So the other day we started planning our California Baseball Road Trip. Here's what we got do far lined up.

1 Week in California. June 21-29
Start our journey from New York City to San Francisco on Saturday and end on the following Sunday returning to New York City from San Diego. The plan is to fly to San Francisco and drive down highway 1 first stop along the way Oakland then start to drive down the coast. Our next city will be Los Angeles spend two days then pack up again and continue and finish our drive in the beautiful sunny San Diego. Anyone ever done this or part of this with advice on cheap but good hotels in each city they would recommend. Any other words of wisdom will help too.

Thanks. Vince and Kriss

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Make sure you gas up in Monterey. After that, you'll be on the PCH for quite a while with only one gas station for hours. Beautiful drive though.

We've done the West Coast, but split it up between 2 summers. I loved California both times! Anaheim had Disney and a great ballpark very centered around Pujols, Dodger Stadium had history but is located in a bad part of town fyi, and Petco park was mellow and had a great kid friendly feel to it and San Diego Zoo!!! In case you didn't know only 2 zoos in the united states have panda bears and San diego is one. :)
Oakland is run down, but you can score great seats for cheap, and San Fran is one of my most favorite cities and ballparks EVER. Whatever free time you can muster stay there. Sit in the 3rd level, 1st base side where you can overlook the bay and watch the kayakers go for home run baseballs, permitting there are some, but still get a pretty good view of the field. There is tons of downtown shopping in San Fran too, everything from high end to Old Navy. And there are secret concrete slides in San Fran, located in the middle of neighborhood. The closest neighbor to the slides is not very friendly and likes to come out and yell at the people trying to have a good time, but it was so worth it. Lol. Oh and driving the California coast, a 2 hr drive from San Diego into Anaheim area is so so beautiful. Be sure to stop somewhere and get your feet sandy for an hour...laguna wasn't busy at all when we were there. Had the whole beach to ourselves. :) About hotels we always stay at holiday inns, they tend to be mid priced, have a pool, and walkable, but there wasn't one in LA. So we chose to stay at The Standard. It was still almost 2 miles away, pricey, and centered around age of 25, not family friendly. In fact their rooftop pool was closed to kids/families for a DJ and pool party for 21 over only. My advise is to not hang out in LA except whatever tourist things you are interested in and find a hotel outside of the city. Dodger Dogs and Garlic Fries were the recommended food I kept hearing about but I didn't try either one.

We are going to see the Dodgers, Padres, and Angels June 18, 19, and 20. We are staying in Anaheim by Disneyland, as it is a good stay for the three teams. Then, we are headed up to see the A's, Giants, and finally the Mariners. You might try Chelsea Motor Inn or one of the sister properties, or even try vacation rentals. The drive down is pretty good and some nice things to see along the way. I am not too familiar with the LA area, but I know you will have fun.

I hope to do this trip in 2015. I'd like to Amtrak down the coast as I'm a huge train fan even if it means adding an extra day or two to my normal allotment of 8 days for each summer trip. I've seen most of the tourist stuff from LA to SD so I just need good game time there. Never been to the Bay though so I'd like that to be the centerpiece of my trip. Good luck with the trip. Look forward to reading about it this summer.

San Francisco will be the centerpiece. Not only the city is so beautiful and fun but AT&T is the best. Enjoy

I did the Cali parks last summer, flew into SFO, then took a cheap Jet Blue flight to Long Beach, stayed in Anaheim at the Doubletree (near the ballpark) then took Amtrak to/from San Diego. I was using free a free flight for flight back to Austin so flew out of LAX & booked a seat on shuttle2lax.com ($20). I did get a rental car for the day to drive to the Dodgers game, biggest problem was getting there to early (didn't know how long it would take in traffic) and there's only one gate area you can wait at, at least that's what they told me.

I actually went to SD twice, took the train so I could catch the day game in SD & the night game in Anaheim, then drove down the next day to do the ballpark tour and go to the Seahawks - Chargers preseason game.

Even though having the car made it easy to enjoy the day in SD, actually preferred the train so I could look at the beautiful scenery. If you take the train the upgrade to premium class is worth it. The car was cleaner, free food and drinks - including wine & you're guaranteed a seat.

A few ticket/stadium pointers:

Giants - ok didn't go to a game, because I went the year the park opened, tickets were pretty high & it would have meant spending another night in SF. But did walk around the park and took the ballpark tour (always recommend this when you can).

As - got great seats on 1st base side in front row near visitors bullpen for about $30-35, great experience & amazing autograph opportunity before game. Friday nights do have fireworks, can even watch on field, but if you take the BART, which I'd recommend (drops you right at the stadium & you even go underwater!), the walkway is closed after the game until after the show because that's where they shoot them from. As also let you bring in outside food and beverages, even soda as long as it's in a sealed plastic bottle.

