The state of California stretches for almost 900 miles along the Pacific coast of the United States. The sunshine state is famous for its gorgeous beaches, beautiful redwood forests, the arid Mojave Desert, and the stunning Sierra Nevada Mountains. Most people know about popular tourist locations such as Los Angeles or San Francisco, but California also has plenty of smaller cities that are less busy but just as great to visit. The list below offers you an overview of some of these lesser known attractions in California.

Garden Grove

Garden Grove is located in northern Orange county. Its most distinct landmark is Robert H. Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral which has an incredible glass-based architecture. Garden Grove is also a good place to go for culture lovers with various theatres offering fantastic entertainment, including the Garden Grove Playhouse, the Festival Amphitheater, and the Gem Theater. The charming city offers a good selection of mid-range hotels to make your stay very comfortable.

San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo is located mid-way between San Francisco and Los Angeles. The area around San Luis Obispo is great for hiking, whether you are interested in mountain hikes, hikes past vineyards, or hikes along the beautiful Californian coastline. There is something on offer for every fitness level. Budget conscious travellers will be pleased to hear that there is also a wide range of cheap hotels available in this lovely Californian city.

Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is the perfect location for beach lovers with numerous beaches available to suit every taste. Whether you enjoy surfing, dog walking, or just beach bumming, visitors can find a wide selection of entertainment that suits their desires. Hotels in Santa Cruz are also plentiful with choices of budget friendly, mid-range and higher-end hotels available.

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Photo by Alex Sam via Trover.com

Orange

The city of Orange is a great place for those wanting to wind down and reconnect with nature. The 477 acre big Irvine Park for example offers numerous outdoor activities from pedal boat rentals, bike rentals, hiking routes, picnic areas, equestrian routes, bbq areas, a nature center, a lagoon and of course the Orange County Zoo. There is a great selection of budget friendly hotels in Orange too, so if you are on a tighter budget Orange would be a good place to go for your next break.

Monterey

Montery is a lovely seaside city with plenty of outdoor, seaside and family adventures available. Lovers of hiking can enjoy the stunning views at Garrapata State Park, adrenaline junkies can try hang-gliding above the sand dunes at Marina State Beach, and ocean lovers can do a scuba diving training programme to explore the big ocean. Budget conscious travellers needn’t worry either as they can save a few pennies by booking into one of the many budget friendly hotels Montery has on offer.

As you can see, California is not just Hollywood and the high life, but there are also plenty of more down to earth attractions that are just waiting to be explored. So why not book your next adventure in one of the lessern known Californian destinations?

 

Disclaimer: This article was brought to you by my partnership with Hipmunk, which not only has the cutest mascot, but also helps you find travel deals to save you money.

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About Tammyonthemove

Tammy & Chris are a couple hailing from Germany and England, meaning between them they are efficient and polite, but unable to talk about football. Find out why they stopped pushing pens around the British civil service to travel the world on their blog.

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