10 great places to visit in California

California is known the world over for its fantastic climate, spectacular scenery and vibrant cities. Here are ten top tips for places to visit!

1. Palm Springs

Located in the California desert, Palm Springs has long been a popular winter destination for people all over the United States. The sun shines for approximately 350 days of the year!

Visitors to Palm Springs can take advantage of all of this sunshine in a number of ways. One of the most popular ways is on one of the city's many golf courses and driving ranges. Palm Springs also boasts a number of exciting annual events, including the famous Coachella and Stagecoach music festivals. But the fun doesn’t end when the sun goes down. Palm Springs is also home to many fine-dining restaurants and to a large number of bars, clubs and casinos.

2. Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara is a beautiful coastal city that is located about 90 miles (150 km) north of Los Angeles. Santa Barbara is famous for its mild temperatures and for the California Mission-style architecture that is very common in this city.

In addition, Santa Barbara has beautiful beaches and is a popular getaway spot for Los Angeles residents. Santa Barbara’s most popular attractions are its Stearns Wharf and the Mission Santa Barbara, a Spanish outpost founded by the Franciscan order in 1786.

3. Catalina Island

This charming island is located approximately 22 miles (35 km) across the Pacific Ocean from Los Angeles. It is both a favorite day trip for visitors to LA, as well as a popular vacation and honeymoon spot.

Travelers can reach the island by private boat, ferries, helicopters or small planes. Once on the island, transportation is limited to bicycles, taxis and golf carts.

4. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

These two national parks are located next door to each other in the southern Sierra Nevada Mountains, and both are famous for their enormous giant sequoia trees. Sequoia National Park, which was established in 1890, is also home to Mount Whitney, which is the highest point in the contiguous United States. Interestingly enough, Kings Canyon boasts the deepest canyon in America.

The parks are also home to a lot of wildlife species, including bobcats, gray foxes, bears and mule deer. Both parks are popular with backpackers and hikers, and there are 14 campgrounds available for visitors.

5. Napa Valley

Napa Valley is the premier destination for wine lovers in the United States. Its wines are considered to be some of the best in the world. To accommodate the many wine lovers that travel to Napa, the area now boasts a variety of accommodations, including charming bed and breakfasts, lovely boutique hotels and well-known chain hotels.

6. Death Valley

Located in the Mojave Desert, Death Valley encompasses much of the Death Valley National Park. Although regarded as the driest and lowest place in North America, Death Valley offers a variety of outdoor activities, historic sites and nature viewing. Places of interests include the scenic vista of Zabriskie Point and historic sites like Scotty’s Castle, the Wildrose Charcoal Kilns and ruins of ghost towns.

7. San Diego

With fabulous beaches, ideal climate and outstanding family attractions, it is no wonder that San Diego is one of the most popular places to visit in California. Located just north of the Mexican border, San Diego is a large coastal city with a small-town atmosphere.

The most popular attraction in San Diego is America's premier zoo, which is located in Balboa Park with flowering gardens and Spanish architecture. The city is home to other family attractions like SeaWorld San Diego and the Birch Aquarium. Another tourist magnet, San Diego’s stunning coastline, offers miles of fantastic beaches including the upscale beach neighborhood of La Jolla.

8. Yosemite National Park

Located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of central eastern California, the Yosemite National Park is well-loved for its stunning granite cliffs, Giant Sequoia groves, beautiful waterfalls and diverse animal and plant life. Visitors can hike among the 800 miles of trails, or drive along scenic routes to experience the beautiful landscapes and glimpse wildlife.

9. Los Angeles

The second largest city in the USA, Los Angeles is located in southern California surrounded by the Pacific Coast, mountains and valleys. Known as the City of Angels, the city offers a wide range of attractions and beaches, including wild-and-crazy Venice Beach and Malibu, the sandy playground favored by movie stars.

Travelers to LA can find some of the best-known amusement parks on the planet here, including Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood. Los Angeles is also one of the best places in the United States to go in search of celebrities.

10. San Francisco

San Francisco is a fun and exciting city in northern California, set on the tip of a peninsula in the San Francisco Bay Area. Undoubtedly, the Golden Gate Bridge is the city's number one attraction. Tourists can drive, bike ride or walk across this famous suspension bridge to admire and photograph stunning views.

In addition, visitors to San Francisco can visit Lombard Street, which is famous for its tight curves, or take a trip to San Francisco's Chinatown section, which is the largest outside of Asia. And then, of course, there are the other big tourist favorites — Fisherman’s Wharf and the infamous prison on Alcatraz Island.

Kings Los Angeles is located in the heart of Hollywood. Read more about the courses on offer here.

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