Visiting California is not all about Hollywood and the Disney theme parks. There is actually a whole lot more to do in California when traveling into this populous state.
Do you want to see how the rich truly live, then Palm Springs is the location for the wealthy who wish to enjoy their summers and winters enjoying a leisurely afternoon on one of the golf courses or attending a Stagecoach music festival. The weather is a comfortable 60°F during the winter months and remains comfortable during the hotter summer months too. For gambling, there are a number of casinos that can cater to high rollers or those who just like a little gamble.
Napa Valley is famous in California for its numerous vineyards that turn out some of the best wine in the region. Beyond wine tastings, the scenery is excellent when driving around and there are many luxury spas to unwind in a different way when not trying out the latest vintage. For people who like guided events, there are combination guided bike wine tours and hot air balloon rides which are best taken as a couple or in small groups.
Catalina Island sits 22 miles across the Pacific from Los Angeles. Most of the visitors to the island travel either to Avalon or Two Harbors, but Avalon has the most visitors who wish to stay overnight. The island is popular with vacationers and couples on their honeymoon. Accessing the island is possible by boat, ferry, small plane or helicopter. Getting around the island once there can be done via taxi, a golf cart or bicycle.
For a city right on the coast, it is difficult to beat Santa Barbara which has been nicknamed “The American Riviera.” The architecture is a Mission-style which is common across the city and due to standing ordinance, adobe walls and red-tiles on the roof are still the order of the day. One of the main attractions of Santa Barbara is the many beaches, Mission Sanata Barbara, and the Strearns Wharf pier in the main harbor which has retained its old-fashioned charm.
Palo Alto is a city that has grown up around the Stanford University and the numerous technology startups that cluster around the city. There are several distinct neighborhoods, each with their own unique charm and they're all safe to walk around.Whilst staying in Palo Alto, visit the Nest, a corporate hotel in Palo Alto that provides a comfortable experience with all the creature comforts, fast internet access and efficient service.
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks
California is fortunate enough to have two national parks almost right next to each other. Both national parks have enormous Sequoia trees standing as high as 300 feet with trunks that can stretch 100 feet across. Sequoia National Park is also home to Mount Whitney which is the highest point in the US. By contrast, Kings Canyon has the deepest canyon in the US.
The parks are also a wildlife lovers' dream with bears, bobcats, mule deer, mountain lions, and bighorn sheep that can be seen if you're lucky on a trip there. California has so many great places to visit that it is impossible to mention them all. These are just a few examples of some of the most stunning places to visit on a first trip to the state.