We know that San Diego is all about fun-in-the-sun and beaches, but students are often surprised to find that while living in San Diego, they also have an opportunity to escape to the mountains and enjoy some skiing or snowboarding. Big Bear, a beautiful ski resort in California, is just a few hours drive from SD!

Big Bear is named after the Grizzly Bears that once were the only residents of the area. For decades, people living in San Bernardino (an area outside of Los Angeles) traveled to the location to see its beautiful scenery and enjoy the hot springs. By the 1920s, the area was also a favorite destination for skiers. Today, Big Bear is the biggest recreation center in Southern California.


What is there to do in Big Bear? This time of year, tourists flock there for two things: skiing and snowboarding! The area was named the “Best Ski Destination” by Gogobot, an online community of travelers. Big Bear has many ski resorts to choose from, and each offers equipment rental, so don’t worry about bringing your own gear. If you are not interested in skiing or snowboarding, there are many other options: trekking, snowmobiling, horseback riding, zip-lining, spa trips, and shopping are all popular activities for Big Bear tourists.

If you would like to visit Big Bear, you have several transportation options. The most popular is to rent a car (this is what most students do). The second option is to take the bus from San Bernardino, which is a great option if you are not comfortable driving in the snow.

If you are interested in learning more about visiting Big Bear, visit its official website at http://www.bigbear.com/.

Big Bear Lake is just 2 hours from LA, but seems like a world away. The smell of pine trees, the quaint little town that offers fantastic restaurants and quirky souvenir shops, and the beautiful lake that serves as the centerpiece of Big Bear makes a trip here feel like you’re in Colorado or Vermont ski town.