Vibrant cities, beaches, amusement parks, and natural wonders like nowhere else on earth make California an intriguing land of possibilities for travelers. The gateway cities of San Francisco and Los Angeles are home to some of the state’s most well-known sites, from the Golden Gate Bridge to Hollywood and Disneyland. But the national parks, covering mountains, forests, desert, coastal areas, and islands offer their own outstanding experiences. The tallest and largest trees on earth, the largest alpine lake in North America, and the famous sites of Yosemite, offer once in a lifetime opportunities for outdoor adventure.
One of the most beautiful cities in America, San Francisco should be on everyone’s must-see list. The ocean and hills provide a stunning natural setting, but the quaint neighborhoods, historic sites, green spaces, inspiring cultural institutions, and relaxed attitude are what truly make this city special. The iconic Golden Gate Bridge is one of the key sights and what many people call to mind when they think of the city, and even California. The orange frame against the blue water of San Francisco Bay, or rising out of the fog that often covers the area is an unforgettable sight. You can appreciate the bridge from afar or, for a more personal experience, drive over it, walk on it, or even bike across it.
If you have time to explore the city and are up for a little exercise, see some of the sights on foot. Families traveling with children will find a world of activities to entertain youngsters and even older children with our article on things to do with kids in San Francisco.
Yosemite National Park in Northern California is one of the United States’ most scenic and most visited national parks. The mountains, valleys, rivers, and spectacular waterfalls have drawn tourists, artists, and athletes here for decades. Most of the key sights and things to do in Yosemite National Park are in Yosemite Valley. Carved by glaciers during the last ice age, the granite walls and huge waterfalls are some of the most outstanding features in the park. This is where you’ll find the big name attractions, like Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, and El Capitan. Beyond the Valley are the Tioga Road and the Glacier Point Road, both of which offer access to alpine areas, lookout points, and incredible views. Sometimes overlooked by tourists but also definitely worth seeing are the giant sequoias. The largest stand is located in Mariposa Grove, in the southern part of the park.
One of the best ways to explore Yosemite is to get right out into the landscape on some of the incredible hiking trails. These range from easy walks along streams and lakes to life-altering trails that will take you to the tops of mountain peaks and to famous landmark sites. If you are spending a few nights and want to set up here for a while, you’ll also find a number of outstanding campgrounds in Yosemite and the surrounding area.
Disneyland, located in Anaheim, is California’s premier family destination and has been for decades. This massive amusement park is home to all kinds of rides, games, shows, and entertainment, complete with restaurants and hotels.
The park is a combination of theme rides and recreated worlds and cultures. You can find shows and other entertainment designed for both children and adults. Long line ups and wait times have been reduced somewhat by the invention of passes, which give you a “return time” to various attractions. However, when kids are out of school, either for the summer, Christmas, spring break, or any other holiday, you can be sure that the park will be very busy.
Keep in mind there is more to Disneyland than just the parks. The entire Disneyland resort experience features hotels, dining, shopping at the Downtown Disney District, and the Disney Adventure Park. Although the parks are definitely what the children are here to see, there is something for everyone in the family.
Death Valley National Park contains some of California’s most inhospitable terrain, with extreme heat that has left this desert area strangely beautiful. Salt fields, dry parched land, sand dunes, mountains, and a lake that lies below sea level create a unique landscape in this remote valley. Visitors can drive through the park and stop at lookouts, hike short trails, see the ruins of the valley’s former industry, and even paddle in the shallow Badwater Lake, if there is any water in the lake at that time.
This beautiful stretch along the Central Coast of California offers a chance for visitors to get back to nature. Camping and hiking are two of the most popular activities in the area, and Garrapata State Park and Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park are some of the best places for these pursuits.
Big Sur begins about four miles south of Carmel in Yankee Point and stretches along the Highway No. 1 as far as Salmon Cove, some 17 miles north of San Simeon. From Highway 1 there are splendid views over the picturesque coastline. To the east stretches a true wilderness – the Santa Lucia Mountains and Ventana Forests, with more than 220 miles of trails.
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park is a great place for hikers, sunbathers, and those looking for a nature escape. The park has camping facilities and, for anyone looking for a little more comfort, the Big Sur Lodge offers a peaceful retreat in a superb location. One of the highlights in the park is Pfeiffer Falls, which is reached by the Valley View Trail. A branch off this trail leads to the Valley Overlook with views that extend to the ocean and the Big Sur River Valley.
Garrapata State Park is another popular area of Big Sur. The main attraction here is Garrapata Beach, a long, wide, crescent-shaped stretch of golden sand. Waves here can be big, and it may not be the best for swimming but it’s great for taking a stroll and soaking up the sun. For those looking to get a little exercise, there are also day hiking trails in the park providing fabulous views of the coastline, mountains, and redwoods.
