Wednesday, July 8, 2009

One Tank Getaways: Outdoor Excursions

Between lack of free time, tightening your budget, and trying to travel while leaving a smaller carbon footprint, it may seem as though you won't be taking that summer trip that you dreamed about during those gloomy days of winter. Luckily, Southern California is rife with destinations that can make you feel a world away from home for one tank of gas or less.

If the outdoors is what you are seeking this summer, offers tons of reviews on local trails, such as this one of an El Morro Canyon trail. Feeling up to a challenge? Try taking on Saddleback Mountain. This landmark formed by the two highest peaks in the Santa Ana Mountains and the ridge between them is 5,687 feet at its highest peak (Santiago Peak), and can offer quite the experience for both intermediate and experienced hikers.

If hiking is not your forte, with over 42 miles of Orange County coastline your to-do beach possibilities are nearly endless! From learning how to surf, lounging in the sand and reading, snorkeling, playing horseshoe, tide pool explorations, or people watching, the beach is always fun for all ages.

Another peaceful and easy way to get away from it all is to spend the day kayaking Upper Newport Bay. Orange County has a great ocean inlet, and kayaking the Back Bay is an excellent way to get a workout, see some beautiful scenery and wildlife, and also take in the views of the million dollar homes perched upon the bluffs. Rentals are available through the Newport Aquatic Center and also though SouthWind Kayak Center.

Last but not least, with a seemingly countless plethora of outdoor shopping malls including Fashion Island, one could spend an entire day walking around, people watching, and of course, shopping.

With so many great things to do outdoors here in Orange County, it's easy to travel and find fun things to do without leaving much of a carbon footprint at all.

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