Among California's eight national parks are some of the most frequently visited parks in the country. Yosemite National Park covers about 1200 sq. miles of scenic wild lands, including alpine wilderness, three groves of giant sequoias, and the glacially carved Yosemite Valley, with its impressive waterfalls, cliffs, and unusual rock formations.

Sequoia National Park, located in central California, is home to the 275 feet General Sherman giant sequoia, considered the most massive tree in the world. Its circumference measured directly above the ground flare is 83 feet. Some of the world's tallest trees grow in the Redwood National Park in the northwestern portion of the state. Joshua Tree National Park has a representative stand of Joshua trees and other desert vegetation.

More of California's dramatically beautiful landscapes can be found in Kings Canyon National Park, located in the Sierra Nevada and containing two enormous canyons of the Kings River In a stark contrast is Death Valley National Park, which encompasses the lowest land surface in the western hemisphere and the place where the country's record high temperature was recorded.

Before the 1980 eruption of Mount Saint Helens in Washington, Lassen Peak, located in Lassen Volcanic National Park, was the most recently active volcano in the contiguous 48 states. Other signs of volcanic activity, including cinder cones, lava flows, lava tube caves, pit craters, and steam vents, can be found in Lava Beds National Monument, near the Oregon border, and in the Mammoth Mountain area of the eastern Sierra Nevada. Devils Postpile National Monument, also near Mammoth Mountain, contains lava columns up to 60 feet high, and Pinnacles National Monument, in the Diablo Range, has rock spires, caves, and a variety of volcanic features.

Five of the eight islands in the Santa Barbara channel comprise the Channel Islands National Park. A portion of the park is under water and provides habitat for marine life ranging from microscopic plankton to the world's largest creature, the blue whale. Also preserving a section of California's coastal environment is Point Reyes National Seashore about 40 miles north of San Francisco.

Other national sites commemorate the rich history of California. Cabrillo National Monument in San Diego's Point Loma district marks the spot where in 1542 Europeans first set foot upon what is now California.

Fort Point National Historic Site, which is part of Golden Gate National Recreation Area, contains the fort built in the mid-1800s to prevent any hostile fleets from entering San Francisco Bay. San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park contains a square-rigged sailing ship, steam schooner, three-masted schooner, steam tug, and a paddle wheel tug.

Next Page about California

Southern California Fun Southern California Beaches
CA State Parks
CA State Govt
CA Tourism Info
CA Scenic Byways
CA National Parks
California Campgrounds & RV Parks
KOA Campgrounds - California
Great Camping Spots - California
Tell A Friend About This Web Site Home Please Tell Us About Broken Links
Need Internet Traffic For Your Website? 2003, 2013 Copyright Notice All rights reserved