You can also join a guided Island Tour (included with the price of admission) with one of the museum’s experienced docents. If you’re visiting California and wondering what the best things to do are then you must see this California bucket list. General Sherman stands at 275 feet tall and is over 36 feet in diameter. But if you’re in L.A you know that it is always overcrowded over the weekend. Another favorite school field trip option when I was in elementary school, I’ve been to the Monterey Bay Aquarium more times than I can count, but it never gets old. The Albany Bulb showcases that the idea of “trash” is simply just a mindset. San Francisco Zoo . Badwater Basin is a special kind of scenic that allows you to experience the beauty of extreme and otherworldly landscapes. Depending on the level of difficulty, you can either opt for the family-friendly Mt. A California vacation, road trip, or work trip isn’t complete without a stop at this native staple. Venice Skate Park is 16,000 sq. Don’t feel like braving the winds in the North Bay for some of that stunning coastal goodness? If you’re a diehard J.K. Rowling fan, you’ve probably already made plans to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood. Note that there are whales that come through the Monterey Bay year-round, it just depends on what kind of whale you’re hoping to see. California has always been about people expressing their feelings via art, no matter how weird that turns out. Ziplining courses are fun by themselves, but being able to do it in the view of California’s massive redwood trees is an entirely unique experience. If you’re camping, I recommend staying at Pfeiffer Big Sur Campground for affordable campsites and cabins and adding in some time for hiking around this beautiful area of California. Spend a night on the island and watch Karl the Fog greet the city in the evening. Who doesn’t like zoos? Book a vacation rental on AirBnB (and get $40 off your first booking). 16 Fun Things to Do in Hollywood, California. One of my favorite places to travel in California is Joshua Tree. Lake Tahoe is one of the clearest, largest, and deepest alpine lakes in the entire world. If you’re feeling particularly adventurous, you can hop on a “Social Cycle” and pedal your way through San Diego streets while sipping crafted pints of awesome. And you can’t leave the state without trying the fusion ‘California Burrito’ that sounds disgusting to anyone who isn’t from here, but believe me when I say it’s DELICIOUS. Sounds like a great location for a Peta campaign, right? Largest body of water in California situated in the middle of desertsounds like Big Bear in Palm Spring? You have 100 square acres of beach, wildlife, and hiking at your disposal, so it only makes sense to go to the pink-capped lighthouse for the best vantage point. Besides General Sherman, Sequoia National Park is one of the nine national parks in California that is well worth visiting for its natural beauty and good hiking trails. You truly have to see it to believe it. The Buffalo Paddock is near the Anglers Lodge in the park just off of John F. Kennedy Drive. Related: 101 Things to Do in San Diego | The Ultimate Bucket List. Sculptures of Anza Borrego 6. 5. Perfect timing for you to enjoy a spring hike! Visiting wine country in Napa Valley is one of the most popular things to do in California. Sipping these world-famous wines is a fun choice for day trips, bachelorette parties, and couples’ getaways alike. Whether you drive the entirety of the area along the Pacific Coast Highway or stop in just for a hint of the beauty, Big Sur is where you come to see it all: bluffs, sea, and sky. The equivalent of New York’s Central Park (but much bigger), Golden Gate Park is a hotspot for outdoor and cultural activities. The Pageant is one of California's best kept secrets and a Laguna Beach tradition since 1932. You can easily get a bag of fortune cookies for a steal at the Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory, help yourself to some egg tarts, or enjoy dim sum during your time in Chinatown! 