The rural side of Southern California is often taken for granted in the Golden State. But for those of us who are drawn to the calming sounds of nature, tree-lined streets, and long and winding country roads, we can’t help but seek out SoCal’s rural towns. If you want a little slice of rural SoCal for yourself, here are the ten best towns where you can truly get away from it all.
1. Oak Glen -- San Bernardino County
The city of Oak Glen completely embodies all the things you'd expect in a rural town. Kind and friendly faces, sprawling farms, and historic charm in every nook and cranny of the city.
2. Ramona -- San Diego County
This rural community approximately 30-miles outside San Diego combines the charms of country life with all the conveniences you'd expect to find in the city. Whether you enjoy horseback riding, art shows, or quaint shops and boutiques, Ramona is a thriving town where people work hard and play hard.
3. Bishop -- Inyo County
To truly get away from it all, Bishop may be the exact place you're seeking. With a population under 4,000, you will practically have this town to yourself. And just one look at this storybook country road may have you hooked on Bishop from day one.
4. Arroyo Grande -- San Luis Obispo County
Head to San Luis Obispo County if you want to experience some serious charm that's far away from the city. Arroyo Grande is known for its rich history, quaint main street, and bustling farmers market where the community shows up weekly to support local farms and businesses.
5. Alpine -- San Diego County
Located in the Cuyamaca mountains of San Diego County, this small town of 18,000 is a haven for those who love nature, enjoy exploring the outdoors, and for those who yearn for a slower pace.
6. Fawnskin -- San Bernardino County
Whether you long to be surrounded by a lake, a thriving historic downtown or the seclusion of the woods, Fawnskin offers all three scenic settings. Its peaceful environment and involved community make Fawnskin the kind of place you could easily stay forever. Pictured here: Inn at Fawnskin Bed and Breakfast
7. Bonsall -- San Diego County
This small community in San Diego county is surrounded by lush rolling hills, vineyards, and all the charms of country life. There's no question that people come to Bonsall to get out of the city and end up staying permanently after experiencing a taste of a simpler life.
8. Sierra Madre -- Los Angeles County
There's no denying that Sierra Madre may be SoCal's best kept secret. Located right outside Los Angeles, you'll have the benefit of living outside the city but still have quick access whenever you need a break from the country.
9. Redlands -- San Bernardino County
Known for its abundant citrus groves, the smell of this sweet town is absolutely heavenly.
10. Fallbrook -- San Diego County
It's hard not to feel at home in the charming town of Fallbrook. Known for its lush rolling hills and acre after acre of avocado orchards and citrus groves, you will never tire of the magnificent scenery and peaceful lifestyle found here.
Although it may not be realistic to up and move, isn’t it fun to daydream about living in the peaceful surroundings of rural Southern California? One of my other favorite places to daydream about in SoCal is this
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