A lot of people travel during the summer season since the kiddos are out of school, but it can be a tough transition for everyone when suddenly you are thrust back into the carpool, soccer mom, lunch making role. Let’s be honest, you need a vacation. And, since everyone is mostly back-to-school, you will miss the crowds and the heat. So I have come up with a fun weekend getaway for the whole family that will be easy, relaxing, and memorable. This is the trip I took with my family. We left from San Diego and drove north to explore parts of California that we hadn’t seen before.
Around 9:00 a.m. leave San Diego and head to Knottsberry Farm. This was a fun place to stop and is much more affordable than Disneyland or Sixflags. I suggest staying until the afternoon then spend the night in Solvang. Solvang is a quaint city in the Santa Barbara County, and maintains its Danish heritage and architecture. And, I actually found a place that sells gluten free desserts!
Spend the morning strolling through Solvang and enjoy the hustle and bustle of the small town. From here, we went to the Hearst Castle. Be sure to book your tours in advance because the tours fill up. Let the scheduled time slots help you dictate your departure time from Solvang. We went on the main castle tour and the upper room tour. I recommend watching the movie before your tours (it’s included in the ticket price) and helps provide context on the tour. The are surrounding the castle is so beautiful, the ocean is gorgeous, so I suggest planning on staying local and if you can go on the beach, do that.
Wake up and get on the road early and head to Yosemite National Park. The country is amazing, and breathtaking. If you are a non- hiker -like me- or a novice, you will enjoy this drive and walking around the park. The places we visited were…. I wish we had spent the night in the tents/cottages in the park, but we spent the night in a quaint town not far from Yosemite. If you can and if the tents/cottages are open, spend the night in Yosemite and have a semi-camping experience.
Eat a yummy breakfast enjoy a short stroll through the park that you didn’t have time to see the day prior, then begin the drive back home. You may need to take Tuesday off to recover, but all in all, a fun family getaway with a variety of activities to please everyone.
Let me know where you go! Happy traveling.