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Family Adventures

California Weekend Getaways


Family Adventures

Family Photo Time

© 2009 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.
They're fun for people of all ages, but these spots are especially good if the whole family is trying to take a break.

Ideas for a Family-Oriented Weekend Getaways

  • Alisal Guest Ranch: This guest ranch just outside the town of Solvang is popular with families and multi-generational groups. You can ride a horse, get a spa treatment or learn to fly fish - and the little ones love the barnyard.

  • Calistoga: It's Napa Valley's most laid-back town and the kids will love visiting Safari West.

  • Catalina Island: The kids can play on the beach, see an honest-to-goodness wild buffalo or a flying fish.

  • Disneyland: Everyone's a kid at Disneyland.

  • Gold Country in the Sierra Foothills: The kids love panning for gold at the old mines and puttering around the cute little towns.

  • Half Moon Bay: Beaches, tide pools, family-friendly hotels and a visit to the farm.

  • Hollywood: Movie stars, studio tours and a day at Universal Studios.

  • Lake Shasta Houseboat Getaway: As long as everyone in the family is comfortable on the water, a weekend in a floating house on the lake is a lot of fun.

  • Lake Tahoe: A great escape for the outdoorsy family who likes skiing, water sports and hiking, with lots of vacation rentals where you can spread out and be comfortable.

  • Los Angeles Beach Cities: The beach scene is fun for everyone.

  • Monterey: Monterey Bay Aquarium, beaches and Dennis the Menace Playground.

  • Napa Valley: Besides the obvious wine and food-related activities, you can have fun getting muddy (with or without the kids).

  • Newport Beach: Stick to the Balboa Peninsula and harbor islands for an old-fashioned time in a quiet beach town.

  • Pismo Beach: Lots of sand to play in, on the beaches or in the dunes.

  • Sacramento Delta Houseboat Weekend: Active families who enjoy water sports can have a ton of fun in their own floating house on the river.

  • San Diego: Our southernmost city has the most family-oriented attractions, good beaches and lots of great parks.

  • Santa Cruz: The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is great for families - and costs less than the big theme parks.

  • Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks: A good choice for active families who enjoy the mountains.

  • Yosemite: Another good mountain getaway spot.
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