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  • California

    California offers a diverse range of outdoor activities. The state boasts pristine coastlines, granite mountains, and expansive redwood forests. Travelers can explore the Alamere Falls, which empties directly into the Pacific Ocean, or visit McWay Falls in Big Sur, a prominent waterfall visible from Highway 1. For those interested in hiking, the Sunrise Lakes to Clouds Rest trail is a notable choice, while the Lands End Trail in San Francisco provides a scenic coastal walk. Whether you're looking to hike, camp, or simply enjoy the outdoors, California has something for everyone.

    Top Spots in and near California

    • Bolinas, California

      Alamere Falls via Palomarin Trailhead

      4.5
      13.54 mi / 1614 ft gain
      Alamere Falls is the tallest waterfall in the bay area. It is known as a tide fall because it empties directly into the Pacific Ocean. This is extremely unique because there are only 34 tide falls in the world and two in California, the other being McWay Falls in Big Sur.  Enjoy stunning views of...
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    • Big Sur, California

      McWay Falls

      4.6
      McWay Falls is one of the most iconic waterfalls in BIg Sur and can be seen from Highway 1. The trail to the falls is located in Julia Pfeiffer. For all of you history buffs, Mcway Falls is named after Christopher McWay, an early settler and farmer from New York who ventured west in the late 1800...
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    • Mariposa County, California

      Sunrise Lakes to Clouds Rest

      4.7
      18.93 mi / 1775 ft gain
      Start out at the Tenaya Lake Trailhead, where you can head directly onto the trail for Clouds Rest or you can branch off after 2.7 miles to Sunrise Lakes. This allows you to break up the hike, spend a night relaxing and help you have an early start back on the trail. Once re-connected to the Clo...
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    • San Francisco, California

      Lands End Trail

      4.7
      3.26 mi / 500 ft gain
      The Lands End Trail is a 3.26 mile out-and-back hike located in the northwest corner of San Francisco along the city's rugged coastline. Offering spectacular views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Marin Headlands, and the Pacific Ocean, the hike is one of the most popular trails in San Francisco for ...
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    • Big Sur, California

      Sykes Hot Springs via Pine Ridge Trail

      4.2
      18.96 mi / 7339 ft gain
      The trek to Sykes Hot Springs is about 10-miles one way along the Pine Ridge Trail. This is a great backpacking trip, but can be done as an out-and-back hike from the campgrounds at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park if you're really moving. The trail is moderately challenging, you'll cross the river t...
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    • Los Angeles, California

      Wisdom Tree

      4.8
      0.95 mi / 528 ft gain
      In Griffith Park, park along Lake Hollywood Drive and walk the paved quarter mile up Wonder View Drive to the start of Wonder View Trail. Here, walk through the yellow gate and make the first right after the road turns to dirt. Head up this unmarked single track path heading east up the mountain....
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    • Stinson Beach, California

      Cataract Falls

      4.2
      2.81 mi / 1184 ft gain
      The Bay Area is home to many beautiful waterfalls, but Cataract Falls located about an hour north of San Francisco is one of the most stunning. Be sure to head out on this hike after a recent rain. Cataract Falls is a picturesque waterfall located in the Mt. Tamalpais Watershed near Stinson Be...
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    • Mill Valley, California

      Canopy, Panoramic, Redwood Trail, Sun, Dipsea Trail Loop

      4.7
      4.31 mi / 1145 ft gain
      While there are other, less crowded redwood groves in the Bay Area, Muir Woods National Monument is easily one of the best. It is a beautifully maintained site, with wooden footpaths meandering between towering redwoods that are between 600 – 800 years old. It’s home to some true giants, with its...
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    • Orick, California

      Tall Trees Grove, Redwood Creek, Emerald Ridge Loop

      4.4
      4.41 mi / 1043 ft gain
      Day 1: Check with the Rangers station before heading up for best camping opportunities. Assuming you've checked with the rangers for approval...if there are openings, off of the main road, there are side streets with access to the beaches. Pull into one of these areas and drive down as far as you...
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    • San Francisco, California

