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west coast of the united states west coast cities

12 Best Places To See Around The West Coast, USA · 1.) Seattle, Washington · 2.) San Francisco, California · 3.) Los Angeles, California · 4.) Death. Outside of California, the most populated cities on the West Coast are Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; Fresno, California; and Sacramento, California. The West Coast is a region packed with wonderful beaches, glitzy coastal cities and national parks, such as Yosemite National Park and Grand Canyon National.
west coast of the united states west coast cities

The Best Small West Coast Towns

Small towns offer a quaint and quiet escape from the noise and hustle of big city life. Slower, friendlier, and more compact, they offer a wonderful alternative for those looking for a simpler life, or for anyone wanting to get away for a weekend. The West Coast of the United States has some of the best small towns around. From wine country, to beach towns, and villages with stunning views, here is our list of the best small west coast towns.

Ashland, Oregon

Technically, Ashland is a city, and its population may keep it from being a small town, at some 21,000 people, but its cute and quaint feel has Ashland sneaking onto this list. Located in southern Oregon, Ashland is surrounded by beautiful scenery from the lush forests to the overlooking mountains and hills. Its downtown has a distinctly small-town feel, with cute shops, galleries and boutiques, as well as unique eateries, cafe’s and the Caldera tap house.Ashland hosts the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, as well as Ashland Independent Film Festival, and Ashland New Plays Festival. Its art and culture scene are booming, making it a great location for creative types seeking a city with a town feel.

Carmel-by-the-sea, California

Carmel-by-the-sea, as the name suggests, is a coastal beach town in northern California. It sits on the Monterey Peninsula, and is full of fairy-tale-like cottages and art galleries. The history and architecture here give it a charming European feel. Also adding to that vibe are west coast of the united states west coast cities abundance of excellent vineyards in the region, and impressing eateries. Carmel-by-the-sea manages to pair small town charm with truly stunning cliff and beach views and high quality amenities, for the perfect mixture for anyone looking to explore a new coastal town.

Hood River, Oregon

Despite its name, Hood River actually sits on the Columbia River, and is named for the nearby tributary. It has a population of a little over 7,000 and has some of the pacific northwest’s best windsurfing conditions. On top of that, outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and cycling are common. Visitors can indulge in nature and all adventurous activities. Apple and peach orchards are plentiful, as are breweries and eateries such as Full Sail Brewing and the Stave and Stone winery. Visitors can also enjoy the waterfront park, History Museum of Hood River County, or the Mt. Hood Railroad tour. The are also has an abundance of impressive waterfalls that make for great hikes and photo opportunities.

Inverness, California

Inverness is a truly picture-worthy town on the west coast of California. Located on the southwest shore of Tomales Bay, Marin County, it has a recorded population of less than 1,500. The town includes the gorgeous Tomales Bay State Park, complete with its impressive sand beaches, as well as Point Reyes Beach which is the site of notable shipwrecks, including one beached rusting boat on the shore which is a favourite photo op. Other instagrammable moments come from the Cypress Tree Tunnel, at Point Reyes National Seashore, which is a pathway completely covered by cypress trees which form a doming tunnel-like roof along the walkway. Nature walks and kayaking in the bay are also popular activities, and nature walks and tours are plentiful and show off much of the local wildlife. 

Leavenworth, Washington

Leavenworth is a German inspired mountain town located below the Cascade mountains. With the towering peaks and the Bavarian style you’d think you were transported to a German village. Almost everything in the town is themed, from the Nutcracker Museum to ample amounts of German beer and restaurants selling German food. At Christmas, the town is completely transformed into a fairy land of lights and decorations that would rival even the North Pole. Aside from all the Bavarian styling, the town is also very beautiful in its own right. It sits along the Wenatchee River, and has beautiful views not only of the waterfront, but the nearby mountains as well. Skiing and snowboarding are the most popular activities in the region,  as well as hiking and various wine tasting, and wine tour activities.

Solvang, California

Solvang, as the name suggests, is a Danish town in Santa Ynez Valley of southern California. The buildings in the area are almost all exclusively in an old Danish style, creating an old and charming atmosphere that will have you feeling like you west coast of the united states west coast cities in the heart of Scandinavian Europe. The Elverhøj Museum of History & Art is full of  heritage and history from Denmark. Additionally, the 1800’s Fransican style church, The Old Mission Santa Inés, andthe Hamlet Square windmill stand in the center of town and add to the appeal. Festivals are common here, such as the Danish Days event,  as are wineries such as the SUnstone Winery and Kalyra winery.

Sausalito, California

Just across the Golden Gate strait from San Francisco sits Sausalito, California. Its position gives it impressive views of the Golden Gate Bridge, and the bay at large. The town is most famous, however, for its houseboat population, which is located in an enclave of Richardson Bay. The community was originally set up by artist squatters after the Second World War, and remains today. Various brightly coloured waterfront and hillside homes add to the artsy feel of the town, while nearby Muir Woods National Monument provides a nature-fille escape from the larger nearby cities with tower redwood trees and wildlife.

Florence, Oregon

Florence is located along Oregon’s coast, on the Siuslaw River. The town offers impressive views of the coastline, as well as Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, where visitors can explore the sand dunes and coastal air. There is also a large population of sea lions in the area, especially in the Sea Lion caves. Kayaking is a great way to see the coastline and river, as well as get closer to some of the natural wildlife. Hiking and cycling are also popular here and there are many local trails, including one that leads to the 19th-century Heceta Head Lighthouse. 

The  Historic Old Town district is full of small town charm, and visitors can enjoy shopping and soaking up the town's homely and inviting feel before relaxing with some local beer or wine.

Port Townsend, Washington

Port Townsend is a small town that sits on the Quimper Peninsula in Jefferson County, Washington State. It has a population of roughly 9,000 people, and has a beautiful waterfront and quaint downtown. Flour mills and well-kept older buildings sit along the water’s edge, and offer an indication of the long history of this town. The town has two different  National Historic Landmark Districts, including a variety of Victorian homes and buildings, as well as strong native american roots. The town is a hub of marine activity from whale watching tours to marine life excursions and a monthly gallery art walk.

Friday Harbor, Washington

Friday Harbor is actually an island town, but still a coastal small town with a population of only around 2,500. Located in San Juan County, Washington State, it is one of many Washington state islands that are located just east of Canada’s Victoria (on vancouver island) and east of cities like Bellingham and Mount Vernon. This marine town is brimming with charm and history and includes various attractions such as The Whale Museum, the San Juan Islands Museum of Art,  the San Juan Community Theatre and the San Juan Historical Museum. Nature lovers will also enjoy the whale watching opportunities as well as kayaking, paddleboarding, and boating in the area. A small lighthouse is also present in the town, and it, as well as walking paths along the shoreline, offer excellent picturesque views. 

From towns brimming with wine, to those full of charm, from Bavarian to Danish, to Victorian and Spanish, these coastal small towns have something for everyone. They are the perfect way to get away from the city for a vacation, or for the quieter at heart, offer excellent places to settle down and enjoy the warmth and charm of small town living.

Carly Dodd October 25 2021 in Places

Источник: https://www.worldatlas.com/cities/the-best-small-west-coast-towns.html

11 Top-Rated West Coast USA Road Trips

Written by Brad Lane
Updated Jul 26, 2021

The West Coast of the United States offers some of the best road trips in the world. Dramatic natural attractions and culturally iconic cities line this entire side of the country. From Seattle and the Cascade Mountains of Washington down to the sunny weather and ocean vistas of San Diego in California, several standout west coast of the united states west coast cities solidify why the West Coast is the best coast for travel.

Among many West Coast must-see roadside attractions, areas like the redwoods surrounding San Francisco, the ancient caldera known as Crater Lake, and the mighty Mount Rainier top the list for places to visit. Whether it's a 10-day, two-week, or months-long trip, plan to spend more time on the road than you might expect. Attractions like active volcanoes, sterling beaches, and alpine lakes encourage a few extra days added to an itinerary. 

Fun things to do stem in every direction on the West Coast. And each season brings new opportunities for travelers to enjoy wide-ranging landscapes that are sure to satisfy some wanderlust. Plan your trip with our list of the best West Coast USA road trips.

Note: Some businesses may be temporarily closed due to recent global health and safety issues.

1. Pacific Coast Highway: Where the Mountains Meet the Sea

Pacific Coast Highway

Also known as California State Route 1, the Pacific Coast Highway is one of the country's most iconic road trip destinations. This modern marvel of engineering hugs over 600 miles of California coastline. It connects movie stars in Los Angeles to the postcard wonders of Big Sur, all before spanning the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and ending in the redwood forests of Mendocino County.

The highway's southern terminus is near the beaches of Dana Point in Orange County. An average trip length along the highway spans five to seven days. However, the recommended itinerary allows for a few weeks to explore the state parks, cities, and hundreds of places to visit along the way. Right at its beginning, popular attractions include extensive ocean vistas and whale-watching tours.

Bixby Canyon Bridge on the Pacific Coast Byway, Big Sur

State Route 1 connects many major metropolitan areas along the coast for automobile touring and everyday commuting. Alongside San Francisco and L.A., the highway also connects other cultural hubs, including Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, and San Luis Obispo.

One of the most scenic stretches of the highway can be found near Big Sur and the Bixby Bridge, where multiple pull-offs and vantage points offer a classic California photo opportunity.

Thirty miles north on the coast from Big Sur, the city of Monterey and its adjacent bay provide historical intrigue and one of the best aquariums in the country. For intrepid explorers, Muir Woods, 10 miles north of Sausalito, features groves of incredible old-growth trees.

Accommodation:

2. Touring the Cascade Loop of Washington

Diablo Lake overlook on Cascades Loop

For a full taste of the cities, sights, and mountain splendor of Washington, the roughly 400-mile Cascade Loop has it all. Starting from the culturally rich city of Seattle, travelers on the Cascade Loop can head in either direction for guaranteed fun things to do.

Heading north toward Anacortes, tourists on the Cascades Loop connect with the North Cascades Scenic Byway for a 120-mile stretch through some of the most dramatic landscapes in the state.

The North Cascade Scenic Byway is open seasonally between May and November and tours many of the best hiking trails and top campgrounds of North Cascades National Park. Among the many great views, the aquamarine water of Diablo Lake really stand out, with a viewing platform easily accessible from the highway.

Bookending the eastern end of the North Cascade Scenic Byway, the tourist-friendly Methow Valley welcomes visitors with scenic places to visit, including Mazama, Winthrop, and Twisp.

Fall colors along the southern portion of the Cascade Loop

The southern portion of the Cascade Loop passes through more road trip destinations including Wenatchee, Cashmere, and Leavenworth – one of the best small towns in Washington. Leavenworth is a Bavarian-themed town with high alpine peaks and cultural celebrations to match, and a certain charm that converts tourists into residents each year.

The route concludes back in Seattle via U.S. Route 2 after crossing Stevens Pass. This final stretch provides even more opportunities for hiking, skiing, and white water rafting along the way.

Official site: https://www.cascadeloop.com/

Accommodation: Where west coast of the united states west coast cities Stay in Seattle: Best Areas and Hotels

3. Exploring the Oregon Coast Highway 101

Oregon Coast Highway 101

The stunning Oregon Coast stretches for over 360 miles from Astoria and the Columbia River down to Brookings and the California border. Historical shipwrecks, impressive sea stacks, and a constantly changing tide line the entire expanse. And what's unique to the coastal location, every single inch is open to the public, earning the nickname the "People's Coast."

Some of the top attractions of the Oregon Coast include Haystack Rock at Cannon Beach and the Yaquina Head Lighthouse in Newport. Towards the southern end of the state, the Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor features some of the most ruggedly beautiful views along the entire coast. Other special places of interest include Cape Perpetua, Yachats, and the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area - a popular place for off-highway vehicle riders and campers.

Oregon Coast Highway

The drive has plenty of scenic vistas worth pulling over for, sometimes spaced every half-mile. In the more popular tourist destinations on the northern Oregon coast, closer to Portland and the Willamette Valley, reservations are recommended in the summer for campgrounds and resorts. For a more bite-sized road trip along the Oregon coast, the Three Capes Scenic Drive can be done over a weekend.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Beach Resorts on the Oregon Coast

Read More: Top-Rated Campgrounds on the Oregon Coast

4. Cruise along the Columbia River Scenic Byway

Bridal Veil Falls along the Columbia River Scenic Byway

Defining the boundary between Oregon and Washington, the Columbia River Gorge is home to many of the best waterfalls in Oregon and a long list of other scenic roadside attractions. The route follows the Columbia River before it plunges into the Pacific Ocean in the charming city of Astoria.

Most visitors start their Columbia River road trip from the city streets of Portland and head east. Alongside stunning waterfalls like the 620-foot Multnomah Falls and historical attractions, including the Vista House at Crown Point, a recommended city stop is Hood River. This happening city has a growing collection of restaurants, galleries, and windsurfing rental companies.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Places to Stay in Portland, Oregon

5. Circling the Olympic Peninsula Loop

Hikers in the Hoh Rain Forest at Olympic National Park

No roads cut through the heart of the Olympic Peninsula of western Washington. Instead, the entire peninsula can be circumnavigated with over 300 highway miles and plenty to see along the way. Among the varied scenery are rainforests, glaciated mountains, and boulder-strewn beaches.

Seattle and Olympia make great starting points for the Olympic Peninsula Loop, and towns like Port Angeles, Forks, and Hoodsport make great basecamp destinations to explore the surrounding Olympic National Park. For extra add-on appeal, boarding a ferry in Port Angeles takes visitors to the always seasonable Victoria, British Columbia.

Read More:

6. Highway 395: South Lake Tahoe to Yosemite National Park

El Capitan viewpoint at Yosemite National Park

Shimmering alpine lakes, jutting mountain peaks, and lush forests filled with wildlife – the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California present one postcard image after another. Highway 395 is desert diamond west valley resort and casino main thoroughfare through the Sierra Nevada, connecting many iconic national parks, gateway cities, and opportunities for adventure.

A great place to start and stay, South Lake Tahoe is an alpine-infused community surrounded by natural attractions, including the sparkling Emerald Bay State Park. In summer you can enjoy hiking trails in the mountains or along the shores, or simply relax on a beach. In winter, pack your skis and hit some of the ski resorts around Lake Tahoe.

Heading south from Lake Tahoe, Highway 395 connects with Mammoth Lakes, a year-round destination for hiking, mountain biking, and downhill winter sports. The small town of Lone Pine is also along the route and serves as the gateway to Mount Whitney, the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States.

For those looking to explore Yosemite Valley, heading west on Highway 120 (Tioga Pass) from Highway 395 leads to iconic areas of the national park including Half-Dome, Tuolumne Meadows, several impressive hikes, and a number of the area's best campgrounds.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Lake Tahoe: Best Areas & Hotels

7. Exploring Washington's Volcanoes: Mount Rainier and Mount St. Helens

Mount Rainier

Sixty miles southeast of Seattle, Mount Rainier is a massive active volcano and home to one of the best national parks of Washington. The stunning national park surrounding this 14,411-foot peak invites all sorts of recreation with many top campgrounds and scenic hiking trails.

Just a few must-do hiking trails at Mount Rainier include the Skyline Trail and Spray Park. It's an extremely popular park throughout the summer and shoulder seasons and offers winter adventure with cross-country ski trails and scenic snowshoe opportunities.

More of Washington's volcanic activity can be experienced at Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, a two-hour drive south of Mount Rainier. Best known for its dramatic 1980 eruption, Mount St. Helens today is a living science demonstration of how habitats bounce back after an eruption.

The top-rated hiking trails at Mount St. Helens provide many unique opportunities to explore this altered environment, including underground expeditions at Ape Caves and permitted hikes to the massive crater left behind after the 1980 explosion.

8. Travel the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway

Mount Lassen above Lake Helen

Unearthing the geological past of the Cascade Mountains, the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway spans from Crater Lake in Oregon to Mount Lassen of California. The ancient caldera known as Crater Lake is a stand-alone destination as the deepest lake in the country and one of the best weekend getaways in Oregon. Within Crater Lake National Park, Mazama Village makes for a great camping destination the whole family will enjoy.

Heading south, the impressive slopes of west coast of the united states west coast cities Shasta beckon with adventure, as do the impressive water features found at Burney Falls. On the southern end of this 500-mile scenic byway, the geothermal features of Lassen Volcanic National Park define the inviting landscape.

During the summer season, expect to see long-distance hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail sharing the scenic stops alongside the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway.

Official site: http://www.volcaniclegacybyway.org/

9. Southern California Splendor: Santa Barbara to San Diego

Santa Barbara

Southern California provides great weather to explore any time of the year, with sandy beaches, surf spots, and palm trees lining the sidewalks. The 200-mile stretch of Highway 101 and Interstate 5 that connects Santa Barbara and San Diego is a great way to experience this warm-weather region of the country.

Mission Santa Barbara is a great place to grab some architectural and cultural flavor of Santa Barbara. The area is filled with many top hiking trails, beach resorts, and fun things to do with the family.

Cities like Beverly Hills, Long Beach, and Irvine all comprise the major metropolitan areas south of Santa Barbara and surrounding Los Angeles, each providing unique cultures and places to visit.