Lake Tahoe lies high in the Sierra Nevada mountain range and is a popular year-round vacation destination. The blue lake, with it’s turquoise coves and surrounding mountain scenery, is a summer playground for boaters, beach goers, campers, and nature lovers. You’ll find outstanding hiking trails for all abilities in the mountains and along the shoreline. Campgrounds in the area are also excellent, with many in beachfront locations or wooded areas. Much of the summertime action focuses around the town of South Lake Tahoe.
Lake Tahoe is also California’s premiere skiing destination, with several popular ski resorts. During the winter, skiers from across the United States descend on the area to take advantage of the incredible terrain and great snow conditions.
Home to the largest trees on earth, a visit to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks is a bucket-list event. The sequoias here are the largest living things in the world, and many of them are more than 2,000 years old, with some even over 3,000 years old. These adjacent parks cover an area of mountains with majestic granite peaks, deep gorges, lakes, rivers, and forests, but they are quite different from each other. If you are planning on visiting both parks, you will need at least a couple of days.
Although both parks are home to the giant sequoias, Sequoia National Park is arguably the best place to visit these ancient wonders. Easy walking trails, many of them paved, meander through the trees and provide easy access to the major sites. This park is also home to Mt. Whitney, which at 14,495 feet is the highest mountain in the US (apart from Alaska). You can find some beautiful campgrounds in Sequoia National Park, many of which are well positioned for visiting the trees and other attractions, like Moro Rock, and the famous giant sequoia known as General Sherman Tree.
Kings Canyon National Park is more rugged and wild, with jagged peaks, roaring rivers, and remote sections where you can escape the crowds and enjoy nature. This is a popular park for hiking. You’ll also find some incredible campgrounds in Kings Canyon, both close to the trees, in the Grant Grove area, and in the Cedar Grove area at the far end of the 26-mile Kings Canyon Scenic Byway.
Walking through a forest of giant redwoods, towering more than 300 feet above you, feels like entering another era. Descendants of trees from the Jurassic Period, these are the tallest trees on the planet, and they are truly one of California’s greatest treasures.
These jointly managed parks, which include Redwood National Park, Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Del Norte Redwoods State Park, and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, stretch out along a spectacular portion of Northern California Coast. Each offers something a little different, but in all of them you can find great hiking trails and beautiful campgrounds.
This park is truly a jewel in the desert. The Joshua trees bring a type of magic to this otherwise lunar-like landscape, where giant boulders and rock formations create unique shapes that capture the imagination. The park covers 800,000 acres and offers a range of diverse sites that include much more than just the Joshua trees. The Cholla Cactus Garden, where chollas stretch out endlessly along the hillside to the mountains beyond, the ruins of the historic Keys Ranch, the giant palms of the Lost Palms Oasis, and the vista from over 5,000 feet at Keys View are just some of the highlights. If you are going to stay awhile, you may want to consider spending a night under the stars and trees at one of the fabulous campgrounds in Joshua Tree National Park.
This amusement park and movie studio is one of the most popular attractions in California, and the perfect place for families with older children and teens. Rides and sets are based on famous movies, with everything from shockingly realistic simulator rides to roller coasters, and much more. You can tour huge sets on organized studio tours. Some of the most popular experiences in the park are The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Fast and Furious – Supercharged, and The Walking Dead Attraction, among others. You’ll also find dining, shows, unique shopping opportunities, and various events held throughout the year.
This theme park is a classic family destination, drawing people from all over the Western United States. Orca and dolphin shows, opportunities for close up encounters with some favorite marine life, and thrill rides are the main attractions. San Diego’s SeaWorld is strategically located along the waterfront in Mission Bay.
Hearst Castle, officially known as the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument, was started in 1919 and built over a 28-year period, resulting in a mix of architectural styles that make it quirky and stately all at the same time. Built by newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst, the 165-room castle was never completed. It sits atop a hill at an elevation of 1,600 feet and offers fantastic views out over the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Lucia Range. One of the major attractions here is the immense collection of art. At one time, the castle was home to the world’s largest private zoo, and to this day, zebras and other exotic wildlife can be seen wandering the grounds. The castle is located almost exactly halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Drive time from either city is approximately four hours.
Part of the Channel Islands, Santa Catalina lies about 22 miles southwest of Los Angeles. The island is a popular destination with boaters and day trippers. Avalon is the main population center and where most of the action is centered. On the other end of the island is the much smaller village of Two Harbours.
While most people come to Santa Catalina Island to wander around and enjoy a day of leisure, other popular things to do include glass bottom boat tours, scuba diving, kayaking, and parasailing. You can reach the island by ferry from San Pedro, Long Beach, Newport Beach, and Dana Point.
