50 Best Things to Do in California | 2024 (with Photos)

Andreas Rukovski

Andreas Rukovski - Travel Writer

Last Updated: March 12, 2024

Hi! I'm Andreas, a passionate traveler and adventurer. With my extensive experience exploring California, I have curated a list of the 50 best things to do in this sun-soaked state, ensuring you have an unforgettable trip filled with excitement and adventure.

Fun Things to Do in California for an Epic Adventure

Welcome to the Golden State, where adventure awaits at every turn. California is a land of diverse landscapes, vibrant cities, and endless opportunities for excitement.

Whether you're a thrill-seeker wanting to spend a day at one of the world-famous theme parks, a nature lover ready to explore the California national parks and state parks, or a foodie looking for the best cuisine on the West Coast, this golden state has something for everyone.

Prepare to embark on an epic adventure as we present 50 fun things to do in California.

Most Recommended Thing to Do

Hollywood Walk of Fame

Top Choice Hotel

The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles

Our Top Choice Restaurant


Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

The Edison.

Best Time to Visit

Sunny, vibrant, cultural, diverse, entertainment, iconic, bustling, year-round.

Average Temperature

Mild to warm temperatures throughout the year.

Transportation Options

Buses, trains, cars, bikes: getting around LA.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

Los Angeles is an incredible city with endless opportunities for exploration. One must-visit recommendation is Griffith Observatory, where you can take a leisurely stroll through the park and then marvel at the breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the famous Hollywood sign.

If you're a foodie, you should definitely make a stop at Grand Central Market, a vibrant culinary hub in downtown LA, where you can indulge in a variety of international flavors, from mouthwatering tacos to freshly shucked oysters, all while soaking up the lively atmosphere and mingling with locals.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Comfortable walking shoes
  2. Sunscreen
  3. Hat and sunglasses
  4. Lightweight and layered clothing
  5. Swimsuit
  6. Travel adapter/converter
  7. Camera or smartphone for capturing memories
  8. Portable charger
  9. Guidebook or map
  10. Travel insurance

What Not to Miss

  1. Hollywood Walk of Fame
  2. Griffith Observatory
  3. Santa Monica Pier
  4. The Getty Center
  5. Universal Studios Hollywood
  6. Rodeo Drive
  7. Venice Beach
  8. The Original Farmers Market
  9. Walt Disney Concert Hall
  10. The Broad Museum

What to Avoid

Crowded tourist areas, like Hollywood Boulevard or Universal Studios. High crime areas, such as South Central or Skid Row.

1. Visit the Engineering Marvel of the Golden Gate Bridge

Golden Gate Bridge

Prepare to be amazed by the engineering of the Golden Gate Bridge. Spanning the entrance to the San Francisco Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge is not only a symbol of the city but also an architectural masterpiece.

As you approach, the red towers of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco rise majestically from the fog, creating a spectacle that will take your breath away.

Take a walk across the Golden Gate Bridge and feel the gentle sway beneath your feet as you look at the panoramic views of the San Francisco Bay, the San Francisco skyline, and the Pacific Ocean.

Learn about the engineering ingenuity that went into the construction of the San Francisco Golden Gate Bridge, admire its elegant design, and capture that perfect Instagram-worthy shot.

Visiting the Golden Gate Bridge is an unforgettable experience that showcases human achievement and the enduring beauty of San Francisco.

2. Go Camping at Sequoia National Park

Sequoia National Park

Escape into a world of towering giants and pristine wilderness as you go camping at Sequoia National Park. Nestled in the heart of California's Sierra Nevada mountains, this enchanting park is home to the magnificent sequoia trees, the largest living organisms on Earth.

Embark on breathtaking hiking trails, winding through ancient groves and witnessing the awe-inspiring General Sherman Tree, standing tall and proud. Camping at Sequoia National Park is a chance to reconnect with nature, find solace in its grandeur, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

3. Wander Around the Historic Balboa Park in San Diego

Historic Balboa Park in San Diego

Step into a world of history and culture as you wander around the historic Balboa Park in San Diego. This 1,200-acre urban oasis is not only a lush green escape but also a treasure trove of architectural wonders and artistic delights.

Stroll through the beautifully manicured gardens at this San Diego park and take in the vibrant colors and fragrant blooms. Explore the diverse museums that call Balboa Park home, from the fascinating San Diego Museum of Art to the interactive exhibits at the Fleet Science Center.

