Travelling to the USA: discover California

Photo by Joseph Barrientos on Unsplash

The United States of America is a massive country, which means that you should always decide well in advance what you want to do during your trip and which sights you do not want to miss. In this article, we provide inspiration for a trip to one of the most popular states in the USA: California.

California: The Golden State

Because California is so big, it is impossible to see everything it has to offer in one trip. With no less than ten national parks (including the famous Yosemite National Park and Joshua Tree National Park), famous cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco, and pleasant temperatures practically all year round, California is undoubtedly one of the most popular American states among tourists.

Other popular American states are New York, Florida and Nevada. A visa or ESTA is required to visit California or any of the other U.S. states. The ESTA is a digital travel authorisation which is valid for two years and allows you to stay in the USA for a maximum of 90 consecutive days per trip.

World Famous Cities

California is home to several world-famous cities, including Los Angeles (which includes the famous Hollywood), San Francisco and San Diego. Los Angeles has several museums, including the Getty Museum and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (also known as LACMA), but the most famous part of the city is the Hollywood district. Who isn’t familiar with the iconic white letters on the Hollywood Hills or the Hollywood Walk of Fame?

San Francisco is best known for the Golden Gate Bridge, the city’s iconic landmark. Another San Francisco landmark is Chinatown. San Francisco’s Chinatown is the oldest Chinese-American district in the USA and also one of the largest. San Francisco is considered one of the cultural capitals of America and is home to several museums, including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (or SFMOMA) and the International Art Museum of America.

San Diego, located in Southern California, also has much to offer, including one of the largest and most famous zoos in the world: the San Diego Zoo, located in Balboa Park. The city also has a nice Italian neighbourhood called Little Italy.

Other cities in California that are worth visiting include Santa Monica, Palm Springs, Sacramento and Malibu.

National Parks

Some of the most famous national parks in the United States of America are located in California, including Yosemite National Park, Redwood National Park, Kings Canyon National Park, Sequoia National Park, Joshua Tree National Park, and Death Valley National Park.

Each of these parks is endowed with beautiful and varied natural landscapes. Death Valley is an exception: this park has a very interesting landscape, but as its name suggests, the park’s climate conditions make it very difficult for animal and plant species to thrive.

A very popular attraction for tourists are the giant sequoias, which can be found in Yosemite National Park, Redwood National Park and Sequoia National Park. In the latter, you can even find one of the tallest trees in the world: the General Sherman tree. Yosemite National Park and Redwood National Park are both on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

ESTA for travel to the USA

In order to visit the famous Golden State, a visa or ESTA is required. The ESTA can be applied for quickly and easily online, making it much easier and faster to obtain than a US visa. Moreover, the ESTA is cheaper than a US visa. The ESTA is valid for two years.

During these two years, you may travel to the United States an unlimited number of times, but each visit to the country may not last longer than 90 days. With an ESTA, you can therefore travel to the USA several times, for example to a different state each time.