Just outside of LA, in San Bernardino county is Big Bear Lake. This odd little mountain community has bright blue sky, tall pines, cedars and a gorgeous lake, which makes this area feel like a little bit of heaven near the city. It’s a great wilderness area for those seeking adventure, yet it has the cutest village for shopping.
We try visiting Monday through Friday, in the winter. With 3 ski resorts and 2 children’s tubing areas, the weekends and holidays tend to get a little crowded in the winter. A mid-week stay is cheaper too and you can really enjoy the peace and beauty of the mountains without the crowds.
During the summer you can rent a pontoon boat for a few hours and tour the lake, then head over to Stater Brothers (the local grocery store). Pick up the 12-piece chicken meal (only about 8 bucks) and relax while the family plays at the Water Park, Swim Beach or the Discovery Center. If you get tired from a full day in the sun, you can sit back with the family and enjoy a movie at the theater in town.