With its blend of history, art, and natural beauty, Balboa Park is a true gem that invites you to immerse yourself in the richness of San Diego's heritage.

4. Hike the Trails at Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

Experience an incredible adventure walking through the hiking trails of Death Valley National Park. This captivating desert landscape in California is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

Enjoy the stunning colors of Death Valley and marvel at the impressive geological formations like the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes and Artist's Palette. Walking along the hiking trails in Death Valley National Park offers a remarkable and peaceful experience of nature's beauty.

5. Go on the Attractions at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

One of the thrilling things to do in California is enjoy the attractions at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Located along the beautiful coastline of Santa Cruz, California, this iconic amusement park offers something for everyone.

Take a thrilling ride on the Giant Dipper, a historic wooden roller coaster that will leave you breathless. Challenge your friends to a game of mini-golf or test your skills at the arcade.

Enjoy the ocean breeze as you take a leisurely stroll on the boardwalk, indulging in delicious treats like cotton candy and funnel cakes.

6. Explore the Lakes and Meadows at Golden Gate Park

 Golden Gate Park

Discover a tranquil oasis within the bustling city as you explore the serene lakes and lush meadows of Golden Gate Park. Located in the center of San Francisco, the park, which is larger than New York's Central Park, offers a peaceful escape from urban life.

Wander along the picturesque lakeshores, where sparkling waters reflect the surrounding greenery. Find a cozy spot on the soft grassy meadows, perfect for picnicking or simply basking in the sun.

7. Go Gold Mining in Sacramento

Gold Mining in Sacramento

Step back in time and experience the thrill of the gold rush era as you go gold mining in Sacramento. Located in the heart of California's historic Gold Country, Sacramento offers a unique opportunity to try your luck at striking it rich.

Grab your pan and shovel and head to the American River, where the waters still hold the promise of hidden treasure. Feel the excitement as you sift through the riverbed, hoping to catch a glimpse of the glittering gold flakes.

8. Kayak Around Channel Islands National Park

Channel Islands National Park

One of the more adventurous things to do in California is go kayaking around Channel Islands National Park. Located off the coast of Southern California, this pristine archipelago is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

Hop into your kayak and navigate the cool, calm waters of the Pacific Ocean, exploring the hidden coves, sea caves, and kelp forests along the coastline. Paddle alongside playful dolphins and curious seals as you soak in the breathtaking coastal scenery.

9. Swim in the Lakes and Creeks of Lassen Volcanic National Park

Lakes and Creeks of Lassen Volcanic National Park

Dive into a refreshing aquatic paradise as you swim in the lakes and creeks of Lassen Volcanic National Park. Nestled in the picturesque wilderness of Northern California, this geologically fascinating park offers a unique opportunity to cool off and connect with nature.

Plunge into the pristine waters of Manzanita Lake, surrounded by breathtaking mountain views, or take a dip in the crystal-clear streams that flow through the park's lush forests.

Immerse yourself in the natural wonders that Lassen Volcanic National Park has to offer, creating unforgettable memories of swimming in these idyllic waters.

10. Wander the Same Halls as Al Capone on Alcatraz Island

Alcatraz Island

Step into the notorious world of Alcatraz Island and wander the same halls that once housed the infamous gangster, Al Capone. Located in the San Francisco Bay, this former maximum-security prison carries a mystique that continues to captivate visitors.

Learn about the prison's fascinating stories and daring escape attempts through informative exhibits and audio tours. Visiting Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay is a must on your list of things to do in California if you like learning about history.

11. Eat Clam Chowder at Fisherman's Wharf

Fisherman's Wharf

Indulge in a culinary delight as you savor a bowl of creamy clam chowder at Fisherman's Wharf. Located in the San Francisco Bay area, this iconic waterfront destination is famous for its delectable seafood offerings, and the San Francisco clam chowder is a true standout.

Enjoy your piping hot bowl of chowder while taking in the vibrant San Francisco atmosphere of the bustling wharf, with its charming fishing boats and lively street performers.

Whether you enjoy it in a sourdough bread bowl or on its own, eating clam chowder at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco is a must-do on your list of things to do in California.

12. Get Inspired at Salvation Mountain

Salvation Mountain

Prepare to be inspired as you visit the captivating masterpiece known as Salvation Mountain. Located in the Colorado Desert in California, this vibrant and colorful work of art is a testament to one man's unwavering devotion and creative spirit.

