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9 Labor Day Weekend Getaways to Plan Now
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9 Labor Day Weekend Getaways to Plan Now

Hey hey, Labor Day Weekend is almost here! What are your plans for the weekend? Discover these exciting weekend getaways to plan now.

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5 min read

September 02, 2021

Observed annually on the first Monday of September, Labor Day is a celebration of the achievements of American workers. The roots of this happy holiday go back to the late nineteenth century, when activists pushed for a federal holiday that recognizes the many contributions workers made to America’s strength, prosperity, and well-being. Today, Labor Day is celebrated with parades, picnics, and parties—festivities similar to those outlined by the first proposal for a holiday.

While many Americans deem the holiday as a last chance to soak in the sun before the crisp autumn air creeps in, Californians don’t see it as a goodbye to the summer weather. Instead, it unofficially marks the end of summer travel season as families gear up for the upcoming school year. Want to get in on all the fun? Here are the best destinations for Labor Day getaways in California.

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Labor Day Weekend Getaways in SoCal

Palm Springs

Yes, Palm Springs is still quite hot by the time Labor Day rolls around. But instead of crossing the desert locale off as a possible Labor Day vacation idea, think of the amazing low-season rates you can snag! While the rest of the state’s hotels become more expensive, the world-class resorts in Palm Springs see the opposite effect. You’ll feel the Labor Day vacation spirit as you go to entertainment venues to watch special performers, hit up the golf courses with awesome discounts, and stroll to any of the stellar restaurants within walking distance.

Welcome to the City of Angels, where experiencing everything in one weekend is totally possible. Whatever floats your boat, you'll find it here.

Los Angeles

For a more traditional Labor day weekend experience, head to the City of Angels. Bursting with activities on every corner, Los Angeles is truly one of the best Labor Day weekend trips in California. The immense Los Angeles County Fair takes place at Fairplex in Pomona, with games, concerts, fantasy exhibits, carnival rides, and plenty of food. The L.A. Fleet Week at the Port of Los Angeles honors the armed forces with ship tours, aerial demonstrations, live music, and fireworks. And the city of Hermosa Beach hosts Fiesta Hermosa, one of the largest arts and crafts fairs in soCal.

Big Bear Lake

You can never go wrong with a Labor Day weekend trip to Big Bear with the family. Your getaway will be all about fishing, swimming, boating, jet skiing, and more awesome water activities by day and barbecues, hikes, picnics and more on-land activities after noon. All in all, if you thought that this beautiful mountain town was only poppin’ during the winter time, your Labor Day getaway is bound to be a pleasant surprise.

Take the family on an exciting vacation to the island... that's right, we're talking about Catalina Island.

Catalina Island

Are you worried about driving home in the awful end-of-holiday traffic after it’s all said and done? Catalina Island is your perfect place to go on Labor Day. No matter the time of year, the Island always has something fun going on. Experience the historic Avalon on the east end of the island and head to Two Harbors on the west for a more rustic and remote adventure. Spend your Labor Day weekend trip hiking to the top of the cliffs, enjoying views of the coast, and snorkeling for a closer look at marine life; could it get any better?

Last-Minute Labor Day Getaways in NorCal

Yosemite

Yosemite is majestic any time of year, but it’s extra special when you go there on a Labor Day getaway. By then, the very busy summer crowds will have gone down just enough to put you in a vacation mood without evading your sense of personal space. Plan early to snag a room at the iconic The Ahwahnee hotel or choose the glamping route and stay in an airstream with Autocamp. If hiking to stunning waterfalls, cooling off in swimming holes, and going on more fun adventures in the great outdoors sounds like something you’d enjoy, then your Labor Day vacation in Yosemite will be an absolute delight.

Feelin' like a wonderful weekend spent in the great outdoors? Head to South Lake Tahoe where adventure awaits.

South Lake Tahoe

The southern end of the beautiful blue lake in the Sierra Nevada Mountains offers numerous fun outdoor activities to enjoy in September. Hike or cycle portions of the iconic Tahoe Rim and Pacific Crest trails, kayak over the relaxing waters out of nearby Zephyr Cove, and drive into the nearby small towns to check out local eateries. Don’t forget to drop by the annual Heavenly Village Carnival, Art, and Music Festival to finish your Labor Day weekend trip with a bang.

Monterey

For another classic Labor Day weekend getaway, head to Monterey, which is located just south of San Francisco. Once you arrive at this picturesque city, you’ll be greeted with pretty beaches, the famous Fisherman’s Wharf, and the historic Cannery Row shopping area. To feel the holiday spirit, check out the Monterey County Fair which offers rides, games, live music and entertainment, and plenty of other fun activities to engage in.

Wander the coast and lose yourself in the unprecedented beauty of Big Sur,

Big Sur

If the typical Labor Day vacation celebrations are not your cup of tea, you’ll love escaping to Big Sur on the Central Coast. With redwood groves, endless dark skies, and California’s wild, dramatic shores, you’ll have a not-so-typical Labor Day getaway, but one that’s no less spectacular than the rest. Book a cabin, take a scenic ride or two, trek a few pretty trails, and spend the long weekend getaway of your dreams. You won’t have much to do in the way of shopping and nightlife, but you won;t really feel the need for that anyway; the natural beauty of Big Sur will keep you occupied all through your last minute Labor Day getaway.

Lake Shasta 

Houseboating, barbecues, and a weekend full of family friendly fun—sounds like a Labor Day getaway you’d enjoy? Head over to Lake Shasta! The pristine lake welcomes many families on a mission to have one last end-of-summer blowout on Labor Day. No boat? No problem. There are many rentals available to spend a day in the waters in Shasta. Book an Airbnb for the night, go on an exhilarating hikes, explore the caverns, and have yourself an awesome Labor Day weekend trip before you welcome the fall.

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