Travel Guide Travel Ideas

5 Small Towns to Settle Down in California

Avalon, California
Written by Jane Sophia

There two states in the U.S. that attract more number of travelers than any other states. They are California and Florida. While Florida is attractive because of warm beaches and the presence of Disney Land, California is visited by tourists for its beautiful beaches with pleasant weather, Hollywood, great sightseeing places and varied landscape.

There are several big cities in California that are pure heaven for their excellent weather and gorgeous terrain that include:

  • San Francisco
  • Los Angeles
  • San Diego
  • San Jose
  • Oakland
  • Sacramento

In this blog post, we will pay a visit to some of the smaller cities and towns in California state that are ideal to settle down for the rest of your life.

Travelers are requested to stay in a hotel in the following towns for a week, go around the place, meet local residents in restaurants, shopping malls, parks, and beaches, ask their experience of living there, eat in as many restaurants as possible and while doing so, gather smaller cities about the living conditions, cost of living, rain and heat, etc and then make up your mind.

Avalon, California

I looked at several small towns in California state and rate Avalon at the top. Why? The video is the proof. What an enchanting town the Avalon is, located on Santa Catalina Island!

Avalon, California

Being an island town in California with a very limited place to explore (only one sq.km), the atmosphere is calm and laid back. For a tourist, there are plenty of adventure sports that include a tour on a glass-bottom boat and snorkeling.

In addition, there are several activities for a visiting tourist to Avalon such as Avalon Canyon Trail tour and the Flying Fish Voyage.

You must watch the video to believe that some fish can fly in Catalina Island.

This small island town Avalon is filled with local restaurants that serve freshly-caught seafood and beer.

Reaching the Avalon, Santa Catalina Island, California

As the video showed, Avalon is ideally reached by a boat ride from any of the ports located at:

  • San Pedro
  • Long Beach
  • Newport Beach
  • Dana Point

Once you reach the Santa Catalina Island, Avalon is accessed by walking from the seashore as not many cars ply on this island. It’s a rule.

If you are sick of traveling on water, you can always fly from Los Angeles in a chopper and it delivers you at Avalon in fifteen minutes.

Pacific Grove, California

Pacific Grove, California

Pacific Grove is a small, picturesque coastal town and is located in the county of Monterey. It attracts not only the tourists but also butterflies, especially the ones that belong to ‘monarch’ species in thousands. This swarming of monarchs happen from the middle of October and they can be seen till the third week of February. They are said to come from more than 3000 km away. No clear reasoning about this special affinity towards Pacific Grove by the butterflies.

Like any small beach town in California, Pacific Grove too offers great weather. The Victorian houses add that extra charm to the idyllic settings of this small Californian town.

Reaching Pacific Grove

It is located 117 km from San Jose and 32 km from Salinas.

Solvang, California

Solvang, California

Located in California’s Santa Ynez Valley and situated in Southern California, Solvang is distinctly Danish that you can identify by their architecture and by the presence of world-famous Danish bakeries and some windmills.

As per the history books, Solvang town was established in 1911 by a group of Danes. If I ever get a chance to stay in Solvang for a day or two, I would eat only the Danish pastries and cookies for as long as I stay.

Solvang is also surrounded by Santa Barbara wineries. Those who drink a daily dose of a glass of wine, there is no better place in the world for them than Solvang. They can find several wine tasting outlets.

Solvang is visited by over one million tourists every year. Being a small town in California, it has only 15 options for accommodations but there are more than 30 restaurants.

Reaching Solvang, California

Solvang is only 56 km from Santa Barbara. The big city Los Angeles is 200 km away and much further away (480 km) is San Francisco.

Julian, California

Julian, California

Looks certainly like a small Californian town, more of a highway-town with the backdrop of Cuyamaca Mountains.

Julian is famous for a week of ‘pick your apple boards that attract many to have a free bite into the juicy fruit.

For the local residents, a stroll or drive to the nearby Cuyamaca lake (seems to be the only pastime).

Children would pester their parents for a boat ride in the lake or a horseback ride, circling the lake.

Tourists are recommended to pay a visit to the Volcan Mountain Wilderness Preserve that is only about 8 km away from Julian town, California.

Reaching Julian

It is about 100 km away from San Diego; roughly about an hour drive by car.

Healdsburg, California

Healdsburg, California

California’s climate favors grapes cultivation and that results in wine production. The state’s map is dotted with wineries (more than 100 dots, mate); Healdsburg is one such small city in California that has several wineries.

Yes, the town looks small and it is the reason that the nearby farms are loaded with fresh fruits and vegetables that are happily garnered by the local restaurants in Healdsburg.

Since there is not much of thing to do, it is an ideal small city in California state to quietly retire, enjoying the weather.

Reaching Healdsburg, California

To see wineries of California, you are advised to drive to Healdsburg from San Francisco. The driving time will be around 75 minutes.

About the author

Jane Sophia

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