Channel Islands National Park, made up of five individual islands, is a great place to see wildlife and a little undisturbed nature. The islands are only accessible by park concessionaire boats and planes, or private boats. You can learn about current conditions and arrange transport at the mainland visitor centers located in Ventura and Santa Barbara.
DigiMarCon is the Largest Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference & Exhibition series in the world, with annual events held in all continents (North America, Latin America, Europe, UK, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa) in 13 countries (United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Ireland, Netherlands, Spain, Brazil, Singapore, India, United Arab Emirates and South Africa), across 33 cities (New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Houston, Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington DC, New Orleans, Atlanta, Detroit, Miami, Denver, San Diego, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Honolulu, London, Dublin, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Johannesburg, Cape Town, Dubai, Sydney, Auckland, Singapore and Sao Paulo). All DigiMarCon Events can be attended in-person or online. Wherever you are located there is a regional DigiMarCon event nearby you can attend.
DigiMarCon Conferences are held in top luxury 5-star event venues across the world such as; Royal Caribbean Cruise Ships, Olympic Stadiums, Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre and Wynn, JW Marriott, Marriott Marquis, Hyatt Regency, InterContinental, The Westin, Renaissance, Hilton, Conrad, W, Sheraton, Loews and Sofitel Hotel properties. Discount hotel room rates at each venue hotel means no hassle getting to and from the venue each day.
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DigiMarCon Keynotes, Panels and Master Classes are facilitated by the foremost thought leaders in the industry, from celebrity social media influencers to CMO’s from the largest Fortune 500 company brands that are disrupting the digital marketing, media and advertising industry, such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon, Oracle, Adobe, eBay, Netflix and more. All presentations are pitch-free, and include actionable takeaways, case studies, strategies and tactics, ready to be applied when back in the office.
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Attend DigiMarCon and you become part of the show! DigiMarCon Conferences tap into the talent of the room, drawing from the knowledge and experience of the professionals in the audience. All DigiMarCon events include regular interactive question and answer sessions with speakers and the audience ideal for collaboration, audience polls, along with ice-breaker and group exercises, steered by charismatic Emcees.
DigiMarCon Conferences put you right up and close with the speakers giving you the opportunity to meet these social media influencers which you follow in person. Speakers are never hidden in private speaker rooms away from the audience, they are in the auditorium sitting right beside you and participating.
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At all DigiMarCon Conferences is the co-located exclusive event TECHSPO Technology Expo, which showcases the new generation of technology and innovation, including; AdTech, MarTech, Internet, Mobile and SaaS technologies. Be inspired, amazed and educated on how these evolving technologies will impact your business for the better. Unlimited Access to TECHSPO Technology Expo is included with all DigiMarCon passes.
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Attendees of DigiMarcon Conferences gain membership to an exclusive global Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Community of over 500,000 worldwide subscribers to our award-winning digital marketing blog and over 100,000 members to the International Association of Digital Marketing Professionals (visit https://iadmp.org). This global community comprises of innovators, senior marketers and branders, entrepreneurs, digital executives and professionals, web & mobile strategists, designers and web project managers, business leaders, business developers, agency executives and their teams and anyone else who operates in the digital community who leverage digital, mobile, and social media marketing. We provide updates to the latest whitepapers and industry reports to keep you updated on trends, innovation and best practice digital marketing.
The events industry has forever changed in a world affected by COVID-19. The health and safety of our guests, staff and community is our highest priority and paramount. The team at DigiMarCon is dedicated to ensuring a great experience at our in-person events, and that includes providing a safe, clean and hygienic environment for our delegates. Some of the key areas we have implemented safe and hygienic measures include;
DigiMarCon has always been industry leaders of the Hybrid Event experience for years (a hybrid event combines a "live" in-person event with a "virtual" online component), no one needs to miss out on attending our events. Each DigiMarCon Conference can be attended in-person (with a Main Conference, All Access or VIP Pass) or online (with a Virtual Pass) giving attendees a choice for the experience they want to have. Attending virtually by viewing a Live Stream or On Demand enables participation by people who might be unable to attend physically due to travel or time zone constraints or through a wish to reduce the carbon footprint of the event. If you would like to meet the speakers, network with fellow marketing professionals at refreshment breaks, luncheons and evening receptions, check out the latest Internet, Mobile, AdTech, MarTech and SaaS technologies providers exhibiting then it is highly recommended to attend DigiMarCon in-person. As the largest Digital Marketing, Media and Advertising Conference series with events in 33 international cities worldwide, across 13 countries, there is bound to be a DigiMarCon Event near you to attend in-person if you can.
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