California: Family

California: Family

FUEL YOUR DREAMS

Explore California's Family Playgrounds
Spotlight: Disneyland Resort
Discover Orange County

The undisputed granddaddy of theme parks has been leading the way since 1955, inviting visitors to spend the day in the ultimate land of make-believe. This beloved Anaheim...

Spotlight: SeaWorld San Diego
Discover San Diego County

From swooshing and swooping rides to interactive shows and million-gallon aquariums, this is one theme park that truly makes a big, big splash. See—and learn about—the...

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Unleash the kid within at California’s ultimate playgrounds

From Disneyland classics to beachfront carousels, the Golden State’s best-in-class theme parks deliver something for everyone. Take a tram ride to...

Amazing Theme Parks
Lucas Himovitz
Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.
Walt Disney
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Old-fashioned fun in the Golden State

Historic oceanfront playgrounds, classic city-park charmers, boisterous adventures—smaller theme parks and attractions offer an array...

Smaller Theme Parks & Attractions
Tai Power Seeff
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Rooms that will make your little ones think you're the coolest parents in the world

Let’s be honest: any hotel with a pool can make a kid happy. But add the family-friendly bells and whistles that these premier lodgings do—like...

Kid-Favorite Lodgings
Gwynne Spann
Spotlight: San Diego Zoo
Courtesy of San Diego Zoo

Spotlight: San Diego Zoo

See rare and endangered species

Visiting this expansive zoo in San Diego’s Balboa Park is more than a chance to see animals from all over the world: it’s a chance to see one of...

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Make memories at some of California's family-favorite beaches

Sand, water, and kids—it’s a natural combination for easy family fun. This sandy dozen offers appealing, family-friendly features, such as calm...

12 Great Beaches for Kids
Alex Farnum
All boysenberries – a cross between a loganberry, red raspberry and blackberry – can trace their roots back to Knott’s Berry Farm.
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Kids get an inside look at wildlife, space, and more

From cool ways for your kids to learn about wildlife, to an insider’s look at a space station, to a chance to walk through a rain...

Family-Favorite Science Centers & Museums
Peter Alfred Hess/Flickr
Pacific Coast Highway - South
Myles McGuinness

Trip 4-5 days 10 stops

Pacific Coast Highway - South

Beach Towns, Iconic Theme Parks
Santa Barbara

Start your coastal cruise in this elegant city hugging the coastal mountains, where classic Spanish architecture gives the region a sun-washed European look straight out of the Riviera. The Santa Barbara, nicknamed “the American Riviera,” may have a burnished antique look of much of the...

San Diego

End your trip with at this sunny, waterfront city. Downtown, shop at Horton Plaza, or catch a baseball game at Petco Park. See the giant pandas at the San Diego Zoo. Next, explore one of the city’s diverse neighborhoods, Little Italy, North Park, South Park, East Village—pedestrian-friendly...

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Take on whitewater rapids, pan for gold and explore California history

Pluck a bit of gold from a riverbed scoured by the original ’49ers. Descend deep into the earth to check out unusual rock formations. Get your...

9 Family-Friendly Gold Rush Adventures
Mount Hermon
Myles McGuinness

Mount Hermon

Thrills and more in the Coast Redwoods

When it comes to thrills, turns out rides at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk aren’t the only option in the region. Nearby Mount Hermon lets you “...

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Hands-on fun for all at farms, ranches, and fields statewide

Milk cows, wake up to roosters crowing, feast on farm-to-table foods served in the shade of a blooming orchard—California has a...

Amazing Agritourism Experiences
Tai Power Seeff
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Get insider tips on visiting our top natural wonders

Ask a local the best things about California, and somewhere at the top of the list would be the sheer beauty of the place. See for yourself with...

9 Great National Parks
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Kid-friendly fun zones, special kids' menus & amazing wine for the grownups

Sure wine country is romantic, but now it’s a surprisingly great destination for families too, with a growing number of vineyards trading in...

9 Family-Friendly Wineries & Craft Breweries
John/ Flickr
California State Railroad Museum

California State Railroad Museum

Climb aboard restored railroad cars at this family favorite

Consistently ranked as one of the best railroad museums in the country, this expansive attraction presents 21 meticulously restored “iron horse”...

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Explore these urban oases

While you might think of a city park as an appealing splash of green amidst the asphalt jungle, California’s urban parks stand out...

12 Great Urban Parks
California State Capitol
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From Gold Rush history to the 8th wonder of the world, visit these favorites

If there was ever a box of chocolates—and all of them delicious—it’s the...

Must-See State Parks
Amy Meredith/Flickr
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Gold Rush history, epic high-country landscapes, hidden wine country, and charming country towns

Granite monoliths, waterfalls, alpine meadows—it’s no secret that Yosemite delivery some seriously big wow moments. But what is a secret is the...

Discoveries on the way to Yosemite
Kodiak Greenwood
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Unforgettable views of amazing animals

From rainforest canopies to luminous kelp beds teeming with sea life, California’s zoos and aquariums give you unforgettable glimpses of amazing...

11 Must-See Zoos and Aquariums
Tim Evanson/Flickr
Crystal Cove State Park
Harriot Manley/ Sunset Publishing

Crystal Cove State Park

Stroll a perfect beach with an intriguing past

In 1912, an early Laguna Beach artist described finding a rugged coastline “with cove after cove and headland after headland, golden cliffs and...

The Living Desert
Courtesy of The Living Desert

The Living Desert

See cool desert critters from around the world

Talk about survival skills. The animals and plants on show at this extraordinary attraction shed light on the amazing adaptions that make it...

January

Welcoming in the New Year with a burst of flower power, this iconic parade in Pasadena is half of the city’s annual one-two punch of parade-and-...

Rose Parade
Pauline Cheng/Flickr
The Tech
Courtesy of Team San Jose/ Tech Museum

The Tech

A workout for your head, hands, and imagination

So much of the magic of the modern era happens invisibly and at nano scale, but The Tech Museum of Innovation—or simply “The Tech”—does a great...