The Golden State of California has long been a top destination for travelers from around the world. It offers a diverse landscape of mountains, deserts, beaches, and vineyards, plus pockets of vibrant culture and stylish design.
Its cliff-lined beaches and rugged coastlines are among the most beautiful in the world, and it’s a perfect place to escape from civilisation for a few days. Here are some of the best places to visit in California for a vacation in 2022:
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1.Santa Monica Pier
One of the most iconic symbols of Los Angeles is the Santa Monica Pier. It’s a great place to go for a fun day in the sun, and it also offers a few activities that are worth taking part in.
A visit to the pier will provide visitors with a wide range of entertainment options, from classic carnie rides and not-too-scary roller coasters to an aquarium and more. Plus, street performers are common throughout the pier, making for an energetic atmosphere that adds to the overall experience of a trip to this iconic destination.
The pier has a number of different dining options including burgers, seafood, and ice cream sundaes. There are even a few sit-down options, such as Soda Jerks, The Albright, and Bubba Gump Shrimp Company. There are also several snack shacks and trinket shops that can be found along the pier.
The Sunset Strip is one of the most famous areas in the city of Los Angeles. It’s home to worldly life, historic restaurants, elegant boutiques, and storied nightclubs that have become legendary over the years.
It’s also a place where many celebrities have been seen, which makes it an unforgettable destination. Its glitzy hotels and fine dining are sure to please the most demanding palate.
You can enjoy a stroll along the 1.5-mile-long street or you can hire a tour to get an overview of the area. You can also do your shopping on the Strip, as it is lined with a variety of stores and specialty shops.
While you’re there, don’t miss out on a visit to the Rainbow Bar and Grill, which used to be a gambling den for mobsters back in the 1930s. This restaurant has hosted a number of famous guests, including Alice Cooper, Elton John, Guns N’Roses and Johnny Depp. The Saddle Ranch Chop House, a Western-themed eatery and a place where you can ride a mechanical bull, is also worth a visit.
Located right in the heart of Sonoma, this historic tree-filled square is a favorite among foodies, wine tasters, shoppers, family travelers and outdoor enthusiasts. On any day of the week, the Plaza is bustling with activity.
A monument to the Bear Flag Revolt stands in the center of the plaza, which is surrounded by historic buildings reflecting Sonoma’s past from Mexican era to Victorian era. You can also visit the Mission San Francisco Solano and Presidio of San Francisco, both of which are within walking distance from the Plaza.
The plaza also boasts a robust central green shaded by coast redwoods and London plane trees. A duck pond, two playgrounds, and other amenities make this an ideal destination for locals and visitors alike. The area also holds many special events and the seasonal Tuesday night Farmers Market.
Melrose Avenue is home to the world’s most coveted fashion and jewelry brands. It’s also a popular dining destination, with some of the city’s best restaurants tucked along its length.
In the fashion-conscious Melrose district, you’ll find designer outposts from cult favorites Monique Lhuillier, Isabel Marant and Chloe, along with a few that stray from the mainstream. Those looking for more of an upscale experience might want to stop by The Row, Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen’s fashion line or Irene Neuwirth’s ocean-inspired jewelry designs.
If you’re not in the mood to shop, head west for a quick bite at Urth Caffe Melrose. You can get a Stumptown brew to go and take a picture in front of the giant “But first, coffee” mural on the wall.
A little farther north, you’ll find Kelly Wearstler’s new flagship store, a one-stop shop for the designer’s swoon-worthy womenswear and sculptural brass jewelry. There’s also a metaphysical shopping destination called House of Intuition, where you can grab books and incense. This is all part of the larger Design District, a trendy neighborhood that features the best of LA’s interior and design stores.
If you’re a fan of luxury shopping, Rodeo Drive is a must-visit. This two-mile-long street is replete with a variety of high-end stores.
You’ll find many of the top designer brands here, including Giorgio Armani, Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Gucci, BVLGARI, Celine, Chanel, Christian Dior, Tiffany & Co., and Salvatore Ferragamo.
Even though you might not be able to afford anything here, it’s still worth the trip for the atmosphere and experience. Rodeo Drive is also home to a number of annual events, like Fashion’s Night Out in September and the Father’s Day Concours d’Elegance in June.
You’ll find plenty of things to do on Rodeo Drive, from window-shopping to admiring the cars that park along the street. You can also take a walk on the famous “Walk of Style,” which features bronze plaques honoring icons in the entertainment industry.
Known as one of California’s premier wine-growing regions, Napa Valley is packed with attractions that are sure to appeal to the whole family. From hiking to biking and swimming, there’s something for everyone in Napa Valley.
If you’re looking for an out-of-the-box experience, consider a ride on the Napa Valley Wine Train. It’s a beautiful way to explore the region, with restored Pullman rail cars from the early 1900s offering plenty of space and comfort.
Napa Valley is also home to several fun and interesting museums that are worth a visit. The di Rosa Center for Contemporary Art is one of them, featuring works by over 800 artists across 2,000 creations.
The Napa Valley Museum is another must-visit for history buffs, with three separate galleries and several programs that cover the area’s past and present.
Napa Valley is a great place to visit in the summer, with long, sun-filled days and warm temperatures that make it a popular destination for locals and visitors alike. During this time, you’ll also find plenty of music and cultural festivals enticing crowds.
7.The Cypress “Tree Tunnel”
The Cypress “Tree Tunnel” is one of the most popular scenic driving spots on the Point Reyes peninsula. This ethereal tunnel is made up of Monterey cypress trees and is a must-see for any photographer or Instagrammer.
Located along Sir Francis Drake Boulevard in the Point Reyes National Seashore, the tree tunnel is a photographer’s paradise. The cypress trees line a 0.25-mile driveway, forming an ethereal tunnel effect that’s sure to impress.
To get to the tunnel, turn right on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard and drive about a mile north from Bear Valley Visitor Center. At the end of the road, look for a sign that says North District Operations Center.
The tunnel is a popular photo location for weddings, engagements and other special occasions. The best time to shoot it is around sunrise or sunset when the sun is low in the sky and golden light illuminates the cypress trees. The resulting photos are gorgeous and mystical. The cypress trees also look beautiful shrouded in fog, which adds to the ethereal atmosphere.
Located at the eastern end of the Santa Monica Mountains, Griffith Park is a sprawling, beautiful natural area that’s home to several attractions. From the famed Griffith Observatory to hiking trails and a museum, it’s a great place for a day trip in Los Angeles.
One of the most fun activities for kids is to take a ride on the merry-go-round. The round was put in place in 1926, and it’s been entertaining for generations.
Another family-friendly activity is to visit the Travel Town Museum. This free outdoor museum is a great way to learn about railroad history and specifically Los Angeles!
Lastly, there are many hiking trails in the park, including several that lead to the Hollywood Sign. These treks are ideal for anyone looking to get out and enjoy the fresh air, with beautiful views along the way.