Although California is known for its Gold Rush history and some of the most expensive places in America, you do not need to spend a lot to travel to California. You can experience some of the most beautiful sites in California, including the redwood towers. There are many things to do in California for free, whether you want to visit stunning state parks, museums, or other attractions that focus on cryptozoology, Italian wines, California cuisine, or marine wildlife.
Here is the list of Things To Do In California For Free:
Redwood National Park
This park is located in the southernmost part of a network of federally and state-owned lands under the Redwood National & State Parks umbrella.
Tall Trees Grove is protected by a restricted number of vehicles per day. However, you can get free permits from the Orick visitor center.
You will find a variety of hiking options after picking up a map from the visitor center. You can also travel inland on Bald Hills Rd to reach Lady Bird Johnson Grove with its 1.5-mile loop trail for kids or the tranquility of Tall Trees Grove.
This is just a few miles north of Hwy 101. Trillium Falls is another recommended hike. It can be accessed from Elk Meadow on Davidson Rd.
Willow Creek China Flat Museum
This museum has a convincing Bigfoot collection. It has everything you need to prove the existence of the old boy: footprints and handprints, and hair.
The Bigfoot Scenic Byway (Hwy 96), named after the Bigfoot, starts right here. It winds through beautiful mountains and river country.
This 15-million-ton concrete dam, a massive feat of engineering and scales well with the region’s natural beauty, is second only to Grand Coolie Dam (Washington) in terms of size and second only to Hoover Dam (Nevada) in terms of height.
It was built between 1937 and 1949. The 487ft high spillway is almost three times the height of Niagara Falls. While Woody Guthrie was entertaining dam workers, he wrote “This Land Is Your Land” A 21-minute video you can view at the Shasta Dam Visitors Center.
In addition, you can check the website to find out if guided tours are offered (they were stopped in 2020 because of construction).
Wild Horse Sanctuary
The Wild Horse Sanctuary has been protecting horses and burros from destruction since 1978. On Wednesdays and Saturdays, you can visit the sanctuary’s humble visitor’s center to view these beautiful animals.
You can also volunteer for a day if you have an advance arrangement. Then, you can take a ride on the open prairies to see them (contact the sanctuary ahead for availability). Shingletown is located 20 miles west of Lassen Volcanic National Park.
Humbolt Redwoods State Park
The 53,000-acre Humboldt Redwoods State Park, which is located along Highway 101, protects some of the oldest redwoods globally and houses three-quarters of the tallest 100 trees in the world.
You can drive the 32-mile, two-lane Avenue of the Giants parallel to Highway 101, even if you do not have the time to hike.
Montgomery Woods State Natural Reserve
This reserve, covering 2743 acres, is located two miles west of Orr Hot Springs. It protects some of the finest old-growth redwood forests within a day’s driving distance from San Francisco.
The trail crosses the creek and winds through the tranquil forest. It is a 2-mile loop that starts near the toilets and picnic tables. Visitors will likely have it all to themselves as it is not in the way.
These trees are magnificent – some reaching 367ft high – but be sure to take in the views from the trail. This is both to preserve the roots of the trees and avoid poison oak which can be found all around the park.
Graziano Family of Wines
Italian Graziano is one of Mendocino County’s oldest grape-growing families. They specialize in Cal-Ital wines, including primitive and barbera, at very affordable prices. Wine tasting at Graziano is complimentary.
A cow rides a tractor and a rocket launches of the lawn. A dinosaur grabs a red convertible for lunch. It is all happening in Florence Ave, where sculptures Patrick Amiot created for neighbor’s yards out of recycled junk. Of course
There are many more in Sebastopol, but Amiot’s block has three: Tin-can firefighters in a tub-sized firetruck, a waitress made from cutlery, and – in a driveway with an ultra-blue VW Beetle.
French Laundry Gardens
A lush organic garden is a secret to French Laundry feasts. Take a walk among the neatly arranged plots and try to guess which heirloom varieties are intended for dinner.
For lazy summer afternoons, tables and chairs are strategically placed near the flowerbeds. The area is unfenced and accessible to the public. Please do not sample.
The Culinary Institute of America at Copia
The Culinary Institute of America’s wine and public food showplace is open to all levels of culinary talent. Turn left at Winemaker Wall of Fame (salute Merry Edwards – the only woman!) Gourmet-themed art, including vintage portraits taken by Julia Child before she became famous.
The amazing, free Chuck Williams Culinary Arts Museum is upstairs, featuring a stunning wall of copper baking molds (10:30 am – 5 pm every day). In addition, you can find cooking classes, demonstrations, documentaries, and too-spicy for TV star-chef panels online.