ABOUT THE CITY: Located about an hour and 40 minutes from Los Angeles up in the San Bernardino mountains, Lake Arrowhead is a sweet little getaway of beauty and weirdness. They don’t love outsiders using the lake unless you get a swim pass or take a waterski lesson. The weirdest thing to do is go to Santa’s Village which just re-opened in 2016. It seems like only a few hundred people live here all year round. They have private beach clubs which we got a pass to from our Airbnb. It doesn’t get as much snow as Big Bear. Don’t go on a weekend.
Archery at Santa’s Village. It costs about 100 bucks for a ticket to SV, but there’s a ton of weird fun stuff to do and the ticket is good for a year. Their busy season is Christmas, of course.
Eat at Stone Creek Bistro. This is one of those places that has not the best decor, but mind blowing dinner. Make a reservation on the weekend or make sure they are open when you go. This was one of the top ten meals of my life. You must end your meal with the pot du creme of Stumptown Coffee and fresh beignets. Hit the mussels, the short rib pappardelle and the grilled Ceasar. Other folks loved the shrimp and grits and the duck as well as the sticky toffee pudding. We loved the hell out of this place; we went back twice.
Mountain biking at Santa’s Village. Go to the Pendleton Outlet in the Arrowhead Village. Go try 10 beers at the Lakefront Tap Room. I recommend everything by Mikkeller and Modern Times. Sweet potato tots and Guinness onion rings are pretty badass for catching a game and getting freshened up. Hit Stone Creek again.
Fly fishing and zip line at Santa’s village. Or take a ride on the riverboat and pay 17 bucks for an hour tour. It’s romantic as hell. Hit up Puglia for Pasta. Try the bolognese and gorge yourself on bread and killer olive oil.
WHERE TO STAY: