12 Best Places to Visit in California (2024)

Best Places to Visit in California

California, a state in the United States, is home to a variety of incredible destinations that cater to different interests. From picturesque beaches to majestic mountains, California offers a diverse range of experiences for travelers. Exploring the 12 Best Places to Visit in California promises a mix of natural beauty, cultural richness, and thrilling adventures.

Get ready to embark on a journey through some of the most captivating and must-visit locations in the Golden State!

1. The Yosemite National Park

Best Places to Visit in California

The Yosemite National Park is a stunning and awe-inspiring place located in California, United States. It is known for its breathtaking natural beauty, with towering mountains, cascading waterfalls, and lush forests.

The park is home to a diverse range of wildlife, including bears, deer, and eagles. Visitors can enjoy hiking, camping, and exploring the park’s many attractions, such as the iconic Yosemite Valley and the famous El Capitan rock formation.

The Yosemite National Park is a must-visit destination for anyone who loves nature and the great outdoors.

Key Point

Things to do
  • Hiking: Explore the numerous trails that offer breathtaking views of waterfalls, valleys, and granite cliffs. Don’t miss iconic hikes like Half Dome, Yosemite Falls Trail, and Mist Trail.
  • Rock Climbing: Yosemite is a mecca for rock climbers with world-renowned granite walls like El Capitan and Half Dome offering challenging climbs for all skill levels.
  • Scenic Drives: Take a leisurely drive along Glacier Point Road or Tioga Road to enjoy stunning vistas of the park’s diverse landscapes.
  • Photography: Capture the park’s natural beauty at iconic spots like Tunnel View, Glacier Point, and Mirror Lake.
  • Wildlife Viewing: Keep an eye out for diverse wildlife including black bears, deer, coyotes, and various bird species.
  • Camping: Experience the serenity of Yosemite by camping in one of its many campgrounds, offering a range of amenities from rustic to full-service.
Best Time to Visit

May to September because there is no snow on the roads and trails, so you can easily get around.

Nearest Major Airport

The nearest major airport to Yosemite National Park is Fresno Yosemite International Airport (FAT), located in Fresno, California. It’s approximately 65 miles (105 kilometers) southwest of the park’s entrance.

Another option is Mammoth Yosemite Airport (MMH), which is about 80 miles (130 kilometers) northeast of Yosemite National Park. Both airports offer car rental services and shuttle options for travelers heading to the park.

Places to stay
  1. The Ahwahnee Hotel
  2. Yosemite Valley Lodge
  3. Half Dome Village (formerly Curry Village)
  4. Wawona Hotel
  5. Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite
  6. Rush Creek Lodge
  7. Evergreen Lodge at Yosemite
  8. Yosemite Westgate Lodge
  9. Yosemite View Lodge
  10. White Wolf Lodge
Tourist Attractions
  • El Capitán
  • Yosemite Museum
  • Tunnel View
  • Glacier Point
  • Yosemite Valley
  • Hetch Hetchy
  • Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias
  • Tuolumne Meadows and Tioga Road
  • Crane Flat Area
  • Waterfalls

2. The Disneyland Resort

Best Places to Visit in California

The Disneyland Resort is a magical place where dreams come true! It’s a special destination filled with exciting rides, colorful characters, and enchanting adventures for people of all ages.

From meeting your favorite Disney princesses to soaring through the sky on thrilling roller coasters, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at this amazing resort.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned Disney fan, the Disneyland Resort promises to create unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime. Get ready to embark on a journey into a world of imagination and fun!

Key Point

Things to do
  • Ride Attractions: Enjoy classic rides like Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, and newer additions like Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.
  • Meet Disney Characters: Meet and greet with beloved Disney characters throughout the parks, including Mickey Mouse, Cinderella, and Elsa.
  • Watch Parades and Shows: Experience the magic of Disney parades like the Main Street Electrical Parade and Fantasmic!, as well as captivating shows such as Frozen – Live at the Hyperion.
  • Explore Themed Lands: Wander through immersive themed lands like Fantasyland, Tomorrowland, Adventureland, and Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
  • Dine at Unique Restaurants: Indulge in a variety of dining experiences, from character dining at Ariel’s Grotto to fine dining at Carthay Circle Restaurant.
  • Enjoy Nighttime Spectaculars: Witness breathtaking fireworks displays such as Disneyland Forever and World of Color, illuminating the night sky with dazzling colors.
  • Shop for Souvenirs: Browse through a multitude of shops offering Disney merchandise, from apparel and accessories to collectibles and toys.
Best Time to Visit

The holiday season, which is the time with lots of celebrations, usually lasts from around Halloween in October until the start of the new year in January.

Nearest Major Airport

The nearest major airport to Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, is John Wayne Airport (SNA), also known as Orange County Airport. It is approximately 14 miles away from Disneyland Resort and is the closest commercial airport to the resort.

Places to stay
  1. Disneyland Hotel
  2. Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
  3. Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel
  4. The Villas at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
  5. Disneyland Resort Campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
Tourist Attractions
  • Disneyland Park
  • Disney California Adventure Park
  • Downtown Disney District
  • Disneyland Resort Hotels
  • ESPN Zone
  • Splitsville Luxury Lanes
  • Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar
  • Star Wars
  • Mickey’s Toontown
  • The Disneyland Monorail


  • EVE Arnold

    EVE Arnold is a Blogger in the USA Travel section at Best Places to Travel where he writes and edits travel guides, tours and articles.

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