Discover Coastal Dream Towns

After canvassing all coasts for towns with seaside charm, a lively beach culture, and good housing, these are our top spots for planning quick trips or finding a new place to live.

San Clemente, California

Old style, New attitude

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Dream Towns: San Clemente, California
Photo: Michael Hanson

Your best beach is:

Any one of many along this perfect coastline, including San Onofre for world-class beginner surf, the beach at the pier for city life and ice-cream shacks, or Trestles to watch top surfers work their magic.

Your favorite place to eat could be: Iva Lee’s for Southern-style comfort food, a cozy scene, and good blues music. It feels like home the first time you walk in.

On the weekend you might: Take the Metrolink train down the coast to San Diego. Or stay in town for an event at another of Ole Hanson’s legacies, the Casa Romantica Cultural Center and Gardens. Locals partake of music, art and nature workshops, literary readings, and food events.

More Ways To Get Coastal Living



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100 Comfy Cottage Rooms 

Develop your coastal cottage’s style by following these simple tricks.

Lacy curtains, fresh florals, and plenty of monogrammed pillows are just a few of the feminine touches that give this room its calming and sweet mood. Pieces scored at thrift stores and flea markets were refreshed with paint, then artfully applied to achieve the shabby-chic distressed look.