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Where to Live in California: Best Cities to Move To

Should you choose to move to the Golden State, be it for a better job or that you simply had enough of your current town, the main thing to decide is where to live in California

Where to Live in California: Best Cities to Move To

To be frank, that choice is not easy. Wherever you put a finger on the map of the most populous US state, there’s something different and exciting. You can find big and bustling cities here, as well as small, quiet towns. The highest peak in the US outside Alaska is located here, along with many national parks and the famous Wine Country. 

It is a land of endless possibilities, opportunities, and natural wonders, and the best part is – everyone is welcome. So join us on a quick tour around the Golden State, and maybe your decision will be easier to make.

Moving to California and Finding the Best Cities and Places to Live

The decision to pick up the phone and call a moving company may be driven by many reasons. You’ve landed a perfect job in the Silicon Valley, got accepted by one of the most prestigious universities in the US, got tired of harsh winters in your hometown, or simply felt the need to change coast. 

In any of those cases, or any other, you’re coming to the right place. It is rich (if it were independent, California would be the seventh-largest economy in the world), it is diverse, it has wonderful landscapes and countless beaches, and by almost all parameters is among the most popular places on Earth, meaning that it’s fairly easy to adjust to a new town. What’s not to like?

Where to Live in California: How to Find the Best Cities and Places

Best Places For You to Live

Will it be a city or a village? Beach or inland? Highlands or plains? Everything is there for taking and up to your wishes. 

Still, if you are moving for a reason other than a change of scenery, there might be some things worthy of taking into account. If you’re moving for education, it would be good to find a new home close to the college you’ll attend. If the reason for relocation is work, then it’s logical to try to be as close to the workplace as possible. Finally, if you’re looking for a quiet corner for retirement and you deem Florida to be too stereotypical, you might wish to settle in a place with excellent healthcare and easy access to it.

That being said, the fact is that many cities across California are constantly ranked in very high places in the rankings of US towns on living standards and quality of life, and is almost always in the top ten when it comes to median household income.

Median housing prices

The only potential trouble you may run into is the price of housing, but it is to be expected in such a rich and famous region. Prices, of course, vary from location to location. Among the lowest median price is that in Santa Rosa, at around $600,000, while that in towns like Palo Alto goes up to 2,5 million.

Still, all that shouldn’t discourage you, for perks heavily outweigh the costs.

Weather in California

Many people choose to move to the Californian part of the West Coast just for the sake of the climate. It is mostly Mediterranean along the coast, with Pacific giving it milder winters and cooler summers. As one moves inland, temperatures begin to rise or fall more sharply, depending on the season.

Dream Big in the City of Angels

There are maybe a few things to be said about the city of Los Angeles that are not universally known, and to learn them, you have to be there. It’s the largest city in the state and second largest in the US. It is home to one of the largest entertainment industries in the world, named Hollywood, you might have heard of it, and countless celebrities chose to reside there. Whatever you may need, or wish for, it is to be found in LA, be it culture, cuisine, sports, or any other amenities that you might expect to find in a true metropolis. All of this makes it one of the best places to live if you are single.

The average prices for houses in Los Angeles are steep, but hey! You’re not just getting a home, you’re making your dreams come alive. And salaries are high, too.

If moving to LA is your choice, you know how to pick.

Best Places For You to Live in San Fernando Valley Cities

Mostly famous for its movie industry (Walt Disney and Warner Bros, among the companies, but scores of adult ones too), this part of the Los Angeles metro area has many other things to offer. For starters, there is one of the most notable examples of street art in the country, ‘Great Wall of Los Angeles,’ a mural depicting California’s history that stretches for amazing 2754 feet. 

Aside from that, whether you opt for Burbank (the place where Walt Disney Company has its headquarters and where the great man himself had died), Glendale, Hidden Hills, or some other town, you’re in for a good life.

Seaside Paradise of Santa Monica

When thinking of the perfect seaside town, you should go no further than Santa Monica. It is small but vibrant, it has beautiful beaches and sunny weather, and it is very close to Los Angeles. What more can you ask?

If you are a fan of video games, you might give it further consideration, for it is a base of operations for Activision Blizzard and also Riot Games and Treyarch, creators of League of Legends and Call of Duty, respectfully.

