Also known as the Golden State, in reference to the discovery of
gold, southern California now attracts visitors looking for a golden tan.
The state capital of California is Sacramento.
and Tourist Information with links to
official travel and tourism websites and
state resources for visitors to California.
Houseboats, California Limousines,
Travel Guides, California Wine,
RV Camping in
California, San Diego,
The Making of
About California -
Find out more about California before you travel there.
County Map of
Colourful map of California showing the location of all 58 counties:
Lake, Lassen, Los Angeles, Madera,
Marin, Mariposa, Mendocino, Merced, Modoc,
Mono, Monterey, Napa, Nevada, Orange,
Placer, Plumas, Riverside, Sacramento, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego,
San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Luis
Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara,
Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Shasta, Sierra,
Siskiyou, Solano, Sonoma,
Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Trinity,
Tulare, Tuolumne, Ventura, Yolo and
California was named after an imaginary island in a
popular Spanish romance when Hernan Cortes first sighted the Baja Peninsula.
The Spaniard, Hernan Cortes had already made a name for himself as
Captain General and the conqueror of the Aztecs in Mexico, before
he moved up the coast on another expedition in 1536.
The Spaniards didn't seem to trust one another, governors were
constantly being replaced and new orders given.
Thus a stream of other conquistadors took it in turns to explore
Dutch and English pirates were also attracted to the area to try and
relieve the armadas of some of their bounty, but it was not until 1769 that San Diego was
Franciscan priests seeking to convert the inhabitants of the New World
to Christianity established San Francisco in 1776.
In 1822 California became a part of independent Mexico, although very
American settlers resented Mexican rule, and captured the town of
Sonoma in June 1846.
Shortly afterwards the US Navy occupied the area, forcing Mexico to
sign the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848.
Then came the Gold Rush.
States neighbouring California are:
Arizona. California also shares
a border with Mexico.
From Hollywood homes to boutique wineries, experience the best of California with these
The Golden State:
The Government of California's online presence.
Brought to you by the California Travel & Tourism Commission.
From Hollywood to the Grand Canyon, there's never a shortage of places to go or things to
do in LA.
The official resource for visitors to Los Angeles.
A travel guide with a difference. Follow Nick around the streets of Los Angeles as he
brings you images from his dashboard mounted webcam. Includes a 'what's hot' places of
interest and a guide to local beaches.
Accommodation in Los Angeles
in Los Angeles:
Find hotels in Los Angeles with special online rates.
San Diego is known for year round great weather, surrounded by the
beautiful Pacific Ocean. San Diego is one of the most visited cities in the U.S. and rated
in the top three for beach vacations.
By Top Cat Limos.
San Diego Limos:
A Plus Limousine provides chauffeured service throughout San Diego, Southern California,
and Las Vegas.
San Diego Beaches
With miles and miles of superb beaches in San Diego, how do you pick
Whether you're a first-time visitor or life-long resident, The San
Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau encourages you to enjoy the beach and hopes the
information provided here will help you to make the most of your stay:
Beaches; Carlsbad State
Beach; Coronado Municipal
Beach; Del Mar Beaches;
La Jolla Beaches;
La Jolla Reefs;
Oceanside City Beach;
Point Loma Beaches;
San Onofre State Beach;
Silver Strand State Beach;
Torrey Pines State Beach.
Accessible San Diego:
San Diego destination information for travellers with disabilities.
San Diego Zoo:
The 100-acre Zoo was founded in 1916. Today the Zoo is home to 3,800 animals, of 800
San Diego news and weather from the online daily.
Accommodation in San Diego
in San Diego.
Airport Inn International:
Located in the middle of Silicon Valley, minutes from San Jose International Airport, San
Jose Convention Center, and Great America. Guest rooms recently renovated with the
corporate traveller in mind.
Happy Hollow Park and
Features a variety of rides for children, amusements and a Puppet Theatre. To add to the
fun, there are themed play areas and picnic groves for the whole family.... and of course,
a chance to meet the animals.
