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in Destinations & Landmarks

San Diego’s 7 Most Stunning Natural Wonders

With 70 miles of sparkling coastline, a pleasantly warm climate year-round and stunning natural wonders, San Diego’s beauty entices and enthralls travelers from around the world — yet many don’t know that San Diego is one of the most biodiverse regions in the U.S.  Home to a variety of habitats ranging from intertidal wetlands and chaparral-covered canyons to alpine mountains and pristine desert wilderness, San Diego teems with Instagram-worthy sites. The following are seven of San Diego’s top natural wonders—a bucket list of sensational sights sure to impress visitors of all ages. Nestled atop the scenic seaside cliffs of La Jolla, the 1,750-acre Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve is one of only two places on earth where nature lovers can find the ancient Torrey Pine (Pinus torreyana), the nation’s rarest pine tree. Visitors can enjoy wind-swept sandstone formations, six hiking trails ranging from easy, family-friendly paths to more advanced trails, and striking sunsets over the Pacific. The reserve offers free guided walks on weekends and holidays at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., departing from the historic lodge-turned-Visitor Center. La Jolla is also home to postcard-perfect La Jolla Cove and La Jolla Underwater Park, the West Coast’s first underwater preserve, spanning…

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in Food & Drinks

Top Ten Places for Afternoon Tea

By Benicia Lie   Craving that authentic English afternoon tea that everyone always speaks of after their trip in London? Well, there is no need to purchase that plane ticket to hop on a flight to Europe when we have various, exquisite tea shops in Southern California to satisfy your craving here.   First on the list is The Rose Tree Cottage, which is located in Pasadena, and features a cozy, ambient British afternoon tea experience that will entice your taste buds in a way never experienced. It is not just the dainty antiques tastefully decorated around the seating area or the delectable finger sandwiches and their special home-brewed tea that makes customers loyal fans, but it is the effort that the owners have poured their heart onto their establishment. The owners, Edmond and Mary Fry, painstakingly transformed a normal home into a serene tea shop that guests can enjoy an unforgettable experience. Their menu showcases their very own loose leaf English Village tea, a savory selection of scones, tasty Yorkshire pudding, and delicious desserts. It is these and the owners that keeps guests loyal fans of the establishment.   Next on the list is The Rose Garden Tea Room…

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in Food & Drinks

Santa Barbara’s Indie Coffee Shops

  It’s no surprise that the uniqueness of Santa Barbara translates into its indie coffee shops. Stay away from the big box java stops and enjoy the brews by the locals.   The French Press -1101 State St., SB, 93101, 805.963.2721 Right in downtown, and with their own in-house roasted coffees, pastries and cookies, it’s more than a worthwhile break from the hustle and bustle of the streets. Whether you sit indoors or outdoors on the back patio, you will enjoy the generous portions. There’s also a private parking lot when you want to make it your direct destination. There is another location at 528 Anacapa St.   Vices & Spices From Around the World – 3558 State St., SB, 93105, 805.687.7196 Candy and tea and coffee? Oh My! This eclectic stop is part knick-knacks, part boutique, and lots of coffee and teas. Around since 1975, this is a spot to sit for a while – maybe even play a game of chess – and enjoy the quiet life for a bit. There’s a selection of gifts, greeting cards and teas to take with you as you go.   Coffee Cat – 1201 Anacapa St., SB, 93101, 805.962.7164 Right across from…

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in Things To Do

 Southern California Slack Key Festival

Kala Koa Entertainment celebrates 12 years of bringing the biggest and brightest names in Hawaiian music to the mainland with the 2018 Southern California Slack Key Festival returning to the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center on Sunday, January 20, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. One of the most acclaimed Hawaiian concerts to ever leave the islands, the Southern California Slack Key Festival takes fans on a Hawaiian musical journey that showcases GRAMMY-winning slack key guitarists, the best hula dancers in the world, special guest performers and a free to the public Island Marketplace. The Southern California Slack Key Festival – the first of its kind anywhere outside of Hawaii – set a major milestone for Hawaiian music events on the mainland when it debuted in 2008 and has garnered a huge loyal following – creating, cultivating, and renewing interest in Hawaii and its music. This year’s Southern California Slack Key Festival’s line-up includes George Kuo, Kawika Kahiapo, Sonny Lim, Jeff Peterson, Jim “Kimo”West, Teresa Bright, Bobby Ingano, and Kunia Galdeira. What is Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Music? Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar (ki ho’alu) is truly one of the world’s great acoustic guitar traditions, considered to be one of the oldest music traditions to still be a viable (other than just historical) part of…

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in Food & Drinks

SoCal Summer Beachfront Dining

By Samantha Schindler   We’re lucky here in SoCal to be able to enjoy delicious food while being swept up in some of the best ocean views. You don’t have to dip your toes in the water or press into the sand if you don’t want to. Our beachfront restaurants provide diners with some of the most beautiful coastlines that Southern California has to offer. Here are a few of our favorites where you can enjoy the ocean while being spoiled with amazing food. Geoffrey’s in Malibu Perched on a romantic Malibu hillside, Geoffrey’s offers a spectacular view of the curving Southern California coastline. Its flower-filled patio is a romantic spot for a candlelight dinner or Sunday brunch. To avoid disappointment, make reservations because it books up quickly, especially in the summer months. SALT Restaurant and Bar in Marina del Rey Situated at the end of Bali Way, SALT is surrounded by views of the marina and its beautiful yachts. The main dining room is indoors with a lounge section offering happy hour at the bar, outdoor patio or communal table. But the romantic terrace with sunset vistas is the place to sit. SALT Restaurant & Bar is an ideal…

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in Things To Do

Southern California Beach Camping

Southern California Beach Camping Summer is the best time to round up family and friends, pull out the camping gear and head for the beach for the weekend. Here are a few of our favorite beach camp sites you may want to visit.   Carpinteria Beach Campground, Carpenteria Carpenteria State Beach is a wonderful place to set up camp just steps from the ocean. Tent camping and RV sites available. 205 Palm Ave. Carpinteria, CA 93013 ph: 805-968-1033 https://www.reserveamerica.com/camping/carpinteria-sb/r/facilityDetails.do?contractCode=CA&parkId=120015   Ventura Beach RV Resort, Ventura Enjoy year round amenities at the Ventura Beach RV Resort! Rent a bike, beach cruiser or surrey, soak in the resort Jacuzzi or take a walk down to the beach to watch the sunset. Live music, karaoke, shuttle rides and activities for the kids are available all summer long. 800 West Main Street Ventura, CA 93001 ph: 805-643-9137 https://www.venturabeachrvpark.com     Campland On The Bay, San Diego Give your family the ultimate camping experience! From live bands, pools and Jacuzzis to surf and ski rentals, this campground has something for everyone. Check the website for upcoming events to enjoy during your stay. RV and tent camping available. 2211 Pacific Beach Dr. San Diego, CA 92109 ph: (800)…

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