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Most Underrated Spring Travel Destinations in California

Most Underrated Spring Travel Destinations in California

Ditch the busy Spring Break crowds and check out these fantastic, underrated spring travel destinations in California. Team


2 min read

April 15, 2024

California is a treasure trove of unique and less-traveled destinations that shine especially bright in the spring. As the state awakens from winter, travelers can explore enchanted forests, serene lakes, and vibrant festivals off the beaten path. Here are some intriguing spring travel spots in California that promise an unforgettable adventure away from the usual tourist hotspots.

1. Mendocino Coast

Escape to the Mendocino Coast for a spring retreat where the Pacific Ocean meets lush forests and quaint villages. Spring brings a burst of wildflowers covering the coastal bluffs, perfect for leisurely hikes or scenic drives. The historic town of Mendocino offers charming bed and breakfasts, local art galleries, and stunning ocean views, making it a serene spot for those looking to slow down and soak in the coastal ambiance.

The Mendocino Coast is one of California's most beautiful areas.

2. Lassen Volcanic National Park

For an adventurous spring getaway, Lassen Volcanic National Park offers a unique landscape of geothermal wonders similar to those found in Yellowstone, but without the crowds. The park’s numerous hiking trails lead to features like boiling springs and bubbling mud pots. As the snow melts, these volcanic wonders become accessible, showcasing Mother Nature’s power in a backdrop of stunning mountain scenery.

3. Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Located in Southern California, Anza-Borrego is the state’s largest state park and a spectacular place to visit in the spring. The desert landscape erupts into a canvas of color with wildflower blooms, drawing nature enthusiasts and photographers alike. Explore the park’s rugged terrain by foot, bike, or even jeep tours, and don’t miss the chance to stargaze under its famously clear skies.

4. Solvang

Nestled in the Santa Ynez Valley, Solvang is a charming Danish village with authentic windmills, European-style architecture, and a plethora of wine-tasting rooms. Spring is a fantastic time to explore the local vineyards or partake in the annual Taste of Solvang festival, where the delights of Danish cuisine are on full display. The mild weather and fewer crowds in spring make it ideal for enjoying all that this quaint town has to offer.

Solvang is one of California's unique gems that is absolutely worth visiting.

5. Lake Arrowhead

Located in the mountains of San Bernardino, Lake Arrowhead offers a refreshing escape from the city life. Known as “The Alps of Southern California,” this mountain resort paradise features blooming dogwoods and wildflowers in the spring. Visitors can enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, boating, and exploring the local artisan shops in Lake Arrowhead Village.

6. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

While these parks may not be as under-the-radar as other destinations, spring brings a fresh perspective to the giant sequoias of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. The massive trees are awe-inspiring against the backdrop of lightly snow-capped peaks and rushing rivers swollen with snowmelt. Fewer tourists in spring mean you can enjoy the majesty of these ancient forests in peace.

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks are great options for those looking to avoid the potential of large crowds at other parks.

Spring in California is a season of renewal and discovery. From hidden coastal gems to desert blooms and enchanting mountain retreats, these destinations offer a blend of adventure, relaxation, and natural beauty. Venture beyond the typical tourist paths this spring to uncover some of California’s most compelling spots.

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