History San Jose manages two sites and a collection of over 500,000 historical artefacts
from Santa Clara Valley. The sites, History Park in Kelley Park and the Peralta Adobe
& Fallon House in downtown San Jose, are approximately four miles apart.
Hotel De Anza of San Jose:
Elegant 100-room, executive hotel located on W. Santa Clara Street.
San Jose CVB:
The San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau provides a complete source of information for
all your vacation planning needs in Silicon Valley.
San Pedro Square:
With its antique archway and Euro-style patio dining, San Pedro Square offers first class
restaurants, cafes and bistros, a microbrewery and night-clubs.
Tour through 110 of the 160 rooms and look for the bizarre phenomena that gave the mansion
its name; a window built into the floor, staircases leading to nowhere, a chimney that
rises four floors, doors that open onto blank walls, and upside down posts!
Accommodation in San Jose
in San Jose.
Accommodation in Monterey
The Hotel Pacific is an all-suite AAA 4-diamond Monterey hotel located downtown, within
walking distance of Fisherman's Wharf, Cannery Row, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium.
Super fun gold panning tours at the Marble Quarry Campground in the Famous Gold Rush town
of Columbia, California. For schools, scouts and tour groups.
The Great Unfenced:
Information on lodging and activities in the California Gold Country, from the Tuolumne
County Visitors Bureau.
Wine Country Tours.
Chateau Souverain identifies Alexander Valley as the best location for growing Cabernet
Sauvignon, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc; the cool-climates of Carneros and Russian River
Valley for Chardonnay; and Dry Creek Valley for Zinfandel.
Napa Valley Wineries:
Napa Valley features some premier wine producers. The climate and soil are virtually
perfect for growing the type of grapes required to produce premium wines.
The Wine Train.
Napa Valley Wine Train:
A 3-hour, 36 mile, excursion from the historic town of Napa through one of the world's
most famous wine valleys to the quaint village of St. Helena and return. Government
regulations do not permit the train to stop or disembark passengers en-route, except at
designated stops or stations.
Visit the award winning wineries in Temecula; 90 miles south-east of Los Angeles and 60
miles north of San Diego.
Wine Country Jeep Tours:
Experience the California Wine Country like never before, on gently rolling
back roads in a
customised 4-wheel drive touring vehicle.
House boating can be a lot of fun for any age, size or type of group. The following
suggestions and ideas are the result of many years of experience, and are intended to help
make your trip more fun. What works for one person does not necessarily work for another,
so you may find only bits and pieces of this useful to you.
Healthy - by Patricia Hamilton:
Eat delicious food and stay fit at home and on the road. Fabulous guide to healthy places
to eat (restaurants, delis, markets, farmers markets, farmstands); walking nearby (malls,
historic downtowns, trails, parks, beaches; super food recipes by Stanford Executive Chef;
and walking/stretching tips by an exercise physiologist. Plus beautiful colour photos of
food and scenery.
The Anaheim Chamber of Commerce offers information on visiting or meeting in Orange
Visit scenic Pacifica, a coast-side community only 15 minutes south of San Francisco.
Santa Barbara Guide:
What to do and where to go on the American Riviera.
Santa Monica Pier:
Another cam from the Westland Network.
Streets of Los Angeles:
A virtual photo tour through the streets of Los Angeles.
The Queen Mary:
The Queen Mary last sailed from Britain in 1967, and is now moored at Long Beach,
Street performers are as much a part of Venice as the iron pumpers on muscle beach.
Venice Beach Cam:
See Venice beach in the raw, if it's not dark when you go there.
The beach area from the Santa Monica Pier south to Marina Del Rey has more things to do
than anywhere else in Los Angeles.
Apart from the beaches of Southern California, visitors are also
attracted to Hollywood, Palm Springs, Disneyland, Lake Tahoe, the Napa and Sonoma wine
valleys, and Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks.
Pioneer Village in Bakersfield, El Pueblo de Los Angeles State Historic Park, the Old
Customs House in Monterey, and Sutter's Fort in Sacramento.
Death Valley, (86 m. below sea level), is the lowest point in North
America, while Mount Whitney (4,417 m .), in the Sierra Nevada, is one of the highest
peaks in the United States.
