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LA and San Diego

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New Jersey
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LA and San Diego

Planning a California vacation in early June - visiting both LA and San Diego. Does it make sense to book a hotel in each area or is there a nice town somewhere between both where we could do day trips from? We will be flying in/out of LA and will have a rental car. Thanks!

Rancho Santa...
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1. Re: LA and San Diego

Yes, book a hotel in both San Diego and Los Angeles. They are about 2-3 hours apart. Understand, you are traversing three major urban traffic zones -- San Diego, Orange County, Los Angeles. So if there's a problem, which is common, your travel time will increase.

Conceivably, you could stay in Orange County and travel to both for day trips. Laguna Beach is very pretty. But, you're still looking at 2-3 hours round trip in the car each day. I wouldn't recommend it. Stay in for a while in each of the three places.

Also, are you aware of the June Gloom weather? During May and June, there is a strong on-shore flow. This creates a very strong morning haze which can take a long time to burn off. So if you're planning on spending a lot of time at the beach, it is likely to be cloudy.

HTH

Los Angeles
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2. Re: LA and San Diego

Conceivably one of the beach areas in Orange County can be a base for day trips, but as mentioned you'd be looking at 2-3 hours round trip driving each day, and that's only if you do the drives when traffic is light. At the wrong times of the day those times can increase dramatically.

I would not use LA as a base for day trips to San Diego or vice versa - if Orange County does not interest you, its a better choice to split your stay between LA and San Diego.

San Diego
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3. Re: LA and San Diego

HI there,

To give you a more local frame of reference, your question is kind of like saying,"I want to go to Atlantic City and NYC so should I stay in Freehold(if it was on the ocean) OR should I just get a hotel in each place I really want to visit and stay a few days in each!"

The answer is stay in LA to see LA and stay in San Diego to see San Diego!

Santa Monica, CA
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for Santa Monica
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4. Re: LA and San Diego

It is so much more fun to immerse yourself in the environment, especially during the evenings. My daughter and I just spent an overnight in Laguna Beach, for example. I enjoyed the visit far more than any day trip I've done in the past. And Riff's comments are spot on.

New Jersey
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5. Re: LA and San Diego

I appreciate all the answers..thanks. And while I can understand the fact that the 2 areas are a distance from each (and the NJ comparison is right on!!), our day trips won't only take us to LA and SD but to other towns in the vicinity of each city.

That said...there are 4 of us and I'm thinking of renting a townhouse or timeshare - can anyone recommend a more precise area to drill down on in each of those areas? E.g. which part of LA am I more likely to find that and should I focus on San Diego proper or a town outside of SD?

Rancho Santa...
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6. Re: LA and San Diego

What is your itinerary? What is your nightly budget?

San Diego
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7. Re: LA and San Diego

I agree with Hitch. We need a little more info.

Everyone has different interests and plans when they are visiting soooo if we get an idea of what you plan to see/do then we can help you more intelligently. Also a nightly budget for lodging might also help us send you in the right direction for rentals as there are many many possibilities.

BTW Mr. Riff is an X Jersey boy so we know the Jersey shore well if you want comparisons!!

New Jersey
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8. Re: LA and San Diego

We are just scratching the surface on itinerary. Here is some additional information. We are travelling with our two 20-something daughters who have never been to California. We are flying in and out of LAX - (I realize there's some back tracking involved but that's a done deal.) Although subject to change, we are planning to spend the first 4 nights in LA area - the girls want to see the typical touristy stuff in and around LA. From there we will drive the coast down to San Diego/La Jolla (staying 4 nights) and see the beach, the zoo and not sure what else at this point. Looking for any tips regarding 2 bedroom suites less than $300 per night as well as comments on my proposed timing of things. Thanks again!!!

Anaheim, California
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9. Re: LA and San Diego

OK, you have options, one place I might look at is the Oceanside Harbor area, lots of VRBO's, and is fairly central. You have access to the COASTER commuter train system headed south to San Diego, the Metrolink Commuter Trains to Orange Count, LA County and other areas in the Southland, along with the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner, which covers Southern California in both directions, also the SPRINTER light rail inland to the Escondido area.

www.oceanside.org

If you want to split up into two areas, I would look at the Mission Beach area for a VRBO in San Diego, and the Newport Beach Balboa Peninsula for the Greater LA Area portion. (Most inland VRBO's are not that exciting, IMHO).

www.sandiego.org

www.visitnewportbeach.com

Anaheim, California
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10. Re: LA and San Diego

Also, is there is a reason you are flying into LAX?

You might get a better deal flying into Long Beach/LGB (A major jetBlue airport), John Wayne/Orange County/Santa Ana/SNA or maybe even San Diego/SAN. It depends on the airline you want to use and if you can get a non-stop flight.....