California travel guide



California Travel Guide

Best of California

Best Architectural Landmarks

The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, one of the most famous bridges around the world and hallmark of the San Francisco skyline. It's also an exceptionally expanse to walk.

Sacramento is California State's capital; The Golden State's dazzling white was made-up in 1869 and restored in 1976. Its dome, which looks like a Faberge egg from inside, and first statuary continue along its eaves, and antiques from the original offices furnish its historic rooms. The collection of California governors' portraits is peculiarly compelling.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo del Río Carmelo in Carmel: The second mission founded in California, in 1770 by Father Junípero Serra, is possibly the most beautiful. Its stone church and tower dome have been renovated, and a garden of poppies adjoins the church.

The Best Museums

California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento: Old Largest attraction in Sacramento, the 100,000-square-foot museum was sometime the terminus of the Transcontinental and Sacramento Valley railways. It exhibits almost two dozen locomotives and railroad cars, among other attractions.

J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center in Los Angeles: Created by Richard Meier and concluded in 1997 to the sum of $1 billion, the Getty Center is a striking, starkly futuristic architectural landmark, with panoramic view of the city and ocean. The building itself is a good reason to visit, but so is the permanent collection, the crown jewel of which is Van Gogh's "Irises," which the museum paid $53.9 million to get.

Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles: This museum is an icon for Los Angeles, a city whose identity and history is so together with the popularity of the automobile. Flawlessly renovated vintage autos are exhibited in life-size dioramas accurate to the last period detail. Upstairs galleries house movie star and motion-picture vehicles and car-related artwork.

The Best Natural Attractions

Redwood National and State Parks: Acres of inconceivable massive redwood trees, up to 350 feet tall, tower over thick, lush, oversized ferns, mosses, and wild orchids in the old-growth forests along the Northern California coast. Walking through these groves is a memorably serene feel.

Lake Tahoe: One of the world's best magnificent bodies of fresh water, sparkling Lake Tahoe includes close to 40 trillion gallons sufficiency to cover the entire state of California to a depth of 14 1/2 inches.

Yosemite National Park: No thing in the state possibly even in the world compares to this vast wilderness and its miles of rivers, lakes, peaks, and valleys. With 3 of the 10 tallest waterfalls on earth, the biggest granite monolith anywhere, and some of the world's largest trees, Yosemite is one of the most beautiful natural places on the planet.

The Best Performing Arts

The San Francisco Opera: this world class company executes at the War Memorial Opera House, sculptured after the Opéra Garnier in Paris. The season opens with a gala in September and operates through December. This was the first municipal opera in the United States, and its productions and members have been acclaimed through the world.

The San Francisco Symphony: the symphony is such a warm ticket, it's difficult to get a seat in advance. If your concierge doesn't have any tricks up his or her sleeve, you can forever try to buy tickets at the door.

The American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco: The A.C.T. is one of the best nation's leading regional theatres. It has been named the American equivalent of the British National Theatre, the Berliner Ensemble, and the Comédie Française in Paris.

The Best Inns and Bed & Breakfasts

St. Orres: Created in a Russian style complete with two Kremlinesque and domed towers. The St. Orres provides secluded accommodations constructed from century old timbers salvaged from a nearby mill, one of the most eye catching inns on California's North Coast.

Albion River Inn: One of the famous rooms with a vista on the coast, the Albion River Inn is located on a cliff overlooking a rugged stretch of shoreline. The major part of the luxuriously appointed rooms have Jacuzzi tubs for two, elevated to window level. Add champagne and you're guaranteed to have a night you will never forget.

The Best Luxury Hotels

Calistoga Ranch: The best Napa Valley's latest hotel, with individual luxury cabins stocked with every imaginable luxury. In a secluded canyon, it's where nature meets nurture with a beautiful pool, spa, gym, and restaurant.

Château du Sureau: Near to Yosemite, the Château du Sureau and Erna's Elderberry House restaurant stand out for their subtle European attention to quality and detail. Furnishings are beautiful in the individually decorated rooms, and the cuisine is worthy of the stars.

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