california, destinations, Food, New, Outdoors, road trip, summer, Travel -

25 Amazing California Road Trip Destinations

Summer is finally here! You've packed up the car and are ready to head out on a great adventure, but you may find yourself wondering exactly where to go. North, South, the beach, the mountains...? The questions are endless. Don't worry though - California has everything (and more) that you'd want for the best summer vacation! Below you'll find 25 amazing California road trip destinations as well as some fun places to stop along the way to add to your list.

California Road Trip Destinations

Northern California

Battery Point Lighthouse in Crescent City

This lighthouse and museum is a great stop if you happen to be in (or traveling through) Northern California. 2 Flickr by David A. Hofmann Flickr by David A. Hoffmann

California Redwood Parks

We've raved about the beautiful California Redwoods before, but they are worth adding to another list! Some of our favorites include: Jedediah Smith State Park and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park (find out more here). 1 Flickr by keppet Flickr by keppet

Old Town Eureka

Traveling down the coast from Crescent City, you'll come to Eureka. Old Town Eureka is definitely worth a visit, especially the beautiful an historic Carson Mansion! 3 Flickr by Kay Gaensler Flickr by Kay Gaensler

Hiking in Mt. Shasta

Over a little ways from the coast is Mt. Shasta. Usually a destination for winter snowboarders and skiiers, Mt. Shasta has a lot to offer to summer hikers. Check out this website for tons of mapped trails! 4 Flickr by Kei Noguchi Flickr by Kei Noguchi

Historic Placerville

A less likely place to visit, Placerville is a great stop if you're on your way to Tahoe or feel like taking a day trip from the Sacramento area. With its historic buildings, free stage coach rides (the third Saturday of each month), and fine dining, Placerville has a lot going on! Check out the cities website for more events. 5 Flickr by Wayne Hsieh Flickr by Wayne Hsieh

Napa Valley Wine Country

Make Napa Valley one of your California road trip destinations this summer! Find actives, wine tours, and spas to build a road trip that is guaranteed to relax you. 6 Flickr by Big D2112 Flickr by Big D2112

Hearst Castle

Be enchanted and overwhelmed by the stunning Hearst Castle. 7 Flickr by by Zengame Flickr by Zengame

Pacific Crest Trail

Spanning over 1500 miles through California (and moving on into Oregon and Washington) the Pacific Crest Trail (known as the PCT to serious hikers) is a fantastic summer adventure! Find out more information about the PCT near you on the USDA Forrest Service website. 8 Flickr by Steve Dunleavy Flickr by Steve Dunleavy

Central California

Old Town Sacramento and the California State Railroad Museum

Make your way through the historic streets of Old Town Sacramento and stop off at the California State Railroad Museum. You'll find lots of things to see and do whether you're from Sacramento or just visiting for the summer! 9 Flickr by Jack Snell Flickr by Jack Snell

San Fransisco Fisherman's Wharf

The bark of a seal and the salty breeze of Fisherman's Wharf is sure to satisfy your road trip curiosity this summer! Try the fresh seafood as well - trust us, it's some of the best you'll have! 10 Flickr by aaron arseneau Flickr by aaron arseneau

Golden Gate Bridge

While you're visiting San Fransisco, make a stop (or drive over) the Golden Gate Bridge. Walking it takes about 20 minutes one way, and we'd recommend having your ride pick you up at the opposite side to avoid troublesome parking. Golden Gate Bridge Flickr by Kevin Cole

Mt. Diablo State Park

Hike up the incredible Mt. Diablo! Make sure to bring lots of water with you - things are dry due to this years drought. 15 Flickr by Keith Cuddeback Flickr by Keith Cuddeback

South Lake Tahoe

Located next to the Nevada state line, South Lake Tahoe is definitely a road trip destination you won't want to pass up. 12 Flickr by Patrick Nouhailler Flickr by Patrick Nouhailler

Bodie State Historic Park

Visit an historic ghost town at Bodie State Historic Park.Make sure you check out their visiting guide before you go! 13 Flickr by Jim Bahn Flickr by Jim Bahn

Yosemite National Park

If you enjoy being outdoors Yosemite is the destination for you! Check out their hiking guide in advance and plan a great adventure. 14 Flickr by Hide Flickr by Hide

Big Sur

Camp, enjoy the beach, and find some great restaurants at Big Sur over the summer. from the blog www.stuckincustoms.com Flickr by Trey Ratcliff

Southern California

Route 66

They say you can "Get your kicks on Route 66" so why not take a little road trip on this unmapped (at least by current standards) road? 17 Flickr by Gianluca Bertoncelli Flickr by Gianluca Bertoncelli

Vasquez Rocks

With rocky peaks and many trails, this heavily photographed LA park is a great day trip destination! 18 Flickr by XavaZ Flickr by XavaZ

Pacific Coast Highway

The Pacific Coast Highway is more of a route than a destination, but you won't be sorry you chose to drive up the coast on the PCH with its stunning ocean views. 19 Flickr by Rachel Kramer Flickr by Rachel Kramer

Santa Monica Pier

Ride a roller coaster, lounge on the beach, take a quick walk over to 3rd street. Santa Monica has it all! 20 Flickr by Ross Pollack Flickr by Ross Pollack

Venice Beach Board Walk

Overflowing with street entertainment, unique shops, and endless people-watching, Venice Beach is a fun and entertaining California road trip destination. 21 Flickr by Calvin Fleming Flickr by Calvin Fleming

Mission San Juan Capistrano

Make it your mission this summer to visit Mission San Juan Capistrano (or any of the other California missions!). 2014-06-18_0002 Flickr by Sharon Mollerus

Palm Springs & Joshua Tree National Park

Whether you're golfing, spending time at Joshua Tree National Park, or taking advantage of your hotels pool, Palm Springs won't dissapoint. 23 Flickr by Merton Wilton Flickr by Merton Wilton

USS Midway in San Diego

Climb aboard this floating museum and enjoy all-day fun! Give yourself about 3 hours to complete the self-guided tour and don't forget your camera. 24 Flickr by Cameron Grant Flickr by Cameron Grant

San Diego Zoo

Come spend the day with the animals of the San Diego Zoo! 2014-06-18_0001 Flickr by (left) Russ May (right) Linda California is a huge state and we know we've probably skipped some of your favorite places. Where are you going this summer? Any place we should know about? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below!   Cover photo Flickr by Kay Gaensler Source: The Grandest Road Trip, Tripit, Moon Travel Guides,

Leave a comment

Tags