California is a state full of amazing sites, natural wonders and history, so it's actually pretty difficult
to decide what you do when you get there, or even if you live there. Today though, I thought I would
ignore the more commercial attractions and look at the historic natural and man-made attractions
that are nearby.
Redwood National Park
3 hours north of San Luis Obispo is the Redwood National park. This park is full of trees (of course) as well
as stunning views, beautiful coastlines and a number of exhibits and activities available. There are
numerous visitor's centers throughout the National Park.
Image Credit: Redwood Forest
Of course the main features of the park are the trees, which are in their own right stunning and
many very old, and on top of that the forest has a claim to fame within the entertainment industry
(another big part of the State's heritage) thanks to being used as a set location for many films
including Return of the Jedi!
Click here to learn more about the park.
There are not many people who haven't heard the name of this great tree. It is a giant Sequoia tree
which can be found in the Sequoia national park. General Sherman is the biggest tree in the world,
standing an astonishing 275 feet tall. No one knows how old he is, but estimates fall within the range of
2,300 and 2,700 years. Arguably then, the General is one of the most historic things in this State and
certainly one of the most impressive. This article has more interesting information about the General.
The Big Sur Coastline
Just up the road San Luis is one of the most famous journeys in the world and a world renowned
route held in high esteem by every car lover. But the Big Sur Coastline is about more than just the
Image Credit: Bixby Bridge
The coast road goes from the Santa Lucia mountains to Carmel and covers about 90 miles of
stunning views and Californian history. Along the way you will see dramatic cliffs and beautiful
beaches along with the historic 40 foot tall lighthouse at Sur Point and Bixby Bridge which is one of
the highest bridges of its type in the world.
The Hollywood Sign
This is one of the most photographed landmarks in the world and there probably aren't many people
alive who couldn't tell you where it is or what it is, so let's face it, if you live you in California you
have probably already seen it.
Image Credit: Hollywood Sign
But this is such an iconic part of the California landscape that I couldn't really leave it out. If you're a
fan of the movies then visiting this sign and paying homage to the greats is practically mandatory! It
even has its own website.
Santa Cruz Surf Museum
Most of what I've covered so far is relatively mainstream, so I thought I would end with a lesser
known but still historic location. I am of course referring to the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum...
You can't easily talk about California without surf culture coming to mind, so it only seemed fair
to mention this small museum which sits atop a cliff overlooking the famous surf spot known as
Steamer Lane. In the museum you will find photos, old wetsuits and vintage surf boards made from
Redwood. All in all there are over a hundred years of surf history and culture to discover and they each
play a vital part in California's heritage.
About The Author
This article was written by Joshuah Marshall, a travel writer and dedicated traveller who works for
Quintessentially in London. Josh works as a personal concierge, so it is his job to
find the best hotels, restaurants and landmarks all over the world for his clients.
San Luis Obispo Blog
We look to provide ideas to get folks away from the couch, and out exploring California. We aim to provide day-trips. We want to provide suggestions of things to do, in a single day. Whether you're from out-of-town, or looking to get to know the our magnificent section of California (and beyond) a little better....we want to inspire you to explore.