Hey! Me and a friend (both 24) are looking to spend 2/3 months traveling in America, and thought a good way to end it would be by renting somewhere for around a month in California. We would like to stay in a location that is good for partying, and have a younger crowd, maybe near a beach etc.. Anybody have any ideas on location and price? I've just started looking at San Diego and Pacific beach.
San Diego--Pacific Beach
Huntington Beach--along the Strand
Newport Beach (but this will be a bit pricier)
Belmont Shores area of Long Beach (good for partying, but the beaches aren't as good as others on this list)
Santa Barbara--main beach or Goleta (which is near the university and yet be cheaper than the main beach)
Personally, I think San Diego's Pacific Beach is a great choice. I lived near the Belmont Shores area in Long Beach for 12 years and in Huntington Beach for 3 years or so, and near Santa Cruz for 10 years now.
If I had to rank them (for beach and parties and low cost combined), I think I'd put San Diego first, then Huntington, then Newport, then Manhattan, then Hermosa, then Santa Cruz, then Santa Barbara, then Pismo, then Belmont Shores. All of these will work for you, though. If you like smaller towns, stick with Santa Cruz and Pismo, but if you don't mind the larger places, then go with the list as given.
P.S. Realize that the Goleta and Santa Barbara beaches will be less of a party spot in the summer except on the weekends--since the university is closed then. Santa Cruz also has a large university--but the town and beach here stay busy year-round since more of the students there are locals anyway--and not commuting in on the weekend.
[ Edit: Add P.S. ]
Wow thank you, great reply! After reading some more, and my previous experiences of San Diego, Pacific Beach is definitely my number 1 choice, but great to have the back up options you've supplied me with! Just having trouble finding websites which can give me a good idea of what's available to rent, and a rough outline of the cost now
I would pick Pacific Beach myself for something like this. Pacific Beach is the place to be for surfers and young people in general in summer. It does get extra crowded at that time of year, and I'm sure prices will reflect heavy summer demand. I recommend Craigslist San Diego to get an idea about rentals, but beware of scams on that website (many have been duped into sending cash for this type of thing and then arrive to no place to stay - be careful!)
Another location I would suggest is Huntington Beach (close to Disneyland) - refer to Craigslist Orange County for that town - another surfer paradise.
[ Edit: Edited on 03-Aug-2010, at 11:13 by Daawgon ]