An interesting photo guide of the south-western Mojave Desert and the bordering mountain
areas. Sponsors are intricately woven into the display, so you have been warned. Full
marks for an original concept though.
Comprehensive guide to Palm Springs, California. Don't forget to order your free copy of
the Palm Springs Visitor Guide.
The Terra Cotta Inn:
Clothing optional resort and spa. Named a favourite couples getaway, by Los Angeles
magazine, and one the top four resorts in Palm Springs, by ABC TV San Diego.
Accommodation in Palm Springs
in Palm Springs.
Historically referred to as the Queen of the Southern
Mines', Sonora is located in the beautiful Sierra Nevada Foothills, in the heart of
Californias 'Gold Country'.
Sonora is the county seat of Tuolumne County.
City of Sonora:
Sonoras prosperity during the late 1800s and early 1900s is evidenced by many of the
historic homes and buildings that local residents can treasure today. Sonora is home to
museums, art galleries and live theatre. The City also plays host to numerous festivals
and special events throughout the year.
Tuolumne County Visitors
The Gateway to Yosemite, Gold Country, the Central Sierra Nevada and home to Stanislaus
National Forest, Columbia and Railtown.
There are so many things to see and do in and around Sonora,
Considered a gateway to
National Park, Sonora is also close to amazing vineyards, world-class golfing,
stunning caverns, hiking, water sports and horseback riding. A short drive from historic
Columbia, Angels Camp and Murphys.
By Carlos Gonzzatti.
Sonora Oaks: Sonora.
|19551 Hess Avenue.
Western Sonora Oaks.
|Nestled under ancient
arbours in the historic Mother Lode area of the Sierra Foothills lies the Best Western
Comfortable and relaxing, the Best Western Sonora Oaks is one of the newest
inns in the area.
In addition to the spacious and tastefully appointed accommodations, guests also enjoy
complimentary coffee, HBO and free local telephone calls.
Guests can also use the outdoor heated pool and spa. The hotel also offers valet
laundry service, 24-hour front desk service and free parking.
|Sonora Days Inn:
|160 S. Washington Street.
Sonora Days Inn.
California hotel offers well-appointed guestrooms and modern conveniences in a
Victorian-era hotel setting.
With 64 guestrooms in the main building and annex, you can
choose from King, Queen, or Double Bed rooms. All rooms are appointed with premium cable
channels, blackout drapes and complimentary toiletries.
A complimentary continental breakfast is served daily and youll find free
newspapers in the lobby for your convenience. Free wireless high-speed Internet access is
Summers can get pretty warm in Gold Country, so lodging guests will be pleased that
there's an outdoor pool. And since its on the rooftop, it may just be the best view
The Bear Valley area as we know it today was originally called Grizzly Bear Valley. The
Bear Valley Mountain Resort is operated under special use permit on the Stanislaus
Bear Valley Village:
Northern California's most centrally located mountain resort, conveniently accessible via
the historic Ebbetts Pass Highway 4 corridor: Bear Valley Village is home to a variety of
services, shops, restaurants and a wide range of accommodations options.
Calaveras County Visitors
Calaveras County is located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains - 133 miles
east of San Francisco and 135 miles west of Lake Tahoe. Midway along State Highway 49,
which links the towns of the Gold Country, Calaveras County is filled with natural and
Winery tours at Ironstone start in the Tasting Room, in front of a magnificent fireplace.
Tours are offered three times daily: at 11:30, 13:30 and 15:30. Highlights of the tours
include the wine production area, tank farm and bottling line, wine-aging cavern,
amphitheatre, gardens and Lakeside Park, as well as the Tasting Room, Culinary Exhibition
Center, Alhambra Music Room and Theatre Pipe Organ, the Heritage Museum, and the Jewelry
Shoppe. Located at 1894 Six Mile Road, Murphys.
World famous for the rare Aragonite flos ferri, Mercer Caverns first received paying
customers in 1885; making it the longest continually operating commercial caverns in the
state of California. Located in Calaveras County, just outside Murphys and about five
miles from Angels Camp. Travel time from Sacramento is about two hours.
