There’s nothing quite like the magic and the majesty of the West Coast – it offers some of the most spectacular scenery, relaxed living, and the world’s best amenities. The range of experiences is endless – from wild adventure and luxury city break. Here are 12 big reasons to visit the US West Coast:

Everything Is More Laid Back

When you think of New York, you imagine legions of office goers all rushing about, trying to get to work in time for the start of the day. But on the West coast, things are a little different. There’s a slower pace of life. And people here are more focused on leisure. 

And it’s not just the economy that promotes this kind of thinking. It’s the culture too. People move to the West Coast because they want a very specific type of lifestyle. Often, they are tired of the hustle and bustle of regular life and just want to enjoy something more peaceful. In many cases, the West Coast offers that kind of vibe. 

It’s Home To Wine-Growing Country

The West Coast is home to some of the world’s best wine-growing areas, particularly in regions like the Napa Valley. A fluke of climate means that conditions here are similar to how they are in Europe’s most popular wine-growing destinations. And that means that the quality of wines coming from this part of the world is exceptional.

If you’re looking to travel a little beyond the Napa Valley for wines, be sure to check out California’s Sonoma Valley. You can also find beautiful wine-growing regions in Columbia Valley in Washington and Willamette Valley in Oregon. Again, the climate here tends to be highly favorable for growing grapes. 

napa vineyard

Napa Valley. Photo via Pixabay

Seattle Is A Coffee Haven

If you’re looking for the world’s best coffee, head on over to Seattle, Washington State’s biggest city close to the Canada border. The settlement is where Starbucks was founded and is home to countless coffee companies across the board. The diversity and range of coffees on offer here is truly spectacular, with something for practically everyone. The drink has almost become a cult, with thousands of people tinkering and playing with it every day to create the perfect brew. Craft shops litter the city’s streets, offering all kinds of coffee-related paraphernalia for you to enjoy. 

Hit the Pacific Coast Highway

The US is well-known for its ability to build highways. But its crown jewel is the Pacific Coast Highway which runs for more than 650 miles. This strip offers stunning scenery and a wonderful driving experience like no other. Stopping off at various points along the way to enjoy the views and sample local hospitality. 

Central Californian coastline looking south, with the McWay Rocks (with arch) in the foreground, and McWay Cove in the center

Photo: Diliff via Wikimedia Commons

There Are Hidden Beaches Everywhere

Only a handful of beaches are well-known in California and the West Coast. But this region actually stretches for thousands of miles, meaning that there are countless hidden gems to find. Beaches where nobody ever goes are way more common than you might think. 

If possible, park up somewhere and then go for a hike along the coast. You’ll find that there are dozens of places tucked away behind innocent-looking beach huts or coastal addresses. Just check that the beach is open to the public. The vast majority are. 

The Weather Is Close To Perfect

If you’re the sort of person who loves to wake up to bright sunshine every day, the West Coast is the place to be. Climate here is unique. In the winter, the harsh arctic vortices don’t extend down into the area, so they are usually mild and pleasant. And, in the summer, refreshing breezes coming from the Pacific keep the coast relatively cool. So, in other words, you don’t necessarily get the same deadly heat waves that you have on the East Coast. 

You Can Get Burritos With Fries

If you’ve never had a burrito with fries inside, you’re missing out. It turns out that this fast-food dish is a bit of a delicacy on the West Coast, and something that people absolutely rave about. 

You Can Try Pretty Much Any Outdoor Activity

Here’s another great thing about visiting the West Coast: it offers an abundance of outdoor recreational activities. You can do pretty much anything you like here, from biking to hiking to skiing, depending on the season. What’s more, if the weather is right, you might not even have to change outfits as you transition between them. Now, wouldn’t that be a first? 

It’s The Perfect Place To Buy A Vacation Home

Perhaps the West Coast is somewhere that you’d like to visit more often. In many ways, it is the perfect place to buy a vacation home. Properties here have access to beautiful natural landscapes, amenities and fun recreational activities that can be hard to find elsewhere. 

What’s more, the sheer variety of locations is breathtaking. Lake Oswego homes for sale, for instance, offer access to local waterways and all of the bright lights of Portland. By contrast, Napa Valley residences provide exceptional access to wine-growing country, an outdoors life, and hiking opportunities. 

The National Parks Are Epic

The West Coast is, by and large, the wildest part of the country. And, as such, it plays host to some ridiculously beautiful national parks. Top of your list of places to visit should be Yosemite. This stunning nature hub in California spans the Sierra Nevada mountain range, offering wonderful hiking opportunities and chances to get genuinely lost in nature. In Yosemite village, you’ll find shops, restaurants, the Ansel Adams gallery and Yosemite Museum. 

You’ll also want to check out Sequoia National Park. It traverses the Lippincott Mountain and offers beautiful views of the surrounding landscape. June is the best time of year to go, since the weather tends to be the most stable and predictable. Hiking here in winter time requires a great deal of courage and expertise. 

It’s A Wonderful Place For Animal Lovers

If you’re somebody who loves animals, the West Coast is the place for you. There are so many creature-friendly options here, including vegan restaurants and hotels. 

People also love their pets too, and will often make them a part of the family. Animals are allowed to go on yacht parties and even some malls – a big difference from many locations on the East Coast. 

It’s Great For Bookworms

If you’re an intellectual or you just love reading, then you might want to check out some of the West Coast’s big book stores. The most famous is Powell’s City of Books. Before you go, you think that the word “city” is an exaggeration. But it isn’t. The store has more than 1.6 acres of shelving, meaning that you could spend a lifetime here and barely scratch the surface of what’s on offer. 

Whether they are the largest bookseller on the planet is a hotly-debated issue. But they’re certainly worth a look if you haven’t been before. 

So, in summary, there are countless reasons to visit the US West Coast for practically every type of person. 

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