Created by Leonard Knight, Salvation Mountain is a towering tribute to love, faith, and the power of imagination. As you explore the intricate details and vibrant hues of the mountain, you can't help but feel a sense of awe and wonder.

13. Ride the Cable Cars in San Francisco

Cable Cars in San Francisco

Embark on a nostalgic journey through the hilly streets of San Francisco as you ride the iconic cable cars. These charming and historic modes of transportation offer a truly unique way to explore San Francisco.

Hop aboard one of the wooden cars and hold on tight as you traverse the steep inclines and winding streets of San Francisco. Feel the wind in your hair and take in the breathtaking San Francisco views as you effortlessly glide along the tracks.

Riding cable cars in San Francisco is not only a convenient way to get around, but it also allows you to immerse yourself in the rich history and timeless charm of San Francisco.

14. Spend a Weekend in Wine Country

Napa Valley

Escape to the beautiful Napa Valley for a weekend getaway in wine country. This lovely region in California is perfect for wine lovers. Explore the rolling vineyards and enjoy visiting the famous wineries.

A weekend in Napa is a wonderful experience of wine, great food, and beautiful scenery that will create lasting memories and make you love wine even more.

15. Spend a Day Hopping Between the Art Museums in San Francisco

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Have a fantastic day exploring the various art museums in San Francisco. Each museum in San Francisco provides a unique experience and opportunity to delve into different aspects of art, science, culture, and history.

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) features an extensive collection of modern and contemporary art, including works by famous artists like Frida Kahlo, Jackson Pollock, and Andy Warhol, while the de Young Museum in San Francisco showcases a wide array of American art from different periods, as well as indigenous art from Africa, Oceania, and the Americas.

If you're looking for museums in San Francisco with science, art, and human perception, the Exploratorium offers interactive exhibits and hands-on activities.

16. Visit the Largest Grove of Sequoia Trees at Kings Canyon National Park

Kings Canyon National Park

Nestled in the heart of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in California, this natural wonderland is one of California's most famous national parks as it's home to some of the tallest and most massive living organisms on Earth.

Stand in awe as you look at the sheer size and age of these ancient trees, some of which have stood tall for thousands of years.

Visiting the largest grove of sequoia trees at Kings Canyon National Park is an experience that will leave you humbled, inspired, and with a deep appreciation for the remarkable beauty and resilience of nature.

17. Make Pit Stops Along the Coastline

Pacific Coast Highway

The iconic stretch of the Pacific Coast Highway offers spectacular coastal views, rugged cliffs, and crashing waves that will leave you in awe from the southern to northern California coastline.

Take your time to pause at various lookout points and soak in the panoramic vistas of the Pacific Ocean. Explore the hidden coves and pristine beaches, where you can dip your toes in the cool waters or simply enjoy the tranquility of the surroundings.

Don't forget to hop off the Pacific Coast Highway to visit iconic landmarks like Bixby Bridge, a picturesque architectural marvel.

18. See the Trains at the California State Railroad Museum

California State Railroad Museum

Located in Sacramento, the California State Railroad Museum offers a remarkable collection of historic locomotives and railway artifacts.

Step back in time as you explore the meticulously restored train cars and learn about the rich history of rail transportation in California.

Admire the intricate craftsmanship of vintage passenger cars and discover the stories of the railroad workers who helped shape the state's development.

19. Float Through the Venice Canals at Venice Beach

Venice Canals at Venice Beach

Experience the unique charm of Venice Beach as you float through the picturesque Venice Canals. Located next to Santa Monica in Los Angeles, these man-made canals were designed to emulate the beauty and charm of the original canals in Venice, Italy.

Hop aboard a gondola or paddle through the calm waters on a kayak or paddleboard. Admire the stunning architecture of the surrounding homes, adorned with colorful flowers and lush gardens.

The Venice Canals by Venice Beach offer a tranquil escape from the lively energy of the beach, allowing you to relax, reconnect with nature, and appreciate the serene beauty of this unique Southern California gem.

20. Immerse Yourself in the Beauty of Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site is nestled in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. As one of the most iconic national parks, it showcases nature's wonders in all its grandeur.

Marvel at the majestic granite cliffs, witness the breathtaking waterfalls and wander through pristine meadows that make Yosemite National Park truly exceptional.

