When you’re planning your next vacation in the USA, you can certainly do worse than to book yourself to touch down on the sunny shores of California. It’s here that you’ll find some of the greenest valleys on the continent, producing the food that feeds some of the most exciting cities in the world. This guide aims to introduce you to some of these majestic and exciting cities, giving you an understanding of where you simply must visit on your vacation along the coastal spine of this wonderful US state.
One has to begin this list with the world capital of cinema – the city of Los Angeles, with the Hollywood Hills unfolding to the city’s rear. As a family, a group of friends, or a couple of solo travelers, this is the one US city that you should ensure is on your list to visit. Not only is the city home to one of the world’s most important and productive cultural industries, but it’s also a city that hosts cuisine, attractions, and style in heaps. When in LA, consider the following:
- Make sure to visit a studio tour to get your head around how the movie industry works
- Take time to explore the outer reaches of the city, where some of the movie stars and directors live
- Catch some rays at the beach to see some of the world’s most beautiful people jogging by
- Grab some wonderfully tasty food to keep you going as you explore the many streets of the city
With so much to do and see in LA, you’ll only need to dip a toe in to find that you’ve got enough you’d like to do to spend a whole week – if not more – hammering its streets.
If Los Angeles is the city of mainstream movies and global culture, its diminutive cousin San Francisco is the counter-cultural side to America. It’s where some of the country’s best music has been created, alongside some of the most impressive art and cultural delights that you’d have to describe as a little more ‘niche’ than what’s going on up in LA. If you really want to get the feel for California, you cannot afford to give this artistic and welcoming city a miss on your tour of the state. Make sure that you:
- Head to the famous Golden Gate Bridge to see one of the marvels of the world’s architecture
- Take a walk up the coastline to see the provincial townhouses that make this city famous
- Visit as many art galleries and creative spaces as possible in this artists’ paradise
- Take a tram or streetcar up one of the hills for a marvelous view of the city
It’s a city that you’ll never want to leave, populated by people who came and never left, and you’ll find a dreamy quality to the streets in this wonderful city.
A hidden gem along the Californian coast, Carlsbad is one of the state’s finest places to take a breather as you traverse the long and bountiful area that makes up one of America’s great states. There are lots of things to do in Carlsbad. Here, you’ll find large and welcoming restaurants serving up some of the best cuisines in the country, with some of the finest wineries located in the hills that are the backdrop to Carlsbad. The beach here is absolutely stunning and should certainly necessitate a stop-off, while there are a host of other Carlsbad attractions on offer too, all of which are family-friendly and exciting in equal measure. For instance, you might:
- Visit the stunning and colorful flower fields that this particular area is famous for
- Take in the delights of the city’s mesmeric museums – dedicated to architecture, music, and culture
- Visit Lego Land located on the fringes of the city – and an absolute winner for your kids
- Find some of the state’s most luxurious and delightful natural spots – from lagoons to beaches to forests to rolling hills
Carlsbad is a city that you might not have heard of before visiting California, but it’s a must-see on your trip to the state. Check out more things to do in Carlsbad if you plan to stay longer than a few days.
Not strictly a city, and more of a huge industrial park, if you’re interested in how the world’s technology is produced and sold, this is a must-visit location. Situated near San Francisco and San Diego, you’ll find the offices of Google, Facebook, and other tech giants squatting in this valley – and some of the most talented and smart people heading here every day to test and create new technologies that you’ll see spreading around the world in no time.
If you’re into technology, try to organize a tour of this area that might take in one of the ‘campus-like’ places of work that techies head to in Silicon Valley. If you’re with your family, there are family-friendly things to do in this valley too – all in the shadow of most of the world’s wealthiest and most powerful corporations.
The state’s capital hosts some of the finest buildings in the whole of California – in part because this is where the local and state-based legislature resides. You’ll find here a leafy and well-to-do set of neighborhoods, with peaceful parks and groves for you to explore. That’s as well as some of the wonderful shopping opportunities in Mid Town, where you’ll find the best of the state’s produce for sale in many designer and boutique shops. A trip to Sacramento shouldn’t miss some of the following activities:
- Head to some of the state museums to see the remarkable history of the West of America
- Sample some of the finest cuisines in the country in the many world-class restaurants that make up the city’s culinary scene
- Book yourself into a night at the theatre to see some performing arts, or simply wander the streets to find entertaining and talented street performers
- Stay in some of the oldest and finest hotels in the state in this leafy and peaceful town
With so much to do and see in Sacramento, you’ll find this to be one of your favorite stops on your trip to California.
From things to do in Carlsbad, CA to Hollywood, there you have it – some of the best urban treats for you and your loved ones to visit in the remarkably beautiful state of California, USA.