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15 California Tours You Haven't Taken Yet, But Should

15 California Tours You Haven't Taken Yet, But Should

Go on a low-key excursion, plan a super touristy escape, and cycle around your hometown—whatever you end up doing, you’re in for a ride.


7 min read

June 27, 2021

Lean out and touch the treetops on a wonderful hot air balloon ride over the magnificent vineyards of Napa Valley.

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Learn about the influential role of Club Land in the history of the city and the entire nation on a tour that highlights S.F. architecture.
Take a quick tour of the neighborhood and roll into the best days of summer as you cycle in Santa Barbara.
Discover the hotspots where you can mingle with the stars and immerse yourself in the ultimate Hollywood experience on the TMZ tours.

Los Angeles Tours 

7. Hop on the TMZ Celebrity Tour 

Extra! Extra! Read all about it—or hop on an exclusive celebrity tour in Los Angeles instead. The two-hour TMZ bus tour rushes you through gossip, secrets, and buzz-worthy clubs all over town. Departing several times a day, this L.A. tour pairs insider stories, video clips, and giveaways with iconic Hollywood locations. The guides also manage a remote studio on wheels, in case wandering celebrities wish to stop by for an interview.

8. Go on an Art Tour in L.A.

Offering tours at many iconic museums in the City of Angels, Art Muse Los Angeles is bound to have you hooked. Visit the Getty Center, Hammer Museum, Norton Simon Museum, Los Angeles County Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art with the best historians, artists, and educators in the state. The tours are organized by district and may also feature seasonal art fares and other interesting installations.

You've hiked and driven to the Hollywood Sign. Now it's time you fly of the iconic L.A. landmark. Are you ready?

Tours of Hollywood 

9. Fly over the Hollywood Sign

Take a ten-minute helicopter tour in Los Angeles starting from Burbank Airport, which is a stone’s throw from the world-famous Universal and Warner Bros Studios. Soar over the Hollywood Sign and across the L.A. Basin—you’ll spot the crowds lined up for butterbeer at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. 

From there, it’s over to Mulholland Drive and around Laurel Canyon, an exclusive historical enclave once home to the greatest names in the music industry. You’ll also fly over Beverly Hills and the ultra-wealthy Bel Air. And even though you won’t see Fresh Prince, we doubt you’d have any trouble making out the $90 million mansion purchased by Jay Z and Beyonce.

10. Take the Warner Bros Studios VIP Tour 

Want a rare and intimate glimpse into Tinseltown at work? Embark on a two-hour exploration through backlot streets, soundstages, and craft shops with the Warner Bros Studios VIP Tour. Walk through the set of a hit television show, watch Foley artists create sound effects, get up-close with set construction, or browse millions of items in the props department—no two tours are alike.

Explore Avalon on a golf cart with a friendly, knowledgeable local and get a personalized experience focused on your interests.

Catalina Island Tours 

11. Tee off on a Private Golf Tour

When it comes to tours on Catalina Island, this one takes you putt, putt, and away. The private golf cart tour combines all the fun of zipping around Avalon with a knowledgeable guide on the wheel. Relax, take photos, and get all your Catalina questions answered with Catalina Tours. Plus, you can stop and take a walking detour at any point.

Desert Adventures has provided the most highly regarded outdoor adventures in the Greater Palm Springs area since 1988.

Palm Springs Tours 

12. Become a Luxury Off-Roader 

Opting for something unique for your getaway? Jeep tours are Palm Springs’ primo family-friendly activity. Desert Adventures Red Jeep Tours bring travelers to Indian Canyons, the ancestral home of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. Knowledgeable guides offer you an introduction to the area’s unique geological formations as you feast your eyes on desert wildlife. And as the sun paints the sky in vivid pinks and oranges, you might even catch a glimpse of an owl or a coyote.

13. Tour the Desert’s Rodeo Drive

The swanky El Paseo district is a shop lover’s paradise. This mile-long strip has everything from distinctive shops to restaurants and galleries; the only time you’ll want to take a break during your walking tour is while venturing in one of El Paseo’s upscale shops. El Paseo is also home to one of the largest concentrations of art galleries in SoCal—we sense another Palm Springs tour in the making.

Learn about the city from an expert guide and enjoy quality time out on the bay on San Diego's best harbor cruises.

San Diego Tours 

14. Go on a Harbor Cruise 

San Diego’s harbor is easily one of the city’s most iconic sites. There are plenty of options to choose from, and whichever you end up picking, you get a chance to marvel at the Coronado Bridge, navy ships, renowned waterfront areas, and adorable sea colonies all at once. These San Diego harbor tours provide professional and in-depth historic narration every step of the way.

15. Have a Scavenger Hunt 

Ever thought of turning San Diego into a giant game? The exciting and interactive scavenger hunt by Shore Excursions combines the fun of the Amazing Race with a three-hour sightseeing tour of San Diego. Your adventure begins at Waterfront Park and winds through Little Italy all the way down to the water. Roam along both well-known attractions and hidden gems, solving clues and completing challenges in the meantime.

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