Walk through the ancient forests of towering sequoias and witness diverse wildlife in their natural habitats at Yosemite National Park.

Stand in awe before the iconic landmarks of El Capitan and Half Dome, symbols of the unrivaled magnificence of Yosemite National Park. Capture unforgettable moments with your camera as you relish the fresh mountain air that invigorates your spirit.

21. Explore the Ghost Town of Bodie State Historic Park

Ghost Town of Bodie State Historic Park

Bodie State Historic Park offers a fascinating glimpse into the Gold Rush era. Walk through the deserted streets and discover the weathered buildings that once thrived with bustling activity.

From the run-down houses to the remnants of saloons and stores, Bodie captures the essence of a bygone era. As you wander through this hauntingly beautiful town, you'll be transported back in time, surrounded by the echoes of a once-vibrant community.

Pacific Park

Experience the nostalgic joy of riding the carousel at Santa Monica Pier. Located in Santa Monica, California, this charming carousel is a beloved attraction that has been enchanting visitors for generations.

Step onto one of the beautifully crafted horses or choose a whimsical chariot as the classic carousel music fills the air on the Santa Monica Pier. Admire the hand-painted details and intricate craftsmanship of the Santa Monica carousel's vibrant animals.

Whether you're a child or simply young at heart, riding the carousel at Santa Monica Pier is a delightful experience that will leave you with cherished memories of laughter, joy, and a touch of timeless enchantment.

23. Get Scared at the Winchester Mystery House in San Jose

Winchester Mystery House

Get ready to feel scared as you enter the mysterious Winchester Mystery House in San Jose. This strange mansion in San Jose was built by Sarah Winchester and is filled with stories of ghosts and strange things happening.

Look at the strange and unusual parts of the house that make it even creepier. Whether you believe in ghosts or not, visiting the Winchester Mystery House in San Jose will give you a spooky and unforgettable experience.

24. Spend the Day at Universal Studios Hollywood

Super Mario World at Universal Studios Hollywood

Enjoy a thrilling and action-packed day at one of the many theme parks in California, Universal Studios Hollywood. This renowned theme park in Los Angeles offers an array of exciting attractions and experiences for visitors of all ages.

Immerse yourself in the world of your favorite movies, like Harry Potter, and TV shows as you explore the various themed areas throughout the park.

From heart-pounding adventures like Jurassic World: The Ride to the iconic Studio Tour that takes you through working movie sets, there's never a dull moment at this theme park.

Enjoy delicious food, shop for souvenirs, and create lasting memories with your friends and family at Universal Studios Hollywood.

25. Join a Los Angeles Celebrity Homes Tour

Going on a Los Angeles Celebrity Homes Tour can be very exciting. Explore the glitz and glamour of Los Angeles as you cruise through upscale neighborhoods and catch glimpses of the lavish residences of your favorite celebrities.

Marvel at the stunning Los Angeles mansions and iconic landmarks that have become synonymous with fame and fortune. Learn fascinating facts about the Los Angeles stars as your knowledgeable guide shares insider information about the glamorous world of Los Angeles.

From the legendary Hollywood Hills to the exclusive streets of Beverly Hills, this Los Angeles tour offers a unique opportunity to get a taste of the celebrity lifestyle and witness the allure of the rich and famous Los Angeles.

Related Article: Fun Things to Do in Malibu at Night

26. Escape for a Weekend to Anza-Borrego Desert

Anza-Borrego Desert

Escape the hustle and bustle of city life and embark on a weekend getaway to one of the most enchanting state parks, Anza-Borrego Desert, California's largest state park. Nestled in the heart of the Colorado Desert, this desert oasis offers a serene and captivating retreat.

Experience the tranquility of nature as you camp under a star-filled sky, surrounded by the peaceful solitude of the desert. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park provides the perfect escape to rejuvenate your mind and reconnect with the raw beauty of the natural world.

27. Ride the Coasters at California's Great America

California's Great America

Get ready for an adrenaline-fueled adventure as you ride the coasters at California's Great America. Located in Santa Clara, this thrilling amusement park is a haven for roller coaster enthusiasts.

Brace yourself for heart-pounding drops, exhilarating twists, and high-speed turns as you conquer the park's world-class coasters. Experience the rush of soaring through the air on rides like Gold Striker, Flight Deck, and RailBlazer.

