Dreaming of the days when going on spring break was no big deal? Us too. Luckily, we were able to live vicariously through Nikki Ruiz’s recent trip from New Mexico to Southern California. Whether you’re planning a trip yourself or looking for some future travel inspo, be sure to bookmark her favorite spots to grab a bite, coffee, or nightcap.
I arrived at LAX from New Mexico and stayed in Orange County, hanging in Huntington Beach, Newport Beach and Laguna Beach. Then my friends and I made our way up to Venice in Los Angeles for some lunch and shopping before we headed to Santa Barbara to check into our AirBnb.
We spent most of our time at the beach, but when we weren’t tanning, these were our favorite spots in each place we spent time:
In Orange County, we loved Landers Liquor Bar, Rye Goods, Semi Tropic Wines, and Daydream Surf Shop for hands down the best place to grab coffee. (I'm obsessed with their espresso float!) And no trip to California would be complete without a stop at In-N-Out.
Santa Barbara was definitely my favorite part of the trip. The natural wine was amazing and I’m so in love with all the white buildings and distinct architecture. It’s pretty magical - I can’t wait to come back. Some of our fave spots were Dart Coffee, Arigato, Margerum Tasting Room, Helena Bakery, McConnell’s, and LaFond Winery.
A few things to remember/keep in mind:
- Don't forget your sunscreen.
- The CA sun is no joke and I got a little extra toasty.
- Try to make reservations. Now that things are opening back up, restaurants seemed a bit more crowded and wait times were longer than we had expected.
- Plan out where to stop for the cheapest gas using GasBuddy.
- Oh, and don’t forget the perfect playlist.