No matter where you come from, you will, no doubt, come down on one side of the east-west debate. Even the good folks in Middle America seem to have an opinion on this age-old feud, and have been long before Biggie vs. Tupac. But when it comes to New Yorkers taking their vacations, we should put aside some of the arguments. Because there are some incredible places way out west that residents of the Big Apple are missing out on.
You can reach the West Coast in a little as five or so hours by plane, or you could even take several weeks if you pluck up the courage to do a road trip. The rain is another option - you can do the entire breadth of the country for a couple of hundred bucks, and take in some spectacular views.
Whether you plan to go for a week or a month, there is so much to see and do in California. Thus, the next time you plan on taking a breakaway, perhaps call off that trip to Europe or Mexico you were expecting, and look west instead. Here are some excellent reasons why the West Coast should be a vacation inspiration for New Yorkers.
OK, the first ones easy. Simply put, the weather in California is just fantastic. It’s the perfect temperature for most of the year - although it can get too hot in the peak of summer, so check the forecast beforehand. However, it’s fair to say that it is comfortably warm and nothing like that horrendous sticky heat we get in New York. And the closer you get to the sea, the fresher the air - there really is a good mix of diverse temperatures to experience. Many Californians wear shorts all year around, and as long as you take some sunscreen, the weather is a joy.
Of course, good weather is irrelevant if you have nothing beautiful to look at while you are outside. The good news is that Cali has plenty. You can expect some of the most beautiful National Parks in the country, including the enormous 1,200 miles of Yosemite Park. Head to San Francisco and you can check out the Marin Headlands, which is simply spectacular - and you might recognize it from Star Wars. California isn't called the Golden State for nothing, you know. In fact, you would be hard-pressed to find anywhere that isn't deserving of a postcard, from the famed, historic landmarks through to the beautiful, crystal clear ocean waters on the coast.
There are a vast amount of incredible places to visit in California and the West Coast. And whether you love the busy city life of LA or the eerie, vast expanse of Death Valley desert (top tip - go at night and see the stars), there really is something for everyone. Lake Tahoe is perfect for those looking for a hippy-style/chilled out breakaway, and you also have the coastal areas like Carlsbad that are famous for beaches and amazing, exciting activities. Napa Valley is a wine lover’s paradise and well worth a visit.
OK, so you need more proof that the West Coast has it all - and more? Well, many people take the ultimate California road trip, and tick the three major West Coast activities off their list in one day. There aren’t many places in the world where you can go to the mountains to ski or snowboard after breakfast, head to the beach with a surfboard after lunch, and walk off the post-dinner belly with a long, wonderful evening hike. It’s an amazing experience that everyone should try at least once in their life.
While we are on the subject of beaches, forget about the ones you may have been to in the Hamptons. California is a beach lovers paradise, and the difference between the West Coast and the East Coast will become clear as soon as you arrive. Expect vast expanses of golden, soft sands. Take a dip in warm, beautifully blue sea water. And explore 840 miles of coastal sights from towering cliffs to small, cozy coves.
A sense of freedom
Let’s face it, New York is an incredible city and we are all lucky to live here. But do you ever feel the rules are a little too much? Toll bridges, barred items on beaches, parking tickets - you have to be on your toes in the East Coast to avoid paying out a fortune of fines every year. Of course, the West Coast certainly has its own rules, but there is a sense of freedom here. You can even take your dog onto many of the beaches.
That sense of freedom also seems to spread to the people of California. Simply put, they are much friendlier than they are in the Big Apple. Expect a warm welcome, a lot of fun, and a whole bunch of new friends. Sure, there are some places where you should probably avoid, especially if you are clearly an obvious tourist. But on the whole, pole in California - both north and south - tend to be on the chilled side.
OK, so Vegas is not everyone’s favorite place in the world. But it is an experience - one that might remind you of New York, albeit it a strange, dreamlike alternative from another dimension. It has the same kind of ‘bubble’ feel that New York has, but the glitz and glamor will get to yo in the end. Las Vegas is truly a world of its own - and some might say universe.
And there you have it - have we convinced you yet New York? If you can put your coastal rivalry to one side and head out to California there is a world of fun to experience. Yes, the East Coast is an incredible place, and New York is - without a doubt - the best city on the planet. But for something different we think the West Coast is the Best Coast - for a incredible vacation experience, at least. What do you think?