Feel the wind in your hair and the excitement in your veins as you scream with delight on each thrilling ride. California's Great America promises a day filled with non-stop thrills, laughter, and unforgettable memories for thrill-seekers of all ages.

28. Have a Picnic by the Lake Tahoe Shoreline

Lake Tahoe Shoreline

Enjoy a peaceful and scenic day by the beautiful shoreline of Lake Tahoe as you indulge in a delightful picnic. There are plenty of spots in North and South Lake Tahoe, so choose whichever location works best for you.

Find a cozy spot along the tranquil Lake Tahoe shores, where the crystal-clear waters of the lake meet the stunning surrounding mountains.

Whether you're with family, and friends, or simply enjoying some alone time, a picnic by the Lake Tahoe shoreline offers a perfect opportunity to relax, recharge, and create lasting memories in one of California's most picturesque settings.

29. Meet the Penguins at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Experience the joy of meeting adorable penguins at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Located in Monterey, California, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is home to a charming penguin exhibit.

Get up close and personal with these fascinating creatures as you learn about their behavior and habitat. Watch them waddle, swim, and interact with each other in their carefully designed habitat in Monterey Bay.

From their playful antics to their unique personalities, the penguins are sure to capture your heart. A visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium offers an unforgettable opportunity to connect with these delightful creatures and gain a deeper appreciation for the wonders of marine life.

30. Go Shopping in Carmel-by-the-Sea


Indulge in a delightful shopping experience in Carmel-by-the-Sea. This charming coastal town in California offers a variety of unique boutiques, art galleries, and specialty shops.

Discover one-of-a-kind treasures, from handmade crafts to exquisite artwork, as you stroll through the quaint streets. Treat yourself to high-end fashion, and fine jewelry, or indulge in local gourmet delights.

31. Visit the Exhibits Inside the California State Capitol Museum

California State Capitol Museum

Step into the fascinating world of California's political history by visiting the exhibits inside the California State Capitol Museum. Located in Northern California, this engaging museum showcases the rich heritage and democratic processes of the state.

Discover interactive displays, historical artifacts, and educational exhibits that provide insight into the workings of California's government. A visit to the California State Capitol Museum offers an enlightening experience that deepens your understanding of the state's political landscape.

32. Go Whale-Watching in Santa Barbara

Whale Watching

Embark on an incredible whale-watching excursion in Santa Barbara, California. With its prime coastal location, Santa Barbara offers a unique opportunity to witness the annual migration of majestic whales.

Hop aboard a whale-watching boat and set sail into the sparkling waters of the Pacific Ocean. Keep your eyes peeled for mesmerizing displays of whales breaching, spouting, and gracefully swimming alongside the vessel. You might even get lucky and see some other marine life.

33. Snap a Selfie in Front of the Hollywood Sign

Hollywood Sign from Lake Hollywood Park

Capture an iconic moment by snapping a selfie in front of the world-famous Hollywood Sign. The Hollywood Sign in Los Angeles, California, is a symbol of the entertainment industry and the glitz and glamour of Hollywood.

Strike a pose with the Hollywood Sign as your backdrop. Whether you're a movie enthusiast or simply seeking an Instagram-worthy photo, a selfie in front of the Hollywood Sign is one of the most iconic things to do in California.

34. Discover the Milky Way at the Griffith Observatory in Griffith Park

Griffith Observatory

Go on a mesmerizing journey through the cosmos as you discover the wonders of the Milky Way at the Griffith Observatory in Griffith Park. Located in Los Angeles, California, this iconic landmark invites visitors to explore the mysteries of the universe.

Gaze through powerful telescopes and witness the awe-inspiring beauty of distant galaxies, nebulas, and stars. From stargazing events to captivating planetarium shows, the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles offers an unforgettable experience that will leave you in awe of the vastness and majesty of the cosmos.

35. Ride a Wave at Huntington Beach

Surf at Huntington Beach

Get ready for an exhilarating adventure as you ride a wave in the iconic Surf City USA. Located along the picturesque coast of Southern California, this renowned beach destination offers ideal conditions for surfing enthusiasts of all skill levels.

Grab your board and paddle out into the inviting waves, feeling the rush of adrenaline as you catch a perfect wave and ride it to shore. You might even get a glimpse of some marine life while you're out there. With its consistent swells and sunny skies, this beach is a surfer's paradise.

