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List Of The Best Places In California You Should Visit!

Salvation Mountain

Perched in the desert, Salvation Mountain is probably the best places in California to visit if you’re looking for something totally unique. Created well over 30 years ago, this unique artistic landscape has become a truly amazing spot to see on your road trip through California.

Made from salvaged materials, lots of help from volunteers and a heck of a lot of toxic-free paints, this landscape is a constant work in progress. Now, you will need to drive here but you might be able to hop on one of the seasonal tours that go from San Diego itself.

Death Valley

Honestly, it’s one of the world’s most hostile environments and equally one of the most beautiful. Once you’re here, make sure to visit Badwater Basin that actually sits below sea-level. Oh, and make sure to visit Dante’s View for an incredible vista over the park.

Finally, if you get properly excited by nature, pop over to the Ubehebe Crater that was formed thousands of years ago.

San Francisco

San Francisco is one of my very favourite cities to visit in the United States. There’s just so much to see and it’s really up there as one of the best places in California to visit for a city break.

If you’re fancying being locked away, pop over to Alcatraz Island is famous for the penitentiary with access by a ferry. Just make sure you book your tickets in advance if you want to ensure a visit, it can get busy. If that doesn’t tickle-your-fancy, check out some of the cities free things to do. You’ll have a great time.

Oh, and pop over to Fisherman’s Wharf and Pier 39 to see the seals that call this area home. Just don’t get too close… they smell horrendous!

Big Sur

Big Sur is one of the most beautiful and best places in California to visit, especially to see its stunning coastline. Often thought of as one of the world’s most scenic coastal drives that span around 90-miles.

If you’re planning on visiting, hire a car and stop off at one of the many spots along the way. Then make sure to include a photo of the Point Sur Lighthouse, McWay Falls (and cove), Pfeiffer Beach, Partington Cove and Ragged Point.

Sequoia National Park

Right next door to King’s Canyon National Park is the utterly stunning Sequoia National Park that crosses the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Now, possibly one of the most famous and best places in California to visit (if you love trees) has to be General Sherman. Just shy of 275 ft, General Sherman is one of the tallest trees in the world (and over 2,000 years old). In fact, you can actually find five of the world’s trees here. There really must be some good nutrients in that soil!

That being said, if you’re looking for a challenge, consider hiking Mount Whitney which is just incredible. Be warned though, this is a strenuous hike and quite difficult so it’s not for the faint-hearted or inexperienced. As always, check with local experts and never head out alone unless you’re familiar with your surroundings.

Disneyland, Anaheim

Look, you’re either gonna love this or hate this but Disneyland first started in California (Anaheim) and still sits in the same spot where Walt Disney created his first park. Built over 60 years ago, it’s actually the only one of Disney’s parks that was actually fully completed by Walt Disney himself.

Disneyland needs little introduction but it really is one of the best places in California to visit if you love a bit of magic! Embrace Mickey Mouse, ride the rollercoasters and explore the futuristic Tomorrowland. Oh, and don’t forget to visit Disney’s California Adventure which is themed around the history of California itself.

Lake Tahoe

Located on the border between California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe is one of the most diverse and best places in California to visit for a little bit of everything. In the summer months, you can chill out and relax on the Tahoe’s beaches (on the lake). Hike along the hundreds of trails or head out sailing on Lake Tahoe itself.

In the winter months, there’s a heap of ski runs that are great for any level you are. If you’re Bambi on ice or an Olympian pro – Lake Tahoe has the best slopes.

For a great place to stay, pop into The Landing which is right on the California and Nevada state line.

San Diego

Based on the southernmost part of California, San Diego one of the best places in California to visit that’s has a huge mix of influences.

Perched on the Pacific Coast, make sure to visit La Jolla Cove, the Cabrillo National Monument and head out into the ocean whale watching. If all that exploring works up an appetite, pop into The Baked Bear who make some of the best ice cream sandwiches in all of California.

Napa Valley

Over the last few decades, Californian wine has really made a name for itself, with places like Napa Valley being the perfect places to grow grapes. 

If you’re a wine-lover, pop over to Napa Valley and explore some of the stunning (and award-winning) vineyards that call this area home. Once here, head to; Silver Oak, Opus One or Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars that are just so yummy.

Just make sure to have a designated driver to hand. No one likes a drunk driver.

Los Angeles

Los Angeles is possibly the most famous of California’s cities and a spot that’s firmly on a travellers path.

Visit places like the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Hollywood sign, but make sure to visit spots like Griffin Park and explore the Silverlake neighbourhood. It’s also got a massive art scene and loads of indie coffee shops and cafes.

And if you’re hankering for a tasty bite, pop into the Maccheroni Republic for some of the best pasta in the city!

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