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Sending Off Summer: Our 4 Places From Our California Road Trip

Sending Off Summer: Our 4 Places From Our California Road Trip

Like most, A California road trip with my best friends was always at the top of my bucket list. I dreamed and I planned this mythical trip for months hoping that one day, someone would be crazy enough to do it with me. With a little chat about summer coming to a close and the fear of winter right around the corner, my friends agreed to my crazy idea and we bought our plane tickets with two weeks to spare. And let me tell you, it was everything I hoped it would be. 

If you are like me and have always dreamed of the west coast, I want to share my favorite spots with you and encourage you to head out on the road and let it blow your mind.

Stop 1: Los Angeles

What is a trip to California without exploring the streets of Los Angeles? From the art district to the Hollywood hills, the city is vast and it at times can be overwhelming if you don't know quite where to go. We landed in LA on Tuesday and chatted with some locals to find the best spots. These are our favorites:

Favorite Restaurant: I have narrowed it down to my top two and that was impossibly hard enough. I am a breakfast gal and fell in love with two breakfast joints in the city. The first, The Hart & The Hunter, has the best victorian-chic vibe with their floral couches and vintage pastel plates, the perfect setting for Saturday girls brunch with the yummiest mimosas. We enjoyed the beautifully designed patio on Melrose Avenue. Secondly, I fell in love with Home Restaurant and their whimsical outdoor patio and southwestern flare breakfast. They serve everything from breakfast burritos to red velvet pancakes, all of which are to die for. Favorite Coffee: Alfred Coffee - Hands down my favorite coffee shop in the whole entire world and possibly the most Instagrammed one, for good reason. It's cute, it's cozy, it's delicious and it's a favorite to many celebrities (we had coffee next to Whitney Port!) Favorite Place to Get Drinks: Ace Hotel Rooftop Bar - Well designed and cozy with a bohemian flare. Do yourself a favor and go at sunset to get the most amazing view of the city. Favorite View: The Hollywood Hills - It sounds very typical and touristy but if done right, it's far from overrated. My advice: skip the Hollywood tour guide and drive as far up the mountain on your own as you possibly can, park and hike the rest! Adventuring off on your own is so much more fulfilling and you can get way closer to the sign then the tour guides lead you to believe.

Favorite Restaurant: I have narrowed it down to my top two and that was impossibly hard enough. I am a breakfast gal and fell in love with two breakfast joints in the city. The first, The Hart & The Hunter, has the best victorian-chic vibe with their floral couches and vintage pastel plates, the perfect setting for Saturday girls brunch with the yummiest mimosas. We enjoyed the beautifully designed patio on Melrose Avenue.

Secondly, I fell in love with Home Restaurant and their whimsical outdoor patio and southwestern flare breakfast. They serve everything from breakfast burritos to red velvet pancakes, all of which are to die for.

Favorite Coffee: Alfred Coffee - Hands down my favorite coffee shop in the whole entire world and possibly the most Instagrammed one, for good reason. It's cute, it's cozy, it's delicious and it's a favorite to many celebrities (we had coffee next to Whitney Port!)

Favorite Place to Get Drinks: Ace Hotel Rooftop Bar - Well designed and cozy with a bohemian flare. Do yourself a favor and go at sunset to get the most amazing view of the city.

Favorite View: The Hollywood Hills - It sounds very typical and touristy but if done right, it's far from overrated. My advice: skip the Hollywood tour guide and drive as far up the mountain on your own as you possibly can, park and hike the rest! Adventuring off on your own is so much more fulfilling and you can get way closer to the sign then the tour guides lead you to believe.

Stop 2: Santa Monica/Venice Beach

Walk the Art District on Abbot Kinney, enjoy the carnival vibe on Santa Monica Pier, and finish off your day relaxing on Venice Beach. The laid back surfer town that is Santa Monica, will always be my favorite and is a must stop on any California road trip!

Stop 3: Big Sur

Miles and miles of turquoise waters to the left and rolling mountains to the right. On this particular day, we had no plans. We didn't research all the best places or what we should do. We simply drove and every now and again, pulled off to the side of the road to adventure. Spontaneous and unplanned, like all road trips should be. Everyone should enjoy the peaceful spirit that is Big Sur.

Stop 4: San Fransisco 

There is no other place in California let alone the world like San Fransisco. The laid back coffee shops, vintage fashion, organic breakfast spots and graffiti coastlines are so special and unforgettable. Here are a few of my favorite spots:

Favorite Restaurant: Plow - Fresh and organic. The staff was so warm and probably the friendliest of all San Fransisco. Order "The Plow". The apple chicken sausage and Lemon Ricotta Pancakes are unreal. Favorite Coffee: Trouble Coffee - They say good things come in small sizes. This quaint little coffee shop is a local favorite. With it's unique decor and drinks, you are sure to fall in love. (Try the girlfriend, a yummy lavender infused milk tea) Favorite View: Golden Gate Bridge - The most iconic spot in all of San Fransisco. There is something so dreamy about it especially when it is surrounded by the San Fran morning fog. Walk the bridge at sunrise or sunset for the best views or visit the Golden Gate Overlook. Sutro Baths Spotlight - After watching the sunrise at The Golden Gate Bridge, we ended our day on the north end of Ocean Beach, watching the sunset reflect off the Sutro Bath Ruins. The ruins, which were once the largest indoor swimming pool in 1896, now make up concrete grafitti filled pools of water overlooking the cliffside ocean. It's by far my favorite spot in all of San Fransisco.

Favorite Restaurant: Plow - Fresh and organic. The staff was so warm and probably the friendliest of all San Fransisco. Order "The Plow". The apple chicken sausage and Lemon Ricotta Pancakes are unreal.

Favorite Coffee: Trouble Coffee - They say good things come in small sizes. This quaint little coffee shop is a local favorite. With it's unique decor and drinks, you are sure to fall in love. (Try the girlfriend, a yummy lavender infused milk tea)

Favorite View: Golden Gate Bridge - The most iconic spot in all of San Fransisco. There is something so dreamy about it especially when it is surrounded by the San Fran morning fog. Walk the bridge at sunrise or sunset for the best views or visit the Golden Gate Overlook.

Sutro Baths Spotlight - After watching the sunrise at The Golden Gate Bridge, we ended our day on the north end of Ocean Beach, watching the sunset reflect off the Sutro Bath Ruins. The ruins, which were once the largest indoor swimming pool in 1896, now make up concrete grafitti filled pools of water overlooking the cliffside ocean. It's by far my favorite spot in all of San Fransisco.

There's something special about venturing through California as the season's change and the air get's a little crisper. I don't think there is a better way to head into fall then on the beach.

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