If you’re thinking about taking a trip to southern California, there are a few things to keep in mind before heading out there. Keep reading for ways to make the most out of it!

5 Ways To Make The Most Out Of Your Trip To Southern California
5 Ways To Make The Most Out Of Your Trip To Southern California
Photo by Jessica Lewis from Pexels

Having lived in California for nearly a year, I can tell you traffic is just about as awful as everyone says. Planning your trip to California is absolutely necessary. I do like having flexibility, but sadly California makes it a little difficult to have that. There is so much to see in California. No worries though! With a little planning, you can see it al!

Here are 5 ways to make sure you are getting the most out of your trip to southern California:

1. List the places you want to visit in California.

California is MASSIVE and there are a ton of things to see. When planning a trip to southern California, start by writing out all the places you want to visit. If you are an avid theme park fan like me, a trip to the original theme park, Knott’s Berry Farms may be on your list. It did inspire Disneyland – also probably want to add Disneyland. 

Or do you want the Hollywood/Celebrity vibe? Add the Hollywood Walk of Fame or the Warner Bros. Studio Tour. Really sit and think about why you want to visit Southern California and add whatever you think of to the list!

Make Your Trip To Southern California Easier By Making A List
Make Your Trip To Southern California Easier By Making A List
Photo by Paul Deetman from Pexels

2. Find the places on a map.

We are going old school here – even if the map is on your phone. After living in Southern California I know that is a place is 20 miles away, it will take you nearly two hours to get there. That being said, it is so important to find the places you want to visit on a map. Once you find them, group them together to figure out where could be visited in one day. 

3. Prioritize where you want to visit.

Think about how long you plan on visiting Southern California, and take this into consideration when making arrangements. My sisters had visited me for only two days. We went to Disneyland, Disney’s California Adventure, The Max, Hollywood, and Warner Bros. Studio Tour. If we can do that in two days, imagine what you can do! All it takes is some prioritizing and a LOT of planning.

4. Consider the places you want to visit and how much time each activity will take. 

Now that you have a list of priorities, think about how much time each activity may take. A trip to Disneyland could be an all-day thing while walking the Hollywood walk of fame could take a couple of hours. Set aside specific days for the full day activities. For example, if you are wanting to try a pop-up restaurant, most of these go by reservation only and list a time limit. This helps with the planning process!

Make Your Trip To Southern California Easier By Prioritizing
Make Your Trip To Southern California Easier By Prioritizing
Photo by Roberto Nickson from Pexels

5. Make an itinerary. 

As annoying as this might sound (think Danny Tanner clipboard-of-fun for all you Full House fans out there) it is necessary. You’ll miss something if you don’t plan for it. Santa Monica Pier is just 40 miles away from Disneyland, but this can turn into a 3-hour car drive! Group Santa Monica Pier with a visit to the Hollywood Walk of Fame or a scheduled tour of the Warner Bros. Studio Tour. Keep in mind traffic and distance. 


A trip to Southern California is incredibly exciting. I love living out there but ultimately left because commuting became too much. There is so much to see in southern California that the last thing you want to do is miss out on something. With a little planning, you will see everything!

Have you planned a trip to Southern California? What are some of your tips for making the most out of it?