There are many places to easily access the trail. You can take a week long hiking vacation or just head out for a weekend getaway. The Pacific Crest Trail passes through some very beautiful scenic areas. Besides hiking, the trail is also very popular for biking and horseback riding.
Some research and planning is essential before you go. The trail covers many types of terrain and weather conditions. You need to be prepared. Many sections of the trail require hikers to be in top physical and mental condition. The Pacific Crest Trail is a great resource for a cheap vacation but to enjoy it safely you must understand exactly what you are getting into.
On the way, we'll enjoy cool ocean breezes and gorgeous panoramic views. Upon disembarking at the Ferry Building, we'll walk around the farmer's market (if it's a Sunday morning) and sample the sweetest, most mouthwatering local and organic fruits found anywhere in the Bay Area.
Afterward, we'll both grab a latte (or a New Orleans iced coffee if it's hot) from the Blue Bottle kiosk. If we're still hungry we'll bike up Market St. and head over to the Tenderloin district for our favorite brunch spot - a Vietnamese pho joint called Turtle Tower.
Next up, is a long but nicely paced bike ride through Golden Gate Park, where we might take a break on the grass or stop off at the rose garden.
Once we make it through the end of the park, we're at Ocean Beach. If the weather's nice, we'll spend an hour or so basking under the sun, perhaps, even catching the sunset if it's that time of the year. Finally, tired and hungry, we'll replenish by grabbing dinner at Burma Superstar or Little Star Pizza on the way back to Oakland.
This is a wonderful and economical way to enjoy the beautiful Napa valley, sample the world famous wines and do all while getting in some fun exercise. California roads and also California drivers are known for being very bicycle friendly.
Getaway Adventures sets you up with a local guide who knows the landscape and history, loves wine and takes you on a personalized route through wine country.
You'll enjoy a gourmet lunch, sample selected wines and learn about wine making California-style. Their Classic Weekend Bicycle Package makes a perfect romantic getaway or weekend outing with wine loving friends.
Crystal Cove State Park has 3 miles of beach for swimming and surfing and some excellent tide pools. The park has 17 miles of trails that are perfect for hiking and biking.
If you enjoy backpacking you can use the three environmental campgrounds in the park. Doheny State Beach is known as an excellent beach learning to surf, this includes the kids. There's a barbecue-equipped picnic area.
The visitor center has a cool indoor tidepool and a 500 gallon aquarium. Bolsa Chica State beach is right next to a bird sanctuary, Bolsa Chica Nature Reserve. Camping, nature walks, birdwatching and nighttime bonfires are popular here as well as the usual beach fun.
Balboa Park Inn is a small Spanish colonial-style inn located in a Hillcrest residential area within walking distance of San Diego Zoo and Balboa Park.
Located in San Diego's popular Gaslamp Quarter, the Gaslamp Plaza Suites was the city's first skyscraper. It's all of 11 stories high. Built in 1913, this European style boutique hotel is on the National Register of Historic Places.
An excellent way to save money is to stay in one of San Diego's hostels. In the Gaslamp Quarter there's the USAHostels. Hostelling International runs the HI-SD Downtown Hostel, also in the Gaslamp Quarter, as well as the HI-SD Point Loma which is near Ocean Beach.