The western state of California is a dream and wild destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers. The place is covered in mountain peaks, rugged desert biomes, peaceful ocean shores, along with some of the most famous forests in the world.

There are numerous things that you can try in California, and it is not shocking to the audience that the Golden State is filled with numerous national parks. Inside the boundaries of these national parks, you are going to find everything you are looking for.

Starting from some famous household names and ending with hidden gems, there are amazing campsites, wondrous wildlife, and various recreational activities inside these national parks in California. If nothing, these are going to plant a seed of exploration in you.

Famous National Parks in California

Famous National Parks in California

There are nine national parks in the state of California, and the National Park Service manages them entirely. This is more than any other state, and every national park has its own specific appeal. 

For instance, Death Valley is the hottest, the biggest, and the most foreboding. Whereas Joshua Tree has that otherworldly charm with its diverse flora. Channel Island is the one that you should visit if you want to get somewhere quiet and avoid the crowd.

Pinnacles National Park

Location: 5000 Highway 146 Main Entrance Is Off of Hwy-25, Paicines, CA 95043-9770

Phone number: +1 831-389-4485

Recently, the name of the national park was changed to Pinnacles National Park from Pinnacles National Monument. It was in January 2013 that this became the newest national park in the state.

Pinnacles National Park

This is an exceptional place and is the land of caves, rock spires, and volcanoes. It is kind of a hiker’s paradise, and exploring its features is nothing less than an expedition. But it is better if you visit the park in winter and fall. Summers are better if you would like to explore the place in a quiet place, but extreme weather conditions become a problem.

If you are visiting during those few weeks when the Talus caves are open, you should definitely visit the colony of protected bats. These often stay closed to guard the colony of protected bats. Camping and rock climbing are some of the activities that you should take part in.

Point Reyes National Seashore

Location: 1 Bear Valley Visitor Centre Access Road, Point Reyes Station, CA 94956, USA

Phone number: +1 415-464-5100

California is famous for its beaches, and for those who want to spend their vacation in quiet with the seals in solitude, this is the exact place for them. The park is 180 square miles long, and Tomales Bay cut the land off from the mainland.

Point Reyes National Seashore

This is like a heaven for the naturalists. This is a protected area, and you will find various species of wildlife. If you are lucky, you might even spot migratory grey whales from the lighthouse. 

You can spot different kinds of birds as well, such as osprey, green-backed herons, owls, and cormorants. Make sure that you are looking for the seasonal closures of the beaches that have been implemented to protect seal pups and nesting birds.

You can try horseback riding and hiking within the Point Reyes National Seashore. Another thing that you cannot miss is the Alamere Falls. The waterfall is 40 feet long into Wildcat Beach, and the view is going to mesmerize you.

Redwood National and State Park

Location: Avenue of the Giants, Myers Flat, CA 95554, USA

Phone number: +1 707-946-2263

If you are driving along the coast of California from San Fransisco towards the north, you will come across the beautiful Redwood National Park. The redwood trees after which the park has been named are among the world’s tallest trees. 

Redwood National and State Park

One of the most popular activities to do here is go on a hike. Biking is in the southern part of the Redwood National Park, which is another popular activity in this park. The trail is going to take you on rehabilitated, old logging roads. 

However, only a small portion of the trail is open for biking. If you wait here to take a break, you might even hear the sea lions calling from a distance.

Channel Islands National Park

Locations: 1901 Spinnaker Dr, Ventura, CA 93001, USA

Phone number: +1 805-658-5730

If you take the route off the coast of Ventura, you will find the Channel Islands National Park. On any of the five islands, Anapaca, Santa Barbara, Sam Miguel, Santa Rosa, and Santa Cruz, you will feel like you have reached another world separate from the mainland.

Channel Islands National Park

You can get to the park by private boat or on a concessionaire boat. The mainland visitor centers are in Santa Barbara and Ventura. Frequent boats are available for Santa Cruz, so it is the most visited one. 

