California Vacation Ideas
California is a state rich in vacation possibilities. Recreational activities such as golf, fishing, horseback riding, hiking, boating and sailing can be enjoyed year-round. There are lakes for water sports and mountains for skiing and snowboarding. The diverse landscape provides something for everyone, for California is a land with mountains, beaches
Mountain vacations in California can be enjoyed year-round. For snow skiing or boarding, visitors can rent a cabin or condo in South Lake Tahoe and enjoy the Heavenly Mountain Ski resort. Just across the state line they can visit casinos in North Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Other ski vacation destinations would be Mammoth Lakes in the Sierras, Wrightwood in the San Gabriel Mountains or Big Bear in the San Bernardino Mountains. During the summer months the weather is beautiful and the scent of pine is crisp in the air. Summer and spring is ideal for camping, fishing and hiking in the mountains of California. There will be some restrictions during the fire season.
Desert vacations in California include camping during the winter months in places such as Death Valley, along the Colorado River or at Lake Havasu's Black Meadow's Landing. Desert resorts, such as Palm Springs, are popular destinations for those seeking golfing, shopping, entertainment and dining. Deserts along the water remain popular during the summer months. In spite of the 120 degree summer temperatures, summer waterskiing is popular along the waters of Lake Havasu and the Colorado River.
beach vacations in California vary according to lifestyle preferences. Southern California beaches tend to be more crowded, while beaches from the central coast going north are typically not. Those seeking sun and social activity gravitate towards southern beaches, such as Newport or San Diego, while those seeking a peaceful interlude and an exploration of nature would prefer beaches along Pismo or Morro Bay, which also have cooler weather. Vacationers have the option of camping, staying in a motel or resort, or renting a beach house or condo.
Attractions, amusement and theme parks are abundant in California. In Southern California family vacation packages can be planned around trips to Disneyland, Knott's Berry Farm, Universal Studios, Sea World and San Diego Zoo. Farther north there is Six Flags Magic Mountains along with other water and theme parks.
Historical themed vacations might explore California missions, tour Hearst Castle or make a stop at the Denmark-themed community of Solvang, California. The Redwood National and State Parks provides a glimpse into natural history at its Trees of Mystery.
Notable California vacation destination cities would include San Diego, Hollywood, San Luis Obispo, Sacramento and San Francisco. Each offers shopping, attractions, dining, and historical and cultural activities unique to each region. San Diego is located on the California coast, bordering Mexico. It is home to Sea World and the famous San Diego Zoo. Hollywood is the motion picture capital, and Sacramento is the state capitol. San Francisco is rich in history and local culture, famous for the Golden Gate Bridge. San Luis Obispo is a quaint college town, with an ideal year-round climate.
Catalina is an island located off the coast of California. The island has been a favorite vacation destination for generations. Visitors to the island can enjoy hiking, scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, kayaking, bicycling, golf, para-sailing, shopping and dining. Visitors can make a day trip over on a ferry or plan an island stay.
Ann Johnson has been a freelance writer since 1995. She previously served as the editor of a community magazine in Southern California and was also an active real-estate agent, specializing in commercial and residential properties. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from California State University, Fullerton.
A. Johnson, Younbok Kim