Farther south, near the U.S./Mexico border, San Diego offers even more family-friendly things to do. With an average annual temperature of around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, one of the most popular attractions in San Diego is the 14,000-acre Balboa Park complex featuring multiple museums, botanical gardens, and the world-famous San Diego Zoo.

Accommodation:

10. Experience the Willamette Valley of Oregon

State Capitol in Salem

Surrounding the Interstate 5 corridor and Willamette River in northern Oregon, the Willamette Valley is well known for its fertile soil and culturally rich places to visit. It's home to Oregon's largest cities, including Portland, Eugene, and the state capital of Salem.

Fun things to do line this entire region, from the western Cascade slopes to a wide range of agricultural attractions and tours. Summer in the Willamette Valley encourages car rides with the top down, and throughout the shoulder seasons, this scenic region features dazzling displays of spring flowers and fall foliage.

11. Travel the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway in Central Oregon

Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway

The 66-mile Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway departs from the high-desert town of Bend. From its arid surroundings, the byway climbs into the Central Cascades and into a world of alpine splendor. With prominent views of postcard summits like Mt. Bachelor, Broken Top, and South Sister, the byway does well to define Oregon's mountain style.

The route is inaccessible in the winter between mid-November and May. Coming from Bend, the byway begins as Century Drive (Oregon Route 372), where it enters the Deschutes National Forest. Todd Lake is west coast of the united states west coast cities of the first alpine lakes encountered, followed by many more.

At least a dozen beautiful lakes line the entire route. And much of the recreation centers around these icy-cold bodies of water. Beaches, marinas, and picnic areas line several of the shores, and all cater to activities like fishing and hiking. Lava Lake offers a particularly interesting stop, as does Little Lava Lake, which provides the source for the Deschutes River.

More Related Articles on PlanetWare.com

imageCalifornia Destinations: Many of the best places to visit in California can be found on road trips. Some of the national parks in California you may want to tack on to these trips are Redwoods National and State Parks and Joshua Tree National Park. For an extra special vacation, the top romantic getaways in California range from seaside resorts to the rolling hills of Sonoma County.

imageOregon Exploring: Oregon is home to adventure, and whether it's top-rated waterfalls, hot springs, or hiking trails, it's fun to explore Oregon at any time of the year. For a mix of city culture and natural appeal, the top-rated attractions in Oregon include places to visit in Portland, along the coast, and at Crater Lake National Park.

imageWashington Wonders: Including stops in Seattle and adventures on the Olympic Peninsula, theattractions in Washington are only limited by the time you can spend exploring. For some real adventure in this rugged state, both the top-rated hiking trails and best campgrounds in Washington provide epic places to explore the day and spend the night.

Источник: https://www.planetware.com/usa/top-rated-west-coast-usa-road-trips-us-ca-475.htm

Otherworldly natural landscapes, dynamic cities, relaxing spa resorts and beachfront escapes…there is something to that “West Coast, Best Coast” saying. And with such variety of scenery within reach, there are plenty of options for extended long weekend trips on the West Coast. Here are a few of our favorite places, all within an easy drive or flight from major West Coast hubs.

Contact Indagare for assistance planning a customized weekend getaway.

From Los Angeles

PALM SPRINGS & JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK

Photo by Elizabeth Harvey, courtesy Indagare

Photo by Elizabeth Harvey, courtesy Indagare

This desert oasis has been a beloved getaway since Hollywood’s golden years, and today Palm Springs remains the perfect all-season escape.

Where to stay: Options include the adults-only L’Horizon Resort and Spa, a 1952 hotel that was transformed into a premiere luxury hideaway; the hip and low-key Arrive, with a youthful ambience and deep connection to the cool zeitgeist of the modern Coachella Valley; and the Colony Palms Hotel, a bohemian boutique hotel with Moroccan-inspired décor.

What to do:Visit Sunnylands, the 200-acre estate of philanthropist Walter Annenberg. Guided tours are the only way to enter the historic house (reserve in advance), but no tickets are necessary to explore the Impressionism-inspired gardens. East of town, the trails (and whimsical flora) of Joshua Tree National Park beckon.

Where to eat: The bustling Birba is a go-to for an al fresco meal, thanks to its large outdoor patio. Head here for top-notch pizza, homemade pasta and Thursday night live music. For the best brunch in town, don’t miss Norma’s.

Driving Distance from Los Angeles: About two hours, although traffic can vary.

MONTECITO

A-Listers like Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres own homes in this community about five miles from Santa Barbara—and now there’s a stunning new place to spend the night.

Photo courtesy Rosewood Miramar Beach

Photo courtesy Rosewood Miramar Beach

Where to stay: Set on 16 acres sandwiched between the beach and the mountains, Rosewood Miramar Beach (an Indagare Index hotel) has a scallop-shaped pool with cabanas, six restaurants and a Goop-branded boutique.

What to do: Check out Lotusland, a 37-acre estate where the late opera star Madame Ganna Walska created her own personal (and eccentric) Eden. Advanced reservations for tours are a must.

Where to eat: Jeannine’s Restaurant & Bakery is a favorite for breakfast, thanks to fresh-baked pastries, delicious challah French toast and classic egg dishes.

Driving Distance salem five bank hours lynn ma Los Angeles:Around two hours

From San Francisco

NAPA & SONOMA

California’s preeminent wine regions are both idyllic destinations where days are spent visiting wineries, biking the winding roads and savoring incredible food. Napa is the elegant, more exclusive option, with some of the most awarded restaurants. Sonoma, meanwhile, is more laid-back and can feel less sceney.

The view from Quintessa. Photo by Peter Schlesinger, courtesy Indagare

The view from Quintessa. Photo by Peter Schlesinger, courtesy Indagare

Where to stay: In Napa, the current talk of the town is the Four Seasons Napa Valley, in Calistoga, which will welcome its first guests later this fall. Expect spacious rooms with fireplaces and vineyard views, an on-site winery and two pools (one for families). Meadowood, long an Indagare member favorite, has reopened its southern portion, after much of the property was destroyed in wildfires. Nearby, the equally luxeAuberge du Soleil offers a relaxing romantic escape, with its outdoor pool looking out over the valley below.

In Sonoma, the new Montage Healdsburg opened in January 2021, with a massive spa, dreamy pool and California-fresh dining. For an option in town, the sophisticated MacArthur Place has handsome accommodations within walking distance to the shops and restaurants of downtown Sonoma.

What to do: Taste the fruit of the vine, of course. Some of the top vineyards include Calistoga’s historic Schramsberg Vineyards (known for its sparkling wines), Quintessa in St. Helena (which makes organic, biodynamic vintages) and the 100 percent solar-powered Frog’s Leap. Over in Sonoma, there are even more options, although crowd-favorite Scribe is still closed to non-members due to Covid still. 

Where to eat:French Laundry continues to be one of the world’s most lauded restaurants, and makes for a fabulous, pretense-free dinner experience. Reservations can be hard to come by.

Driving Distance from San Francisco: Under two hours

BIG SUR & CARMEL

Vying with Italy’s Amalfi Coast for most gorgeous stretch of shoreline, Big Sur, just south of the beachy arts colony Carmel, is on many travelers’ must-see list. And it just happens to be an easy (and jaw-droppingly gorgeous) drive south from San Francisco.

Courtesy Indagare

Courtesy Indagare

Where to stay: Seemingly suspended over the Pacific,Post Ranch Inn is a serene and romantic escape that blends into its hillside surroundings, and looks out (through enormous window) to the ocean below. Across Highway 1, Ventana Big Sur is a woodsier experience (there’s even glamping), though no less luxurious. 

What to do: Part of the magic is just driving Highway 1, a road so stunning that HBO’s Big Little Lies used it throughout the series even though it’s miles away from the show’s setting in Monterey. The area has several state parks, each with great trails and scenic overlooks, which can make for incredible picnic spots. Indagare can help arrange for specialist guides to craft the ideal hiking itinerary for your group (with add-ons like photography, food foraging and surf lessons).

Where to eat:Big Sur Bakery is a must-stop lunch spot along the road, with a rustic façade that makes its impressive cuisine all the more surprising. Lunches here showcase seasonal comfort cuisine with local produce (currently closed for dinner).

Driving Distance from San Francisco: Under three hours on the fastest route, with options to spend more time on Highway 1 bringing it to around three and half hours

Related: 5 Best U.S. Road Trips

LAKE TAHOE

Lake Tahoe is not only a winter wonderland for the West Coast ski set, but an easy getaway any time of year—perfect for a long weekend as well.

Courtesy Indagare

Courtesy Indagare

Where to stay: Indagare members often opt for a house rental around Lake Tahoe. For resorts, the Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe is a favorite for skiers. In the mountains of Truckee, on the north shores of Lake Tahoe, this lodge-like property has ski-in, ski-out access to Northstar. Those looking for direct frontage on Lake Tahoe should consider Edgewood Tahoe. The resort has a contemporary design, with a fabulous outdoor pool (open year-round), as well as a 18-hole George and Tom Fazio-designed golf course. In the winter, Heavenly Ski Area is just a few minutes away.

What to do: Summertime sees hiking, biking and—of course—plenty of time on the water, either swimming or with a boat charter. Come winter, skiing and snowboarding take centerstage.

Where to eat: In Truckee, Trokay is a fine-dining, tasting-menu restaurant with a relaxed ambience and a serious pedigree: husband-and-wife owners John and Nyna Weatherson decamped to Tahoe following careers as chef de partie at New York’s Daniel (John) and head cheesemonger at Murray’s Cheese.

Driving Distance from San Francisco: Three-plus hours to either Truckee or South Lake Tahoe

From Seattle & Portland

WILLAMETTE VALLEY, OREGON

Courtesy The Allison Inn & Spa

Courtesy The Allison Inn & Spa

Restaurants (and oenophiles) across the country have, finally, begun to pay close attention to the wines coming out of Oregon’s Willamette Valley. The region is even more laid-back than Sonoma, with more than 500 wineries making exceptional Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and more.

Where to stay: The best hotel in the area is The Allison Inn & Spa, on 35 acres of manicured gardens and rolling vineyards. It’s an ideal home base for exploring the wineries, but the hotel itself is a destination in its own right, with an emphasis on wellness and reconnecting to nature, thanks to a 15,000-square-foot spa.

Where to eat: Jory, the farm-to-table restaurant at The Allison, is one of the Willamette Valley’s top restaurants for a special occasion. Its seasonal, farm-to-table menus showcase the wine region’s bounty.

What to do: Like in California Wine Country, days in the Willamette Valley move slowly, with relaxed tastings at multiple top wineries. Some of our favorites include Sokol BlosserPonzi Vineyards and Solena.

Driving Distance from Seattle and Portland: Three and a half hours from Seattle; 35 minutes from Portland

Related: The Perfect Weekend in Portland

From Vancouver

VANCOUVER ISLAND, BRITISH COLUMBIA

Vancouver Island is rich enough as a region to entertain you for a week, but also makes a superb destination as a long weekend. Its beaches and rainforest trails are great for kids, while its sheer remoteness makes it unbelievably romantic.

Courtesy Clayoquot Wilderness Lodge

Courtesy Clayoquot Wilderness Lodge

Where to stay: The area is home to two refined wilderness lodges: the secluded, family-run Nimmo Bay Resort promises a remote and extremely private retreat with only nine cabins, while Clayoquot Wilderness Resort (an Indagare Index hotel)is a tented camp offering a unique wilderness experience with sublime food and service in an unforgettable setting.

What to do: Adventures range from bear-viewing and whale-watching to guided kayaking and boat tours of the Broughton Archipelago.

Distance from Vancouver:To reach Nimmo Bay, take a one-hour flight to Port Hardy, and then a seaplane or helicopter ride to the resort (half-hour charter flight). Clayoquot has set guest arrival dates of Thursdays and Sundays and schedules an afternoon sea plane to collect incoming guests from Vancouver Airport. The flight is about an hour and is a gorgeous aerial introduction to the region.

Contact Indagare for assistance planning a customized weekend getaway.

– Brooke Katz on September 15, 2021

Источник: https://www.indagare.com/destinations/north-america/california/articles/west-coast-weekend-getaways

Is Texas East Coast or West Coast?

The debate of East Coast vs West Coast will never end as people compare the music, food, cities, weather, way of life and even accents between the two sides to the United States. Texas is a large state and has coastline so is it East Coast or West Coast?

Texas is neither West Coast nor East Coast – the U.S. Census Bureau places it in the South Region and it is in the Central timezone. Geographically, it can be argued to be East Coast due to its Gulf of Mexico coastline, but culturally it is much closer to the West Coast.

To find out exactly what makes Texas East Coast, West Coast or neither, we'll have to dive into the details.

Is Texas on the East Coast geographically?

Proponents of Texas being an East Coast state will usually go for the Geography argument as the main argument for which coast Texas should belong to.

Texas is a huge state and has a long coastline that runs all the way from Louisiana to the east to the border with Mexico in the south. There's amazing beaches, long National and State parks along the barrier islands and major cities like Galvestson and Corpus Christi along this coast.

The Gulf of Mexico is technically classified as a ocean basin and a sea of the Atlantic ocean which is the ocean sitting along the east coast of the United States, separating it from Europe and Africa.

This, some people would say, is irrefutable proof of the fact that Texas is in fact an East First foundation bank lucerne valley State. The state has a coast and it faces east, sharing the same ocean as other east coast states.

Another popular geographical argument that frequently comes up is that Texas is east of the Continental Divide, thereby placing it in the eastern part of the country. Whether you believe that to be a valid way of splitting up the states into East and West Coasts is up to you!

How are East Coast and West Coast actually defined?

If Geography was the only definitive way to determine things like East Coast and West Coast definitions, this question would have a very short and simple answer.

The good news is, the definition of East and West Coast is usually a fair bit more complicated depending on what you use as the basis for making that determination.

Wikipedia, Cambridge Dictionary and even the most upvoted answer on the Urban Dictionary website all agree that the East Coast definition covers the Eastern Seabord states from Maine to Florida only. Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, which all have coastlines along the Gulf are not included.

At the same time, the definitions of the West Coast by all of the above agree to include only California, Oregon and Washington State.

It might now sound like the issue is resolved and clearly Texas is neither West Coast, nor East Coast if you use the dictionary definitions of what the two terms actually mean and which states they include.

But then again, ask someone from Vermont, West Virginia or the District of Columbia whether they consider themselves to be East Coast and you can see how the technical definition can get murky. By the same token, Nevada and Arizona are definitely not West Coast.

Less strict definitions of the coasts focus on the industry, culture, food, climate and even the style of rap music so could thees shed a bit more light on whether Texas is part of either of the two Coasts?

Is Texas actually more West Coast than East Coast?

If you start with food, then Texas continues feeling distinctly East Coast. The famous Texas barbecue comes in different styles and flavors and BBQ is a Deep South culinary tradition with the Carolinas arguably the original and most famous states for their unique ways of grilling meat.

In this sense, Texas is very much an East Coast state.

But then consider things like the climate, way of life, music and even industry and you may just change your mind.

East Coast states in New England and all the way down to Virginia have strong seasonal climates with hot summers and freezing cold snowy winters. Sure, the Carolinas, Georgia and Florida are exceptions, but that's the overall East Coast feel.

West Coast is famous for t-shirt weather all year round with occasional drizzle marking the arrival of winter. A glass of wine on the veranda in your shorts is how you spend a February weekend in San Diego.

In this respect, Texas feels a lot more West Coast than East Coast. There might be a day or two in the entire year when you hit freezing temperatures and it might feel icy, but generally the weather ranges from warm and pleasant through to mighty hot which aligns it a lot more with states to its west rather than east.

In recent years Texas has become a hub for tech companies and innovation centers. Austin is the fastest growing city in the country, fueled by huge investment in the tech sector and underpinned by its large university population.

Some of the biggest tech companies in the world including Rackspace, HostGator and HomeAway have recently grown in Texas and giants such as Google and Microsoft have expanded their presence in Austin's Silicon Hills and other cities across the state.

With the East Coast being known for its finance and bricks and mortar industries and Silicon Valley, Seattle and Los Angeles pioneering technology, Texas feels a lot more West Coast than East Coast when you look at it this way too.

How Texas is neither West Coast nor East Coast

It may be a good conversation among friends or you might find yourself genuinely trying to figure out whether Texas is an East Coast or West Coast state.

However, just take a look at the map of west coast of the united states west coast cities United States and find the huge state of Texas slap bang in the middle, in the south of the country. Does every state have to be part of either the East or West Coast? If so, where does Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas fit in?

Most will agree that there is a large number of states in the central part of the USA that are neither East Coast nor West Coast. Whether you look at culture, geography or any other measure, the United States is such a vast and rich country, you don't have to pigeon hole every part into one of just two camps.

Country and Blues music dominate in Texas, so the distinction between rap styles and cultures doesn't apply.

In fact, Texas don't see themselves as part of any kind of group of states. The Lone Star State moniker is no accident and Texas has long toyed with the idea of going at it alone outside of the union, although this train of thought never gets substantial public support.

If you're trying to figure out whether Texas is East Coast or West Coast, perhaps the correct answer is that Texas is neither and is actually part of a one state member club called Texas Coast.