There are numerous hike trails and various well-maintained campsites. Anacapa Island has Inspiration Point, which you cannot miss. This provides a picture-perfect view of the other four islands in a line.

Death Valley National Park

Location: Airport Rd, Furnace Creek, CA 92328, USA

Phone number: +1 760-786-3200

The Death Valley National Park is the driest, hottest, and lowest national park in California. This one is spread across 5,000 square miles, and there is a lot for you to explore. The park is vast, and because of the extreme weather conditions, it is better to drive through the park.

Death Valley National Park

You can try the self-guided Star Wars tour if you want to check out all the popular filming locations. The spring wildflower super blooms are one of the major attractions of the park, and you should not miss them.

But for that to be witnessed, there needs to be adequate rainfall. So check for the weather forecast before you go to make the most of your trip.

Yosemite National Park

Location: 9035 Village Dr, Yosemite Valley, CA 95389, USA

Phone number: +1 209-372-0200

This is the most visited national park in California, and there is a justified reason for it. The park is known for its famous night hikes and numerous waterfalls Like yosemite falls, Bridalveil Fall that it is home to. Spring is the best time to visit this national park, as the waterfalls are in full flow after the snow has melted.

Yosemite National Park

You can also try the hike to the Half Dome. However, the best time to do that is from May to October, when the rangers set up cable for a certain part to climb. Apart from the seasonality of the Half Dome and the waterfalls, the open meadows and the giant sequoias possess all the charm.

Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks

Location: 83918 CA-180, Grant Grove Village, CA 93633, USA

Phone number: +1 559-565-3341

If you want to witness Mother Nature to its fullest, this is the location for you. You should definitely visit this park if you want to be mesmerized by the world’s largest trees. Walking through the giant sequoias is going to give you a totally different experience altogether.

Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks

The Giant Fores is home to the famous General Sherman tree. You should also visit the Giant Grove to check out the mature sequoias. This is a very popular place among the photographers. 

There are numerous viewpoints that will not fail to mesmerize you. Moro Rock is one of those viewpoints that you should not miss. You can get to the granite dome through a long long stone stairway or from the Great Forest Museum.

Joshua Tree National Park

Location: 6554 Park Blvd, Joshua Tree, CA 92252, USA

Phone number: +1 760-367-5500

This national park is going to make you fond of desert landscapes. Joshua Tree National Park has two deserts, the Colorado and Mojave. It is across a land of over 800,000 acres, and it has a diverse range of animals and plants.

Joshua Tree National Park

There are a lot of activities that you can take part in. You can take pictures of the bizarre-looking trees, take a hike, go rock climbing, or horseback riding. For the best experience, you should visit during the month of October through May.

Santa Monica Mountains National Recreational Area

Location: 26876 Mulholland Hwy, Calabasas, CA 91302, USA

Phone number: +1 805-370-2301

It is possible to have an adventurous and luxurious Malibu holiday. The Santa Monica Mountains National Recreational Area is also close to the famed beach city. Inside the recreational area, there are 500 miles of trails from where you can access the beach. 

Santa Monica Mountains National Recreational Area

However, do not miss out on the Paramount Ranch, where Paramount Pictures has been filming their projects since 1927. This is a perfect place to find an amazing mixture of art and nature. 

Wrapping up!

There are various national parks in California, and there is a lot to cover in these above-mentioned national parks. However, Yosemite is particularly famous and stands out because of its beauty. There is a lot that you can see in these parks. 

Whichever you visit, the picturesque view is going to mesmerize you with its enigmatic beauty. It depends on your preference which one you should visit, but it is recommended to visit at least one national park in your lifetime.

Subhasree Nag

Subhasree is a content writer who is passionate about traveling, writing, and reading books. In her leisure time, she is seen listening to music and watching web series. Writing along with music and dance are ways in which she expresses herself.

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