We've enjoyed stays in San Francisco, San Diego, and Napa Valley. We've followed the Tour of California (bicycle race) two times and visited many interesting cities/towns during the course of the event. We really enjoyed visiting Pasadena, Solvang, Monterey, and Carmel; however these visits were short. We would like to return some day. Of course, we stayed at numerous Marriott properties. We enjoyed Boudin Bakery on the wharf in San Francisco.
The 2012 Tour of California starts next week in Santa Rosa. Even if you are not a cycling enthusiast, it is amazing to watch the professional riders.
We never ever tire of Carmel/Monterey. Also love, love, LOVE going to Newport Coast every summer. My husband loves the central coast, specifically Morro Bay - very quiet and sleepy. I love San Francisco, but the husband hates crowds and traffic (why he won't travel to Paris or any big city with me) and - just doesn't like to travel in general (although we just found out this am that our good friends are moving to Kona next month. Maybe I'll get him on a plane yet... ) Tahoe is a great place. Very beautiful. Napa/Sonoma Wine Country can't be beat. Kings Canyon/Sequoia Nat'l park is a great place to see the oldest living things on Earth.
The Tour of California comes to our town every year. Next Wednesday it will land in Clovis from Sonoma. Then on to Bakersfield for a closed circuit time trial.
I live in Monterey County area, so I can relate to how people love this area! We go about once a month over to Monterey just to walk around Cannery Row and the Aquarium. The reason I asked this question was to see what other areas in California people liked. My husband and I would love to go to the Napa area!
Tell your husband he would love Hawaii! It is so quiet and peaceful! Even if you go to Oahu away from Waikikithere are some amazing quiet places. Plus it's always fun to see a new place with friends! Does he like Pismo Beach or Solvang?
He likes Pismo (we all do), but his favorite spot is Morro Bay. One of my sister's friends moved to Paso Robles (not far from Pismo in central cal wine country) and opened a winery, Pear Valley Winery. It's absolutely beautiful. My niece will be getting married there next year.
I hope Jerrycoin chimes in on Hollywood. There used to be a restaurant in Hollywood called The Brown Derby. Stars used to frequent it in an era gone by. I dined there about 30 years ago, and it was wonderful. Don't know if it's still in business, and if so, still any good, but at one time, it was iconic.
If you're ever in Orange County, CA, visit The Cellar in Fullerton, CA. Culinary excellence abounds there. Also haven't dined there in 30 years, but it's still rated one of the top 10 French restaurants in America.
I visited El Torito in Newport Fashion Island about a year or two ago. Didn't have high expectations as it is a Mexican Restaurant chain that has been in business for a long time, and had just "good" food. It turns out, they have completely remade their menu and use fresh ingredients. The Chile Rellenos are now made with Anaheim Chile's, lightly breaded and are phenomenal. Great food for a "chain" restaurant. Was pleasantly surprised and will return.
Chronic Taco in Corona del Mar. It's a walk up, and one taco will fill you up and amaze you.
At Morro Bay, we like Dorn's.
At Carmel, thanks to Stepping Stones, we now like Carmel Mission Ranch Restaurant and Vesuvio.
In Encinitas, I love Corner Bistro. Fantastic food and wine.
In Carlsbad by the Sea, Hennessy's.
Check out the photo album below on our last trip to Carmel/Monterey.
You are making me hungry! Great "Line-up' of places to dine! (I must have seen too much Jack Webb, in Dragnet)
Aren't you in Paris?
On my way to Kansas City, for some Arthur Bryant's and Gates BBQ, along with Jack Stacks BBQ. They are all very good!
Will do that Hollywood post soon, just wish I had more pictures. There was a "Train car", on Sunset Blvd, I ate in a few years ago and it was great. It was an old pullman, wish I could remember the name. By the way, is Chasens (Famous for their chili, still in Hollywood?, I don't think I was ever there)
Take care, and happy travels.
Chasens is closed. I only know that because I just googled it, but guess what? It's famous chili recipe abounds on the internet, if you have a hankering for cooking chili.
I don't head out for Paris until 5/25. Or as I posted on my Facebook status this morning, "T-19 and counting until I see my grandkids!!!" (Forget Paris, Hello Cadence and Cody.)
Look for the following approaching headlines in Le Monde:
"The City of Lights Prepares for Royalty."
"Terminal 2 Blocked off for Prince Cody and Princess Cadence."
"Cadence and Cody arrive in Paris. Paris Police Tasked with Riot Patrol."
"Cody and Cadence Grandmother, Pluto77 says: No Interview Will Be Given." (of course they are too young to talk. details...)
"Cadence and Cody Take Paris By Storm!"
"Paris Back To Normal After Cady and Cody Departure."
(Isn't imagination a wonderful thing? )
I hope you have a wonderful time in Paris with your grandkids!
Now for a silly question.. Are you pluto77 because you like Pluto the dog?
Our family are huge Disney fans (my kids my disagree ). We go to Disneyland several times a year and are in the process of planning a trip to Walt Disney World.
Again, have fun and try not to drink too much coffee!!!
Alas, no, after much wringing of the hands.
But! I think my next trip 2013 or 14 is going to be a flight into CDG, a stay at Bailly-Romanvilliers, including Paris Disneyland, then over to Bretagne and Normandie for a week, rounded out by a week in London (via the Eurostar). I've never been to Normandie or London, and it's way past time!
We live in PA, but our son has lived in Oakland for the past six years. We NEVER tire of visiting CA! It doesn't get much better than San Francisco (where we have enjoyed a variety of Marriott properties), but we also love Sonoma, Tahoe, Carmel, Monterey, etc. We have enjoyed driving the coastal highway to San Diego with many stops along the way. We are wine lovers and our search for great wineries has led us to many lovely and interesting places in your beautiful state.
Depends on what you are looking for. The previous replies are terrific for the 2 gem cities, however, Lake Tahoe and the Yosemite/Sequoia NP trip not to be missed. Do a loop that includes Santa Barbra and the coast up to Big Sur on the way also spectacular. It's a big state, a week can hardly do it justice.