Not Just LA: Other Parts of California To Visit This Summer
In the mid-1960s, The Mamas & the Papas talked about ditching the cold of New York City for the warm, sunny skies of Los Angeles in their hit single “California Dreaming.” Likewise, L.L. Cool J recorded an ode to City of Angels in his 1988 song “Going Back To Cali,” which was later adopted by rapper, The Notorious BIG. In popular culture, there is no shortage of honor and celebration for America’s second largest city, the home to Hollywood and the famous Beverly Hills. However, with more than 150,000 miles of land and more than 10 percent of the country’s entire population, there’s a lot to experience, see and do in the historic state.
First, California is known for its diverse terrain, climates, and habitats. In addition to great beaches, California has some of the most mesmerizing mountain regions in the world. The most notable, perhaps, is the Sierra Nevada mountain range, which runs about 400 miles north to south along the state, or just 47 miles shorter than the entire state of Florida. Along the famous range is the Yosemite National Park, an incredible display of nature with waterfalls, incredible peaks, and variety of plant and an animal life. For the nature lover, this is a must see.
Secondly there’s Santa Cruz, which sits about 75 miles south of San Francisco. Situated along the Monterey Bay in central California, this town of 60,000 is considered one of the greatest surfing regions in the world. In fact, the area is proudly referred to as “Surf City.” During the summer, Temperatures can reach over 100 degrees, which is slightly hotter than summers in San Francisco, but you’ll have access to the cool Pacific, and the positive vibes from residents will make you never want to leave.
There’s also fun awaiting you further south. San Diego, which borders Mexico is one of the most exciting places in California, the second largest city there, after Los Angeles. While not exactly Hollywood, some travel blogs, like Thrillist, have made an argument in favor of the city over LA, citing reasons such as food, less traffic, air quality and an incredible park system as reasons to ditch the City of Light.
Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that a trip to California should not include its most populous city. Of course, Los Angeles is unique in its offerings and overflowing with great sites, landmarks, and of course, homes to the stars. Yet, don’t stop there. Make your visit out west count by exploring all the Golden State has to offer, and learning as much as possible about its people, history, and culture.