10 Surprising Ways to Enjoy the West Coast


Check out these 8 Surprising Ways to Enjoy the West Coast by Emily of Coat and Coffee. Emily has been one of my favorite travel bloggers since I stumbled upon her blog last year. This is our second collaboration together (you can find our first one here) and again, I couldn’t be happier with the editorial she is providing today. Keep reading for the best tips on West Coast travel. 

Living so close to the West Coast is one of my favorite things ever. Every time I visit the West Coast I am reminded of how much there is to do, and the beauty of each city. Taking yourself off the beaten path and exploring what the coast has to offer makes for great memories. After living in San Francisco for a few years, and frequently visiting Los Angeles, San Diego, Portland, and Seattle, I’ve experienced the best ways to enjoy the West Coast. Most of these definitely aren’t your typical activities, which is what makes them so fun. So here are 10 surprising ways to enjoy the West Coast.

1. Drink The Coffee

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Of course I have to mention the West Coast coffee scene! Short of New York City, the West Coast has the best coffee in the United States. Lots of coffee shops roast their own beans, and their cold brews are nothing short of amazing. You’ll find some amazing coffee in Portland and San Francisco. I suggest trying out a few coffee shops if you’re traveling to the West Coast. Pssst, don’t pass on an order of avocado toast either! You won’t regret it.

2. Brunch, HARD

If there’s one thing people who live on the West Coast know how to do, it’s brunch. Some of my favorite places in San Diego include Breakfast Republic and Snooze. The Tine Shed in Portland is really good, and I honestly couldn’t even pick my favorite brunch place in LA. Be sure to order bottomless mimosas or a nice bloody mary, something the West Coast cities particularly excel in. Trying to be healthy? No problem as the West Coast is traditionally pretty health conscious, and always has gluten free options.

3. Stay at a Boutique Hotel

img_1952

Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle, and San Francisco are all known for their trendy boutique hotels. Be on the lookout for The Line hotel in LA and the Ace Hotel in Portland. These are two seriously cute and trendy boutique hotels that offer amazing charm and a comfortable night’s stay. Lately the West Coast has been booming with minimalist hotels that offer the bare necessity, but are a gorgeous example of exceptional design. You’ll be able to snap some amazing photos!

4. Drive the PCH

Nothing is more perfect in the spring/summer than a drive up the Pacific Coast Highway. You will have loads of fun! Grab some friends and hit the road starting in San Diego, and ending in San Francisco. Along the way you can stop in all the beautiful West Coast cities, and even get in some hiking. Don’t forget your camera though, because there are some amazing sights along the way including Big Sur. Everyone should drive the PCH once in their lifetime. You’ll be really surprised at how much fun you’ll have!

5. Experience the Beaches

img_5003

Beaches are abundant on the West Coast. While I do know a handful of people who aren’t about that beach life, you just have to visit a beach while you’re there . The great thing about the West Coast is that there is something for everyone. Washington, Oregon, and the bay area offer breathtaking views with their beaches that are often hike-able. San Diego and Los Angeles offer sunshine, surfing, and beach volleyball. For an amazing beach experience in LA, check out Santa Monica Pier or Manhattan Beach.

6. Eat Vegan

I am not vegan whatsoever, but the West Coast has some of the best vegan food. Seriously. You need to try some vegan affair while you are visiting. It’s surprisingly very good, and you’ll be double checking to make sure it’s not actually meat. The West Coast knows how to cook vegan, so you should definitely take advantage of it.

7. Be a Wino

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

West Coast wines are to die for. They make some of the best blends and cabernet sauvignons. Notable regions are Temecula, Napa Valley, and Southern Oregon. It’s always a great idea to book a wine tour if you’re visiting the West Coast. Not in to wine? Then make sure to check out some amazing gourmet cocktails in San Francisco or Los Angeles. They know how to make the freshest and most delicious cocktails. There are also some really great breweries on the West Coast.

8. Watch the Sunset

Being from Arizona, I have to say we do have the best sunsets in the United States. However, Los Angeles and San Diego come in at a close second. The dust from these cities make for some of the most amazing sunsets you’ll ever see. One of my favorite ways to enjoy a sunset is by taking a walk on the beach, or setting up a bonfire for the night. There’s nothing better than just relaxing with your besties on the beach and watching the gorgeous cotton candy skies. Wherever you want to enjoy a good sunset, just add wine and good company, and you’re golden!

9. Get Outdoors

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The hiking on the West Coast is some of the best in the U.S. In California you have Yosemite National Park and in Washington you have Mount Rainer. These make for great camping trips to unplug, reset, and relax. You just can’t beat the beautiful weather in the spring time either. If you’re not a serious hiker, check out Big Sur for a fun day-hike with incredible views of the ocean. There are also several small trails in the bay area and in San Diego. Get outdoors and get some sunshine!

10. Eat In n Out Burger

I mean really. Did you think I wouldn’t mention In n Out? In n Out Burger is a staple of the West Coast and a must visit. A perfect lunch for a day drive up the PCH, it’s also cheap as well! Definitely check out their secret menu before you go, which really isn’t so secret anymore.

Visiting the West Coast is such a great time, and each city has something different to offer. It really is the lifestyle that sets the West Coast apart from the rest of the United States. If you follow some of these tips, you’ll be sure to have a great visit. So definitely get off the beaten path and surprise yourself with all the different ways to enjoy the West Coast.

All pictures above are provided and taken by Emily. 

Emily is a part time travel blogger living in Phoenix, Arizona, who specializes in European travel and loves sharing tips and hidden gems. When she’s not in front of her computer, she’s out exploring the newest coffee shops around the world. Emily started her own blog Coat + Coffee to inspire others to travel smart with helpful tips, and non-touristy editorials about the best things to do in Europe. 

img_6020

Advertisements

33 thoughts on “10 Surprising Ways to Enjoy the West Coast

    • lacasabloga says:

      Thank you Susanne! Oh, really? Maybe it’s just us “visitors” that get excited about it. I took my boyfriend there last year. The fries I wasn’t too impressed with but the burgers were great. Thanks for stopping by and reading.

      Like

  1. mexploring says:

    OMG, what are you doing? 🙂 My dream of making an epic road trip in the states is on the shelf, in a pleasant sleep, and you wake it up! haha.
    Really, great post, I got inspired to go right away)) I have never been to the USA, using all my spare time and money in my beloved Europe – but I have always had this dream of renting a ca and driving from East Coast to West Coast, like in those movies, wiii! Hope, that will come true soon! Must bookmark this page until then!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lacasabloga says:

      Omg you’ve never been?? That’s so crazy to me, I have met quite a handful of Europeans that have never been to the states. I love it there so much because of the diversity and culture. It really has everything you could ask for. These were some great tips from Emily. I personally would love to drive the PCH. It’s on my bucket list 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        No *blush blush wink wink*
        I am a holder of Ukrainian passport, so for me the process of getting visa is not the same as for other Europeans, so I was mostly stopped by that. But soon this will change – and then you will see 😉
        For me the diversity of culture is really Europe, where you can cross several borders on one day -and voila, a totally different people, language and everything. The USA is more about the feeling of American freedom, the cities, the nature and the roads 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lacasabloga says:

        Yes, very true. Which is why I love it here all the same. Even when I was living in Miami from South Carolina I met so many international friends that I would have never met had I continued to live in Charleston. This is why it’s so important to travel and see the world.

        Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        Yes, it is. Though to be honest, making friends in your own country is easier than in a foreign one (maybe not the states, looks like people there are way more open than Europeans). Here in Europe it is easier with expats, and more difficult with 100% locals. In Norway at least))

        Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        The thing is, as I understand it, it is difficult to make friends with someone 100% (even from my country), bc as an expat you are not 100% yourself. So you have to look for your tribe. Expats or locals who have lived outside of the country go well. Maybe, in states it is different, huge country with a lot of mobility, so you are used that everyone is from somewhere else. Not here. That is why I idealize USA 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lacasabloga says:

        Yes, finding your “tribe” and those that respond well to you can be quite the challenge. Even in Miami after living there for 4 years, I felt that I never really found my own tribe. Rather I was friends with friend’s friends. At least here in Rome, I am able to bring together a group of individuals, Rome Bloggers, who I feel are like my tribe in a sense and that gives me a sort of “accomplishment”, if you will.

        Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        It is also difficult, bc it is a sentiment hard to define. One day I feel like I belong, another – like I need to search further. Does it happen to you? I am so used to be rootless and not to belong, that it became a habit to feel that way. I think, it’s time to change it 🙂
        Your engagement with Rome Bloggers sounds just so great! Makes me dreamy at once…:) Keep on doing, your accomplishment is a great contribution to your world!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lacasabloga says:

        Thank you so much and yes I too, feel this way. I think it’s completely normal. I feel very indifferent about my life altogether. Like I’m happy in Italy one minute and the next I’m asking myself, “what am I doing here?” I’m sure you know what I mean.

        Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        I know, I know! You know what? Sometimes you just have to make a choice 🙂 I think, it can work me – but I have to practice. Like that “I choose to believe that I am here for a reason. That my life is fantastic where I am. That I am creating good life. that everything is fine, and going to be even better”. what do you think? 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lacasabloga says:

        Yes, I believe those positive affirmations help in making one feel like their at the right place at the right time. We all have those moments of doubt from time to time. I sure do have mine, maybe a little too often, even though it may not seem like it from my blog and pictures sometimes…

        Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        It never seems from what we share – if we don’t share exclusively our doubts 🙂 it is ok to have doubts, I think, it is a sign that you are moving. And still human 🙂 So hold the hand of your doubt and move with it 🙂 I am trying to learn this now 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lacasabloga says:

        Yes, there is no growth without doubt or fear. That is for sure. I listened to an interview yesterday where they said fear always comes from a place where success happens. If your afraid to do something this is healthy, there is a good type of fear just as there’s a good type of anything else as long as you look at it this way.

        Liked by 1 person

      • mexploring says:

        Good idea. So I will learn to put a label “good” on my fear – as soon as I see it, sometimes this is what is hard to do: to see it. And take it by the hand and move! Nice perspective: fear comes from the place of success. I wonder how that can change my attitude 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s