55 Best Things to Do in Los Angeles (California) ... And, naturally, the Main Street parades are a big part of the fun, especially for smaller visitors. Today, the ground is open for the public to go and explore. One of the more unique things to do in Southern California, A few miles away from the Salton Sea, visionary Leonard Knight took it upon himself to create an actual mountain out of adobe, straw, and non-toxic paint. The Murphy Ranch aka the Nazi compound or locally known to as the Nazi House. If sailing, isn’t your thing, simply spending a day or two exploring Catalina Island is well worth it. But there’s no reason to complain when you have 100's of dinosaur sculptures just lying around. You might remember your heart fluttering when La La Land’s Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone danced with the stars, but it was Rebel Without a Cause that cemented Griffith Observatory’s reputation as a must-visit in L.A. Perched on the south-facing slope of Mount Hollywood, Griffith Observatory is an astronomer’s dream with its own planetarium, the Tesla Coil, and public telescopes. If you’re in Julian, you can’t go wrong with pie a la mode at the Julian Pie Company. The most popular part of the PCH is from San Francisco to Los Angeles or San Diego. If you happen to swing by this cute, pink ATM in Beverly Hills, grab a cupcake for you and your pup (yes, Sprinkles makes dog-friendly cupcakes as well!). Attractions defiantly off the beaten path. The Atlas Heart is a space where you'll find anecdotes on slow travel, craft beer, outdoor adventures, and all the eccentric bits in between that this world has to offer. While reservations are worth it so you don’t have to worry about beating out the crowds for free parking, you can also park along the side of the road if you don’t want to foot the bill. Enjoy a break from skiing … Since it closed as a prison, it has become a national landmark and home to history exhibits and art installations by world-famous artists such as Ai Weiwei. So what are you waiting for? Cacti and crystal swimming pools. Located three hours south east of L.A. Salvation Mountain is truly one of the most remarkable, unique, and fascinating landmarks of Southern California. This zoo is home to … California is the third-largest state in the nation and will take you through a variety of temperatures and environments. The Hook is a little more low key, and a better place to go surfing if you’re still a beginner surfer, but keep in mind that it’s still a coveted local spot. Related: 101 Things to do in Santa Cruz (From a Local). Sarah Winchester added spirit-warding touches such as decoy bathrooms, the number 13, and spider-web motifs throughout the manor. While visiting the Salvation walk up to the top, you will see in the near distance two giant walls with colorful paintings on it. No beer lover’s visit to California is complete without a tour of one (or more) of the famous San Diego breweries. No matter what your motivation, there are plenty of things to see and do in the Golden State, no matter where you go. With such diverse terrain, it’s not surprising that this region offers practically an endless number of things to do. Touring Coronado Island is a perfect daytime activity on a nice day since you can walk around the peninsula in about two hours. Book your tickets online for the top things to do in San Diego, California on Tripadvisor: See 233,657 traveler reviews and photos of San Diego tourist attractions. Griffith Park Old Zoo 3. Pro-tip if you want to visit this historical landmark: buy tickets early! Squaw Valley Ski Resort is the crown jewel of Lake Tahoe. The best time to visit is in the fall during “crush” season when you have the unique opportunity to see a winery in action! Balboa Park is not just any ordinary park. This place is no exception! The cold winters and cool water temperatures keep the lake’s clarity extremely high. The forested mountains, the desert, grassy chaparrals, … It’s seen as one of the best aquariums in the world, and it’s not hard to see why with how diverse our marine life is in the Monterey Bay. As Mexico’s northern neighbor, California has picked up a thing or two from the culinary king next door, although be forewarned that California Mexican is a completely different experience from what you’ll find down south. Grab your Disneyland tickets ahead of time here. We have reviews of the best places to see in San Diego. Stand on potato chip rock, a hot tub in Death Valley, Hindu Temple in Malibu Beach, off-beat museums in Hollywood. This expansive aquarium is all kinds of cool, educational, and inspiring. No we are not talking about Atlantis here. Sticking to something vegetarian? In fact, it’s my favorite spot on the whole California coast. As if those weren’t enough, visitors are treated to free admission, stunning Greek-inspired architecture, and world-class views of the Los Angeles Basin and the Pacific Ocean. Here’s the quick list and more description with pictures below. Even the parking! © 2019 The Atlas Heart | made in collaboration with Ink & Honey Design Co. + Michelle Robins Creative. Visit the aquarium to see a living kelp forest, cute sea otters, penguins, and more! Although it may be the sunshine state, sometimes bad luck strikes. These canals were created back in 1905 to resemble the appearance of the