Источник: https://lazytrips.com/blog/is-texas-east-coast-or-west-coast

List of largest cities on the United States West Coast

2017 Rank City State County /
borough Population
(2017 est.)[4]MetroNotes 1 Los AngelesCounty seatCaliforniaLos Angeles3,999,759 13,131,431 Largest city in California 2 San DiegoCounty seatCaliforniaSan Diego1,419,516 3,317,749 3 San JoseCounty seatCaliforniaSanta Clara1,035,317 1,998,463 Located within the San Francisco Bay Area4 San FranciscoCounty seatCaliforniaSan Francisco884,363 4,727,357 5 SeattleCounty seatWashingtonKing724,745 3,733,580 Largest city in Washington 6 PortlandCounty seatOregonMultnomah647,805 2,389,228 Largest city in Oregon 7 FresnoCounty seatCaliforniaFresno527,438 972,297 8 SacramentoCounty seatCaliforniaSacramento501,901 2,149,127 9 Long BeachCaliforniaLos Angeles469,450 13,131,431 Located within the Los Angeles metropolitan area10 OaklandCounty seatCaliforniaAlameda425,195 N/A 11 BakersfieldCounty seatCaliforniaKern380,874 839,631 12 AnaheimCaliforniaOrange352,497 N/A Located within the Los Angeles metropolitan area13 Santa AnaCounty seatCaliforniaOrange334,136 N/A Located within the Los Angeles metropolitan area14 RiversideCounty seatCaliforniaRiverside327,728 N/A 15 StocktonCounty seatCaliforniaSan Joaquin310,496 726,126 16 AnchorageCounty seatAlaskaAnchorage294,356 401,635 Largest city in Alaska 17 IrvineCaliforniaOrange277,453 N/A Located within the Los Angeles metropolitan area18 Chula VistaCaliforniaSan Diego270,471 N/A Located within San Diego metropolitan area19 FremontCaliforniaAlameda234,962 N/A 20 SpokaneCounty seatWashingtonSpokane217,300 556,634 21 San BernardinoCounty seatCaliforniaSan Bernardino216,995 4,224,851 22 ModestoCounty seatCaliforniaStanislaus547,899 N/A 23 TacomaCounty seatWashingtonPierce213,418 3,733,580 24 FontanaCaliforniaSan Bernardino211,815 N/A 25 Santa ClaritaCaliforniaLos Angeles210,888 13,155,788 26 OxnardCaliforniaVentura210,037 N/A 27 Moreno ValleyCaliforniaRiverside207,226 N/A 28 GlendaleCaliforniaLos Angeles203,054 N/A 29 Huntington BeachCaliforniaOrange201,874 N/A 30 Rancho CucamongaCaliforniaSan Bernardino177,452 N/A 31 OceansideCaliforniaSan Diego176,193 N/A 32 OntarioCaliforniaSan Bernardino216,995 N/A 33 VancouverCounty seatWashingtonClark176,400 2,389,228 Located within Portland metropolitan area[5]34 Santa RosaCounty seatCaliforniaSonoma175,269 N/A 35 Garden GroveCaliforniaOrange174,226 N/A Located within Los Angeles metropolitan area36 Elk GroveCaliforniaSacramento171,844 N/A Located within Sacramento metropolitan area37 SalemCounty seatOregonMarion169,798 400,408 Capital city of Oregon 38 EugeneCounty seatOregonLane168,916 369,519 39 CoronaCaliforniaRiverside167,836 4,224,851 Located within Riverside metropolitan area40 HaywardCaliforniaAlameda160,500 7,468,390 Located within San Francisco Bay Area41 LancasterCaliforniaLos Angeles160,316 N/A 42 SalinasCounty seatCaliforniaMonterey157,596 N/A 43 PalmdaleCaliforniaLos Angeles157,519 12,828,837 Charter city44 SunnyvaleCaliforniaSanta Clara153,656 Located within San Francisco Bay Area45 PomonaCaliforniaLos Angeles152,939 46 EscondidoCaliforniaSan Diego151,969 47 TorranceCaliforniaLos Angeles146,758 N/A Located within Los Angeles Metropolitan area48 BellevueWashingtonKing144,444 3,733,580 Located within Seattle metropolitan area49 PasadenaCaliforniaLos Angeles142,647 N/A Located within Los Angeles metropolitan area50 OrangeCaliforniaOrange140,560 N/A 51 FullertonCaliforniaOrange140,392 N/A 52 RosevilleCaliforniaPlacer135,329 N/A Located within Sacramento metropolitan area53 VisaliaCounty seatCaliforniaTulare133,010 N/A Located within San Joaquin Valley54 ConcordCaliforniaContra Costa129,783 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area55 Thousand OaksCaliforniaVentura128,995 N/A Located within Los Angeles metropolitan area56 KentWashingtonKing128,458 N/A Located within Seattle metropolitan area57 Santa ClaraCaliforniaSanta Clara127,134 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area58 Simi ValleyCaliforniaVentura126,878 N/A Located within Greater Los Angeles59 VictorvilleCaliforniaSan Bernardino122,441 N/A 60 BerkeleyCaliforniaAlameda122,324 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area61 VallejoCaliforniaSolano122,105 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area62 FairfieldCounty seatCaliforniaSolano116,266 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area63 El MonteCaliforniaLos Angeles116,109 N/A 64 CarlsbadCaliforniaSan Diego115,330 N/A Located within San Diego metropolitan area65 TemeculaCaliforniaRiverside114,327 N/A 66 Costa MesaCaliforniaOrange113,825 N/A 67 MurrietaCaliforniaRiverside113,326 N/A 68 DowneyCaliforniaLos Angeles113,092 N/A 69 AntiochCaliforniaContra Costa111,674 N/A 70 GreshamOregonMultnomah111,053 2,314,554 Located within Portland metropolitan area[6]71 VenturaCaliforniaVentura110,790 N/A Officially the City of San Buenaventura[7]72 InglewoodCaliforniaLos Angeles110,598 N/A Located within Los Angeles metropolitan area73 EverettCounty seatWashingtonSnohomish110,079 3,733,580 Located within Seattle metropolitan area74 RichmondCaliforniaContra Costa110,040 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area75 ClovisCaliforniaFresno109,691 N/A 76 West CovinaCaliforniaLos Angeles107,598 N/A Located within Greater Los Angeles77 Daly CityCaliforniaSan Mateo107,074 N/A 78 Santa MariaCaliforniaSanta Barbara107,014 N/A 79 HillsboroCounty seatOregonWashington106,894 N/A Located within Portland metropolitan area[6]80 NorwalkCaliforniaLos Angeles106,084 N/A Located within Greater Los Angeles81 Jurupa ValleyCaliforniaRiverside106,028 N/A 82 BurbankCaliforniaLos Angeles104,834 N/A Located within Los Angeles metropolitan area83 San MateoCaliforniaSan Mateo104,748 N/A 84 El CajonCaliforniaSan Diego103,894 N/A 85 RialtoCaliforniaSan Bernardino103,562 N/A 86 VistaCaliforniaSan Diego101,568 N/A Located within San Diego metropolitan area87 RentonWashingtonKing101,379 N/A Located within Seattle metropolitan area88 VacavilleCaliforniaSolano100,032 N/A 89 ComptonCaliforniaLos Angeles97,612 N/A Located within Los Angeles metropolitan area90 Spokane ValleyWashingtonSpokane97,847 547,924 Located within Spokane metropolitan area91 BeavertonOregonWashington97,514 N/A Located within Portland metropolitan area[6]92 Federal WayWashingtonKing96,690 N/A Located within Seattle metropolitan area93 San MarcosCaliforniaSan Diego96,198 N/A 94 Mission ViejoCaliforniaOrange96,016 N/A 95 South GateCaliforniaLos Angeles95,430 N/A 96 HesperiaCaliforniaSan Bernardino94,859 N/A 97 BendCounty seatOregonDeschutes94,520 N/A 98 YakimaCounty seatWashingtonYakima93,667 N/A 99 ChicoCaliforniaButte93,293 N/A 100 CarsonCaliforniaLos Angeles92,735 N/A 101 Santa MonicaCaliforniaLos Angeles92,306 N/A 102 Santa BarbaraCounty seatCaliforniaSanta Barbara92,101 N/A 103 ReddingCounty seatCaliforniaShasta91,794 N/A 104 WestminsterCaliforniaOrange91,564 N/A 105 TracyCaliforniaSan Joaquin90,889 N/A 106 San LeandroCaliforniaAlameda90,553 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area107 LivermoreCaliforniaAlameda90,295 N/A Located within San Francisco Bay Area108 IndioCaliforniaRiverside89,793 N/A 109 BellinghamCounty seatWashingtonWhatcomb89,045 221,404 110 KirklandWashingtonKing88,630 N/A Located within Seattle metropolitan area
Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_largest_cities_on_the_United_States_West_Coast

The 20 Greatest Beach Towns in America

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Picture the perfect beach. Some details may vary from person to person: Maybe you’re envisioning bike wheels thunking along a boardwalk, or traipsing through dunes to find the ideal patch of sand. Maybe you're picturing surly hot-dog vendors and teenage taffy pullers, or butter dripping off a lobster roll onto your towel. Regardless, it's almost certain that your vision includes warm sand, blue waters, and a vibe that can only be described as “chill.”

The US has beaches for every taste. And the towns that crop up around these blissed-out beaches—from New England to New Jersey, from Craigslist fort smith houses for rent to Michigan—are world-class destinations unto themselves. The 20 below represent the best of the best, places where those sands give way to dreamy towns, where the locals vibe with the visitors, and the food and drink become the stuff of endless summer memories. Pack extra sunscreen.

Asbury Park, New Jersey

In the not-so-distant past, Asbury Park was best known as a dated Springsteen reference—a once-great tourist destination turned as stale as months-old saltwater taffy. The tide has shifted. AP's iconic boardwalk vibes have now made way for a "Brooklyn on the beach" feel, an energy that extends into the city's legendary (and recently returned!) music scene. Want to drink? Asbury Festhalle and Biergarten is on point for al fresco imbibing, holding rank alongside the always-lively Johnny Mac's and the delightfully divey Bond Street Bar atop the list of the 50-plus bars in town. Wanna try out vintage pinball? The Silverball Museum Arcade has more than 600 machines. A bustling art scene, a longstanding LGBTQ community, and (obviously) a beautiful beach make Asbury Park worth fully greeting again, boss.

Must eat/drink: For a solid middle ground between fancy and beachy-casual, check out Moonstruck for a Mediterranean menu in a classic Jersey shore Victorian home. Asbury Park has one of the most low-key yet top-notch pizzerias in the country at Talula's, and Pop's Garage is a cheap-as-hell beachside favorite, slinging two-for-$6 tacos and $3 happy hour beers.

Don't leave without: Perusing—and posing in front of—the many murals of Sunset Pavilion. It's a perfect (macro?) dose of AP's art community, and ideal beachside Instagram fodder. —Wil Fulton

Nags Head, North Carolina

Nags Head has become the de-facto name for a power trio of beach towns in the Outer Banks: Nags Head, Kill Devil Hills, and Kitty Hawk. A haven for East Coast surfers, Nags Head proper stretches for 11 miles of beach and sound, which includes the tallest sand dune on the East Coast at Jockey’s Ridge State Park (before it sets, scramble up to the top and catch the sun sinking beneath the horizon). Jennette's Pier is among the best spots to people-watch in this laid-back slice of the Atlantic, where fresh seafood from old-school family restaurants is unparalleled. Aviation geeks should check out the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills, then lope up the 90-foot hill where the Brothers Wright conducted their glider tests. And in Kitty Hawk, the canals crisscrossing the village make for excellent kayak adventures.

Must eat/drink: Have them build you a colossal biscuit sandwich at Biscuits N’ Porn (yes, you read that right), or slurp down a dozen or so raw oysters at I Got Your Crabs (again, yes), where they pop open the bivalves right in front of you.

Don’t leave without: Taking a break from the beach and stretching your legs with a hike through the surprisingly hilly Nags Head Woods Preserve, which boasts a full 1,400 acres of pristine maritime forest. —Jim Trotman

Saugatuck/Douglas, Michigan

Saugatuck is to western Michigan what Provincetown is to Cape Cod. It is thoroughly a tourist's beach town—invaded in the summer—but like many of Michigan’s best beach towns, its character is impeccably maintained despite the influx of visitors. Nicknamed "The Great Art-Doors," Saugatuck—along with its sister city across the river, Douglas—has gained a reputation as Michigan's premiere gaycation spot. It’s also a destination for the arts and antiques, thanks to ties to the Ox Bow School of Art, the Saugatuck Center for the Arts, art galleries like the Armstrong De-Graaf International Fine Art Gallery, and the Saugatuck Antique Pavilion.

Must eat/drink: Start your morning off at Uncommon Coffee Roasters, a hip coffee house that roasts their own sustainably sourced beans. Hit the Saugatuck Brewing Company's pub for made-from-scratch pub food washed down with a blueberry lemon shandy. For dinner—sorry, "supper"—don’t miss out on the Southern hospitality from James Beard Award semi-finalist chef Matthew Millar at The Southerner. End with a nightcap at the New Holland Spirits Tasting Room.

Don’t leave without: The beach of choice here is Oval Beach, one of the best freshwater beaches in the US. Climb the 282 steps to the top of Mount Baldhead (a giant sand dune, actually) for a gorgeous overlook of Oval Beach and the surrounding dunes. —Nicole Rupersburg

Cannon Beach, Oregon

At once abuzz and sleepy, Cannon Beach is home to one of Oregon’s most recognizable icons: Haystack Rock, which rises from the Pacific like the centerpiece of a titan’s rock garden. That Goonies-famous landmark might be the postcard star, but tiny Cannon—with its dog-thronged beaches, smattering of restaurants, wealth of breweries, and overabundance of galleries—is bursting at the seams with treasures. This is a highly walkable slice of West Coast pleasures, where the waterfront is dotted with cabin rentals and micro hotels that beg for extended stays. Here, you'll feel like a local after all of five minutes.

Must eat/drink: Get a sampling of the coast’s best breweries all in one place at Cannon Beach Hardware—yes, it’s a hardware store, but also a taproom with fantastic burgers and seafood—then bop over to Ecola Seafood for some fried fish straight off the dory.

Don’t leave without: Taking in a spectacular sunset, be it from the beach with a Dungeness crab cocktail from the aforementioned seafood shack, or overlooking Ecola State Park's Indian Beach after a brisk hike through the thick forest. —Andy Kryza

Thrillist TV

Ocean City, Maryland

This Mid-Atlantic shore town is forever trapped in the '80s, and that’s why people love it. The vast majority of motels, hotels, and rental properties around town sprouted up in the ‘70s and ‘80s, and nothing—from the outdoor cover band at Seacrets to the French fries at Thrasher’s—seems to have changed. There’s even a cult film, Ping Pong Summer, that encapsulates the '80s-induced nostalgia of a kid’s summer spent on the OC boardwalk. (If you’ve visited OC during Senior Week, maybe you can relate.)

Must eat/drink: Do as the locals do and add Maryland’s Old Bay seasoning and some vinegar to your bucket of Thrasher's french fries. Ocean City is also the birthplace of the Orange Crush, a fresh-squeezed, orange-vodka cocktail that’s mixed with Sprite or 7UP. You can find it at the Harborside Bar and Grill, where the drink was invented, but Marylanders debate who serves the best one. Best bar hop to decide for yourself.

Don’t leave without: Visiting the sprawling outdoor beach bar that is Seacrets, Jamaica, U.S.A. It’s a 5,000 person capacity complex—some call it an adult amusement park—filled with tiki-themed bars, music acts, and a lagoon where waiters serve frozen beverages to patrons on inflatable rafts. —Tim Ebner

Anna Maria Island, Florida

The northernmost of three cozy beach towns on a seven-mile-long island, Anna Maria is packed with so much old-Florida charm—from its sun-faded architecture and ice cream shops to beachside seafood shacks—it’s essentially a 1950s time warp. Outdoor adventurers will be happy with its array of paddle boarding and kayaking tours, plus snorkeling trips to nearby spots like Passage and Egmont Keys, where you can see stingrays, manatees, sharks, and dolphins. But at the end of the day, this is a bonafide sleepy town (the speed limits seldom exceed 35mph), so be prepared to blissfully check out on its pristine, quiet white sand beaches from sunrise to spectacular sunset.

Must eat/drink: Grouper sandwiches from the very waters you’ll be looking at from Rod & Reel Pier; anything on the menu (but it should probably be the mullet reuben) from Sandbar since you can literally dip your toes in the sand as you bite into your order.

Don’t leave without: Biking to Bean Point to frolic in the powder white sands of this lesser-known beach located at the northernmost tip of the island. If it wasn't for the sweeping views of Tampa Bay and the iconic Sunshine Skyway bridge, you’d think you were in Castaway. —Liz Newman

Haleiwa, Oahu, Hawaii

This North Shore surf town is not not touristy, but it is your entry point to some of Oahu’s most stunning beaches, like surfer paradise Sunset Beach or the sea turtle haven of Laniakea. Parking sucks, so explore Haleiwa’s charming main drag on foot. The road is lined with colorful old buildings, an architectural nod to North Shore’s sugar industry past, and most of the boutiques, art galleries, and eateries are locally owned. Hawaii’s oldest surf and dive shop, the waterfront Surf N Sea, has groovy Haleiwa-emblazoned apparel, while Aloha General Store is overflowing with island-themed tchotchkes (even if you do not want tchotchkes, stop in for the renowned shaved ice/ice cream bowls).

