California just about has it all. I know most people have a soft spot in there heart for the place they’re from and why shouldn’t they? Their beloved family and friends are there, their favorite food spot is close by, and it’s “amazing at [this or that] time of year,” but California is, well, different. And the more international travelers I’ve talked with, the more glaringly apparent this idea has become. I left California to see and experience what’s out there in the world, but that doesn’t mean I don’t absolutely love where I’m from.
The Outdoors: California is beautiful. From sunbathing and surfing on its beaches, to the dramatic landscapes of its deserts, to its mountains and forests with world class skiing and trekking, California’s outdoors keeps me busy and wanting more.
Opportunity: Moving into the cities of California, opportunity abounds. Even after the economic downturn, the silicon valley is still the mecca of startups and the University of California is arguably the best public university system in the world.
Diversity: California’s diversity of ethnicities and cultures in a single region is also astounding when compared to other cities in the U.S. and around the world. This is glaringly obvious to any Californian traveling internationally.
The Food: The range of cultures, coupled with California’s fertile soil, allow residents to just about any international cuisine of their choosing made with fresh ingredients. For lunch, I can choose Vietnamese pho, Mexican burritos, Japanese sushi, Italian pasta, Indian chicken tikka masala, or a good ‘ol American burger and it’s all within a few mile radius.
The Weather: What seems to be the real kicker, and the thing that I hear over, over and over again from fellow travelers, is actually what I studied in college, the weather. Its one of the few Mediterranean climates in the world with warm dry summers and mild winters, giving it an absurd number of amazing days coupled with very few bad ones.
All this adds up to a pretty sweet place!
Now, this isn’t to say California is the “best” in every aspect. I’ve visited places with stunning beauty, amazing culture and much richer history. On the same note, California’s government is broke at this point in time, American politics can make one want to pull their hair out and it can be on the rather pricey side, but looking at it as a whole, is there another place with a complete resume quite like California? How I was lucky enough to grow up there will always be beyond me. It’s easy to appreciate home. I know why I’m traveling but I believe the call of home will never cease.