13 Weekend Trips From Los Angeles, California, USA - Updated 2022

weekend trips from los angeles

Do you feel like you need another day between Saturday and Sunday? Weekends may only last for two days, but on a positive note, they keep coming week after week. And you have the chance to spend them as you wish. That being said, can you think of anything better to do in the weekends except for short, fun trips to Los Angeles? While Los Angeles is fun and lively itself, there are so many hidden paradises around for you to discover. We all have a little explorer hidden somewhere anyway. If you believe that it’s time to break the routine and do exciting things, say no further. Check out our guide for 13 weekend trips from Los Angeles, California, USA, pack your bags, and you’re all set!

1. Palm Desert (from USD 229)

The Mountain View Course at Desert Willow Golf Resort, Palm Desert, California
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Christopher Hurdzan used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Driving from Los Angeles to Palm Desert will take you about 1 hour and 49 minutes (122.9 miles or 197 km). Palm Desert promises fun-filled weekends with plenty of things to see and do. Visit McCallum Theatre for the Performing Arts for one of their top-notch performances, plays, concerts etc. Spend some time outdoors with hiking activities or visit world-class golf spots. Visit the Palm Desert Aquatic Center for relaxation by the pool, and of course, don’t forget to explore the vast number of cozy eateries and fancy restaurants. It’s the weekend and you’re out of town, you have to spoil yourself! Need a suggestion for your Los Angeles vacation stay? Shadow Mountain Resort & Club is an excellent choice.

Shadow Mountain Resort & Club

Wifi Available

Address: 45-750 San Luis Rey Avenue
Accommodates: 6

Parking Restaurant Meeting/banquet facilities Bar Tennis court Sauna Fitness centre Golf course (within 3 km)

2. Desert Hot Springs (from USD 86)

Cabot Pueblo, Desert Hot Springs, CA (5860407545)
Source: Photo by user inkknife_2000 used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Named after its many natural hot springs, Desert Hot Springs will satisfy a wide range of travelers. The must-do activities include a visit at the Cabot’s Pueblo Museum, featuring Native American arts, and hiking and wildlife watching at the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve. Deserts Hot Springs is located 108 miles (173 km) away from Los Angeles. That means you will need around 1 hour and 36 minutes to reach your destination. Recommended accommodation, is the beautiful Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa.

Aqua Soleil Hotel and Mineral Water Spa

Wifi Available

Address: 14500 Palm Drive
Accommodates: 4

Parking Pets allowed Meeting/banquet facilities 24-hour front desk Golf course (within 3 km) Garden Non-smoking rooms Family rooms

3. Ventura (from USD 176)

Ventura City Hall1
Source: Photo by user skinnylawyer used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Ventura is a beautiful coastal city, only 1 hour away from Los Angeles (68 miles or 109 km). Once in Ventura, you’ll discover the laid-back spirit of the city, that will help you to get in the mood. Make a stop at the Museum of Ventura County for cultural facts about the city, treat yourself with a visit at the Ventura Harbor Village, where you can sip on local wines and taste freshly cooked seafood dishes. And of course, don’t forget (how could you anyway) to visit one of the safe and clean beaches of Ventura, and why not grab your surfing board and catch some waves. Waypoint Ventura and its retro, refurbished trailers, is the ideal hotel for a comfy night sleep.

Waypoint Ventura

Wifi Available

Address: 398 South Ash Street Unit E
Accommodates: 2

Parking Non-smoking rooms Family rooms Free parking Internet services WiFi Available Free WiFi Non-smoking throughout

4. Rancho Santa Fe (from USD 279)

Rancho Santa Fe street view 2013
Source: Photo by user Tuxyso used under CC BY-SA 3.0

The list with fun weekend trips from places to visit in Los Angeles goes on with the Rancho Santa Fe. Located 104 miles (167 km) from Los Angeles, you will need approximately 1 hour and 33 minutes to reach there. Get on a surfing board for some water fun, and explore its numerous restaurants and shopping malls. As for your stay, the luxurious The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe is the best choice.

