I am a huge travel fan and recently went on a family trip along the California Coast. My family and I have been making many trips to the west coast of the United States and most recently we got to travel to Northern California in June. We are a hiking family, so we had to make sure we stopped at a National park or two during our trip. Before this trip, I also had the chance to travel to Oregon and shoot some gorgeous elopement photos.
Yosemite National Park
Our first stop was Yosemite National Park where we stayed at a small mountain town called Mariposa, eating at local restaurants and getting to know a few of the locals, who gave us some great tips for when we visit Yosemite. We spent the whole day at the park and traveled along the Yosemite Valley and saw some amazing views of so many beautiful rocks, and waterfalls. We were able to see the famous El Capitan and Glacier Point, which was incredible!
Visiting friends in Redding on our family trip
We then traveled to Redding to visit some long-time friends who moved there from Indiana. They showed us their city, took us to a few places to eat and gave us some ideas of good places to go visit. One of our most memorable places is Mount Shasta, an ice-topped dormant volcano. We drove up the highest peak (about 7,900 ft) and found an alpine lake which reminded me of my childhood in Switzerland!
Redwood National Park
On our third stop, we visited the Redwood National Park. It was unbelievable! The park is home to one of the tallest trees on earth. It was all so beautiful! It was a little rainy the day we visited but it didn’t stop us from having a 5-mile hike around the forest. We were surrounded by ferns, banana slugs, and other wildlife native to the forest. Being back in nature, and seeing this incredible park was an amazing experience.
We traveled to San Francisco for a day and experienced driving across the Golden Gate Bridge to the city. There we had delicious seafood at the iconic Fishermans Wharf and saw sea lions sunbathing on Pier 39. We also took a boat tour to get a different view of the Golden Gate Bridge, Angel Island State Park, and Alcatraz. It was a nice break on our trip, and the food was amazing!
Our trip ended in Monterey, a beautiful town surrounded by delicious food and miles and miles of views of the ocean. We spent some time having picnics along the water, discovered a 17-mile-drive that stretches along the Monterey Peninsula. Each mile had a point of interest.
On our last day, we drove to see the famous Big Sur. A stretch of road that follows the coast, which was filled with stunning views from start to finish. If you ever visit the California coast, I definitely suggest doing a drive along the coast! There are so many beautiful views, and places you can stop to soak it all in.