The Question: Can you suggest a romantic getaway in southern California, preferably on the coast, for late spring?
Sunsets, surf, that warm California breeze. While the sun does indeed meet the horizon while you're both busy at work, watching it perform its daily duty on the Pacific Coast makes for easy romance. Which is why it's hard to pick just one romantic locale. Here are three from Jennifer Miner, one of the founders of The Vacation Gals, an award-winning travel blog that covers North America and the Caribbean ( thevacationgals.com).
San Diego: "San Diego is the most cosmopolitan of my recommendations for a Southern California romantic escape, but remember – in this part of the world, cosmopolitan still means beachy, unpretentious and chill," the California resident says. Couple-time pursuits include horseback riding, sailing and dining out at such ambience-rich restaurants as Candelas Restaurant ( candelas-sd.com) in the Gaslamp Quarter. Spend the night in the historic and elegant US Grant ( usgrant.net), Miner recommends. The four-diamond AAA hotel is also in the downtown Gaslamp neighbourhood, close to shopping and nightlife, and it's a short drive to the beach. Newport Beach: Here, 80 kilometres south of Los Angeles, the beaches are quieter and pastimes include cycling the Newport Pier or Back Bay ecological preserve, Miner says. A highlight? Dining at intimate Pas.tu with its linen tablecloths and hurricane lamps on nearby Balboa Island ( pasturestaurant.com).
La Jolla: Her last pick? The picturesque town of La Jolla ( lajollabythesea.com), near the sea and the slopes of Mount Soledad, which is just north of San Diego. "It feels completely different than that larger city," Miner says. "The town centre is easy to stroll, with many independent antique shops to nose around in. The beaches are lovely, of course." She recommends the Bed & Breakfast Inn at La Jolla ( innlajolla.com), which offers lush grounds, fresh flowers in the rooms and that other key ingredient on a romantic getaway, privacy.
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Follow Karan Smith on Twitter: @karan_smith. Special to The Globe and Mail