ANGELS: Went to 3 games, sat in 3 areas. First night I didn't stay long, partly because I didn't feel well & partly because the seats I had were killing my neck, be warned the seats in sec 131 are not angled to the field of play very well, thankfully I didn't spend a lot on them, because I ended up buying different seats for the next two games. The right field seats were pretty cool, had to buy the pair, but got them on stub hub that afternoon for $20 for both. The last night I splurged on a $95 ticket to sit half-way up behind the Rangers dugout, but the ticket value increased as Angels fans left early & gave me their tickets to move down ended up in the row right behind the dugout for the final inning & a half ($175 value). Angels also let you bring in drinks, but they have to be in a cup with a lid, like from McDonalds (so weird).

PADRES - loved the low key atmosphere - bought the all you can eat seats as it was an early game. Hot dogs, popcorn, peanuts, and instead of watered-down fountain drinks, they give you the the short bottles of coke products. Food is served from when the gates til 2 hours after the start of the game. Seats have a great view of park. You can take the trolley from the Amtrak station right to the ballpark, do have to pay for a compass card (though that day pretty sure I didn't need the card, you scan it at a random post - like an honor system - though they do random checks). If you drive, head over the big blue bridge (scary) and grab lunch at Little Piggy's - so good!

DODGERS - tickets are high here, but be warned, lower priced outfield bleacher tickets = outfield only, no access to the rest of the stadium & septic smell. Also, they have a curfew, so if games run long there's no fireworks on Friday.


Hope that helps!

This past season I went on a 18 games in 16 days, 11 stadiums trip. What I used was
http://www.stadiumhotelnetwork.com/ then clicked on the Stadium that I was going to visit. Then a list of local stadiums popped up, and you could either book directly through that site, or take that information and call the hotel directly and maybe save a few bucks.. Worked for me.

I have season 2 Tickets for Dodgers, if you're interested as well.

Did a 10 Day trip last April - San Fran to LA and Back. Went to Giants, A's, Angels & Dodgers games. If possible don't rush the drive down HWY 1, fabulous drive. We stopped and stayed 2 nights along the way before LA (Monterey & Cayucus). If your looking for a cheaper hotel in San Fran "Coventry Motor Inn" - located downtown on Lombard St (Convenient to everything and Free parking included - very rare in SF - Think it only cost us $110/night - Clean and convenient - trip advisor recommends). In LA we stayed at the Ayers Hotel (Orange, Ca). Walking distance to Angels Stadium and 25 Min (no traffic to Dodgers). If going to Dodgers game get there early - parking is crazy - ony one entrance to stadium and parking. Only time I've been out there but if you have questions let me know. Have Fun!

We will be doing this trip from April 12-20. Flying into Orange county airport and driving to SD to see 2 games against Detroit. We are staying at the Hampton Inn downtown. We have stayed there before and like it. It is 2 blocks from the harbor and the metro runs behind the hotel.  Walking to the park is also an option. We will then drive to Anaheim to see the Angels vs A's for 1 game.  Staying at Homewood suites on Harbor. We have stayed here before also. Next day we will drive the coast to Big Sur where we will stay in a cabin at Ripplewood resort. This was one of the less expensive places to stay in that area. We will spend that day and 1/2 of the next sightseeing and then get into SF that afternoon. In SF, we are staying at the Columbus Motor inn (3 nights) which is downtown and 4-5 blocks from fishermans wharf. This seemed to be the best option for staying downtown - reasonably priced, had good ratings on TA, has free parking and WiFi.  We will go to Giants / dodgers games that night and next day and then A's vs Houston on Friday night.  We will then hop on the freeway Sat. morning and drive back to Orange county. We will stay at Hampton inn orange county airport and go to the Dodgers / DBacks game that evening. Flying out of OC the next day.  We have been to all of these parks except for SF and Oakland, so if you have any specific questions about SD/LAA/LAD, I may be able to answer them now but will have more knowledge when we get back.  I am usually partial to the Hampton / Hilton brands but I also search others to compare.  You will want to book hotels early for best rates and if you can't decide between a couple, book both and cancel the one you don't want later. Trip advisor is a good tool to find places to stay and tips.  We just bought most of our tickets 2 days ago off of the Seat Geek website.  It is an awesome site with great deals. Most sellers are ticket brokers so you usually want too wait until closer to your game dates to get better prices. Some of our favorite places to eat are In-n-out burgers , Claimjumper , Point Loma seafood (SD), Ruby's.  Lots of things to see out there in just a week. Some of my favorite places are Newport Beach / Balboa pier area, Huntington beach area , Laguna beach area.  When you drive from LA to SD, take highway 1 along the coast from Huntington beach until it merges into highway 5.  Let me know if you have any questions. Feel free to send me a message if you want.

Dan

I read that parking at Qualcomm is a good idea and then take the trolley to Petco and back.  Does that still work?

 

Parking near Petco Park is only $15 and plentiful.  Then you won't be limited by schedule.

For a cheap SD hotel (around $125 per night) and on the water, look at the Bay Club on Shelter Island.

I think we will park at Petco. 
We will get there early enough, if not, then onto Qualcomm.

We are going to base ourselves out of Anaheim.  It will be easier than moving three times. 

Thank you for your help, I get a little nervous about spending a lot of money for parking when I am not sure where to go.  But, it is always an adventure!

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