36. Eat your Heart Out at Grand Central Market

Grand Central Market

Prepare to satisfy your culinary cravings as you eat your heart out at Grand Central Market. Located in downtown Los Angeles, this bustling food hub is a food lover's paradise.

From mouthwatering tacos and gourmet burgers to artisanal ice cream and fresh seafood, this Los Angeles Market has something to tempt every palate.

Whether you're a local foodie or a curious traveler, a visit to Grand Central Market promises a feast for the senses that will leave you craving more.

37. Take a Hike at Pinnacles National Park

Pinnacles National Park

Another one of California's national parks is Pinnacles National Park. This stunning natural reserve located two hours from the Northern California coast and the Santa Cruz mountains offers breathtaking landscapes, towering rock formations, and picturesque trails.

With its moderate to challenging hiking trails, Pinnacles National Park is a haven for hikers of all levels.

38. Wander Down the Hollywood Walk of Fame

Hollywood Walk of Fame

One of the most famous things to do in California is walking along the star-studded Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Located in the heart of Hollywood, Los Angeles, this iconic tourist attraction is adorned with thousands of brass stars, each representing a legendary figure from the entertainment industry.

Take a leisurely stroll along the boulevard, and let your favorite actors, musicians, and other notable personalities guide your way. From Marilyn Monroe to Michael Jackson, the Hollywood Walk of Fame offers a glimpse into the rich history of Hollywood and its iconic stars.

39. Climb Aboard an Aircraft Carrier at the USS Midway Museum

USS Midway Museum

Step aboard history and explore the USS Midway Museum, located in San Diego, California. This immersive San Diego museum offers visitors the unique opportunity to climb aboard a real aircraft carrier, the USS Midway.

Walk the same decks that once hosted thousands of sailors, explore the aircraft hangar, and get an up-close look at the impressive collection of aircraft on display.

Learn about the rich naval history in San Diego and experience the challenges faced by those who served aboard this mighty vessel in San Diego.

40. Soak in the Beauty of Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park

Immerse yourself in the mesmerizing beauty of Joshua Tree National Park. This enchanting desert oasis in Southern California showcases the unique landscape of the Mojave and Colorado Deserts.

From hiking scenic trails to stargazing under the vast night sky, Joshua Tree National Park offers a peaceful and captivating retreat where you can connect with nature's wonders.

41. Go on the 17-Mile Drive in Monterey

17-Mile Drive in Monterey

The iconic 17-Mile Drive in Monterey is a scenic route that takes you through the picturesque Del Monte Forest, a lush and serene woodland area that adds to the beauty of the drive.

Take in the sights of famous landmarks like the Lone Cypress and Pebble Beach Golf Links, and enjoy the tranquility of the coastal landscape.

The 17-Mile Drive in Monterey, with its stunning vistas and the enchanting charm of Del Monte Forest, is a must on your list of things to do in California.

42. Admire the Landscapes of Point Reyes National Seashore

Point Reyes National Seashore

Located in Northern California this coastal gem offers diverse and stunning views, from cliffs and sandy beaches to lush meadows and picturesque lighthouses.

Explore the park's trails, spot wildlife, and witness the dramatic collision of land and sea. This is a great spot for those who love being surrounded by nature.

43. Explore the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Another one of the great tourist attractions in California is ascending high above the Aerial Tramway of Palm Springs, California, in a rotating tramcar that offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway is a must on your list of things to do in California that provides an unforgettable journey and an opportunity to witness the breathtaking landscapes of the Coachella Valley from a unique perspective.

44. Meet the Sea Lions at La Jolla Cove in San Diego

Sea Lions at La Jolla Cove

One of the unique things to do in California is to visit sea lions at La Jolla Cove in San Diego. This scenic coastal spot is home to a vibrant population of these playful marine mammals.

Watch as they bask in the sun, frolic in the waves, and interact with each other. With their cute antics and distinct calls, these San Diego marine animals offer an enchanting wildlife encounter.

Capture memorable moments and create lasting memories in San Diego as you witness these charismatic creatures in their natural habitat. A visit to La Jolla Cove in San Diego promises an unforgettable opportunity to meet and admire these fascinating sea lions up close.

45. Go Skiing in Big Bear

Skiing in Big Bear

Hit the slopes and experience the thrill of skiing in Big Bear, California. Nestled in the San Bernardino Mountains, Big Bear offers a winter wonderland for snow enthusiasts.