Where to Live in California? Consider Irvine

Irvine is another place in the LA metro area that can be a perfect solution for you. It is the base of operations for nearly 200 companies on the Fortune 500 list, so jobs are many and paid more than enough to compensate for a bit higher prices. Education institutions are also top-notch, with around 97% of students who graduate from high school enter universities.

It has to be mentioned that Irvine counts among the greenest towns in the US. With its hiking trails, it might not be one of the best hiking towns, but it surely gives you a lot of possibilities to enjoy the outdoors.

If You’re Going to San Francisco…

The old advice about flowers in the hair perhaps lost its appeal, but the place is still home to kind people, and a true capital of the northern part of the state, the same way LA is for the south. It is a preferred choice for some of the largest tech companies for offices, and need we go further from Apple, Facebook, or Twitter. 

It doesn’t fall behind in the other spheres, too. When deciding on the best city to move to, what can be more inviting than the mental image of waking up to see the Golden Gate Bridge and the infamous Alcatraz prison? 

When deciding to relocate there, you might expect that housing is not cheap, but with six Fortune 500 companies, numerous financial institutions, and accompanying service sector, it’s not that hard to find a good and well-paid job in SF. The cost of living is high as well, but relocation to SF means that you’d be moving to one of the happiest towns in the US.

Where to Live in California? Choose the Wine Country

If you enjoy a tasty sip, then the northern part of the Bay Area is the perfect place for you. There are more than 800 wineries scattered around the region’s valleys, Napa including. The region also boasts with its cuisine and restaurants, many highly graded, architecture, and many more things.

Santa Rosa – Gem of the Wine Country

This small town of fewer than 200000 residents represents a paradise for those who enjoy a good bite and even better sip. Its restaurants and wineries are famous, as are opportunities for shopping, lovely sunny weather and when compared to others, very affordable median prices for houses. So whether you wish to buy or to rent a house, it is a place for you.

Mill Valley – Follow the Trail of Greats

The main assets of this picturesque town are its beautiful parks and a high level of public safety. It’s very close to SF, so it’s no wonder that many folks from the city opt to settle there. Prices for real estate are high, but they are well worth it. When you’re done thinking about how to move, you dedicate your free to explore your new location.

Many famous musicians and writers called it home or spent some time there at some point in their lives. Among them were John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Janis Joplin, Jerry Garcia, Jack London, and Jack Kerouac.

Fremont is the Happiest Place In the US

Named the happiest place in the US by some websites, Fremont is a town in the Bay Area that should definitely be on your shortlist of places to move. Crime rates are low, the real estate market is stable, and jobs are plenty and well paid. Even buying a house is not as expensive as in some other hotspots, at around a million USD on average.

Officially happiest place in the US might be a good spot to start your new life and avoid anxiety about moving to another state.

Surfer or a Geek, San Diego Is Calling

Located in the southernmost part of the state, when you are relocating to San Diego, know that the town is well known for its restaurants and climate, but it is also famous as a surfer’s heaven. Like LA and SF, it is very diverse, and that only adds to its charm, and it also has its place on all ‘best places’ lists year after year. And even though it may not have Chargers anymore, it still has Comic-Con, so it’s well worth considering a relocation there

To live there isn’t cheap, but the housing market is stable, and prices for homes are significantly lower than in other parts of the state, with average listing at less than $700,000.

Mexico is Just Across the Bridge

No, really. American Finest City and across-the-border Tijuana form one of the largest metro areas of that kind in the world. So you can sit in the car, and after just a few minutes’ drive, enjoy all the amenities that Tijuana has to offer and be back home in time for dinner.

Palo Alto – Life in the Social Media Neighborhood

There are probably three things that Palo Alto is known for. First would be first-class amenities and overall living standards. Second – Stanford University is located there. And third, it is the birthplace of our inseparable friend Facebook.

Having that, all many more tech companies that began their life in Palo Alto, it is expected that some of the best minds are drawn there. The town is small (less than 100000 people reside there), but it is very diverse, with booming nightlife.

Also, on the plus side, Palo Alto has an excellent educational system, with its public schools being among the best in the US.

The only bad thing to be said about moving to Palo Alto would be, no surprise there, extremely high house prices, over two million bucks on average. Yet it is to be expected in a town where the average income more than doubles US average.