Must eat/drink: Food trucks park themselves around town daily, including plenty of the North Shore’s famous shrimp trucks. But don't sleep on some of the world's best mobile poke, either.

Don’t leave without: Hitting the Haleiwa Farmers Market on Thursday afternoons. You can peruse locally grown produce and artisan-made crafts and nosh on fish tacos, mac nut-filled baked goods, and a wildly good honey and fruit slushy you’ll wish you could find on the mainland. —Lizbeth Scordo

Rehoboth, Delaware

Rehoboth has a long-established LGBTQ community, and you’ll spot plenty of buff dudes strutting along the beach in supernaturally small speedos. But this upscale retreat on the Atlantic is fun for all, with its classic boardwalk, amusement park, and free summer concerts. While most of the youths and boozy beach parties keep to Dewey Beach three miles down the road, Rehoboth boasts the better bar and restaurant scene. It’s also a haven for craft beer nerds: Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione can often be seen skateboarding around town, and his flagship brewpub and restaurant, Chesapeake & Maine, is one of the first signs you’ve made it to the beach.

Must eat/drink: Local favorites include The Cultured Pearl for sushi with a rooftop view, or Henlopen City Oyster House for a raw bar spread. Meanwhile, Blue Moon rages into the night, and it’s where you’ll find drag queen competitions and shirtless bartenders serving shots of Fireball.

Don’t leave without: Taking a chill bike ride around Silver Lake, a sleepy neighborhood with waterfront views and ornate million-dollar beach homes you may dream of one day owning. —TE

Rincón, Puerto Rico

Rincón’s Caribbean cred is strong, but its “hang ten” vibes are imported by surfers from all over the world. Waveriders, tourists, and longtime locals alike are drawn to this tropical outpost for some of the hemisphere's best surf and sunsets. Drive along the legendary routes 413 and 4413 and you’ll quickly see why Rincón is catching up to bustling San Juan in popularity: Surfboard-carrying dudes contribute a Boho feel unique to the island; lines of food trucks continue some of the best culinary traditions in Puerto Rico; and there are plenty offerings for active travelers like world-class scuba diving, horseback riding, and whale-spotting.

Must eat/drink: Rincón has plenty of bars for relaxing with a drink, but the beachfront Tamboo Tavern's mojitos are the perfect cure to the ills of the world.

Don’t leave without: Scuba-diving around Desecheo, a small, uninhabited island paradise located just 12 miles off the coast of Rincón and home to a kaleidoscopic seascape of wildlife. —Norbert Figueroa

Tybee Island, Georgia

You’ll find Tybee just 30 minutes from historic downtown Savannah at the easternmost point of Georgia, a barrier island of wide, sandy beaches and a laid-back vibe with just the right amount of weird. There are plenty of hotels, but the picturesque pastel-colored rental homes with white Bahama shutters and white picket fences will captivate you. What truly sets this tiny, 21-square-mile island apart is its long, funky history. Pop in at a dive bar (Huc-A-Poo’s, Tybee Time, or the Sand Bar), grab a beer, and chat up a local, who will probably be eager to tell you all about the town or nearby Fort Pulaski, a Civil War-era national monument you can explore on bike or foot.

Must eat/drink: For a good, old-fashioned seafood platter on a dock with a water view, head to the Crab Shack. Want something a little more sophisticated? The Deck is technically Tybee’s only beachfront bar/restaurant and serves up juicy shrimp tacos and fresh ceviche.

Don’t leave without: Grabbing an ice cream or an old-fashioned malt at Seaside Sweets and heading to the pier at sundown, keeping watch for sea turtles and their nests throughout the summer. —Allison Ramirez

Santa Barbara, California

The palm tree-lined coast of this bougie SoCal oasis has a Mediterranean flair and a magnificent backdrop of scenic mountains and crystal blue water. Don’t skip the deservedly hyped Urban Wine Trail in the Funk Zone, a span of 10 colorful blocks where converted warehouses and art galleries operate alongside 20 wine tasting rooms (read: wine crawl). On top of all the delicious Mexican food (try Lilly’s Taqueria), Santa Barbara boasts some of the best produce on the West Coast, so hit up the Santa Barbara Public Market, a food lover’s paradise showcasing local food vendors where you can get a little taste of everything under one roof. SoCal visitors can also ditch the car and take the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner for a scenic route that drops you off a stone’s throw away from the ocean.

Must eat/drink: New England clam chowder from Brophy Brothers. It’s creamy, it’s comforting, and it’s chock-full of clams. And while it doesn’t come in a bread bowl, it does come with a sweeping view of the harbor.

Don’t leave without: Grabbing a cocktail and playing a few vintage board games at the Moroccan-themed library bar, Djinn, that just opened inside the Hotel Californian. The Funk Zone-adjacent hideaway also hosts a monthly full moon celebration called HOWL, featuring a DJ and tarot card reader. —Leila Najafi

Ogunquit, Maine

Summer in Maine is a heartbreakingly brief affair, but oh so worth it, if only for three months of pure bliss. And Ogunquit, located right off Route 1 on the southern tip of Vacationland, is the state's summer sweet spot, swelling from a usual population of 1,200 residents to more than 80,000 between May to September. The three-mile sandy beach is consistently ranked one of the country’s best, thanks to warm tides from the Ogunquit River emptying right behind the sand dunes. Pepper in a strong LGBTQ+ community, a walkable main drag of superb eateries and artsy boutiques, and its very own Museum of American Art, and you'll see why “a beautiful place by the sea” is still a fitting translation for Ogunquit from the native Abenaki language.

Must eat/drink: GrabFrench-ified Maine fare at The Crooked Pine, located in a 150-year-old Victorian mansion (don't miss the rooftop lounge), followed by knock-you-over cocktails at alfresco Brix + Brine or a sing-a-long sesh at piano bar The Front Porch.

Don’t leave without: Strolling the Marginal Way, a cliffside path (like a mini version of Sydney’s Bondi-to-Bronte walk) that leads to Perkins Cove, an impossibly photogenic harbor with snazzy seafood joints and galleries. Have a classic rum punch, steamer clams, and the lobster roll of your dreams at Barnacle Billy’s. —Paul Jebara

Folly Beach, South Carolina

The two-dozen bars and restaurants dotting Folly’s main drag, Center Street, welcome the shirtless, shoeless, and thirsty masses on this low-key, six-mile long sandbar. Folly's waves are known for their steep drops, drawing surfers from around the state to the island's "Washout" break. To lose the crowds, both ends of Folly are nature preserves that harbor endangered seabirds, loggerhead turtles, and bottlenose dolphins aplenty. If you've got the stamina to hoof it a half mile beyond where the road ends, the 19th-century, candy cane Morris Island Lighthouse emerges directly from the surf at the island's east end. Its namesake island provides one of Charleston's most iconic views.

Must eat/drink: Bert's Market is a 24/7 staple on the island ("we may doze, but we never close"), and their Wooden Spoon Deli presses a mean panini. By late afternoon, migrate to Surf Bar (temporarily closed, but worth keeping an eye on) for a Painkiller cocktail, or Lowlife Bar where, despite the name, you'll find friendly locals digging into tall drinks and hearty seaside comforts.

Don't leave without: Walking 1,000 feet out over the ocean on the Folly Beach Pier. Grab a cocktail from the open-air bar for the stroll or rent a fishing rod and bait from the onsite tackle shop. —Stratton Lawrence

Paia, Maui, Hawaii

A historic village turned surf town, Paia is—well, everything a tiny Hawaiian surf town should be: funky, bohemian, and blissfully free of gigantic resorts. Most visitors breeze through town on the way to Hana, but sticking around for a night or two at the Paia Inn, mere steps from the sandy shore, has its rewards. (For one, you might see Willie Nelson; according to local lore, he periodically shows up to play an impromptu show.) Browse the art galleries and endearingly hippie-dippie boutiques, take a class at the Maha Yoga & Wellness studio, hit the “secret” clothing-optional beach, or just take advantage of the many prime surfing locales along miles of panoramic coastline. Be sure to visit the west coast of the united states west coast cities clear blue waters and scenic shores of Baldwin Beach Park, just outside town.

Must eat/drink: The plate lunches at Paia Fish Market (order the ono!), shaved ice and poke from Tobi’s Shave Ice, locally grown produce from Mana Foods, and smoothies with bee pollen and super fresh açai bowls from Choice Health Bar.

Don’t leave without: Catching a glimpse of the Hawaiian green sea turtles that make their way to the shores of Ho’okipa Beach like clockwork each day. Ho’okipa is known as the windsurfing capital of the world, and while the intense surf isn’t the best for swimming, it’s fun to watch the pros take on the waves. —Lauren Reichert

Gulf Shores, Alabama

Aside from hosting the supremely fun annual Hangout Music Festival (hopefully returning in 2022), Gulf Shores is very likely the scenic highlight of Alabama, a picturesque mash-up of pastel houses and high-rises. The sand is perfect powdery white and the water is clear and blue, a big reason why this is one of the best destinations on the Gulf Coast. It’s generally cheaper than its Florida counterparts and offers the added bonus of Gulf State Park’s zip lines and near-empty beaches. Plus it’s only a short drive to one of Florida’s weirdest, wildest bars, the legendary Flora-Bama, where you can attend a boozy church service and send up a much-needed prayer for all the Florida Men out there.

Must eat/drink: Anything from Avenue Pub. It’s the kind of creative bar fare you’d expect in a big city gastropub, but in an unassuming waterfront spot.

Don’t leave without: Getting breakfast at Hazel’s Nook. It’s everything a Southern breakfast joint should be, decked out like your grandma’s kitchen. —Matt Meltzer

Wellfleet and Provincetown, Massachusetts

Quintessential vacation wonderland Cape Cod is 77 miles of sandy shoreline, lobster rolls, and Rockwellian towns. Of the latter, few are more adorable than Wellfleet on the Outer Cape, where life is quieter and the pace slower. Marconi Beach, part of the Cape Cod National Seashore, has wide beaches dotted with massive sand dunes. The water is a bit cooler here, and the waves harsher as they roll on from the Atlantic. Bayside at Duck Harbor Beach, the water is warmer and it feels like you’re at the end of the world.

Just a short drive from Wellfleet on Route 6 is Provincetown, at the tip of the cape. P-town is known for its LGBTQ community, but walk down crowded Commercial Street and you’ll see a delightful mix of drag queens, families with kiddos, locals, and a young artsy crowd from all over. Visit one of the many art galleries downtown, duck into the shops, and then hit the Lobster Pot (a favorite of Anthony Bourdain) for some chowdah or Pepe’s Wharf for a lobster roll.

Must eat/drink: Fried clams at Mac’s Seafood. Take Commercial Street through town until you reach the pier overlooking Wellfleet Bay. Order clams and fries at the shack’s take-out window and sit at one of the communal picnic tables in the sand overlooking the harbor and Mayo Beach, a low-key, grassy, bayside spot perfect for swimming and watching the sunset.

Don't leave without: Biking the Cape Cod Rail Trail. The 27-mile bike trail runs from South Wellfleet down to Yarmouth through salt marshes, cranberry bogs, evergreens, and pine forests. It’s completely paved and mostly flat. —Jennifer Mattson

Narragansett, Rhode Island

Tiny but mighty Rhode Island happens to have the best surfing in New England, and the best place to do it is Narragansett. It’s also home to one of the best beach bars in America at the historic Coast Guard House, where views of Narragansett Bay pair well with a platter of oysters and an ice-cold can of—well, take a wild guess. Gansett’s population more than doubles in the summer as surfers, families, and college kids flock to some of the region’s best beaches. The always-lively Narragansett Town Beach offers dramatic views of the “Towers,” the iconic remains of the bygone Victorian-era Narragansett Pier Casino—but if you’d rather skip the admission fees, opt for one of the state beaches like Roger Wheeler.

Must eat/drink: Seafood, le duh. Hit up Aunt Carrie’s clam shack or Iggy’s Doughboys and Chowder House, both classics with dining rooms and takeout windows. They’re not right downtown (a little closer to Point Judith) but absolutely worth the trip.

Don’t leave without: Strolling the seawall along Ocean Road, then grabbing a drink at the Coast Guard House. It’s fun even if the weather isn’t perfect. —MM

Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

Small and quaint x 1000, Carmel-by-the-Sea proudly displays its Spanish colonial roots in the smallest details, from Spanish tilework to cottages seemingly plucked from a fairy tale. Soak up California’s coastal beauty—winding hiking trails, cypress trees, and pristine white sand beaches—as you wander this pleasantly walkable, transportive village where, for two years in the '80s, Clint Eastwood served as mayor. Don’t miss the sun-bathing sea lions at Point Lobos Natural Reserve, or poet Robinson Jeffers’ cottage he built himself, stone-by-stone. If you’re feeling bougie, hit the green at Pebble Beach. Or channel the area’s boho vibes at the Sunset Cultural Center, which typically hosts hundreds of performances a year.

Must eat/drink: Cultura Comida y Bebida is your one-stop shop for bomb Oaxacan fare—think 30+ mezcals and an array of tacos that includes chapulines (toasted grasshoppers).

Don’t leave without: Taking the 17-Mile Drive tour. There are no ugly views on this scenic drive—think dramatic, majestic cliffs, secluded beaches, and magical redwood forests. —Liv Lawson

Virginia Beach, Virginia

Virginia Beach is a destination with two faces. One has long lived as a laid-back, middle-class family summer vacation hub with a crowded boardwalk, high-rise hotels, and endless frozen-custard shops. The other face, which has emerged over the past decade, embraces the growing local arts community in the Vibe Creative District, drawing in a younger crowd that definitely wasn’t traveling to Virginia Beach before, and especially not in the off-season. Suddenly, Virginia Beach is a destination beyond the boardwalkers: Just ask hometown hero Pharrell, whose Something in the Water festival will hopefully return next year.

Must eat/drink: Check out the sustainable food scene at airy Commune and Esoteric, where the dishes (including sky-high burgers) seem made for Instagram. While teens head off to wander members 1st credit union boardwalk, you’ll find a congenial family vibe at Waterman’s Surfside Grill.

Don’t leave without: Partaking in Live! On Atlantic, the annual summer entertainment lineup that is free and open to the public. Magicians, chalk artists, stilt walkers, and other acts take over Atlantic Avenue, endlessly entertaining visitors. —Keryn Means

Ocean Springs, Mississippi

This quirky hamlet on the Gulf has a tiny historic downtown that punches way above its weight. Seemingly every block has a cool bar with live music on a sprawling outdoor patio, interspersed with funky galleries and artists’ studios, independent shops, a giant art museum, and seriously good, inventive restaurants. The streets are lined with live oaks and colorful historic cottages, there’s catfish and barbecue aplenty, and—oh yeah, the beach. The Gulf here is calm, and after you’ve had your fill of culture and nightlife, you can take a paddleboard out to enjoy Mississippi’s natural beauty. Or take a boat out to the barrier islands and see beaches so remote and pristine they’ll make any Floridian jealous.

Must eat/drink:The pioneering gourmet biscuits at The Greenhouse on Porter. This converted greenhouse is doing for biscuits what Voodoo did for donuts, serving up stuff like jalapeño chili biscuits alongside weekly live music and yoga.

Don’t leave without: Getting out on the water. The town is so fun you might forget the beach is even there, but hit Paddles Up on Government Street and find some water-bound expeditions. —Matt Meltzer

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Источник: https://www.thrillist.com/travel/nation/best-beach-towns-in-the-usa

West Coast States 2021

The West Coast states – also known as the Pacific Coast -- of the United States are the states that lie along the coast of the Pacific Ocean. The Pacific Ocean is to the west of these states, while the Sierra Nevada, Alaska Range, Mojave Desert, and the Cascade Range lie to the east.

Based on the United States Census Bureau, five states make up the Pacific States region. Those states are:

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Hawaii
  • Oregon
  • Washington

Based on the last census taken in 2010, the five West Coast states' population was about 47.8 million. According to estimates taken in 2017, the population has since grown to over 51 million people.

The largest city by population among the West Coast states is Los Angeles. California's largest city has an estimated population of nearly 4 million people. The next most populous cities are also located in California: San Diego, Santa Clara, San Francisco. Alaska has the West Coast and country's four largest cities by area: Sitka (2,8770.3 mi²), Juneau (2,701.9 mi²), Wrangell (2,542.5 mi²), and Anchorage (1,704.7 mi²)

Outside of California, the most populated cities on the West Coast are Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; Fresno, California; and Sacramento, California. However, only the top three most populous cities – Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Jose – have populations that exceed 1 million.

The West Coast is known for its beautiful beaches, thriving cities, and a young, diverse population.

Источник: https://worldpopulationreview.com/state-rankings/west-coast-states

West coast of the united states west coast cities -

The Best Small West Coast Towns

Small towns offer a quaint and quiet escape from the noise and hustle of big city life. Slower, friendlier, and more compact, they offer a wonderful alternative for those looking for a simpler life, or for anyone wanting to get away for a weekend. The West Coast of the United States has some of the best small towns around. From wine country, to beach towns, and villages with stunning views, here is our list of the best small west coast towns.

