West Coast Best Coast - Wintering in SoCal Beach Towns
For the past few winters we have spent quite a bit of time in Southern California. Three years in a row we have returned to San Diego in December and we have already waxed lyrical about our love for SD. This year instead of retreating to the desert in January we decided to spend some time on the coast. I am happy to say since Jan 2nd we have never camped more than 200 yards away from the Pacific Ocean.
It has been challenging because we found ourselves having to cope with an uncharacteristically wet and windy winter. California needs the rain for sure, but boy oh boy - there were days we thought we might have to inflate the kayaks to navigate the campground.
We spent three weeks in Orange County splitting our time between Doheny State Beach in Dana Point and San Clemente State Beach. I have talked before about the OC coast not being my favorite destination but San Clemente is really a great little town with lots of charm and interesting stores, cafes and restaurants. The weather was at its most challenging here, but when it was good, we had a blast.
Partly due to the weather and also the desire for a change of scene, we then relocated up to Malibu Beach RV Park, where we could get some hook-ups and not worry about cloudy days. What an amazing RV park. They have great winter rates which made picking an oceanside spot easy for us. We planned to stay for a week, but couldn't tear ourselves away and stayed for three. The 180 degree views from our site were simply stunning.
We had a few rainy days again here in Malibu but took advantage of our proximity to LA to go see the Space Shuttle at the California Science Center. It was a very cool visit. Malibu itself is very scenic, if a little sleepy. It has expensive restaurants, funky seafood spots and fantastic hiking. We were in Malibu a few years ago and had a few celebrity sightings, but none this time - oh well. The ocean vistas made up for it. It's an interesting piece of coast, go in one direction on Pacific Coast Highway and you are in rugged, wilderness-like shoreline that seems like you are at the end of the world. Head in the other direction and you hit Santa Monica and all that is La-La-Land.
We only have a few more weeks in the Airstream before we start our overseas traveling and we are not sure exactly when we will be back. So I am really grateful that we are spending this time near the water in places that we really enjoy. It has been a great few months of coastal camping. Next up Central Coast; Santa Barbara & San Luis Obispo here we come.