When you think of California, you think of warm weather, the beach, and Hollywood. You think of spotting celebrities on the streets of Los Angeles. You think of people surfing and drinking green juice. But, California has a whole lot more offer than just beaches and celebrities. California is one of the most traveled to states in the country, and for good reason! Besides the beautiful weather and incredible food, California is home to some of the most astonishing cities that you probably have never even heard of. While the major cities in California are amazing, there are a lot of other hidden gems that should be on your bucket list. If you’re planning on making a trip out to the West Coast, make sure to stop at these 5 must-see cities in California:

  • Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe is a place in California that doesn’t receive as much credit as it should! If you’re into the outdoors, or just appreciate a beautiful sight, Lake Tahoe should definitely have a place on your list. Whether you go in the winter or summer, there are countless activities to do, like skiing, hiking, and swimming. It’s a popular destination in the winter, but it’s truly beautiful all year long.

  • Los Angeles

The City of Angels! There is a reason why Los Angeles is one of the most visited cities in the country. Aside from being the home to endless celebrities and media moguls, Los Angeles has a lot to offer. There are great museums, like the LACMA, and the food is delicious. The Los Angeles airport is a major hub with people constantly coming and going, so it’s easy to find flights to LAX from anywhere in the world. 

  • San Diego

If you’re looking for a quintessential California vibe, San Diego is the place to be. Located in the Southernmost part of California, the city is known for its blend of beautiful beaches and sweeping city views, all within a 20 minute drive. San Diego is the place where you can be surfing on the beach one hour and sipping on a cocktail at a classy bar downtown the next. A must-see!

  • San Francisco

If you love California but are a city person at heart, San Francisco is definitely the place for you. San Francisco is surrounded by some of the biggest tech industries in the world, but there is a ton to do in the city itself. Make sure to grab lunch at the Fisherman’s Wharf and explore the iconic neighborhoods. And don’t skip out on seeing the Golden Gate Bridge, one of the most well-known sights in all of California.

  • Big Sur

Whether you’re traveling with friends or with your kids, Big Sur is the perfect place for a relaxing stop along your journey throughout California. Located in central California, it’s full of remarkable views that will leave you in awe. Drive on the Pacific Coast Highway during sunset as you look out at the stunning California coastline. Check out the Bixby Bridge and the Julia Pfeiffer State Park to truly become one with nature. Big Sur is definitely a place you don’t want to skip out on.

While this list doesn’t even begin to encompass all the amazing destinations throughout California, it’s a good start. You could spend your whole life exploring all that California has to offer, and still not see it all. It is a place that everyone should make a point to visit at some point in their lives, just make sure to plan enough time to see both the spectacular cities and mountains.

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