Ashland, Oregon

Technically, Ashland is a city, and its population may keep it from being a small town, at some 21,000 people, but its cute and quaint feel has Ashland sneaking onto this list. Located in southern Oregon, Ashland is surrounded by beautiful scenery from the lush forests to the overlooking mountains and hills. Its downtown has a distinctly small-town feel, with cute shops, galleries and boutiques, as well as unique eateries, cafe’s and the Caldera tap house.Ashland hosts the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, as well as Ashland Independent Film Festival, and Ashland New Plays Festival. Its art and culture scene are booming, making it a great location for creative types seeking a city with a town feel.

Carmel-by-the-sea, California

Carmel-by-the-sea, as the name suggests, is a coastal beach town in northern California. It sits on the Monterey Peninsula, and is full of fairy-tale-like cottages and art galleries. The history and architecture here give it a charming European feel. Also adding to that vibe are the abundance of excellent vineyards in the region, and impressing eateries. Carmel-by-the-sea manages to pair small town charm with truly stunning cliff and beach views and high quality amenities, for the perfect mixture for anyone looking to explore a new coastal town.

Hood River, Oregon

Despite its name, Hood River actually sits on the Columbia River, and is named for the nearby tributary. It has a population of a little over 7,000 and has some of the pacific northwest’s best windsurfing conditions. On top of that, outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and cycling are common. Visitors can indulge in nature and all adventurous activities. Apple and peach orchards are plentiful, as are breweries and eateries such as Full Sail Brewing and the Stave and Stone winery. Visitors can also enjoy the waterfront park, History Museum of Hood River County, or the Mt. Hood Railroad tour. The are also has an abundance of impressive waterfalls that make for great hikes and photo opportunities.

Inverness, California

Inverness is a truly picture-worthy town on the west coast of California. Located on the southwest shore of Tomales Bay, Marin County, it has a recorded population of less than 1,500. The town includes the gorgeous Tomales Bay State Park, complete with its impressive sand beaches, as well as Point Reyes Beach which is the site of notable shipwrecks, including one beached rusting boat on the shore which is a favourite photo op. Other instagrammable moments come from the Cypress Tree Tunnel, at Point Reyes National Seashore, which is a pathway completely covered by cypress trees which form a doming tunnel-like roof along the walkway. Nature walks and kayaking in the bay are also popular activities, and nature walks and tours are plentiful and show off much of the local wildlife. 

Leavenworth, Washington

Leavenworth is a German inspired mountain town located below the Cascade mountains. With the towering peaks and the Bavarian style you’d think you were transported to a German village. Almost everything in the town is themed, from the Nutcracker Museum to ample amounts of German beer and restaurants selling German food. At Christmas, the town is completely transformed into a fairy land of lights and decorations that would rival even the North Pole. Aside from all the Bavarian styling, the town is also very beautiful in its own right. It sits along the Wenatchee River, and has beautiful views not only of the waterfront, but the nearby mountains as well. Skiing and snowboarding are the most popular activities in the region,  as well as hiking and various wine tasting, and wine tour activities.

Solvang, California

Solvang, as the name suggests, is a Danish town in Santa Ynez Valley of southern California. The buildings in the area are almost all exclusively in an old Danish style, creating an old and charming atmosphere that will have you feeling like you are in the heart of Scandinavian Europe. The Elverhøj Museum of History & Art is full of  heritage and history from Denmark. Additionally, the 1800’s Fransican style church, The Old Mission Santa Inés, andthe Hamlet Square windmill stand in the center of town and add to the appeal. Festivals are common here, such as the Danish Days event,  as are wineries such as the SUnstone Winery and Kalyra winery.

Sausalito, California

Just across the Golden Gate strait from San Francisco sits Sausalito, California. Its position gives it impressive views of the Golden Gate Bridge, and the bay at large. The town is most famous, however, for its houseboat population, which is located in an enclave of Richardson Bay. The community was originally set up by artist squatters after the Second World War, and remains today. Various brightly coloured waterfront and hillside homes add to the artsy feel of the town, while nearby Muir Woods National Monument provides a nature-fille escape from the larger nearby cities with tower redwood trees and wildlife.

Florence, Oregon

Florence is located along Oregon’s coast, on the Siuslaw River. The town offers impressive views of the coastline, as well as Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, where visitors can explore the sand dunes and coastal air. There is also a large population of sea lions in the area, especially in the Sea Lion caves. Kayaking is a great way to see the coastline and river, as well as get closer to some of the natural wildlife. Hiking and cycling are also popular here and there are many local trails, including one that leads to the 19th-century Heceta Head Lighthouse. 

The  Historic Old Town district is full of small town charm, and visitors can enjoy shopping and soaking up the town's homely and inviting feel before relaxing with some local beer or wine.

Port Townsend, Washington

Port Townsend is a small town that sits on the Quimper Peninsula in Jefferson County, Washington State. It has a population of roughly 9,000 people, and has a beautiful waterfront and quaint downtown. Flour mills and well-kept older buildings sit along the water’s edge, and offer an indication of the long history of this town. The town has two different  National Historic Landmark Districts, including a variety of Victorian homes and buildings, as well as strong native american roots. The town is a hub of marine activity from whale watching tours to marine life excursions and a monthly gallery art walk.

Friday Harbor, Washington

Friday Harbor is actually an island town, but still a coastal small town with a population of only around 2,500. Located in San Juan County, Washington State, it is one of many Washington state islands that are located just east of Canada’s Victoria (on vancouver island) and east of cities like Bellingham and Mount Vernon. This marine town is brimming with charm and history and includes various attractions such as The Whale Museum, the San Juan Islands Museum of Art,  the San Juan Community Theatre and the San Juan Historical Museum. Nature lovers will also enjoy the whale watching opportunities as well as kayaking, paddleboarding, and boating in the area. A small lighthouse is also present in the town, and it, as well as walking paths along the shoreline, offer excellent picturesque views. 

From towns brimming with wine, to those full of charm, from Bavarian to Danish, to Victorian and Spanish, these coastal small towns have something for everyone. They are the perfect way to get away from the city for a vacation, or for the quieter at heart, offer excellent places to settle down and enjoy the warmth and charm of small town living.

Carly Dodd October 25 2021 in Places

Источник: https://www.worldatlas.com/cities/the-best-small-west-coast-towns.html

11 Top-Rated West Coast USA Road Trips

Written by Brad Lane
Updated Jul 26, 2021

The West Coast of the United States offers some of the best road trips in the world. Dramatic natural attractions and culturally iconic cities line this entire side of the country. From Seattle and the Cascade Mountains of Washington down to the sunny weather and ocean vistas of San Diego in California, several standout destinations solidify why the West Coast is the best coast for travel.

Among many West Coast must-see roadside attractions, areas like the redwoods surrounding San Francisco, the ancient caldera known as Crater Lake, and the mighty Mount Rainier top the list for places to visit. Whether it's a 10-day, two-week, or months-long trip, plan to spend more time on the road than you might expect. Attractions like active volcanoes, sterling beaches, and alpine lakes encourage a few extra days added to an itinerary. 

Fun things to do stem in every direction on the West Coast. And each season brings new opportunities for travelers to enjoy wide-ranging landscapes that are sure to satisfy some wanderlust. Plan your trip with our list of the best West Coast USA road trips.

Note: Some businesses may be temporarily closed due to recent global health and safety issues.

1. Pacific Coast Highway: Where the Mountains Meet the Sea

Pacific Coast Highway

Also known as California State Route 1, the Pacific Coast Highway is one of the country's most iconic road trip destinations. This modern marvel of engineering hugs over 600 miles of California coastline. It connects movie stars in Los Angeles to the postcard wonders of Big Sur, all before spanning the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and ending in the redwood forests of Mendocino County.

The highway's southern terminus is near the beaches of Dana Point in Orange County. An average trip length along the highway spans five to seven days. However, the recommended itinerary allows for a few weeks to explore the state parks, cities, and hundreds of places to visit along the way. Right at its beginning, popular attractions include extensive ocean vistas and whale-watching tours.

Bixby Canyon Bridge on the Pacific Coast Byway, Big Sur

State Route 1 connects many major metropolitan areas along the coast for automobile touring and everyday commuting. Alongside San Francisco and L.A., the highway also connects other cultural hubs, including Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, and San Luis Obispo.

One of the most scenic stretches of the highway can be found near Big Sur and the Bixby Bridge, where multiple pull-offs and vantage points offer a classic California photo opportunity.

Thirty miles north on the coast from Big Sur, the city of Monterey and its adjacent bay provide historical intrigue and one of the best aquariums in the country. For intrepid explorers, Muir Woods, 10 miles north of Sausalito, features groves of incredible old-growth trees.

Accommodation:

2. Touring the Cascade Loop of Washington

Diablo Lake overlook on Cascades Loop

For a full taste of the cities, sights, and mountain splendor of Washington, the roughly 400-mile Cascade Loop has it all. Starting from the culturally rich city of Seattle, travelers on the Cascade Loop can head in either direction for guaranteed fun things to do.

Heading north toward Anacortes, tourists on the Cascades Loop connect with the North Cascades Scenic Byway for a 120-mile stretch through some of the most dramatic landscapes in the state.

The North Cascade Scenic Byway is open seasonally between May and November and tours many of the best hiking trails and top campgrounds of North Cascades National Park. Among the many great views, the aquamarine water of Diablo Lake really stand out, with a viewing platform easily accessible from the highway.

Bookending the eastern end of the North Cascade Scenic Byway, the tourist-friendly Methow Valley welcomes visitors with scenic places to visit, including Mazama, Winthrop, and Twisp.

Fall colors along the southern portion of the Cascade Loop

The southern portion of the Cascade Loop passes through more road trip destinations including Wenatchee, Cashmere, and Leavenworth – one of the best small towns in Washington. Leavenworth is a Bavarian-themed town with high alpine peaks and cultural celebrations to match, and a certain charm that converts tourists into residents each year.

The route concludes back in Seattle via U.S. Route 2 after crossing Stevens Pass. This final stretch provides even more opportunities for hiking, skiing, and white water rafting along the way.

Official site: https://www.cascadeloop.com/

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Seattle: Best Areas and Hotels

3. Exploring the Oregon Coast Highway 101

Oregon Coast Highway 101

The stunning Oregon Coast stretches for over 360 miles from Astoria and the Columbia River down to Brookings and the California border. Historical shipwrecks, impressive sea stacks, and a constantly changing tide line the entire expanse. And what's unique to the coastal location, every single inch is open to the public, earning the nickname the "People's Coast."

Some of the top attractions of the Oregon Coast include Haystack Rock at Cannon Beach and the Yaquina Head Lighthouse in Newport. Towards the southern end of the state, the Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor features some of the most ruggedly beautiful views along the entire coast. Other special places of interest include Cape Perpetua, Yachats, and the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area - a popular place for off-highway vehicle riders and campers.

Oregon Coast Highway

The drive has plenty of scenic vistas worth pulling over for, sometimes spaced every half-mile. In the more popular tourist destinations on the northern Oregon coast, closer to Portland and the Willamette Valley, reservations are recommended in the summer for campgrounds and resorts. For a more bite-sized road trip along the Oregon coast, the Three Capes Scenic Drive can be done over a weekend.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Beach Resorts on the Oregon Coast

Read More: Top-Rated Campgrounds on the Oregon Coast

4. Cruise along the Columbia River Scenic Byway

Bridal Veil Falls along the Columbia River Scenic Byway

Defining the boundary between Oregon and Washington, the Columbia River Gorge is home to many of the best waterfalls in Oregon and a long list of other scenic roadside attractions. The route follows the Columbia River before it plunges into the Pacific Ocean in the charming city of Astoria.

Most visitors start their Columbia River road trip from the city streets of Portland and head east. Alongside stunning waterfalls like the 620-foot Multnomah Falls and historical attractions, including the Vista House at Crown Point, a recommended city stop is Hood River. This happening city has a growing collection of restaurants, galleries, and windsurfing rental companies.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Places to Stay in Portland, Oregon

5. Circling the Olympic Peninsula Loop

Hikers in the Hoh Rain Forest at Olympic National Park

No roads cut through the heart of the Olympic Peninsula of western Washington. Instead, the entire peninsula can be circumnavigated with over 300 highway miles and plenty to see along the way. Among the varied scenery are rainforests, glaciated mountains, and boulder-strewn beaches.

Seattle and Olympia make great starting points for the Olympic Peninsula Loop, and towns like Port Angeles, Forks, and Hoodsport make great basecamp destinations to explore the surrounding Olympic National Park. For extra add-on appeal, boarding a ferry in Port Angeles takes visitors to the always seasonable Victoria, British Columbia.

Read More:

6. Highway 395: South Lake Tahoe to Yosemite National Park

El Capitan viewpoint at Yosemite National Park

Shimmering alpine lakes, jutting mountain peaks, and lush forests filled with wildlife – the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California present one postcard image after another. Highway 395 is the main thoroughfare through the Sierra Nevada, connecting many iconic national parks, gateway cities, and opportunities for adventure.

A great place to start and stay, South Lake Tahoe is an alpine-infused community surrounded by natural attractions, including the sparkling Emerald Bay State Park. In summer you can enjoy hiking trails in the mountains or along the shores, or simply relax on a beach. In winter, pack your skis and hit some of the ski resorts around Lake Tahoe.

Heading south from Lake Tahoe, Highway 395 connects with Mammoth Lakes, a year-round destination for hiking, mountain biking, and downhill winter sports. The small town of Lone Pine is also along the route and serves as the gateway to Mount Whitney, the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States.

For those looking to explore Yosemite Valley, heading west on Highway 120 (Tioga Pass) from Highway 395 leads to iconic areas of the national park including Half-Dome, Tuolumne Meadows, several impressive hikes, and a number of the area's best campgrounds.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Lake Tahoe: Best Areas & Hotels

7. Exploring Washington's Volcanoes: Mount Rainier and Mount St. Helens

Mount Rainier

Sixty miles southeast of Seattle, Mount Rainier is a massive active volcano and home to one of the best national parks of Washington. The stunning national park surrounding this 14,411-foot peak invites all sorts of recreation with many top campgrounds and scenic hiking trails.

Just a few must-do hiking trails at Mount Rainier include the Skyline Trail and Spray Park. It's an extremely popular park throughout the summer and shoulder seasons and offers winter adventure with cross-country ski trails and scenic snowshoe opportunities.

More of Washington's volcanic activity can be experienced at Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, a two-hour drive south of Mount Rainier. Best known for its dramatic 1980 eruption, Mount St. Helens today is a living science demonstration of how habitats bounce back after an eruption.

The top-rated hiking trails at Mount St. Helens provide many unique opportunities to explore this altered environment, including underground expeditions at Ape Caves and permitted hikes to the massive crater left behind after the 1980 explosion.

8. Travel the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway

Mount Lassen above Lake Helen

Unearthing the geological past of the Cascade Mountains, the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway spans from Crater Lake in Oregon to Mount Lassen of California. The ancient caldera known as Crater Lake is a stand-alone destination as the deepest lake in the country and one of the best weekend getaways in Oregon. Within Crater Lake National Park, Mazama Village makes for a great camping destination the whole family will enjoy.

Heading south, the impressive slopes of Mount Shasta beckon with adventure, as do the impressive water features found at Burney Falls. On the southern end of this 500-mile scenic byway, the geothermal features of Lassen Volcanic National Park define the inviting landscape.

During the summer season, expect to see long-distance hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail sharing the scenic stops alongside the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway.

Official site: http://www.volcaniclegacybyway.org/

9. Southern California Splendor: Santa Barbara to San Diego

Santa Barbara

Southern California provides great weather to explore any time of the year, with sandy beaches, surf spots, and palm trees lining the sidewalks. The 200-mile stretch of Highway 101 and Interstate 5 that connects Santa Barbara and San Diego is a great way to experience this warm-weather region of the country.

Mission Santa Barbara is a great place to grab some architectural and cultural flavor of Santa Barbara. The area is filled with many top hiking trails, beach resorts, and fun things to do with the family.

Cities like Beverly Hills, Long Beach, and Irvine all comprise the major metropolitan areas south of Santa Barbara and surrounding Los Angeles, each providing unique cultures and places to visit.

Farther south, near the U.S./Mexico border, San Diego offers even more family-friendly things to do. With an average annual temperature of around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, one of the most popular attractions in San Diego is the 14,000-acre Balboa Park complex featuring multiple museums, botanical gardens, and the world-famous San Diego Zoo.

Accommodation:

10. Experience the Willamette Valley of Oregon

State Capitol in Salem

Surrounding the Interstate 5 corridor and Willamette River in northern Oregon, the Willamette Valley is well known for its fertile soil and culturally rich places to visit. It's home to Oregon's largest cities, including Portland, Eugene, and the state capital of Salem.

Fun things to do line this entire region, from the western Cascade slopes to a wide range of agricultural attractions and tours. Summer in the Willamette Valley encourages car rides with the top down, and throughout the shoulder seasons, this scenic region features dazzling displays of spring flowers and fall foliage.

11. Travel the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway in Central Oregon

Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway

The 66-mile Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway departs from the high-desert town of Bend. From its arid surroundings, the byway climbs into the Central Cascades and into a world of alpine splendor. With prominent views of postcard summits like Mt. Bachelor, Broken Top, and South Sister, the byway does well to define Oregon's mountain style.

