Ten Facts You May Not Know About The National And State Parks Of California

by admin


There are a great many reasons to travel to California for a vacation.  The state offers some of the most incredible theme parks in the world.  The entertainment capital of Los Angeles has an incredible amount of things to do.  The city of San Francisco offers a completely unique experience on a number of different levels.  One of the best reasons to visit California though is to enjoy the tremendous amount of natural beauty that the state has.

The protected natural areas of California, both along the coast and inland towards the mountains or desert, are some of the most beautiful in the world.  California offers endless beaches, towering waterfalls, pounding surf, imposing cliffs, tall mountains, and arid desert landscape to be enjoyed by any traveler lucky enough to go there.  Much of this beauty is protected in the various national and state parks that are found in the state of California.  Visiting these park lands is one of the best ways to gain an appreciation for the more natural side of the state.  Some of the parks are nationally known and very famous, while others get little to no attention at all from outside the state.  Here though is a look at some things you just may not know about the national and state parks of California.

Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park covers more than 1,100 square miles of land and sits across the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountain range.  More than three and a half million visitors come to Yosemite National Park each year, and for a very good reason.  It is simply hard to match the beauty and interesting attractions that are found there.  Yellowstone National Park became the first national park in the United States in 1872, but the Yosemite Grant that was issued by President Abraham Lincoln in 1864 that set aside the area that would become the park was the first time that the federal government had set aside land for public use and preservation.

Will Rogers State Beach
A very popular beach location in the Pacific Palisades area of the California coast is Will Rogers State Beach.  There are a number of chances to have fun and play along the beach including in the surf, on the sand, a bike path, volleyball courts, gymnastic equipment, and a playground.  Surfing is also popular along the one and three quarters mile long beach too.  This beach is a popular backdrop for many movies and television shows.  It has been seen in a number of productions including Baywatch, Creature from the Black Lagoon, The Kiss, and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.

Death Valley National Park
Located east of the Sierra Nevada mountain range and straddling the California-Nevada border is Death Valley National Park.  Death Valley National Park covers more than 5,200 square miles and is both the hottest and driest national park in the entire United States.  Visitors going there can view an amazing amount of history and see some incredible scenery.  One of the most unique structures in the park is known as Scotty’s Castle and tours are available there.  The castle was built by an investor from Chicago who had been duped into believing tales of a gold strike in the area.

Russian Gulch State Park
Located in Mendocino County, Russian Gulch State Park is located just a few miles south of Fort Bragg.  Extending for nearly three miles in length and being up up to three quarters of a mile in width, the rocky shoreline at Russian Gulch State Park is popular with those wanting to explore the coastline looking for items brought up by the sea.  The Frederick W. Panhorst Bridge, which transports California State Highway 1 over part of the park area below, is regularly judged to be the most beautiful of California’s concrete arch bridges.

Redwood National

Redwood National

Redwood National Park

One of the most famous national parks in the entire United States is Redwood National Park on the northern California coast.  This is one of the most impressive and unique forestlands in the world, with trees towering as high as more than 300 feet in the air.  Though the northern California coast was at one time covered with redwoods, today roughly half of what is left of original redwood trees in the state can be found in Redwood National Park.

Grover Hot Springs State Park
Located on the eastern side of California, near Markleeville, Grover Hot Springs State Park is centered around a natural hot spring.  The park has a pool facility that is fed by the hot spring, and there are also camping and other recreational activities that can be participated in there.  The water in the pools appears to be green because of the mineral deposits on the bottom.  The light reflects off of these mineral deposits up through the water giving the entire pool the appearance that the water is green.

Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree National Park is a park that covers more than 1,200 square miles in the San Bernadino area.  Within the park are a number of unique natural areas, including two separate and distinct deserts.  Visitors coming to the park do so in most part to take part in some of the fun and exciting activities that  take place there including birdwatching, hiking, camping, and rock climbing.  One of the popular features of the park is Skull Rock, a granite rock with two gaping holes in it that make it resemble a skull.  These holes were formed by erosion caused by the accumulation of rain drops over a great many years.

Castle Rock State Park
Located on the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Castle Rock State Park covers more than 3,500 acres of land.  Most of the park is covered in Douglas Fir and Coast Redwood, much of it left to grow in it’s natural state without human interference.  Castle Rock, perched high above the surrounding area, was the inspiration for a number of settings in the work of famous author John Steinbeck.

Channel Islands National Park
Channel Islands National Park is one of the newer national parks in California, having only been established as such in 1980, though it had been a United States National Monument since the late 1930s.  The park consists of five islands that are part of the Channel Islands that sit off the coast of Southern California.  The islands that make up the park are San Miguel, Santa Rosa, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, and Anacapa.  The only island in the park to not have a name derived from the Spanish language is Anacapa Island.  Anacapa translates as “mirage island” in the Chumwash Native American language.

Angel Island State Park
Located in the middle of San Francisco Bay, Angel Island offers some truly great views of the San Francisco skyline and the surrounding area.  It has a long history in the area and has served in a number of capacities including as a military fort and an immigration station.  For a time during World War II, both German and Japanese prisoners of war were held on Angel Island.

Visit the National Parks with Orbitz
Experience the wonder of these national parks when booking through Orbitz. Orbitz offers substantial discounts to California vacations with their already low rates. To get greater discounts travelers can also use orbitz promotion codes for taking advantage of any promotions available. An advantage of booking through orbitz is their price assurance which helps travelers receive some of their money back if others going to the same destination book their prices at a lower rate.

There are a number of great reasons to vacation in California.  The state has been welcoming guests for well over a hundred years to it’s warm climate, beautiful surroundings, and fun attractions.  The state and national parks, as well as the other protected lands, in California offer tourists and locals the chance to see some of the most scenic areas of the state and appreciate the area for what it is and was.  California is an extremely beautiful place to travel to in the United States.  The state and national parks that are found there are just one more reason that it is one of the top travel destinations in the entire United States.

Joshua National Park

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