State Detail - California

California

Description

California's diversity is incredible.

In the northern part of the state you'll discover two of California's six national parks--Redwood and Lassen Volcanic. The giant trees are the main attraction at Redwood, and there are more than 30 miles of wild Pacific coastline to explore. Lassen Volcanic has Mount Lassen, a dormant volcano; hot springs, and 150 miles of hiking trails.

Three national parks?Yosemite, Sequoia, and Kings Canyon?are all located in the central part of California. Some of the ancient sequoias have been growing for more than 3,500 years. In Yosemite you'll discover a variety of wonders, including Half Dome and El Capitan, granite monoliths that tower above Yosemite Valley. At Kings Canyon you can find the General Grant sequoia, which is 107.6 feet around. Hikers can leave from Cedar Grove, located in a giant glacial gorge, to explore the extensive alpine back country.

California's cities hold attractions of quite another kind. In San Francisco you can ride the cable cars, amble along Fisherman's Wharf, discover the delights of Chinatown, and stretch your legs in Golden Gate Park. In Los Angeles, of course, many of the attractions have to do with movie stars. On tours you see where they live, make their films, and have left their footprints. The best places to see some of the more enduring aspects of Los Angeles are Chinatown, Little Tokyo, the old Spanish Plaza, and the sidewalk cafes and Mexican shops of Olvera Street.

San Diego is famous for its zoo and the aquatic playground known as Mission Bay. There you can visit SeaWorld. A few miles to the south and you're in Tijuana, Mexico, where San Diegans regularly go to shop, and watch the bull fights.

Highway 1, one of the most scenic routes in the world, runs along the California coast. It offers breathtaking views and serves as a connecting link between coastal cities and prime tourist attractions. Along this route visitors can see some of the famous California missions, marvel at the fabulous Hearst castle, play golf at Pebble Beach, challenge the surf at Malibu, and dine in style on the Queen Mary, now permanently moored at Long Beach alongside the Spruce Goose.

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