Strap on your skis and carve through the powdery snow as you explore the well-groomed slopes. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced skier, Big Bear has trails suitable for all skill levels.

46. Take the Youngsters to Legoland California

Legoland California

For a whimsical adventure, take the youngsters to Legoland California in Carlsbad. As one of the many family-friendly theme parks in California, Legoland is a paradise for Lego lovers of all ages.

Watch their eyes light up as they explore the colorful Lego-themed attractions, ride thrilling roller coasters, and build and play with their favorite Lego creations.

From the iconic Miniland, featuring detailed Lego replicas of famous landmarks, to interactive shows and hands-on activities, Legoland California offers a world of imagination and fun.

47. Enjoy a Balboa Bar at Newport Beach

Balboa Bar

Indulge in a sweet treat and enjoy a Balboa Bar at Newport Beach. This classic dessert is a must-try when visiting this coastal gem in Southern California.

Sink your teeth into a deliciously creamy vanilla ice cream bar, coated in your choice of delectable toppings like sprinkles, nuts, or chocolate chips. Take a leisurely stroll along the scenic waterfront, savoring each delightful bite of this iconic local treat.

48. Spend a Day at the Infamous San Diego Zoo

San Diego Zoo

San Diego Zoo is one of the most popular tourist attractions in San Diego, California. It spans over 100 acres and houses more than 3,500 rare and endangered animals from around the world.

The San Diego Zoo was founded in 1916 and has since become a top tourist attraction and a leader in animal conservation efforts, as well as providing visitors with a fun and educational experience.

Along with the San Diego Zoo, you can also find the Safari Park in the same city. The San Diego Safari Park is a premier wildlife sanctuary that attracts tourists from across the globe. It has over 3000 animals spread out across its 1800-acre land.

The park's primary goal is to provide a natural and safe environment for the animals where they can thrive and live freely.

49. Go Park-Hopping at Disneyland California Adventure

Disney California Adventure Park

Disneyland California Adventure is the perfect place for park-hopping enthusiasts. With a variety of attractions and activities, it's easy to spend an entire day exploring all that this theme park has to offer.

One of the highlights of Disneyland California Adventure is Cars Land, which transports visitors into the world of Pixar's "Cars" franchise. Here, you can ride Radiator Springs Racers, a high-speed attraction that takes you on a tour through Ornament Valley and culminates in an exhilarating race against other cars.

50. Take a Tour of the Queen Mary in Long Beach

Queen Mary in Long Beach

The Queen Mary has been docked in Long Beach since 1967 and welcomes visitors from all over the world to explore its rich history and luxurious amenities.

As you step aboard the Queen Mary, you'll be transported back in time to the golden age of ocean liners. The ship is filled with beautiful Art Deco details and stunning wood paneling that will leave you in awe.

There are several self-guided tours available, ranging from a quick walk-through of the public areas to an extensive exploration of the entire ship. Apart from exploring Queen Mary, Long Beach offers more things to do.

FAQS About Things to Do in California

Now let's take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions about things to do in California.

What are some of the best ways to get around in California?

When visiting California, you can get around by using public transportation, as the state has extensive bus and rail networks, so you can easily get from one place to another without having to drive yourself.

However, if you need more flexibility, renting a car is also an option. California has plenty of rental companies that offer competitive rates and vehicles for all types of trips.

When is the best time to go to California?

If you're looking to experience the state's iconic beaches and mild temperatures, then summer is the ideal time. For those seeking a more temperate climate with fewer crowds, spring, and fall are great times to visit.

Finally, if you're a fan of winter sports like skiing or snowboarding, then winter is an ideal time to visit California's ski resorts.

What are the most popular attractions in California?

One of the most popular attractions in California is Disneyland. Another popular attraction in California is Yosemite National Park. Finally, there's the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. It's an absolute must-see for any visitor to California.

Summing up: Best Things to Do in California 

As our whirlwind tour of California comes to a close, we hope you're filled with inspiration and anticipation for the epic adventure that awaits you in the Golden State.

From the majestic beauty of Yosemite National Park to the vibrant streets of San Francisco, the breathtaking beaches of Santa Monica to the enchanting vineyards of Napa Valley, visiting California offers a plethora of experiences that cater to every interest and passion.

The West Coast is calling, and the adventure of a lifetime awaits you.