Closest Airports to Temecula CA

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Closest Airports to Temecula, CA

One of the best things about Temecula is its proximity to everything, including airports. There are a total of five airports near Temecula, all within an hour and a half’s drive. In this blog post and video, we will share some of our experiences flying into and out of the closest airports to Temecula, California. There are pros and cons to each airport near Temecula, and hopefully, this blog post will answer these questions for you.

For your convenience, I have also included links to pages that have a list of all non-stop destinations and airlines from each airport.

The closest airports include:

John Wayne Airport, Costa Mesa, Orange County, Airlines, and Destinations

San Diego International Airport: San Diego Airlines and Destinations

Ontario International Airport: California Airlines and Destinations Here

LAX: Los Angeles Airlines and destinations here

Palm Springs International Airport Palm Springs: Airlines and Destinations

If you are flying out of Temecula, most of these airports are very similar in regards to how long it’s going to take to get to each one. The one exception is LAX. Not only is it a little longer in mileage, but you can always hit traffic in LA, which can add hours to your drive. Oftentimes, you do not have a choice, as LAX is going to be the airport that flies to the most destinations with the highest frequency.

Vacation Travel

If you’re flying in for a vacation and have an end goal of spending time in Temecula, you definitely have some options that I would like to go over. These factors will most likely influence your decision on where to fly, depending on the time of year, what you enjoy doing, and how much time you have.If you plan a vacation to Temecula and have an extra day, I wanted to explain each city and what they offer for a one- or two-night stay.

Palm Springs

If you can fly into Palm Springs before ending in Temecula, the winter, fall, or spring months will not disappoint. I’d suggest spending a night before coming to Temecula. This is one of our favorite places to go and get away for the weekend. Quaint restaurants, safe neighborhoods, gorgeous weather, and lots of golf courses are just a few of the things that we love about Palm Springs.

We will warn you: if you’re flying into Southern California during the summer, I would probably stay away from Palm Springs unless you like extreme, extreme heat. We mean that it’s so hot that you can’t even sit by the pool.

Thursday night in Palm Springs is great; they have market night, which is awesome to walk up and down. They have lots of local arts and crafts, fruits and vegetables, and prepared food. They shut the whole street down, and it really is a great experience, very relaxing and fun. In regards to restaurants, you can’t go wrong in Palm Springs. They line Main Street, and you really have your pick of what type of food you’re looking for or what atmosphere you like.

Personally, one of our favorites is Shanghai Reds. It’s a seafood townhouse-type restaurant with great fish tacos, ahi tacos, lobster, pasta, and steak. In regards to the airport, we have never actually flown into or out of Palm Springs, but it’s going to be the smallest airport out of the five and probably the least amount of hassle.

John Wayne

We have flown in and out of John Wayne Airport many times. It’s a small airport, easy to get around, and very convenient from Temecula. A few of the major hotels that are no more than half a mile from the airport allow you to overnight park and provide shuttle service to the airport. This is very convenient, and the overnight parking is relatively inexpensive.

If you are flying into Orange County, we suggest that you take a drive down PCH to get to Temecula. This will allow you to visit the many beach towns, from Laguna Beach all the way down to Oceanside or Carlsbad. The drive is going to be about an hour to get to Temecula from John Wayne Airport. John Wayne Airport is easy to get around, and you can usually check in and get to your terminal within half an hour, which is always a plus.


Personally, we would only fly into Ontario if we were going straight to Temecula. There is really nothing around this airport that you would want to see. The Ontario airport has one advantage in that it is small and you can fly in and out in minutes. In regards to the drive to Temecula, it will take you about 40 minutes without traffic.

San Diego

We could spend hours talking about San Diego; it’s probably one of our favorite cities in America. Sunshine, ocean breezes, beaches, and the Gaslamp District are just a few of the fun things you can see if you fly into San Diego.

Just like the other three airports I previously mentioned, it’s pretty easy to get in and out of. We suggest, if your end goal is Temecula, spending a night or two in San Diego. Visit the Gaslamp District, drive over the bridge, and see Coronado and the Coronado Hotel. These two things are very fun, and Coronado is one of the most beautiful places in America. In terms of hotels and food, San Diego will be slightly more expensive overall.

Los Angeles

In all honesty, big cities and Los Angeles might be great for some people, but we stay away from LAX or Los Angeles unless we absolutely have to. There are going to be some cool things to see, like Malibu, Santa Monica (the pier), or Manhattan Beach, but overall, it’s going to be very crowded, dirty, and stressful. Obviously, because LAX is one of the bigger airports in America, this is where many incoming and outgoing flights will be from, especially internationally.

Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport; you really can’t tell what’s going to happen with traffic in this area. You have the option of taking an hour or three hours. One accident, and you can pretty much guarantee you’re going to miss your flight if you’re a little late. In terms of distance, LAX will be the longest of the five airports. Also, if you fly into LAX around dinner time or leave during the morning rush hour, expect to spend 2-4 hours in your car getting to or from Temecula. Plan your flight to arrive when traffic is at its lightest.

Hopefully, this blog post gave you some insight into the five different airports near Temecula. As we mentioned in many other blogs, Temecula is in the middle of everything and is very convenient. I would say all of the major airports have something to see except for Ontario. Take your pictures and spend an extra couple of days sightseeing, enjoying the beach, restaurants, and weather.

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