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Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

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Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

I have been to both LB and SB (only for one day each) so I have a general feel for the beauty and abundant resources of each place, however I have the opportunity to spend the month of November in CA and I am having a hard time deciding which one will be best. A little about me:

I am 24, gay, photographer, writer, surfer, and into sports and nature. I would like to spend my time around young people my age, at the beach, surfing the local breaks. I also like art galleries, book stores and shopping and am no stranger to the dance floor. Can anyone give their honest opinion about which of the two towns might have an advantage relative to what I have described about me and what I am looking for??

Thanks in advance.

Santa Barbara Art Glass
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Cebada Wine
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1. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

Laguna just because Nov can be pretty nippy up in SB

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Laguna Beach
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2. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

I agree that Laguna Beach would be better. If you get tired of the town you can easily get into LA or SanDiego by car or train. I think SantaBarbara is a little more isolated and perhaps a little more conservative.

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Laguna Beach
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San Diego
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3. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

Laguna Beach.....We just returned from California and found Laguna Beach very charming. I think you will be very happpy with the choice.

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Laguna Beach
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4. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

thanks everyone for replying, seems like Laguna Beach is the obvious winner for me. I appreciate the input!

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Laguna Beach
Laguna Beach
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Orange county, CA
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5. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

I agree with everyone else....but let me also address the lifestyle-

Laguna is known to be gay friendly - I live in OC, and am gay, so I strongly suggest Laguna Beach. Be sure to visit this site:

http://laguna.gaycities.com/

And don't forget to visit the Boom Boom Room! Santa Barbara seems very tolerant to me, when I'm there, and makes a wonderful weekend trip.

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Laguna Beach
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Santa Barbara
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6. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

I think Laguna Beach has better dining choices than S.B. Javier's, Beach House, Las Brisas, Sun-Dried Tomato, etc. All within walking distance from the beach.

There are no tidepools in S.B. within easy reach, either.

Have a great time!

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Laguna Beach
Laguna Beach
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Las Brisas
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7. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

I disagree about the restaurants comment--SB has amazing restaurants, including some great local dives. It's also has a strong youthful presence as it is a University Town. There is great hiking to be found in the hills of SB--not Laguna.

Having said that, there is more of everything to choose from around Laguna--beaches, nearby towns--HB is a big surfer town-- whereas as the poster above pointed out, SB is more isolated.

You have picked two amazingly wonderful towns here--both aesthetically beautiful, artsy, near the beach.

SB is only abut 2.5 hours away from Laguna--so I would definitely explore it.

To have an entire month is quite a gift. Hope you have a good time--but take care of yourself too! :-)

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Laguna Beach
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8. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

There are wonderful places to walk and hike at Crystal Cove, just a mile up the road from Laguna. Good surfing, too.

There's a Shake Shack on PCH going South. Ruby's just bought it and you can get great sandwiches and shakes. It overlooks the Pacific above the bluffs...just beautiful! There's even an off-the-menu item...a honey, peanut butter and banana sandwich. So yummy!

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Laguna Beach
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9. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

Much more green in SB for sure due to the climate--indeed the hikes are in the trees/mountains. Crystal Cove is a beachy bluff area with very little green--fairly nice, but IMO nothing that spectactular--entirely different terrain.

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10. Re: Laguna Beach vs Santa Barbara -- Help me Decide

if one wants nature trail walking/biking in laguna beach there are 4000 acres nearby in aliso-wood canyon parks. i also see lots of people hiking off the main road into laguna on the weekends where they have easels set up for painting.