The route is inaccessible in the winter between mid-November and May. Coming from Bend, the byway begins as Century Drive (Oregon Route 372), where it enters the Deschutes National Forest. Todd Lake is one of the first alpine lakes encountered, followed by many more.

At least a dozen beautiful lakes line the entire route. And much of the recreation centers around these icy-cold bodies of water. Beaches, marinas, and picnic areas line several of the shores, and all cater to activities like fishing and hiking. Lava Lake offers a particularly interesting stop, as does Little Lava Lake, which provides the source for the Deschutes River.

More Related Articles on PlanetWare.com

imageCalifornia Destinations: Many of the best places to visit in California can be found on road trips. Some of the national parks in California you may want to tack on to these trips are Redwoods National and State Parks and Joshua Tree National Park. For an extra special vacation, the top romantic getaways in California range from seaside resorts to the rolling hills of Sonoma County.

imageOregon Exploring: Oregon is home to adventure, and whether it's top-rated waterfalls, hot springs, or hiking trails, it's fun to explore Oregon at any time of the year. For a mix of city culture and natural appeal, the top-rated attractions in Oregon include places to visit in Portland, along the coast, and at Crater Lake National Park.

imageWashington Wonders: Including stops in Seattle and adventures on the Olympic Peninsula, theattractions in Washington are only limited by the time you can spend exploring. For some real adventure in this rugged state, both the top-rated hiking trails and best campgrounds in Washington provide epic places to explore the day and spend the night.

Источник: https://www.planetware.com/usa/top-rated-west-coast-usa-road-trips-us-ca-475.htm

Is Texas East Coast or West Coast?

The debate of East Coast vs West Coast will never end as people compare the music, food, cities, weather, way of life and even accents between the two sides to the United States. Texas is a large state and has coastline so is it East Coast or West Coast?

Texas is neither West Coast nor East Coast – the U.S. Census Bureau places it in the South Region and it is in the Central timezone. Geographically, it can be argued to be East Coast due to its Gulf of Mexico coastline, but culturally it is much closer to the West Coast.

To find out exactly what makes Texas East Coast, West Coast or neither, we'll have to dive into the details.

Is Texas on the East Coast geographically?

Proponents of Texas being an East Coast state will usually go for the Geography argument as the main argument for which coast Texas should belong to.

Texas is a huge state and has a long coastline that runs all the way from Louisiana to the east to the border with Mexico in the south. There's amazing beaches, long National and State parks along the barrier islands and major cities like Galvestson and Corpus Christi along this coast.

The Gulf of Mexico is technically classified as a ocean basin and a sea of the Atlantic ocean which is the ocean sitting along the east coast of the United States, separating it from Europe and Africa.

This, some people would say, is irrefutable proof of the fact that Texas is in fact an East Coast State. The state has a coast and it faces east, sharing the same ocean as other east coast states.

Another popular geographical argument that frequently comes up is that Texas is east of the Continental Divide, thereby placing it in the eastern part of the country. Whether you believe that to be a valid way of splitting up the states into East and West Coasts is up to you!

How are East Coast and West Coast actually defined?

If Geography was the only definitive way to determine things like East Coast and West Coast definitions, this question would have a very short and simple answer.

The good news is, the definition of East and West Coast is usually a fair bit more complicated depending on what you use as the basis for making that determination.

Wikipedia, Cambridge Dictionary and even the most upvoted answer on the Urban Dictionary website all agree that the East Coast definition covers the Eastern Seabord states from Maine to Florida only. Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, which all have coastlines along the Gulf are not included.

At the same time, the definitions of the West Coast by all of the above agree to include only California, Oregon and Washington State.

It might now sound like the issue is resolved and clearly Texas is neither West Coast, nor East Coast if you use the dictionary definitions of what the two terms actually mean and which states they include.

But then again, ask someone from Vermont, West Virginia or the District of Columbia whether they consider themselves to be East Coast and you can see how the technical definition can get murky. By the same token, Nevada and Arizona are definitely not West Coast.

Less strict definitions of the coasts focus on the industry, culture, food, climate and even the style of rap music so could thees shed a bit more light on whether Texas is part of either of the two Coasts?

Is Texas actually more West Coast than East Coast?

If you start with food, then Texas continues feeling distinctly East Coast. The famous Texas barbecue comes in different styles and flavors and BBQ is a Deep South culinary tradition with the Carolinas arguably the original and most famous states for their unique ways of grilling meat.

In this sense, Texas is very much an East Coast state.

But then consider things like the climate, way of life, music and even industry and you may just change your mind.

East Coast states in New England and all the way down to Virginia have strong seasonal climates with hot summers and freezing cold snowy winters. Sure, the Carolinas, Georgia and Florida are exceptions, but that's the overall East Coast feel.

West Coast is famous for t-shirt weather all year round with occasional drizzle marking the arrival of winter. A glass of wine on the veranda in your shorts is how you spend a February weekend in San Diego.

In this respect, Texas feels a lot more West Coast than East Coast. There might be a day or two in the entire year when you hit freezing temperatures and it might feel icy, but generally the weather ranges from warm and pleasant through to mighty hot which aligns it a lot more with states to its west rather than east.

In recent years Texas has become a hub for tech companies and innovation centers. Austin is the fastest growing city in the country, fueled by huge investment in the tech sector and underpinned by its large university population.

Some of the biggest tech companies in the world including Rackspace, HostGator and HomeAway have recently grown in Texas and giants such as Google and Microsoft have expanded their presence in Austin's Silicon Hills and other cities across the state.

With the East Coast being known for its finance and bricks and mortar industries and Silicon Valley, Seattle and Los Angeles pioneering technology, Texas feels a lot more West Coast than East Coast when you look at it this way too.

How Texas is neither West Coast nor East Coast

It may be a good conversation among friends or you might find yourself genuinely trying to figure out whether Texas is an East Coast or West Coast state.

However, just take a look at the map of the United States and find the huge state of Texas slap bang in the middle, in the south of the country. Does every state have to be part of either the East or West Coast? If so, where does Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas fit in?

Most will agree that there is a large number of states in the central part of the USA that are neither East Coast nor West Coast. Whether you look at culture, geography or any other measure, the United States is such a vast and rich country, you don't have to pigeon hole every part into one of just two camps.

Country and Blues music dominate in Texas, so the distinction between rap styles and cultures doesn't apply.

In fact, Texas don't see themselves as part of any kind of group of states. The Lone Star State moniker is no accident and Texas has long toyed with the idea of going at it alone outside of the union, although this train of thought never gets substantial public support.

If you're trying to figure out whether Texas is East Coast or West Coast, perhaps the correct answer is that Texas is neither and is actually part of a one state member club called Texas Coast.

Источник: https://lazytrips.com/blog/is-texas-east-coast-or-west-coast

INTA represented on the US Pacific Coast
"INTA Goes West"

An urban and territorial revolution continues on the USA Pacific Coast and for sharing experience and expertise of our international network of cities’s practitioners, we have installed a representative office in Los Angeles, California. Christian Grusq, President of « Diplomacy and Sustainable Development » and as Director on INTA’s Board is the CEO.

To fix part of this revolution Christian Grusq recalls in the following text the mains highlights of West Coast urbanization.

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Pacific Coast of the United States – an urban laboratory !

Beyond the Appalachians, it always seemed, from the first pioneers, that utopia, as the perfect happyness, was in the West. As elsewhere, we are in the century of cities, economy’s engine : urban life, not without difficulties, remains rich in economic and social opportunities. What about urban population’s happiness on US Pacific Coast ?

Areas of influence

USA could be understood through 3 main zones of influences: Eastern, Central and West, and with particularities on Southern states in the Gulf of Mexico, and on the border states with Canada.
The US West and Pacific Coast (almost 811.00 Mi2), concentrated in the four coastal states, California - Oregon - Washington and Alaska, 52 millions inhabitants ,in which, like all other regions, maximum are living in urban areas.
These four coastal states maintain relations of influence and economics interdependence with other states that makes American West, as Idaho, Nevada, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico and even Guam and Hawaii islands.
It's across this large area of ​​more than 72 million people we have to understand these areas and the problems related to their increasing urbanization

The promise of new sea routes to the West Coast

Still, and always on the West Coast, another revolution, born from climate change effects, with fairly similar players, is running in Alaska. Global warming is promising new sea routes and access to huge reserves of energy, hitherto inaccessibles, with necessary urbanization promises and creation of new business premises.

The increase in the urban population

The expected increase of 80 millions people across inside the entire US territory by 2050, 60 millions will be living in urban areas. From 2000 to 2010, US urban population had increase by over 12%, exceeding the overall national growth rate, that is only of 9.5% over the same period. After New York and before Chicago, Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim region is the second most populous region, with over 12 millions inhabitants.
The newly urbanized land area increased by over 25% since 1996. This increase is particularly due to Los Angeles - San Diego megalopolis. And the latest driving region stretch from Portland to Seattle. Under the pressure of rapid urbanization, the rural-urban linkages find their importance, and it is mainly the states in the Northwest, Oregon and Washington, who experience the most advanced political mastery and accompanying urban sprawl and sustainable urban development.

The crisis of urban model

During the first third of the 20th century, the rise of the automobile pushes the middle class to leave urban areas, a phenomenon accentuated during the 1950s, with the appearance of motorway networks. This ever increasing urban sprawl will gradually ruin downtowns weakening local fiscal resources and leading municipalities in the 1970s to engage in neighborhood renewal to attract new residents.
Thus US cities will restructure around the centers vested in the trade and service sector, as a very recognizable vertical urbanism, « downtowns » or « Central Business Districts (CBD) ». Then the town will grow in successive layers around this center, with intermediate deprived areas, shared more or less successful industries, ghettos and habitats for middle class and the « suburbs ».
The « suburbs », spread mainly suburban cities, have become the main landscape of American cities, where small shopping centers, service facilities, small industrial areas, developed on acres in absence of any recognizable center. Rural areas, already hard hit by the suburbs phenomenon, have also been progressively urbanized as and when planning highways. Thus were formed the « edges cities », on urban cores outskirts of cities.

The awareness of the difficulties of the model

The crisis of this urban model is inside the difficulty to arrange a vast and sparse territory, with less tax revenue in the centers and the impoverishment of the central districts. The urbanized parts began to suffer from a lack of equipment and substantial pollution due to the necessary use of the automobile. The saturation of access roads to the major road network has joined the environmental issues, especially those related to water and air quality. This phenomenon has worsened with the development of city networks forming a megapolitain together, as between San Diego to San Francisco via Los Angeles.

The new priority Environmental Planning

The United States give priority to the development of more sustainable and inclusive communities aware that they directly contribute to strengthening the economy to sustainable prosperity, while using more efficient energy and protecting natural environment and health.
The coordination of policies aimed to improve transportation choices, quality of air and water, clean energy supply, public health and increase climate resilience. Sustainable development is a key principle that must articulate discussion on environmental planning in urban areas and must succeed in reconciling :
That a city has its own metabolism, by wich it absorbs the necessary ingredients to its existence and purge itself of which is harmful to it,
Therefore, that natural areas conservation is important, especially in sensitive areas and with high ecological value.

The birth of new governance linked to the digital economy

Today, all major players in the digital economy (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, etc.) are the ones that are currently developing new urban concepts to streamline costs, protect the environment, etc.
Economically, those companies have financial resources that seem limitless as they are experiencing much higher growth than many countries themselves over the world.
More effective also because they have knowledge at every moment of our precise location, what we are doing, how we consume, and those transnational companies seem to be the only ones that can provide concrete answers to our questions on improving our life  framework.
Moreover, they are the only economics actors seeking to urbanize areas for innovation, with total freedom of action, whether airports or floating platforms in international waters.
They are already, in fact, the city of the future key players, attracting talents of the new « creative class » new gold and new blood that future cities will compete.

Political developments in connection with the "uberisation" of society

In the spirit of these global companies, this must be understood as « political projects » to reorganize the governance of cities and, by extension, to rethink the political and economic powers. The question now arises here is whether « uberisation » the city built as a new form of citizen « crowdfunding » enable everyone to participate in the development where they live. Topics as challenges are multiples.
And it is on this area of ​​the United States, the West Coast, which focuses this revolution.

Источник: https://inta-aivn.org/en/communities-of-competence/about-2/us-west-coast

Otherworldly natural landscapes, dynamic cities, relaxing spa resorts and beachfront escapes…there is something to that “West Coast, Best Coast” saying. And with such variety of scenery within reach, there are plenty of options for extended long weekend trips on the West Coast. Here are a few of our favorite places, all within an easy drive or flight from major West Coast hubs.

Contact Indagare for assistance planning a customized weekend getaway.

From Los Angeles

PALM SPRINGS & JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK

Photo by Elizabeth Harvey, courtesy Indagare

Photo by Elizabeth Harvey, courtesy Indagare

This desert oasis has been a beloved getaway since Hollywood’s golden years, and today Palm Springs remains the perfect all-season escape.

Where to stay: Options include the adults-only L’Horizon Resort and Spa, a 1952 hotel that was transformed into a premiere luxury hideaway; the hip and low-key Arrive, with a youthful ambience and deep connection to the cool zeitgeist of the modern Coachella Valley; and the Colony Palms Hotel, a bohemian boutique hotel with Moroccan-inspired décor.

What to do:Visit Sunnylands, the 200-acre estate of philanthropist Walter Annenberg. Guided tours are the only way to enter the historic house (reserve in advance), but no tickets are necessary to explore the Impressionism-inspired gardens. East of town, the trails (and whimsical flora) of Joshua Tree National Park beckon.

Where to eat: The bustling Birba is a go-to for an al fresco meal, thanks to its large outdoor patio. Head here for top-notch pizza, homemade pasta and Thursday night live music. For the best brunch in town, don’t miss Norma’s.

Driving Distance from Los Angeles: About two hours, although traffic can vary.

MONTECITO

A-Listers like Oprah Winfrey and Ellen DeGeneres own homes in this community about five miles from Santa Barbara—and now there’s a stunning new place to spend the night.

Photo courtesy Rosewood Miramar Beach

Photo courtesy Rosewood Miramar Beach

Where to stay: Set on 16 acres sandwiched between the beach and the mountains, Rosewood Miramar Beach (an Indagare Index hotel) has a scallop-shaped pool with cabanas, six restaurants and a Goop-branded boutique.

What to do: Check out Lotusland, a 37-acre estate where the late opera star Madame Ganna Walska created her own personal (and eccentric) Eden. Advanced reservations for tours are a must.

Where to eat: Jeannine’s Restaurant & Bakery is a favorite for breakfast, thanks to fresh-baked pastries, delicious challah French toast and classic egg dishes.

Driving Distance from Los Angeles:Around two hours

From San Francisco

NAPA & SONOMA

California’s preeminent wine regions are both idyllic destinations where days are spent visiting wineries, biking the winding roads and savoring incredible food. Napa is the elegant, more exclusive option, with some of the most awarded restaurants. Sonoma, meanwhile, is more laid-back and can feel less sceney.

The view from Quintessa. Photo by Peter Schlesinger, courtesy Indagare

The view from Quintessa. Photo by Peter Schlesinger, courtesy Indagare

Where to stay: In Napa, the current talk of the town is the Four Seasons Napa Valley, in Calistoga, which will welcome its first guests later this fall. Expect spacious rooms with fireplaces and vineyard views, an on-site winery and two pools (one for families). Meadowood, long an Indagare member favorite, has reopened its southern portion, after much of the property was destroyed in wildfires. Nearby, the equally luxeAuberge du Soleil offers a relaxing romantic escape, with its outdoor pool looking out over the valley below.

In Sonoma, the new Montage Healdsburg opened in January 2021, with a massive spa, dreamy pool and California-fresh dining. For an option in town, the sophisticated MacArthur Place has handsome accommodations within walking distance to the shops and restaurants of downtown Sonoma.

What to do: Taste the fruit of the vine, of course. Some of the top vineyards include Calistoga’s historic Schramsberg Vineyards (known for its sparkling wines), Quintessa in St. Helena (which makes organic, biodynamic vintages) and the 100 percent solar-powered Frog’s Leap. Over in Sonoma, there are even more options, although crowd-favorite Scribe is still closed to non-members due to Covid still. 

Where to eat:French Laundry continues to be one of the world’s most lauded restaurants, and makes for a fabulous, pretense-free dinner experience. Reservations can be hard to come by.

Driving Distance from San Francisco: Under two hours

BIG SUR & CARMEL

Vying with Italy’s Amalfi Coast for most gorgeous stretch of shoreline, Big Sur, just south of the beachy arts colony Carmel, is on many travelers’ must-see list. And it just happens to be an easy (and jaw-droppingly gorgeous) drive south from San Francisco.

Courtesy Indagare

Courtesy Indagare

Where to stay: Seemingly suspended over the Pacific,Post Ranch Inn is a serene and romantic escape that blends into its hillside surroundings, and looks out (through enormous window) to the ocean below. Across Highway 1, Ventana Big Sur is a woodsier experience (there’s even glamping), though no less luxurious. 

