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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Cal Lutheran chapter.

I have spent all of my summers in California. And by that, I don’t mean that I have never traveled outside of Cali for the summer. I have, but only for a short time, and then I’m back here. These are some of the things that I have deemed essential for an awesome summer in sunny SoCal.

The Beach

Not to totally start off my list with something obvious and cliché, but going to the beach in the summer is a must. Even if going in the water is not for you (like me), then laying out in the sand reading a book or listening to some music is a good way to go. If you do go in the water, then boogie boarding, paddle boarding, or surfing are awesome ways to have fun at the beach. I would also recommend playing some volleyball or spike ball to pass your time in the sun. But don’t forget your sunscreen! That Cali sun is unforgiving.

Amusement Parks

I absolutely adore going to amusement parks in the summer because that means that their water rides are operating. Even though it can be a bit of a bummer having to walk around in the heat, it is always nice to cool off. And I know it can be very expensive to go to one of the parks, but if you have the means to visit at least one, then I would highly recommend it. Two personal favorites of mine are Hurricane Harbor (a water park) and Universal Studios. Check out the new Jurassic World ride opening this summer if you’re looking for a fun way to cool down! If anything, the Santa Monica Pier is a lovely place to go on rides and play in a great arcade!

                                                                           Santa Monica Pier Photo Courtesy of Pixabay.com 


I have bonfires every summer with my friends and family, and they are always a blast. There are some great beaches along the SoCal coast that allow bonfires, so I say grab your marshmallows, chocolate, and graham crackers and head to the beach. Bring your friends with you and watch a gorgeous Cali sunset while you make some s’mores and tell stories around the fire. Just don’t get burned!

Night Swimming

If you have access to a pool, then swimming either way (during the day or at night) is super fun. But a favorite of mine is when it just gets dark and it isn’t quite cold yet. Throw in a water balloon fight and you have the perfect evening to have with friends. When it’s dark, the lights from the pool give a cool, almost eerie look that makes for a fun setting for games like Marco Polo and Colors. 

Baseball Games

I am a huge Dodgers fan, and I go to their games every summer. If you are not a fan of them, then go to any baseball game and partake in the hot dog eating, seventh inning singing culture of a baseball game. I love the comraderie of it all, even if I don’t know the people around me. I feel as though I know them by the end. 

                                                                                Photo Courtesty of Pixabay.com

Driving Down PCH

There is only one way to do this. Windows down, music blasting, singing at the top of your lungs. For me, there is nothing more relaxing that doing this on a nice day and just driving until I don’t feel like driving anymore. And, there are a ton of beautiful beaches along the way. You can check two off your summer essentials list!

Big Brother

This one might not be essential, so to speak, but it is an awesome recommendation. Big Brother is a show based out of LA where 8 guys and 8 girls go to live together in a house together for the summer and compete for half a million dollars. They do different challenges, and every week someone is voted off until there is a winner. I absolutely love this show and would highly recommend watching it if you love drama, competition, or in some cases, a little bit of romance.

This list might not include every summer essential for California, but these are the ones that help to give me an amazing summer every year. Feel free to add your own essentials to list, or take mine and put your own little twist on it. Whatever you decide to do, I hope your 2019 summer is fantastic.

Alexia Lee

Cal Lutheran '21

Alexia Lee is the Social Media Director for Her Campus at Cal Lutheran. She is a senior majoring in English with a minor in Creative Writing. She absolutely loves reading and writing, which she finds herself doing a lot in her free time. If she isn’t doing either, she can be found waltzing around Universal Studio’s Harry Potter World in her Ravenclaw robe, at the beach working on her tan, or daydreaming about where her travels will take her next.
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