Mountain Springs Golf
Located above the fog and below the snow in historic Sonora, California. Play this scenic
18-hole Robert Muir Graves designed championship course while enjoying the Gold Country
and the scenic beauty of the Sierra Nevada foothills.
Muir-Hanna Vineyards, located in California's Napa Valley, is owned and operated by the
direct descendants of John Muir. True to their legacy, they practice sustainable
agriculture in every phase of their operation and every vintage celebrates the respect and
connection that John Muir had with the glories of nature. The tasting room is located at
36 S. Washington Street, Sonora.
Sierra Glen Ranch:
One of Tuolumne County's oldest and most scenic farming enterprises, Sierra Glen Ranch is
planted on a shelf of fertile mountain loam at an elevation of 3,600 feet and overlooking
the great Central Valley. The whole family can visit to pick their own fruit, depending on
the season, or cut down their very own Christmas tree.
During the gold rush, the area that would become the Stanislaus National Forest was a busy
place, occupied by miners and other immigrants, homesteaders and ranchers, dam builders
and loggers. Today you can fish in over 800 miles of rivers and streams, stay in a
campground, or hike into the backcountry seeking pristine solitude. You can swim near a
sandy beach or wade into cold clear streams, raft the exciting Tuolumne River, or canoe
one of the many gorgeous lakes. Depending on the time of year, you can ride a horse, a
mountain bike or a snowmobile.
Located in California's Central Coast region, between the Gavilan
and Diablo Ranges of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Hollister is about 95 miles south of San
Francisco, 45 miles east of Monterey and 300 miles north of Los Angeles.
In 1868, 'Colonel' (honorary title) William Welles Hollister sold his
portion of the original land grant, known as Rancho San Justo, to a group of civic-minded
Hollister was officially incorporated as a city on August 29th, 1872
and by February 12th, 1874 had secured its place as the most important city in the area
when San Benito County was formed and Hollister was named the county seat.
City of Hollister:
Located in San Benito County, Hollister is served by major California highways and has one
of the few remaining executive airports in the country.
Discover the dining, shopping, history and vitality that downtown Hollister has to offer.
San Benito County:
San Benito County covers approximately 1,396 square miles ranging in elevation from near
sea level to over 5,000 feet, has a population of over 56,000, and is bordered to the
north by Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties, by Merced and Fresno counties to the east,
and by Monterey County on the west and south.
San Benito Historical
In 1772 Father Crespi named the San Benito River, the main waterway in the county, in
honour of Saint Benedict. Early history of San Benito County revolved around Mission San
Juan Bautista, founded in 1797; the seventh mission to be built in California.
|Best Western San Benito Inn: Hollister.
|660 San Felipe Road.
Best Western San Benito Inn.
|With easy access from
Route 156 and 25, the Best Western San Benito Inn is an exceptional value economy hotel
near the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Monterey Bay, California.
The well-equipped rooms
feature free high-speed Internet access, cable television with HBO, coffee makers,
hairdryer, iron and ironing board, air-conditioning, refrigerator, microwave and
Experience a refreshing blend of modern luxury and laid-back Northern California
lodging in the heart of Hollister as you start your day with a complimentary continental
Later in the day, you can relax in the hotel's outdoor pool.
Only two miles from golf courses, six miles from the Mission San Juan Batista and eight
miles from San Juan College.
49er RV Ranch:
Located at 23223 Italian Bar Rd, Columbia, the 49er RV Ranch is a full service RV Park in
a rustic setting; serving Columbia Historic State Park.
State Historic Park:
Where the Park System re-creates a gold rush town of the 1850-1870 time period and local
merchants provide for your modern needs.
Hiring a limo is not really that expensive, if there are six or
more of you to share the costs.
Top Cat Limousine:
Located in San Diego, they charge $45 an hour for 6 people (book a minimum of two hours
and you'll get an hour free) and $169 for a five-hour Temecula wine tour.
Travel Guides -
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