The Best Airbnbs in California, From Beach Bungalows to Clifftop Oases Above the Clouds

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Have you been California dreaming lately? It’s hard not to frequently fantasize about the Golden State — after all, California offers everything from beaches and cities to deserts and mountains! And don’t even get us started on that year-round perfect weather…

Instead of booking a hotel for your next Cali getaway, truly integrate yourself into the state’s culture and landscape with a unique Airbnb that is undeniably California. Book a cabin under the Hollywood sign, stay at a remote bungalow in the Redwoods, or rent out a home that’s literally above the clouds. Or, hit a few of these all in one go on an epic Cali road trip!

San Francisco Apartment With Epic Ocean View

San Francisco apartment with beach view

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

We won’t blame you if, upon arriving at this beachfront Airbnb, you begin thinking you’ve died and gone to heaven. The place is actually located on San Francisco’s dreamy Ocean Beach, a rocky shoreline just 15 minutes from the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Hollywood Sign Chalet

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

Want to live like a star? Stay a few nights in this boho cabin on Mount Lee, the peak made famous by the Hollywood Sign, which sits near the top. While tourists can’t hike directly to those giant white letters, the back porch of this home offers all the unobstructed views you’d ever want.

Palm Springs Dome Home

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

Dome homes are all the rage — so why not stay in one that features incredible views and even better weather? This futuristic, two-story abode in lavish Palm Springs is sure to be a hit amongst those who prefer a little privacy, as the 3-bedroom dome is surrounded by nothing but desert and wind turbines.

Malibu ‘AirDream’ Above the Clouds

Malibu ‘AirDream’ above the clouds

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

It’s hard to believe places like this stratospheric Airbnb even exist, but you and 3 friends can take a very real trip to the cliffs above Malibu, where you’ll enjoy seemingly never-ending views of the clouds and sea. The home’s host promises “no noise, pure nature.” Sign us up!

Retro San Francisco Apartment With Downtown Views

Retro San Francisco apartment with downtown views

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

There’s nothing like a gorgeous downtown view, especially when it’s downtown San Francisco! When you stay at this Airbnb, feel free to peruse books, art, vinyl records, vintage video games, and more. Hungry? Head downstairs — this apartment sits in the heart of Chinatown.

Coral Tree House in Rainbow

Coral Tree House in Rainbow, CA

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

This nautical little hideaway is fit for a king — a tiny-home-loving king, that is. Located in the small town of Rainbow between Los Angeles and San Diego, Coral Tree House is perfect for Californians looking for an escape or tourists hoping to vacation off the beaten path. Enjoy shady outdoor space, a hot tub and pool, and plenty of privacy.

Saddle Estate in South Lake Tahoe

Saddle Estate in South Lake Tahoe

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

If the mere sight of this Lake Tahoe rental’s multiple decks is enough to make you book, you’re not alone. This highly sought-after lake home is designed to provide glamorous vacation vibes with a rustic touch. Put off by the hefty price tag? Invite 16 of your closest friends to join you and split the cost (there’s enough space for all of them!)

Modern Home Overlooking Los Angeles

Modern home overlooking Los Angeles

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

Just below the San Fernando Valley and on the cusp of Hollywood sits this hilltop home with some of the most incredible views in Los Angeles. Floor-to-ceiling windows allow guests to look out for miles over the mountains and downtown area, while a wide-open indoor space provides a touch of opulence.

Waterfront Bay House Bungalow on San Francisco Bay

Waterfront bay house bungalow on San Francisco Bay

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

If a beachfront home isn’t close enough to the water for you, why not try a home that’s literally on the water? This tranquil bungalow with bridge and bay views is made for lovers of the sea, but anyone could easily fall in love with the beach decor, sprawling deck, and steps down to the water.

Juju Paradise Redwoods Retreat Near Santa Cruz

Juju Paradise Redwoods Retreat near Santa Cruz

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

When you need to hit reset, consider booking this remote cabin amongst the redwoods near Santa Cruz. At rustic-chic Juju Paradise, you can enjoy the seclusion and ultra-quiet of the forest, but when you feel like you need some action, you can drive just 15 minutes to Rio Del Mar State Beach.

Idyllic Beachfront Apartment in Malibu

Idyllic beachfront apartment in Malibu

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

Does it get any more quintessentially California than this? Drift away with the sights and sounds of the ocean right from the porch of this Malibu escape, then take a drive along the coast to neighboring towns like Santa Monica or Ventura for more unforgettable views.

Light-filled Haven in Bonita

Light-filled Haven in Bonita

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

This pod-like house overlooking the southernmost point of California is like no place you’ve ever stayed before. The home’s floor-to-ceiling windows and minimalistic white color scheme provide clarity and meditative vibes for days. Book when you’re due for some relaxation, or when you want to try something completely unique.

Luxury Apartment in Downtown Los Angeles

Luxury Downtown Los Angeles apartment

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

Ever dreamed of blissing out like a celebrity in LA? All you have to do is book a stay at this European-style complex in the heart of the city to live out all your Hollywood fantasies. Soak in DTLA views from the pool, hot tub, and even your room before heading out for a night on the town featuring Los Angeles’ best restaurants and bars.

Vineyard Retreat in Occidental

Vineyard Retreat in Occidental

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

You haven’t truly experienced California until you’ve experienced vineyard life. Luckily, you can stay in your own private guesthouse on the vines in Cali’s wine country. Equipped with a pool, spa, and hot tub right on the property, you’ll likely never want to leave this Airbnb — but if you do, beach towns like Carmet and Bodega Bay are under 30 minutes away.

Northstar Townhouse Near Lake Tahoe

Northstar Townhouse near Lake Tahoe

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

This spacious lodge is right in the middle of an entertainment oasis, which means you can do a little bit of everything when you book a stay. Ski in the winter, swim in the lake in the summer, and experience year-round activities like horseback riding, hiking, and sky diving. Although, taking in the views right from this cozy home is an A-plus idea, too.

Private Malibu Bungalow With Ocean & Mountain Views

Private Malibu bungalow with ocean and mountain views

Credit: Courtesy of Airbnb

There’s an almost mystical aura surrounding this bungalow in the sky, and you can actually stay there! On a foggy day, revel in the feeling of living on an island above the clouds — and on a clear day, indulge in vast ocean views. Inside, enjoy charming decor, a weight room, and plenty of natural light.

Hillary Maglin is a digital editor who splits most of her time between New York City and Pittsburgh. You can find her on Instagram @hillarymaglin, where her DMs are always open to discuss travel gear, wine bars, and Taylor Swift’s latest record.

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