The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, a Tribute Portfolio Resort & Spa

Wifi Available

Address: 5951 Linea Del Cielo
Accommodates: 4

Parking Restaurant Pets allowed Room service Meeting/banquet facilities Bar Tennis court Fitness centre

5. La Jolla (from USD 58)

weekend trips from los angeles | la jolla
Source: Pixabay

Set atop sea cliffs, La Jolla is a wonderful seaside place, only 1 hour and 44 minutes away from the crowded Los Angeles (112.5 miles or 181 km). With more than 250 sunny days every year, La Jolla is absolutely charming. Visit the Cuvier or Kellogg Park for a fun family day, get closer to nature at the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, go for hiking, or take a dip at the beautiful and secluded Black’s Beach. La Jolla Cottage is the perfect hotel for your stay once in La Jolla.

La Jolla Cottage

Wifi Available

Accommodates: 2

Parking Non-smoking rooms Free parking Internet services Heating WiFi Available Free WiFi Non-smoking throughout

6. Carlsbad (from USD 99)

weekend trips from los angeles | carlsbad
Source: Pixabay

The 1 hour and 19 minutes (87 miles or 140 km), you have to drive to reach Carlsbad, is definitely worth your time. Weekend trips from Los Angeles are more exciting with destinations like Carlsbad. Visit the sandy South Carlsbad State Beach, where surfing is an option, visit the LEGOLAND for all-day water fun with your family and a roller coaster, or maybe go flower watching at The Flower Fields. Carlsbad by the Sea Resort will be your base camp to explore the city.

Carlsbad by the Sea Hotel

Wifi Available

Address: 850 Palomar Airport Road
Accommodates: 10

Parking Restaurant Pets allowed Meeting/banquet facilities Bar 24-hour front desk Fitness centre Golf course (within 3 km)

7. Palm Springs (from USD 249)

weekend trips from los angeles | palm springs
Source: Pixabay

Palm Springs of Southern California is just a short distance away from Los Angeles by car, which equals for 106.6 miles (151.7 km). Known for its hot springs, the relaxing spas, and the golf courses, Palm Springs offers a plethora of fun things to do and see upon your visit. First, shelter at the impeccably beautiful Ace Hotel and Swim Club Palm Springs, and let the fun begin! Get active with horseback rides or with the hiking trails at the Indian Canyons, discover native species and animals at The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, operating from 1970, pay a visit to the Coachella Valley, and enjoy the view of a waterfall at the Tahquitz Canyon.

Ace Hotel and Swim Club Palm Springs

Wifi Available

Address: 701 East Palm Canyon
Accommodates: 10

Parking Pets allowed Room service 24-hour front desk Golf course (within 3 km) Garden Terrace Non-smoking rooms

8. Big Bear Lake (from USD 67)

weekend trips from los angeles | big bear lake
Source: Maxpixel

Big Bear Lake is an excellent choice for a short weekend trip from Los Angeles. At a distance of 97 miles (156 km) which means about 1 hour and 48 minutes by car, Big Bear Lake offers numerous fun activities. During the winter you can go for ski or snowboarding, while summer and spring days are filled with water activities, off-road experiences, hiking, horseback riding, fishing, and many more. Big Bear Lakefront Lodge will serve as the perfect base camp for your adventures.

9. Santa Barbara (from USD 595)

santa barbara
Source: Pixabay

Weekend trips from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara can be really fun. If you’re visiting any time from January to February, then make sure to attend the Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival. If not, then don’t miss the chance to chill at the beach, go for wine tastings, or to visit the Channel Islands National Park. Driving from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara will take you about 1 hour and 26 minutes (95 miles or 152 km). Looking for the perfect accommodation as well? Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara will do the work!

Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara

Address: 1260 Channel Drive

WiFi available in all areas Hot tub Terrace Mobile app for room service Room service Fitness centre Use of cleaning chemicals that are effective against Coronavirus Outdoor pool

10. Avalon (from USD 258)

Source: Pixabay

Located at Catalina Island, Avalon is approximately 49 miles (79 km) from Los Angeles, and you can reach there by boat within an hour or take a helicopter ride for around 15 minutes. Once you arrive, settle at the gorgeous Avalon Hotel, and let the adventure begin. Relax with a day at the spa, go for water activities, join Los Angeles tours, play your heart out in Catalina’s escape rooms, or visit the Avalon Theatre.

The Avalon Hotel in Catalina Island

Wifi Available

Address: 124 Whittley Avenue
Accommodates: 4

Golf course (within 3 km) Garden Terrace Non-smoking rooms Fishing Internet services Safety deposit box Gift shop

Best weekend getaways from Los Angeles

Put all the essentials in a bag, find the perfect companion, fill the gas tank and you’re off for some great adventures! You just need to choose one of our fun weekend trips from Los Angeles.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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