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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

Places to go this summer on a budget

With summer vacation quickly approaching, many students are planning a summer full of adventures with their friends. But here’s the main question: How much are they willing to spend for a great time?
What many people may not know is that there are many different places nearby that can easily fit a student’s budget.  
Mission Peak:
Located in Fremont, Mission Peak is a great trail for hiking. Be sure to avoid hiking during the daytime, since the high temperatures can be intolerable. The perfect time to embark on your hike is at 6:30 p.m., when the sun is down, and the air is cool. The hike takes around an hour and a half, so you will reach the peak around 8 p.m. and see the sunset over the East Bay.
Hiking with friends at Mission Peak is a great way to get a workout, and the burn from the exercise is barely noticeable if you are engaged in a great conversation with your friends. But once you take a breather in the middle of the hike, you will realize how tight your gluteus maximus is from the lactic acid buildup.
The beautiful and peaceful view of the sunset and the bay at the top of Mission Peak is well worth the strenuous hike up the range of hills.     
Not only do you get a great exercise from hiking steep hills and a great view, but your wallet will never need to leave your pocket.  
Seacliff State Beach:
Only a half hour south, just below Santa Cruz, the Seacliff State Beach is a perfect spot to enjoy the summer sun without the stress of a huge crowd. Avoid the early mornings or evenings because the chilly sea breeze causes uncontrollable shivering.  
 Be sure to bring a boogie board or surf board because the waves are perfect for surfing.  
Seacliff State beach is one of the only beaches around Santa Cruz that has a BBQ grill on-site so you can prepare lunch without leaving the beach. There are picnic tables available as well so you can sit down comfortably and eat your lunch.
There is also a RV campsite right by the beach with a beautiful view of the ocean and famous cement ship on the dock. Be sure to reserve a camping spot in advance if you plan to camp at the beach.
 
San Francisco:
If you are planning on spending the day in San Francisco, a great place to start is at Ghirardelli Square. 
For many chocolate lovers, the Ghirardelli store is like a chocolate fantasy. It has the best hot fudge sundaes in the Bay Area, leaving many consumers in a trance, so it is worth the drive up to San Francisco. 
Not only is this place a chocolate paradise, but it is also packed with history. The Ghirardelli store in San Francisco has been there for over 150 years and it was the original factory where Ghirardelli chocolate was made. You can even see the antique equipment in the store being used to make the rich Ghirardelli chocolate.  
When you are hungry for lunch, head to Union Square to pick up a nice lunch and eat it outside in the bright sun. Don’t forget to where layers since the San Francisco weather is likely to be windy and cold.
After lunch, you can bring your roller skates over to the Golden Gate Park and go skating together with your friends. The park is covered with vibrant colored flowers and grass, which brings out the warm summer feeling.
 
So this summer, the next time you and your friends find yourself asking each other the same question, “What do you want to do?” over and over again, pick one of these destinations above and enjoy a fun day that can easily fit your budget. 
 
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