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California Road Trip Lodging

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I am doing a roadtrip up and down the coast (LA to Seattle and back) for 2 months this summer with some friends and am wondering what the lodging is like. We plan on going slow and taking our time, spending multiple nights in a row at places. We also plan on having most nights outside of major cities, exploring small towns and things.
What do you think would be a good way to organize the lodging? Just doing it on the fly, or because we will there at some places for a few nights book most in advance , or what?
We are considering everything from normal hotels to Airbnb to home rentals like VRBO and Zaranga.
Prices aren't a big deal, we are more looking for the best experience to have as much fun as possible.

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