What to do: Part of the magic is just driving Highway 1, a road so stunning that HBO’s Big Little Lies used it throughout the series even though it’s miles away from the show’s setting in Monterey. The area has several state parks, each with great trails and scenic overlooks, which can make for incredible picnic spots. Indagare can help arrange for specialist guides to craft the ideal hiking itinerary for your group (with add-ons like photography, food foraging and surf lessons).

Where to eat:Big Sur Bakery is a must-stop lunch spot along the road, with a rustic façade that makes its impressive cuisine all the more surprising. Lunches here showcase seasonal comfort cuisine with local produce (currently closed for dinner).

Driving Distance from San Francisco: Under three hours on the fastest route, with options to spend more time on Highway 1 bringing it to around three and half hours

Related: 5 Best U.S. Road Trips

LAKE TAHOE

Lake Tahoe is not only a winter wonderland for the West Coast ski set, but an easy getaway any time of year—perfect for a long weekend as well.

Courtesy Indagare

Courtesy Indagare

Where to stay: Indagare members often opt for a house rental around Lake Tahoe. For resorts, the Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe is a favorite for skiers. In the mountains of Truckee, on the north shores of Lake Tahoe, this lodge-like property has ski-in, ski-out access to Northstar. Those looking for direct frontage on Lake Tahoe should consider Edgewood Tahoe. The resort has a contemporary design, with a fabulous outdoor pool (open year-round), as well as a 18-hole George and Tom Fazio-designed golf course. In the winter, Heavenly Ski Area is just a few minutes away.

What to do: Summertime sees hiking, biking and—of course—plenty of time on the water, either swimming or with a boat charter. Come winter, skiing and snowboarding take centerstage.

Where to eat: In Truckee, Trokay is a fine-dining, tasting-menu restaurant with a relaxed ambience and a serious pedigree: husband-and-wife owners John and Nyna Weatherson decamped to Tahoe following careers as chef de partie at New York’s Daniel (John) and head cheesemonger at Murray’s Cheese.

Driving Distance from San Francisco: Three-plus hours to either Truckee or South Lake Tahoe

From Seattle & Portland

WILLAMETTE VALLEY, OREGON

Courtesy The Allison Inn & Spa

Courtesy The Allison Inn & Spa

Restaurants (and oenophiles) across the country have, finally, begun to pay close attention to the wines coming out of Oregon’s Willamette Valley. The region is even more laid-back than Sonoma, with more than 500 wineries making exceptional Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and more.

Where to stay: The best hotel in the area is The Allison Inn & Spa, on 35 acres of manicured gardens and rolling vineyards. It’s an ideal home base for exploring the wineries, but the hotel itself is a destination in its own right, with an emphasis on wellness and reconnecting to nature, thanks to a 15,000-square-foot spa.

Where to eat: Jory, the farm-to-table restaurant at The Allison, is one of the Willamette Valley’s top restaurants for a special occasion. Its seasonal, farm-to-table menus showcase the wine region’s bounty.

What to do: Like in California Wine Country, days in the Willamette Valley move slowly, with relaxed tastings at multiple top wineries. Some of our favorites include Sokol BlosserPonzi Vineyards and Solena.

Driving Distance from Seattle and Portland: Three and a half hours from Seattle; 35 minutes from Portland

Related: The Perfect Weekend in Portland

From Vancouver

VANCOUVER ISLAND, BRITISH COLUMBIA

Vancouver Island is rich enough as a region to entertain you for a week, but also makes a superb destination as a long weekend. Its beaches and rainforest trails are great for kids, while its sheer remoteness makes it unbelievably romantic.

Courtesy Clayoquot Wilderness Lodge

Courtesy Clayoquot Wilderness Lodge

Where to stay: The area is home to two refined wilderness lodges: the secluded, family-run Nimmo Bay Resort promises a remote and extremely private retreat with only nine cabins, while Clayoquot Wilderness Resort (an Indagare Index hotel)is a tented camp offering a unique wilderness experience with sublime food and service in an unforgettable setting.

What to do: Adventures range from bear-viewing and whale-watching to guided kayaking and boat tours of the Broughton Archipelago.

Distance from Vancouver:To reach Nimmo Bay, take a one-hour flight to Port Hardy, and then a seaplane or helicopter ride to the resort (half-hour charter flight). Clayoquot has set guest arrival dates of Thursdays and Sundays and schedules an afternoon sea plane to collect incoming guests from Vancouver Airport. The flight is about an hour and is a gorgeous aerial introduction to the region.

Contact Indagare for assistance planning a customized weekend getaway.

– Brooke Katz on September 15, 2021

Источник: https://www.indagare.com/destinations/north-america/california/articles/west-coast-weekend-getaways

Top 10 Places to Visit on the West Coast, USA

The West Coast of the USA, like the East Coast, has its own unique vibe and character with plenty of wonderful places to visit.

Also known as the Pacific Coast, this area is rich in amazing views, world-famous destinations and landmarks, and attractions that the whole family can enjoy.

There are many wonderful places to explore along the West Coast of America, so if you are planning a visit or touring this area, it is well worth knowing what some of the top places of interest to visit are.

Here is a look at some of the most popular places to visit on the West Coast.

Attractions on the West Coast of the US

Table of Contents [Show]
  1. Discovery Park, Washington
  2. Seattle Aquarium, Washington
  3. Disneyland, California
  4. Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, California
  5. Las Vegas Strip
  6. Yosemite National Park
  7. Sunset Boulevard, California
  8. Hoover Dam, Arizona, Nevada
  9. Golden Gate Bridge, California
  10. Mount Rainier National Park, Washington

Affiliate links may be used in this post. I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you if you use my affiliate link.

Discovery Park in Seattle spans over 500 acres and is an incredible place to take in fascinating wildlife as well as immerse yourself in natural beauty. You can also enjoy a variety of recreational activities when you visit such as some great walking trails. There are some spectacular views to enjoy at this park, including fabulous mountain views. There are also protected tidal beaches, sand dunes, and woodland, enabling you to enjoy a diverse and breathtaking environment.

Address: 3801 Discovery Park Blvd, Seattle, WA 98199

Website:www.seattle.gov

2: Seattle Aquarium, Washington

Seattle Aquarium, Washington

If you are travelling with your family and have kids, this is a great place to stop off at for a fascinating day out with plenty for everyone to enjoy. The aquarium can be found on Elliot Bay Waterfront, Pier 39 in Seattle, Washington, and boasts some wonderful exhibits that are both great to see and educational. The displays and exhibits can be enjoyed by both children and adults, which makes this the perfect stop-off for families.

Accomodation: Where to stay in Seattle

Address: 1483 Alaskan Way, Seattle, WA 98101

Website:www.seattleaquarium.org

Also Read: 25 Best Aquariums in the United States

3: Disneyland, California

Disneyland, California

If you are visiting or passing through California then you should make sure you take a trip to Anaheim to enjoy the magical wonders of Disneyland. Again, this is the perfect place if you are travelling with children and will provide plenty of entertainment as well as an unforgettable trip for those who have never been before. There are many attractions, rides, shows, and of course character to be found here making it a must-visit place on the West Coast of America.

Address: 1313 Disneyland Dr, Anaheim, CA 92802

Website:disneyland.disney.go.com

4: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, California

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom, California

Whether you are just looking for fun and entertainment or whether you are into white knuckle rides and adrenaline fueled thrills, a trip to Six Flags in Vallejo, California. This exciting theme park covers 135 acres and is brimming with fun and excitement for people of all ages to enjoy. You can enjoy a fabulous day out with the kids when you come to this theme park, which is one of the most exciting in the area.

Address: 1001 Fairgrounds Dr, Vallejo, CA 94589

Website:www.sixflags.com

5: Las Vegas Strip

Las Vegas Strip

If you want to enjoy a unique, memorable and incredible entertainment experience, a trip to the Las Vegas Strip is something that you should not miss out on. With its vibrant neon lights, sprawling casino resorts, incredible nightlife and fabulous entertainment, this is a place that will really enhance your exploration of the West Coast. Whether you decide to explore the hotels and casinos, catch a show from world class entertainers, enjoy a night of partying, or simply relax with a meal at one of the many eateries, you should definitely make sure you take a stroll along the strip.

Address: Las Vegas, NV

Website:www.lasvegas.com

6: Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park

If natural beauty, adventure, and the outdoors are all things that appeal to you then you should make sure you pay a visit to Yosemite National Park. Visited by millions of people very year, this was designated a World Heritage Site back in the 1980s. With its deep valleys, waterfalls and fascinating wildlife, this is a wonderful place to explore whether you are travelling alone, with a partner, or with your whole family.

Address: Yosemite National Park, CA 95389

Website:www.nps.gov

Also Read: Top 10 Things to Do in Yosemite National Park

The famous Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles is definitely worth a visit if you enjoy exciting nightlife, great shopping or simply the chance to take in some famous establishments and even spot s celebrity or two. You can enjoy having a bite to eat and a drink as you people watch, or you can explore the boulevard, do some shopping, and take in the many well known venues that are located here such as the Viper Club and a variety of movie studios.

Address: Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, California

Website:www.seeing-stars.com

Those looking for a memorable and fascinating experience will be delighted with a trip to Hoover Dam, which will definitely be one to remember. This is an awe-inspiring experience and the dam is located between Arizona and Nevada. You can choose from a number of different tours to suit your preferences including the power plant tour and the dam tour.

Address: Hoover Dam Access Road, Boulder City, NV 89109

9: Golden Gate Bridge, California

Golden Gate Bridge, California

A trip to the vibrant city of San Francisco will enable you to take in the striking, breathtaking and historic Golden Gate Bridge, which receives many visitors each year. You can enjoy not only seeing this iconic bridge up close and personal but also taking in some wonderful views. In addition, you can take the opportunity to explore the city itself including the attractive bay area with its recreational activities and wide variety of facilities.

Address: Lincoln Boulevard, near Doyle Drive and Fort Point, San Francisco, CA 94129

Website:www.goldengatebridge.org

The iconic Mount Rainier is a towering volcano that has become an iconic landmark and a key part of the Washington landscape. This is a place where you can enjoy diverse and striking landscapes, stunning scenery, fascinating wildlife and plant life, and an overall educational experience that is ideal for people of all ages to enjoy. The beauty and diversity of this national park attracts many people each year and when you visit you can learn more about its fascinating history as well as taking in the awe-inspiring surroundings.

Address: 55210 238th Ave. East, Ashford, WA 98304

Website:www.visitrainier.com

Источник: https://www.attractionsofamerica.com/thingstodo/top-10-places-of-interest-to-visit-along-the-west-coast-usa.php

The 20 Greatest Beach Towns in America

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Picture the perfect beach. Some details may vary from person to person: Maybe you’re envisioning bike wheels thunking along a boardwalk, or traipsing through dunes to find the ideal patch of sand. Maybe you're picturing surly hot-dog vendors and teenage taffy pullers, or butter dripping off a lobster roll onto your towel. Regardless, it's almost certain that your vision includes warm sand, blue waters, and a vibe that can only be described as “chill.”

The US has beaches for every taste. And the towns that crop up around these blissed-out beaches—from New England to New Jersey, from California to Michigan—are world-class destinations unto themselves. The 20 below represent the best of the best, places where those sands give way to dreamy towns, where the locals vibe with the visitors, and the food and drink become the stuff of endless summer memories. Pack extra sunscreen.

Asbury Park, New Jersey

In the not-so-distant past, Asbury Park was best known as a dated Springsteen reference—a once-great tourist destination turned as stale as months-old saltwater taffy. The tide has shifted. AP's iconic boardwalk vibes have now made way for a "Brooklyn on the beach" feel, an energy that extends into the city's legendary (and recently returned!) music scene. Want to drink? Asbury Festhalle and Biergarten is on point for al fresco imbibing, holding rank alongside the always-lively Johnny Mac's and the delightfully divey Bond Street Bar atop the list of the 50-plus bars in town. Wanna try out vintage pinball? The Silverball Museum Arcade has more than 600 machines. A bustling art scene, a longstanding LGBTQ community, and (obviously) a beautiful beach make Asbury Park worth fully greeting again, boss.

Must eat/drink: For a solid middle ground between fancy and beachy-casual, check out Moonstruck for a Mediterranean menu in a classic Jersey shore Victorian home. Asbury Park has one of the most low-key yet top-notch pizzerias in the country at Talula's, and Pop's Garage is a cheap-as-hell beachside favorite, slinging two-for-$6 tacos and $3 happy hour beers.

Don't leave without: Perusing—and posing in front of—the many murals of Sunset Pavilion. It's a perfect (macro?) dose of AP's art community, and ideal beachside Instagram fodder. —Wil Fulton

Nags Head, North Carolina

Nags Head has become the de-facto name for a power trio of beach towns in the Outer Banks: Nags Head, Kill Devil Hills, and Kitty Hawk. A haven for East Coast surfers, Nags Head proper stretches for 11 miles of beach and sound, which includes the tallest sand dune on the East Coast at Jockey’s Ridge State Park (before it sets, scramble up to the top and catch the sun sinking beneath the horizon). Jennette's Pier is among the best spots to people-watch in this laid-back slice of the Atlantic, where fresh seafood from old-school family restaurants is unparalleled. Aviation geeks should check out the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills, then lope up the 90-foot hill where the Brothers Wright conducted their glider tests. And in Kitty Hawk, the canals crisscrossing the village make for excellent kayak adventures.

Must eat/drink: Have them build you a colossal biscuit sandwich at Biscuits N’ Porn (yes, you read that right), or slurp down a dozen or so raw oysters at I Got Your Crabs (again, yes), where they pop open the bivalves right in front of you.

Don’t leave without: Taking a break from the beach and stretching your legs with a hike through the surprisingly hilly Nags Head Woods Preserve, which boasts a full 1,400 acres of pristine maritime forest. —Jim Trotman

Saugatuck/Douglas, Michigan

Saugatuck is to western Michigan what Provincetown is to Cape Cod. It is thoroughly a tourist's beach town—invaded in the summer—but like many of Michigan’s best beach towns, its character is impeccably maintained despite the influx of visitors. Nicknamed "The Great Art-Doors," Saugatuck—along with its sister city across the river, Douglas—has gained a reputation as Michigan's premiere gaycation spot. It’s also a destination for the arts and antiques, thanks to ties to the Ox Bow School of Art, the Saugatuck Center for the Arts, art galleries like the Armstrong De-Graaf International Fine Art Gallery, and the Saugatuck Antique Pavilion.

Must eat/drink: Start your morning off at Uncommon Coffee Roasters, a hip coffee house that roasts their own sustainably sourced beans. Hit the Saugatuck Brewing Company's pub for made-from-scratch pub food washed down with a blueberry lemon shandy. For dinner—sorry, "supper"—don’t miss out on the Southern hospitality from James Beard Award semi-finalist chef Matthew Millar at The Southerner. End with a nightcap at the New Holland Spirits Tasting Room.

Don’t leave without: The beach of choice here is Oval Beach, one of the best freshwater beaches in the US. Climb the 282 steps to the top of Mount Baldhead (a giant sand dune, actually) for a gorgeous overlook of Oval Beach and the surrounding dunes. —Nicole Rupersburg

Cannon Beach, Oregon

At once abuzz and sleepy, Cannon Beach is home to one of Oregon’s most recognizable icons: Haystack Rock, which rises from the Pacific like the centerpiece of a titan’s rock garden. That Goonies-famous landmark might be the postcard star, but tiny Cannon—with its dog-thronged beaches, smattering of restaurants, wealth of breweries, and overabundance of galleries—is bursting at the seams with treasures. This is a highly walkable slice of West Coast pleasures, where the waterfront is dotted with cabin rentals and micro hotels that beg for extended stays. Here, you'll feel like a local after all of five minutes.

Must eat/drink: Get a sampling of the coast’s best breweries all in one place at Cannon Beach Hardware—yes, it’s a hardware store, but also a taproom with fantastic burgers and seafood—then bop over to Ecola Seafood for some fried fish straight off the dory.

Don’t leave without: Taking in a spectacular sunset, be it from the beach with a Dungeness crab cocktail from the aforementioned seafood shack, or overlooking Ecola State Park's Indian Beach after a brisk hike through the thick forest. —Andy Kryza

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Ocean City, Maryland

This Mid-Atlantic shore town is forever trapped in the '80s, and that’s why people love it. The vast majority of motels, hotels, and rental properties around town sprouted up in the ‘70s and ‘80s, and nothing—from the outdoor cover band at Seacrets to the French fries at Thrasher’s—seems to have changed. There’s even a cult film, Ping Pong Summer, that encapsulates the '80s-induced nostalgia of a kid’s summer spent on the OC boardwalk. (If you’ve visited OC during Senior Week, maybe you can relate.)

Must eat/drink: Do as the locals do and add Maryland’s Old Bay seasoning and some vinegar to your bucket of Thrasher's french fries. Ocean City is also the birthplace of the Orange Crush, a fresh-squeezed, orange-vodka cocktail that’s mixed with Sprite or 7UP. You can find it at the Harborside Bar and Grill, where the drink was invented, but Marylanders debate who serves the best one. Best bar hop to decide for yourself.

Don’t leave without: Visiting the sprawling outdoor beach bar that is Seacrets, Jamaica, U.S.A. It’s a 5,000 person capacity complex—some call it an adult amusement park—filled with tiki-themed bars, music acts, and a lagoon where waiters serve frozen beverages to patrons on inflatable rafts. —Tim Ebner

Anna Maria Island, Florida

The northernmost of three cozy beach towns on a seven-mile-long island, Anna Maria is packed with so much old-Florida charm—from its sun-faded architecture and ice cream shops to beachside seafood shacks—it’s essentially a 1950s time warp. Outdoor adventurers will be happy with its array of paddle boarding and kayaking tours, plus snorkeling trips to nearby spots like Passage and Egmont Keys, where you can see stingrays, manatees, sharks, and dolphins. But at the end of the day, this is a bonafide sleepy town (the speed limits seldom exceed 35mph), so be prepared to blissfully check out on its pristine, quiet white sand beaches from sunrise to spectacular sunset.

Must eat/drink: Grouper sandwiches from the very waters you’ll be looking at from Rod & Reel Pier; anything on the menu (but it should probably be the mullet reuben) from Sandbar since you can literally dip your toes in the sand as you bite into your order.

Don’t leave without: Biking to Bean Point to frolic in the powder white sands of this lesser-known beach located at the northernmost tip of the island. If it wasn't for the sweeping views of Tampa Bay and the iconic Sunshine Skyway bridge, you’d think you were in Castaway. —Liz Newman

Haleiwa, Oahu, Hawaii

This North Shore surf town is not not touristy, but it is your entry point to some of Oahu’s most stunning beaches, like surfer paradise Sunset Beach or the sea turtle haven of Laniakea. Parking sucks, so explore Haleiwa’s charming main drag on foot. The road is lined with colorful old buildings, an architectural nod to North Shore’s sugar industry past, and most of the boutiques, art galleries, and eateries are locally owned. Hawaii’s oldest surf and dive shop, the waterfront Surf N Sea, has groovy Haleiwa-emblazoned apparel, while Aloha General Store is overflowing with island-themed tchotchkes (even if you do not want tchotchkes, stop in for the renowned shaved ice/ice cream bowls).

Must eat/drink: Food trucks park themselves around town daily, including plenty of the North Shore’s famous shrimp trucks. But don't sleep on some of the world's best mobile poke, either.

Don’t leave without: Hitting the Haleiwa Farmers Market on Thursday afternoons. You can peruse locally grown produce and artisan-made crafts and nosh on fish tacos, mac nut-filled baked goods, and a wildly good honey and fruit slushy you’ll wish you could find on the mainland. —Lizbeth Scordo

Rehoboth, Delaware

Rehoboth has a long-established LGBTQ community, and you’ll spot plenty of buff dudes strutting along the beach in supernaturally small speedos. But this upscale retreat on the Atlantic is fun for all, with its classic boardwalk, amusement park, and free summer concerts. While most of the youths and boozy beach parties keep to Dewey Beach three miles down the road, Rehoboth boasts the better bar and restaurant scene. It’s also a haven for craft beer nerds: Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione can often be seen skateboarding around town, and his flagship brewpub and restaurant, Chesapeake & Maine, is one of the first signs you’ve made it to the beach.

Must eat/drink: Local favorites include The Cultured Pearl for sushi with a rooftop view, or Henlopen City Oyster House for a raw bar spread. Meanwhile, Blue Moon rages into the night, and it’s where you’ll find drag queen competitions and shirtless bartenders serving shots of Fireball.

Don’t leave without: Taking a chill bike ride around Silver Lake, a sleepy neighborhood with waterfront views and ornate million-dollar beach homes you may dream of one day owning. —TE

Rincón, Puerto Rico

Rincón’s Caribbean cred is strong, but its “hang ten” vibes are imported by surfers from all over the world. Waveriders, tourists, and longtime locals alike are drawn to this tropical outpost for some of the hemisphere's best surf and sunsets. Drive along the legendary routes 413 and 4413 and you’ll quickly see why Rincón is catching up to bustling San Juan in popularity: Surfboard-carrying dudes contribute a Boho feel unique to the island; lines of food trucks continue some of the best culinary traditions in Puerto Rico; and there are plenty offerings for active travelers like world-class scuba diving, horseback riding, and whale-spotting.

Must eat/drink: Rincón has plenty of bars for relaxing with a drink, but the beachfront Tamboo Tavern's mojitos are the perfect cure to the ills of the world.

Don’t leave without: Scuba-diving around Desecheo, a small, uninhabited island paradise located just 12 miles off the coast of Rincón and home to a kaleidoscopic seascape of wildlife. —Norbert Figueroa

Tybee Island, Georgia

You’ll find Tybee just 30 minutes from historic downtown Savannah at the easternmost point of Georgia, a barrier island of wide, sandy beaches and a laid-back vibe with just the right amount of weird. There are plenty of hotels, but the picturesque pastel-colored rental homes with white Bahama shutters and white picket fences will captivate you. What truly sets this tiny, 21-square-mile island apart is its long, funky history. Pop in at a dive bar (Huc-A-Poo’s, Tybee Time, or the Sand Bar), grab a beer, and chat up a local, who will probably be eager to tell you all about the town or nearby Fort Pulaski, a Civil War-era national monument you can explore on bike or foot.

Must eat/drink: For a good, old-fashioned seafood platter on a dock with a water view, head to the Crab Shack. Want something a little more sophisticated? The Deck is technically Tybee’s only beachfront bar/restaurant and serves up juicy shrimp tacos and fresh ceviche.

Don’t leave without: Grabbing an ice cream or an old-fashioned malt at Seaside Sweets and heading to the pier at sundown, keeping watch for sea turtles and their nests throughout the summer. —Allison Ramirez

Santa Barbara, California

The palm tree-lined coast of this bougie SoCal oasis has a Mediterranean flair and a magnificent backdrop of scenic mountains and crystal blue water. Don’t skip the deservedly hyped Urban Wine Trail in the Funk Zone, a span of 10 colorful blocks where converted warehouses and art galleries operate alongside 20 wine tasting rooms (read: wine crawl). On top of all the delicious Mexican food (try Lilly’s Taqueria), Santa Barbara boasts some of the best produce on the West Coast, so hit up the Santa Barbara Public Market, a food lover’s paradise showcasing local food vendors where you can get a little taste of everything under one roof. SoCal visitors can also ditch the car and take the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner for a scenic route that drops you off a stone’s throw away from the ocean.

Must eat/drink: New England clam chowder from Brophy Brothers. It’s creamy, it’s comforting, and it’s chock-full of clams. And while it doesn’t come in a bread bowl, it does come with a sweeping view of the harbor.

Don’t leave without: Grabbing a cocktail and playing a few vintage board games at the Moroccan-themed library bar, Djinn, that just opened inside the Hotel Californian. The Funk Zone-adjacent hideaway also hosts a monthly full moon celebration called HOWL, featuring a DJ and tarot card reader. —Leila Najafi

Ogunquit, Maine

Summer in Maine is a heartbreakingly brief affair, but oh so worth it, if only for three months of pure bliss. And Ogunquit, located right off Route 1 on the southern tip of Vacationland, is the state's summer sweet spot, swelling from a usual population of 1,200 residents to more than 80,000 between May to September. The three-mile sandy beach is consistently ranked one of the country’s best, thanks to warm tides from the Ogunquit River emptying right behind the sand dunes. Pepper in a strong LGBTQ+ community, a walkable main drag of superb eateries and artsy boutiques, and its very own Museum of American Art, and you'll see why “a beautiful place by the sea” is still a fitting translation for Ogunquit from the native Abenaki language.

Must eat/drink: GrabFrench-ified Maine fare at The Crooked Pine, located in a 150-year-old Victorian mansion (don't miss the rooftop lounge), followed by knock-you-over cocktails at alfresco Brix + Brine or a sing-a-long sesh at piano bar The Front Porch.

Don’t leave without: Strolling the Marginal Way, a cliffside path (like a mini version of Sydney’s Bondi-to-Bronte walk) that leads to Perkins Cove, an impossibly photogenic harbor with snazzy seafood joints and galleries. Have a classic rum punch, steamer clams, and the lobster roll of your dreams at Barnacle Billy’s. —Paul Jebara

Folly Beach, South Carolina

The two-dozen bars and restaurants dotting Folly’s main drag, Center Street, welcome the shirtless, shoeless, and thirsty masses on this low-key, six-mile long sandbar. Folly's waves are known for their steep drops, drawing surfers from around the state to the island's "Washout" break. To lose the crowds, both ends of Folly are nature preserves that harbor endangered seabirds, loggerhead turtles, and bottlenose dolphins aplenty. If you've got the stamina to hoof it a half mile beyond where the road ends, the 19th-century, candy cane Morris Island Lighthouse emerges directly from the surf at the island's east end. Its namesake island provides one of Charleston's most iconic views.

Must eat/drink: Bert's Market is a 24/7 staple on the island ("we may doze, but we never close"), and their Wooden Spoon Deli presses a mean panini. By late afternoon, migrate to Surf Bar (temporarily closed, but worth keeping an eye on) for a Painkiller cocktail, or Lowlife Bar where, despite the name, you'll find friendly locals digging into tall drinks and hearty seaside comforts.

Don't leave without: Walking 1,000 feet out over the ocean on the Folly Beach Pier. Grab a cocktail from the open-air bar for the stroll or rent a fishing rod and bait from the onsite tackle shop. —Stratton Lawrence

Paia, Maui, Hawaii

A historic village turned surf town, Paia is—well, everything a tiny Hawaiian surf town should be: funky, bohemian, and blissfully free of gigantic resorts. Most visitors breeze through town on the way to Hana, but sticking around for a night or two at the Paia Inn, mere steps from the sandy shore, has its rewards. (For one, you might see Willie Nelson; according to local lore, he periodically shows up to play an impromptu show.) Browse the art galleries and endearingly hippie-dippie boutiques, take a class at the Maha Yoga & Wellness studio, hit the “secret” clothing-optional beach, or just take advantage of the many prime surfing locales along miles of panoramic coastline. Be sure to visit the crystal clear blue waters and scenic shores of Baldwin Beach Park, just outside town.

Must eat/drink: The plate lunches at Paia Fish Market (order the ono!), shaved ice and poke from Tobi’s Shave Ice, locally grown produce from Mana Foods, and smoothies with bee pollen and super fresh açai bowls from Choice Health Bar.

Don’t leave without: Catching a glimpse of the Hawaiian green sea turtles that make their way to the shores of Ho’okipa Beach like clockwork each day. Ho’okipa is known as the windsurfing capital of the world, and while the intense surf isn’t the best for swimming, it’s fun to watch the pros take on the waves. —Lauren Reichert

Gulf Shores, Alabama

Aside from hosting the supremely fun annual Hangout Music Festival (hopefully returning in 2022), Gulf Shores is very likely the scenic highlight of Alabama, a picturesque mash-up of pastel houses and high-rises. The sand is perfect powdery white and the water is clear and blue, a big reason why this is one of the best destinations on the Gulf Coast. It’s generally cheaper than its Florida counterparts and offers the added bonus of Gulf State Park’s zip lines and near-empty beaches. Plus it’s only a short drive to one of Florida’s weirdest, wildest bars, the legendary Flora-Bama, where you can attend a boozy church service and send up a much-needed prayer for all the Florida Men out there.

Must eat/drink: Anything from Avenue Pub. It’s the kind of creative bar fare you’d expect in a big city gastropub, but in an unassuming waterfront spot.

Don’t leave without: Getting breakfast at Hazel’s Nook. It’s everything a Southern breakfast joint should be, decked out like your grandma’s kitchen. —Matt Meltzer

Wellfleet and Provincetown, Massachusetts

Quintessential vacation wonderland Cape Cod is 77 miles of sandy shoreline, lobster rolls, and Rockwellian towns. Of the latter, few are more adorable than Wellfleet on the Outer Cape, where life is quieter and the pace slower. Marconi Beach, part of the Cape Cod National Seashore, has wide beaches dotted with massive sand dunes. The water is a bit cooler here, and the waves harsher as they roll on from the Atlantic. Bayside at Duck Harbor Beach, the water is warmer and it feels like you’re at the end of the world.

Just a short drive from Wellfleet on Route 6 is Provincetown, at the tip of the cape. P-town is known for its LGBTQ community, but walk down crowded Commercial Street and you’ll see a delightful mix of drag queens, families with kiddos, locals, and a young artsy crowd from all over. Visit one of the many art galleries downtown, duck into the shops, and then hit the Lobster Pot (a favorite of Anthony Bourdain) for some chowdah or Pepe’s Wharf for a lobster roll.

Must eat/drink: Fried clams at Mac’s Seafood. Take Commercial Street through town until you reach the pier overlooking Wellfleet Bay. Order clams and fries at the shack’s take-out window and sit at one of the communal picnic tables in the sand overlooking the harbor and Mayo Beach, a low-key, grassy, bayside spot perfect for swimming and watching the sunset.

Don't leave without: Biking the Cape Cod Rail Trail. The 27-mile bike trail runs from South Wellfleet down to Yarmouth through salt marshes, cranberry bogs, evergreens, and pine forests. It’s completely paved and mostly flat. —Jennifer Mattson

Narragansett, Rhode Island

Tiny but mighty Rhode Island happens to have the best surfing in New England, and the best place to do it is Narragansett. It’s also home to one of the best beach bars in America at the historic Coast Guard House, where views of Narragansett Bay pair well with a platter of oysters and an ice-cold can of—well, take a wild guess. Gansett’s population more than doubles in the summer as surfers, families, and college kids flock to some of the region’s best beaches. The always-lively Narragansett Town Beach offers dramatic views of the “Towers,” the iconic remains of the bygone Victorian-era Narragansett Pier Casino—but if you’d rather skip the admission fees, opt for one of the state beaches like Roger Wheeler.

Must eat/drink: Seafood, le duh. Hit up Aunt Carrie’s clam shack or Iggy’s Doughboys and Chowder House, both classics with dining rooms and takeout windows. They’re not right downtown (a little closer to Point Judith) but absolutely worth the trip.

Don’t leave without: Strolling the seawall along Ocean Road, then grabbing a drink at the Coast Guard House. It’s fun even if the weather isn’t perfect. —MM

Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

Small and quaint x 1000, Carmel-by-the-Sea proudly displays its Spanish colonial roots in the smallest details, from Spanish tilework to cottages seemingly plucked from a fairy tale. Soak up California’s coastal beauty—winding hiking trails, cypress trees, and pristine white sand beaches—as you wander this pleasantly walkable, transportive village where, for two years in the '80s, Clint Eastwood served as mayor. Don’t miss the sun-bathing sea lions at Point Lobos Natural Reserve, or poet Robinson Jeffers’ cottage he built himself, stone-by-stone. If you’re feeling bougie, hit the green at Pebble Beach. Or channel the area’s boho vibes at the Sunset Cultural Center, which typically hosts hundreds of performances a year.

Must eat/drink: Cultura Comida y Bebida is your one-stop shop for bomb Oaxacan fare—think 30+ mezcals and an array of tacos that includes chapulines (toasted grasshoppers).

Don’t leave without: Taking the 17-Mile Drive tour. There are no ugly views on this scenic drive—think dramatic, majestic cliffs, secluded beaches, and magical redwood forests. —Liv Lawson

Virginia Beach, Virginia

Virginia Beach is a destination with two faces. One has long lived as a laid-back, middle-class family summer vacation hub with a crowded boardwalk, high-rise hotels, and endless frozen-custard shops. The other face, which has emerged over the past decade, embraces the growing local arts community in the Vibe Creative District, drawing in a younger crowd that definitely wasn’t traveling to Virginia Beach before, and especially not in the off-season. Suddenly, Virginia Beach is a destination beyond the boardwalkers: Just ask hometown hero Pharrell, whose Something in the Water festival will hopefully return next year.

Must eat/drink: Check out the sustainable food scene at airy Commune and Esoteric, where the dishes (including sky-high burgers) seem made for Instagram. While teens head off to wander the boardwalk, you’ll find a congenial family vibe at Waterman’s Surfside Grill.

Don’t leave without: Partaking in Live! On Atlantic, the annual summer entertainment lineup that is free and open to the public. Magicians, chalk artists, stilt walkers, and other acts take over Atlantic Avenue, endlessly entertaining visitors. —Keryn Means

Ocean Springs, Mississippi

This quirky hamlet on the Gulf has a tiny historic downtown that punches way above its weight. Seemingly every block has a cool bar with live music on a sprawling outdoor patio, interspersed with funky galleries and artists’ studios, independent shops, a giant art museum, and seriously good, inventive restaurants. The streets are lined with live oaks and colorful historic cottages, there’s catfish and barbecue aplenty, and—oh yeah, the beach. The Gulf here is calm, and after you’ve had your fill of culture and nightlife, you can take a paddleboard out to enjoy Mississippi’s natural beauty. Or take a boat out to the barrier islands and see beaches so remote and pristine they’ll make any Floridian jealous.

Must eat/drink:The pioneering gourmet biscuits at The Greenhouse on Porter. This converted greenhouse is doing for biscuits what Voodoo did for donuts, serving up stuff like jalapeño chili biscuits alongside weekly live music and yoga.

Don’t leave without: Getting out on the water. The town is so fun you might forget the beach is even there, but hit Paddles Up on Government Street and find some water-bound expeditions. —Matt Meltzer

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Источник: https://www.thrillist.com/travel/nation/best-beach-towns-in-the-usa
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