California: Outdoor

California: Outdoor

FUEL YOUR DREAMS

Explore California's Outdoor Playgrounds
Spotlight: Redwood National & State Parks
Discover the North Coast

Hugging California’s north-western edge, a spectacular network of parks protecting nearly half of the world’s coast redwoods, the world’s tallest living things, which grow...

Spotlight: Yosemite National Park
Discover the High Sierra

Famous for its plunging waterfalls and massive granite faces, this unparalleled parkland, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1984, attracts 4 million visitors...

Spotlight: Death Valley National Park
Discover the Deserts

The largest national park outside Alaska, Death Valley is an almost unfathomable place. The park’s 3.3 million acres encompass mountain-size sand dunes, below-sea-...

SPECIAL FEATURE
From Gold Rush history to 8th wonders 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
The mountains are calling and I must go.
John Muir
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Family-friendly resorts, snowy escapes

High Sierra peaks, deep drifts on a Mammoth volcano, family friendly resorts, snowy escapes on the edge of Yosemite and more - California has...

Ski & Board in California
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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
California is blessed to have the most designated National Parks in the United States.
Spotlight: Mammoth Lakes
Rebecca Garrett

Spotlight: Mammoth Lakes

Snowy winters, wildflower summers

Surrounded by some of the highest peaks in the west, folks in this laid-back mountain town know they’ve got a good thing going. It’s a land of...

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See a few amazing wonders of the sea first-hand

Each year, about 20,000 gray whales make an epic 6,000-mile/9,656-km journey between Alaska and Mexico—and then back again. These whales travel...

8 Top Places for Whale Watching
Michele W/Flickr
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Lava, geysers & naturally heated hot springs

From the snow capped heights of Mount Shasta in California’s far north to Amboy Crater in the Mojave Desert, signs of California’s volcanic past,...

Volcanoes, Geysers, & Hot Springs
Lassen Peak by Grant Montgomery/Flickr
It [Pinnacles] represents what nature often does, all the great conflicts and tensions are there, of volcanic activity and fault lines, and the sort of geology of it is just spectacular to see on display.
Ken Burns
May

America's largest and most prestigious cycling event brings many of the world’s top riders to the Golden State. The 8-stage race changes it up...

Amgen Tour of California
Amgen Tour of California
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Feel really, really small at these wow-worthy parks

Get ready to look up—way, way up. California has the biggest, tallest trees on the planet. Discover them at outstanding parks and...

11 Places to See Big Trees
Calaveras Big Trees State Park by Kai Schrieber/Flickr
Wild North Coast

Trip 4 days 10 stops

Wild North Coast

Wine, Romance & Sunsets
San Francisco

Start your trip with one of the world’s great cities. For a novel way to explore 'the City by the Bay' park your car and explore by foot, bike and unique public transport. Pedal bikes across the Golden Gate Bridge and back, then explore the lush Presidio, a former military base that is now...

Crescent City

The last stop on this spectacular road trip ends at the very last city in California. Only 20 miles south of Oregon, sea faring Crescent City is home to the northernmost of California’s lighthouses. Overlooking the town’s harbour, the 1856 Battery Point Lighthouse, built with 22-inch thick slabs...

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Get into the coastal vibe

Maybe it is the sun-streaked hair, the frequent smiles, the eyes always looking west to the horizon to see when the next wave set might roll in....

5 Surfing Hot Spots
Spotlight: Lake Tahoe
Alex Farnum

Spotlight: Lake Tahoe

Majestic Peaks, Bucket-List Essential

Blue as a topaz and circled by majestic peaks, this High Sierra gem straddling the California-Nevada border is a bucket list essential. Where else...

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Vast landscapes, spectacular desert vistas

Both vast and intimate, the California desert is a region that ranges from arid, barren expanses to oasis-like canyons with hidden waterfalls....

6 Unforgettable Desert Parks
Joshua Tree National Park by Alex Farnum
There is science, logic, reason; there is thought verified by experience. And then there is California.
Edward Abbey
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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
Flyfishing
Harriot Manley/ Sunset Publishing

Flyfishing

Cast a fly in blue-ribbon waters

Between the volcanic summits of Mt. Shasta and Mt. Lassen flow some of California’s most celebrated fly fishing rivers. Blue-ribbon waters lace...

SPECIAL FEATURE
8 great urban parks

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

12 Great Urban Parks
California State Capitol
March

Get into the checkered-flag spirit at this big and loud NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event. Cheer for your favorite drivers as they zoom for the front...

AUTOCLUB 400
Courtesy of Auto Club Speedway
July

Yoga meets alpine wow at this om-filled, 4-day event. Daytimes are filled with workshops and workouts lead by eminent yoga instructors, all taking...

WANDERLUST
Christen Vidanoviv/ Wanderlust Festival
Waterfalls
Kodiak Greenwood

Waterfalls

See thundering cascades trimmed with mist rainbows

Among Yosemite’s many bragging rights, its waterfalls rank high. In the list of the world’s 20 tallest waterfalls,...

Death Valley National Park is the largest national park in the continental U.S., at 3.3 million acres.
Spotlight: Big Sur
Kodiak Greenwood

Spotlight: Big Sur

Art and nature merge on this rugged coast, one of California’s most spectacular settings

Welcome to one of the world’s most unforgettable stretches of coastline. This roughly 90-mile-long stretch of redwood- and fog-trimmed waterfront...