We road trip it to Southern California from Phoenix, AZ about once every month or two months. We have lots of family and work between the two of us out there and it’s only about a 5 1/2 hour drive. 5 1/2 hours isn’t much if you’re an ocean lover like me! The problem when we drive out is that if we are going for work that usually means one of us is stuck without a vehicle while we’re there. On our last trip our friends at DriveShop and Mazda graciously let the boys have fun zooming around in a borrowed 2016 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring. I had never driven a Mazda before this one!On this trip we were hotel/family house hopping and the CX-5 had tons of room for our over packing selves.
We also found that there was plenty of room for my 5ft 9in (and still growing) teenager, tween and my husband when he joined us.
Southern California Favorites
We always try to find new restaurants, beaches, museums, events or locations but these are the ones we’ve come back to and agree with as a family in no particular order:
- Tide pooling at Little Corona Del Mar
- Vans Skate Park
- Seal Beach
- Carlsbad (the town and beach are always just a fun relaxing stay for us)
- Hotel Del Coronado
- Balboa Island
- Universal Studios
- Huntington Beach (usually the boys’ pick)
- Taco Surf
- Fred’s Mexican
I suggest us trying something new every time we go out and often we try all new things but these are the ones the boys ask to do or go to on a regular basis. We did many of these on our last road trip but mostly we were driving from city to city so we were happy to be comfortable zooming around in this Mazda! It handled on the mountain roads perfectly and I loved how peppy it was when pulling onto freeway traffic. The boys approved of the sound system 😉 As an added bonus it has great gas mileage for a crossover (26 city/33 highway).
We’ll be back on quite a few more road trips this year so I hope we have the chance to try out some more vehicles. In the mean time you can find us at any of the spots above on any given trip. What would you add to the list?
Author: Allison Waken
Allison Waken is a wife, mom of boys and Phoenix, AZ native. She has been creating inspiring content for All for the Boys since 2011. Allison loves travel, movies and spending as much time as possible with her family while she can!