Travel Guide to California

2015 Travel Guide to California

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8 2 0 1 5 T R A V E L G U I D E T O C A L I F O R N I A Joseph P. Turkel Larry Habegger Judi Scharf Mark Tzerelshtein David Armstrong Christopher P. Baker Susan Brady (Resources) Laura Del Rosso Bill Fink John Flinn Don George Marcy Gordon Jeff Greenwald Lenore Greiner Robert Kaufman Maribeth Mellin Laura Ness Jill K. Robinson Michael Shapiro Bonnie Smetts Lavinia Spalding Matt Villano Peter Watts Jacqueline Yau Julia Wall Gloria Mungo 54791 Shoal Creek La Quinta, CA 92253 1288 Columbus Ave., Suite 292 San Francisco, CA 94133 TEL: 1-888-700-4464 • FAX: 416-497-0871 E-MAIL: Collier C. Granberry Dexter Taylor Joe Turkel The Travel Guide to California is published by Globelite Travel Marketing Inc., a leading lifestyle media company and publisher of The Travel Guides to Canada, The Travel Guide to Florida, The Travel Guide to California, and Dreamscapes Travel and Lifestyle Magazine. Globelite Travel Marketing Inc. 3 Bluffwood Drive Toronto, Ontario M2H 3L4 TEL: 416-497-5353, 1-888-700-4464 FAX: 416-497-0871 E-MAIL: No part of this publication can be reproduced or duplicated without the written permission of Globelite Travel Marketing Inc. The opinions in this magazine are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Globelite Travel Marketing Inc. Publications Mail Agreement 40047932. Contents © copyright 2015 Printed in Canada ISSN 1926-304X (Print) ISSN 1927-7245 (Online) PRESIDENT & GROUP PUBLISHER EDITOR EXECUTIVE EDITOR ART DIRECTOR WRITERS CIRCULATION MANAGER DIRECTOR OF FINANCE CALIFORNIA OFFICES ACCOUNT MANAGERS CANADIAN OFFICE 2 0 1 5 T R AV E L G U I D E TO CALIFORNIA As the water flowed around the kayaks, sparks flew. The waters of Tomales Bay at Point Reyes National Seashore looked like a skyful of shooting stars when we stroked with our paddles or swirled the water with our fingers. I had seen this before in Thailand and the Philippines, had heard about it in Puerto Rico and Mexico, but until recently, I didn't know we had it in California: phos- phorescent plankton that light up when disturbed and cast a happy glow on the evening's activities. It was just one in a series of sur- prises this year that reminded me how much California has to offer. Another was, coincidentally, a kayak tour of McCovey Cove in San Fran- cisco Bay. I'd booked it months in advance for a date in October, and who could have known that we'd be paddling around AT&T Park a few hours before Game 5 of the World Series between the San Francisco Giants and Kansas City Royals? Another surprise enlivened a camping trip in Calaveras Big Trees State Park, when we arrived late to a campsite back in the woods and a large cat rushed across our path. It stared back at us from the bushes, its glowing eyes in our headlamp beams showing the face of a mountain lion (or maybe a bobcat, we learned later). And then there was the swimming hole at Natural Bridges near the Gold Country town of Angels Camp. I expected a simple place to cool off in Coyote Creek, but what we found was a stupendous cavern of stalactites in a tunnel the creek has carved through the karst over millennia. It was like swimming in an enchanted world. If a multi-decade resident of the state can be delightfully surprised at every turn, how about you? In California, we have easy access to the ancient natural world of the giant sequoias, Death Valley National Park, Lake Tahoe and Yosemite National Park. We also have access to all that's new, in technology, architec- ture, design, art, theater, opera, music, film, food, sports, you name it. We have the Pacific Ocean to play in and its beaches to comb, the Cen- tral Valley and its bounty of fruit, nuts and vegetables to enjoy, desert oases to bask in, manicured golf courses to challenge our skills, mountains to ski down or climb up, some of the best restaurants in the USA, some of the world's finest wines and, of course, the World Series champions three of the last five years. So when you're looking for sur- prises in California, you can find a deserted beach, a theme park for the kids, a romantic urban adventure, an escape to a desert or seaside resort. In these pages we help you get ready, with profiles of the state's main tourism regions, essays on history, cuisine, museums, theme parks and many other topics, plus resource pages with information on visitors bureaus, driving distances, average temperatures, California Welcome Centers and much more. As you make your plans for a trip to the Golden State, you'll have a lot to look forward to. California offers a profound richness of experience, and once you're here, you can expect the surprises you encounter to be happy ones. —L A R RY H A B E G G E R , Editor EDITOR'S NOTE >> ÉRNE Mc CABE There's Always Something Surprising

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