Things to do in California
It’s nearly impossible to run out of things to do in California. The state has so much going on, from its bustling urban centers -- most notably Los Angeles (which includes all the razzle-dazzle of Hollywood) and San Francisco (where tourists can visit Silicon Valley, widely considered the innovation epicenter of America) – to its rustic, rugged, sprawling national parks.
Nature-lovers wondering what to do in California have an extensive list of available options at their disposable. From skiing in Lake Tahoe, to surfing in Santa Barbara, to hiking in Yosemite, to touring Napa Valley, the option of outdoor things to do in California is truly endless.
Foodies should also rejoice: Anyone wondering what to do in California need look no farther than the state’s incredibly diverse, eclectic, authentic, adventurous, ambitious, and downright delicious culinary scene. From five-star, Michelin-reviewed establishments to corner delis, food carts and fast food joints, the golden state truly has something for every palate.
Even the sign that hangs out from the Recchiuti Confections storefront in the Ferry Building Marketplace along Embarcadero is a glossy chocolate color. Inside, chocolates and other products are displayed against walls.
California wine country’s top summer festival, which takes place at venues throughout Napa, combines classical music—including a recital by Renée Fleming—with wine tastings.
Thomas Keller, the famed restaurateur who made the small town of Yountville in Napa a culinary destination, opened this casual bakery as a way to service the bread and pastry needs of his neighboring restaurants French Laundry and Bouchon Bistro.
An offshoot of the Seattle-based original, this lively brewery is housed in a converted warehouse with high ceilings, stained concrete floors, and exposed ductwork. The indoor seating area has several TV’s tuned into sporting events, as well as large windows overlooking the palm-shaded patio.
Atop Spring Mountain, this winery was started by the Pride family in 1990, with current winemaker Sally Johnson.
Situated on a 130-acre salt marsh, this former military airfield is now part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The waterfront extends from the marina to the base of the Golden Gate Bridge, drawing runners, dog walkers, and bikers.
The plate-glass windows beneath the blue-edged roof give a preview of the high-end 1950s furnishings for which Modernway (and Palm Springs) is known. The store’s mid-century classics span furniture, accessories, lighting, and art.
The hotel takes full advantage of its location on kid-friendly Mission Bay.
L.A.’s young and fab make regular pilgrimages to this warren of shops housed beneath a vine-covered roof.
Designed for home chefs rather than restaurant professionals, this cooking school has a great range of short-format courses to help you brush up on (or develop) your kitchen skills.
A collection of approximately four-dozen art spaces spanning from L.A.’s Historic Core to the Fashion District, Gallery Row became part of the local vernacular back in 2003. The establishments represent many artistic mediums, from painting and sculpture to graffiti and photography.
Years as agent: 36. Specialties: Indonesia. Consulting fee: Varies.