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California Summer Getaways

9 Great Places to Go in California in Summer


Some places in California are great any time, but theses are especially nice to visit during Summer: June. July and August.

Downtown Los Angeles' Last Remaining Seats

© 2004 Betsy Malloy Photography. Licensed to About.com

If you love the films and grand movie palaces of yesteryear, this summer event is well worth the trip.

In June, the L.A. Conservancy's annual series of classic films screens in the historic theatres of downtown Los Angeles. For some of them, it's the only way you'll get to see their lavish interiors.

Lake County

© 2008 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by permission.

A trip to the lake is always a good summer activity, and you'll find Lake County refreshingly uncrowded.

It's just north of Napa County, with a nice lake, a budding wine region and some fun, little towns to poke around in.

Mendocino Coast

©2007 Betsy Malloy Photography. Licensed to About.com

Wildflower season comes later in Mendocino than other parts of California. The early summer blossoms make an already scenic coastline even more attractive.


Mount Lassen

© 2008 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.

Before Mount St. Helens, Lassen blew its volcanic top in the early 20th century. Remnants from the eruption remain and the landscape is intriguingly volcant.

This northern California volcanic park is best visited in summer, before it gets covered in snow.

Pismo Beach

Courtesy Pacific Adventure Tours

Summer and "beach" in California go hand in hand and the Golden State has plenty of them to visit, from urban to uninhabited.

For a taste of iconic California summer beach atmosphere, you can't beat Pismo Beach.

Russian River

©2010 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.

Between the Pacific Coast and Sonoma, the Russian River area is popular with lots of people

Hiking and horseback riding in Armstrong Woods, water play along the river, bicycling on the back roads make it a fun summer getaway.

Sequoia High Sierra Camp

© 2008 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.

If you like the idea of sleeping in a tent, but would rather have a comfy bed and a hot shower than a sleeping bag and wash basin, this is the place for you. It's only a short hike in from the nearest road and you can get the outdoor experience without sacrificing those creature comforts.

This luxury, high country camp is only open in the summer.

Sequoia National Park

© 2009 Betsy Malloy Photography. Used by Permission.

John Muir called Sequoia a rival of Yosemite, but it's much less crowded than its sister park to the north.

You can visit any time, but only summer can you drive all the way down into Kings Canyon, which is by some measures the deepest canyon in North America.

Shooting Stars

Courtesy of Getty Images News/NASA
The Perseid meteor showers occur in mid August, with as many as 60 meteors per hour streaking through the sky. Death Valley, Big Sur, Mendocino and locations along Scenic Highway 395 are some of the best places to see it. Check the exact dates for this year.

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