Railroad. With the construction of Interstate 8 in the ’60s to ease traffic from Old Highway 80, the town’s main thoroughfare, tourism plummeted. However, Jacumba Hot Springs is now experiencing a revival, thanks to its crown jewel boutique hotel (more on this below). 

A three-hour drive from L.A.

Where to Stay: Jacumba Hot Springs Hotel, the area’s premier establishment, is a restored property featuring 18 rooms and suites encircling two mineral-rich spring pools—where the healing waters are drawn directly from the earth’s natural mineral baths. Plus, the design here is giving exotic desert hideaway meets Wild West ranch home, which we just love.

Big Bear Lake, CA

Big Bear Lake, the crown jewel of the San Bernardino Mountains, offers Los Angeles residents a year-round mountain escape. Explore Big Bear Mountain Resort for year-round outdoor adventures and discover adorable local shops in The Village, including Bear Cupboards Market for freshly baked bread and build-your-own picnic basket options; Teddy Bear Restaurant for homestyle fare; and Yelp-favorite Tropicali for poke. (Yes, you read that correctly—a top-rated poke joint exists in the mountains.) 

Credit: Josh Cho

A two-hour drive from L.A.

Where to Stay: Hotel Marina Riviera, a 42-key boutique hotel, embodies the archetype alpine ski lodge with its elevated cabin vibe.

Palm Springs, CA

Similar to how New Yorkers flock to the Hamptons during the summer, Southern Californians escape to palm-tree-fringed swimming pools in Palm Springs during the winter. Basking in the sunshine at Minerva’s, a chic day-to-night desert oasis pool club at the new Life House Palm Springs, followed by evening cocktails at Truss & Twine, sounds like the perfect day amidst the Coachella Valley heat. 

Credit: Lance Gerber

A two-hour drive from L.A.

Where to Stay: If only Casa Cody’s walls could talk, they’d tell of Hollywood’s Golden Age elites. Today, it’s a secluded mid-century modernist abode in the heart of downtown Palm Springs—where its 30 chambers conceal secret gardens and idyllic lidos, beckoning guests to lose themselves in sun-drenched days.

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