canals in Venice. California is a state of many beautiful things. On powder days, Tahoe’s most hardcore skiers and riders queue up for the famous KT-22 lift before the sun rises. To preserve the “arrested decay” of the town, there are no commercial vendors in Bodie. Many years ago a landslide caused all the houses on the cliff to fall into the ocean. It might not look that interesting, but we’d suggest you to go ahead and check them out. You can check the Guinness Book of World Record as it is recognized for having the largest collection dedicated to a single fruit. Or, if you’re really looking for a workout, you can get in a great cardio sesh on the Cahuenga Peak Hike. Hundreds of feet inside the McCloud Limestone Mountain Range are the alluring and mysterious Lake Shasta Caverns. Related: The Perfect Weekend in Mendocino. Recommended Experience: Ride a Steam Train through the Santa Cruz Redwoods. There are also quite a few good foodie spots and cafes in the neighborhood (especially for vegans and vegetarians), so make sure to research a place or two to eat and drink via Yelp or Foursquare while you’re in town. Address: 2920 Zoo Dr, San Diego, CA 92101, United States. To celebrate spring in style, Carlsbad opens their flower fields to the public every March to May. Each of the Inn’s 110 rooms is uniquely decorated and themed, and the property, built in 1958, has a whole lot of character. Things to do in southern California when it rains. Lost Sunken City 4. If you want a fun time with your favorite critters, buy a ticket today. Catalina is excellent for scuba diving and snorkeling as well if you’re wanting to get in the water. Napa is home to incredible restaurants, shopping, and outdoorsy activities. Kayte Deioma. Luckily Southern California has many things to do whatever the weather. If you have time to embark on a longer trip, the Pacific Coast Highway is world-renowned for its ocean views and popular pit stops, such as Big Sur and San Luis Obispo. The weather in San Francisco is best described as “perpetually chilly,” which means that it’s always soup weather! You’d think that a sinking town and an abandoned old zoo are not weird enough, how about a 50 acres Nazi compound in the Santa Monica Mountain which is minutes away from the popular third street promenade. Grab your Alcatraz tickets here + a San Francisco City Tour. Better yet, treat yourself to some funnel cake or a scoop of Soda Jerks’ ice cream while watching the sun disappear into the horizon. If you’re looking for a good tour to take you around to the different wineries so you don’t have to drive, I’d recommend this one. A visit to the Venice Beach Boardwalk isn’t complete without watching the talented skateboarders at the skate park along the beach. So the next time you plan your vacation there would you really want to explore it like a tourist and visit the popular clichéd places, or would you like to explore it as a traveler and go where the locals go? See a haunted house come to real life on the Winchester Mystery House tour in San Jose. If you can only pick between a few places to go in California, Big Sur should be one of them. It also serves as a playground for kids who have fun crawling and hopping in and out of the cages. Yosemite National Park is easily the most popular national park in California. And no one is stopping the adults from doing the same thing, while taking some good Snapchats, doesn’t it sound like the perfect place to use that dog filter? Even if you decide not to stay here, make sure to take a step inside to look at the quirky decor and the famous rock waterfall urinal. Winona and Norman Stephens and their followers took over the canyon and started to build this compound. One day was spent just walking around by Pier 39, going up the crookedest street in America, and checking out the botanical gardens. The city was founded by a group of Danes in 1911 who were trying to escape the intensely cold Midwestern winters. San Francisco’s Chinatown is truly a sight to behold, with the gilded Dragon’s Gate and glowing red lanterns looming over you at its entrance. It’s a city of trailblazing beer culture and techniques that will take you through a journey of unique flavors and styles. One of the more unique things to do in Southern California, A few miles away from the Salton Sea, visionary Leonard Knight took it upon himself to create an actual mountain out of adobe, straw, and non-toxic paint. However, if you can fit in both parks over a couple of days, do it! You can visit this place just to take that quirky instagram picture. The city has never forgotten its roots nor its love for all things Danish since then. 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