      Lover's Lane, Ecology, Mountain Lake Trail Loop

      4.5
      2.04 mi / 344 ft gain
      Tucked into a corner of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area is the Presidio, a beautiful little oasis of forests, beaches, and sweeping views that locals love. While the coastal trails get most of the attention here, the park covers 300 acres of prime real estate with lots of notable attract...
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    • Apple Valley, California

      Deep Creek Hot Springs

      4.2
      3.64 mi / 948 ft gain
      Deep Creek Hot Springs is nestled along the Mojave River at an elevation of 3,000 feet in the San Bernardino Mountains. This year-round mineral water retreat consists of three pools the size of large hot tubs, that range in temperature from around 96 degrees in the first pool to 102 in the third....
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    • Mill Valley, California

      Summit of Mt. Tamalpais Loop

      5.0
      1.15 mi / 394 ft gain
      Mt. Tam is a large park with plenty of amazing viewpoints, but the East routes and the East Peak are best for sunsets. Once you're at the top, it's an amazing spot to view a large number of Marin trails, which can help you can get a head start on planning your next adventure. At 2,570 feet, this ...
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    • Newport Beach, California

      Arches at Little Corona del Mar

      4.9
      Little Corona del Mar Beach is a secluded beach located on Poppy Avenue across Ocean Boulevard in Corona del Mar. Known as one of the less crowded beaches in the area, this spot is the perfect place to chill for the day or photograph a sunset. You will find plenty of free street parking in the ne...
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    • Burney, California

      Burney Falls

      4.9
      0.97 mi / 82 ft gain
      Burney Falls can be seen right from the parking area, but this scenic loop is a great hike for all levels of hiking ability. Heading out on this trail will take you to the base of this 129 foot tall waterfall.  The Hike Burney Falls has a 1.3 mile loop trail that takes approximately 30 minutes ...
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    • Big Sur, California

      Clifftop Camping & Hot Springs in Big Sur

      4.7
      Campsite:There is nothing quite like driving or biking along US-1, the Pacific Coast Highway. Make sure you get a chance to do the drive during the day so that you can see all that Big Sur has to offer. Be careful when pulling off especially onto the shoulder and never stop on a curve in the road...
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    • San Diego, California

      Torrey Pines Beach Trail Loop

      4.7
      2.15 mi / 374 ft gain
      The beach trail brings you from the parking lot across the lodge from the bluff down to the beach. You can choose to visit the Red Butte, the Razor Point, and the Yucca Point trails along the way. Of the other trails, this trail seems to provide a complete walkthrough of geological features; it a...
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    Camping and Lodging in California

    Upper Sage Flat
    Big Pine, California

    Upper Sage Flat

    Bear Valley Resort Glamping
    Bear Valley, California

    Bear Valley Resort Glamping

    From $129 / night

    Merrill Campground
    Susanville, California

    Merrill Campground

    Heart Bar Equestrian
    Angelus Oaks, California

    Heart Bar Equestrian

    Trumbull Lake
    Bridgeport, California

    Trumbull Lake

    Big Pine Creek Campground
    Big Pine, California

    Big Pine Creek Campground

    Guides, Insights and Stories from California

    5 Calf-Crushing Trail Runs in the San Francisco Bay Area

    5 Calf-Crushing Trail Runs in the San Francisco Bay Area

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    Why Backpacking Clouds Rest Should Make Your Permit Application Lineup

    Why Backpacking Clouds Rest Should Make Your Permit Application Lineup

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    5 Must-Do Hikes in the California Redwoods

    5 Must-Do Hikes in the California Redwoods

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    Why Laguna Beach Is the Ultimate Summer Destination

    Why Laguna Beach Is the Ultimate Summer Destination

    Visit Laguna Beach

    The Best Views in Laguna Beach

    The Best Views in Laguna Beach

    Visit Laguna Beach

    The 10 Best Campsites near San Francisco

    The 10 Best Campsites near San Francisco

    The Outbound Collective