This Summer’s Staycation Destinations


by Vanessa Garcia

With the high rise of gas prices this summer, vacationing to far off destinations and exotic lands may not seem like a possibility for the traveler on a budget.  Many people this travel season are choosing to vacation close to home. Think about it, this is the perfect opportunity to visit all the wonderful places on the Central Coast and Northern California that you’ve always been saying to visit, but never have.  After all, tourists flock from all over the world just to take in a few days of what we experience every day.  So why not be a tourist in your town?  We scoped out the land and compiled a list of the most exiting local vacation spots from the 831 to the Frisco Bay.

The Fernwood Resort, nestled in the Big Sur Valley, caters to the camper on any budget.  It offers camping spots, RV hook ups, tent cabins, and motel rooms along the Bug Sur River.  The resort offers guests a general store, an espresso bar, and a BBQ Grill so tasty it’s even been featured on The Food Network’s Bobby Flay show.  Activities on the resort include lounging down the river on an inner tube, hiking up to Pfiefer Big Sur State Park and experiencing the majestic 60 foot waterfall, and walking along the redwood groves on The Oak Grove Trail.  When the sun goes down have a drink at the famous Fernwood Tavern and dance the night away to one of the resorts featured bands.  From reggae to bluegrass, the Tavern is sure to entertain all!  For reservations visit

For the adventurous at heart, why not try out some extreme vacationing from Adventure Out, California’s leader in outdoor adventure located in Santa Cruz.  They are an outdoor school offering rock climbing at the Pinnacles, Surf camps in Santa Cruz, Big Sur, and Baja California.  They also offer mountain biking, backpacking trips, and wilderness survival skills.  If you’re looking for a real California adventure, why not venture out into your own backyard and experience all the escapades the Central Coast has to offer.  You don’t have to be Survivor Man to experience these California journeys, Adventure Out offers classes for all skill levels; from never been to the woods beginner, to adrenaline junkie experts.   For more information visit 

Not a happy camper?  No problem!  Why not vacation in San Francisco?!  There’s a myriad of things to do, places to see, and clubs to dance at.  Take a stroll through Chinatown and experience some of the best Asian food this side of the Pacific.  Visit the many curio shops, herbal stores, and traditional Chinese buildings from this little nook in the City. For more

Another great attraction is the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (  It showcases the great contemporary artists, as well as world famous painters.  Don’t forget to take your walking shoes, the museum is plenty large, and if you’re an art lover, you’re bound to stand around examining the brush strokes of, screen prints, and pencil drawing of many of today’s great modern artists.

After you’ve soaked in the daytime culture of the City there’s no place to experience the best of San Francisco’s nightlife than AsiaSF ( The entrance to this club is through the five star Cal-Asian restaurant.  But don’t let the gender illusionists on your way in scare you out, downstairs is where all the fun is!  The club plays a great mixture of Asian and Eastern inspired dance music that you won’t find anywhere else.  Imagine a little hip-hop and dance music with an Asian twist.  It’ll have you dancing the night away. 

If these Frisco destinations don’t float your boat you can also check out Fisherman’s Wharf, Haight-Ashbury, the San Francisco Zoo, and a trip to the City would not be complete without a drive across the Golden Gate Bridge!

So instead of spending that hard earned cash on an outrageously priced plane ticket and even more outrageously priced gasoline, stick that money back in your pocket and into your local communities vacationing spots!

Vanessa Garcia has written for Modern Latina since 2008, in addition to Live en Vivo, and 831 Magazine.  Many of her articles reflect her interests in art, music, culture, travel, and the environment.  Vanessa received her Bachelor’s degree from UCLA in Anthropology, and is currently finishing her Master’s as San Jose State University in Mass Communications.