If you planning a California vacation, this guide will help you figure out what to see and do in California. Having some information on the things to do in California and a good California map can help you plan your trip, so that you can make the most out of your California travel plans. From the bronze stars of Hollywood to the red-orange hues of the Golden Gate, there is a lot to see and do in the Golden State.
One of the most scenic cities that is known all over the world is San Francisco. Most tourists come here to take a cruise to Alcatraz, visit the Golden Gate Bridge, and ride the Cable Car.
The inspiration for the Cable Car came when a horrible accident was witness by the man who would become to inventor of the Cable Car. Horses pulled the streetcars in the mid 1800s in San Francisco. On the incredibly steep, wet slopes of a hill in the city, five horses perished in a tragic accident, sparking the idea of a motorized car to safely traverse the steep hills of San Francisco.
San Francisco Cable Car
Today you can still see original cars in use. The two main routes start at Powell and Market, where you can watch the Cable Car turnaround. You can take one of the lines up California Street. The Powell Mason line goes up Mason street and stops at the Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39 area, while the Powell Hyde lines, and takes you to the same area, but goes further west and leaves you at Ghirardhelli Square. This is one of the most authentic things to do in California, so there is always some waiting involved when you visit the Cable Car.
San Francisco Pier 39
Once you're in the Fishermans Wharf, you can miss the sign for Pier 39, since all the crowds and activity is centered around here. In the winter, there are sea lions that lounge on the floating docks, sunning themselves and occasionally making their odd barking noises. There are also a few that live here year-round. On Pier 39, there are attractions like the Aquarium of the Bay, which has a walk through tunnel, and various shops, restaurants, and arcades for kids. No visit to the wharf would be complete to Pier 39.
Napa Valley Vineyards
If you're in the Bay Area, make time to go to Napa Valley. This is an area northeast of San Francisco, is a peaceful grape-scented valley, whose ripening smells catch on the summer breeze. You can tour the wineries and sample excellent wines in the tasting rooms of the Napa Valley wineries, and top it off with a romantic evening on the Napa Valley Dinner Train. Here you can enjoy the countryside from the comfort of a train car as you enjoy fresh California cuisine. There are a number of charming bed and breakfasts in the area to spend the night at.
Further to the east, Lake Tahoe is a major destination to getting away for the weekend. From all over California, locals and visitors come here to ski, snowboard, or enjoy watching all the action while one simply relaxes in their Lake Tahoe vacation rentals. All year round there are things to do in California, from fishing, to mountain biking or relaxing by the beach in the summer. Lake Tahoe is in the High Sierra, close to the border with Nevada, and is only a few hours from San Francisco.
On the Central Coast, you should stop at visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium and then take the Famous 17 mile drive through Carmel to San Simeon. Stop at take pictures of the famous landmark, the Lone Cypress.
Hermosa Beach California
In Southern California, you should be sure not to miss Hollywood, Disneyland, and the famous Venice Beach, where the Doors used to hang out. There are lots of other California Beaches to visit in the area as well, like Malibu or Long Beach. Disneyland is the reason many tourists come to this region alone, since it is one of the most popular things to do in California. From the Chinese Theater, to the movie studios to the walk of fame, Hollywood is a full days adventure, and one of the things to do in California you should make sure not to miss.
There are a few different parts of Disneyland, there is the main park and the smaller California Adventure theme park, which children and adults will enjoy.