10 Places in California that will make you feel like you’re halfway around the world.

Sometimes you just want to pack up your bags and travel somewhere new and exotic! However, our bank accounts don’t always agree. Don’t worry, I have the perfect list for you. These 10 places in California will make you feel like you are somewhere else, and best of all, they won’t break the bank. They are the perfect place for your next staycation.

1. Avalon, Catalina Island


The minute you get to Avalon you will feel like you are not in the United States . The water is cleaner and the buildings are more colorful. It is the perfect place to go on a day trip. Ferries run from Dana Point, San Pedro, and Long Beach directly to Avalon daily. You can usually find good deals online and can even get a FREE ride on the ferry for your birthday.
2. Alpaca Hacienda
Alpaca Hacienda is located in Temecula, CA. In between many track homes, you will find the small ranch overlooking the Temecula Wine Country. They breed and sell high quality alpacas and give educational tours. You must make a reservation in order to get a tour. Tours start at only $5 and includes feeding the alpacas! Visit their website for more information.
3. Oasis Camel Dairy
 Oasis Camel Dairy is located in the small town of Ramona, CA in San Diego county. They offer private tours, camel rides, and even have watermelon days! Yes, you will get to feed a camel watermelon! The tours start at only $10. For more information visit their website here.
4. Solvang, CA
If you’ve ever wanted to go to a small Danish village, Solvang is the perfect place for you. Solvang is a city located in Santa Barbara County. The village is home to hotels, merchants, bakeries, and restaurants all built in an authentic Danish architectural style. For more information on upcoming events and festivals visit their website.
5. Shri Swaminarayan Mindir Temple
Swaminarayan Temple is a Hindu temple located in Chino Hills. It is one of 5 authentic Hindu Mindir in all of North America. The achiecture is amazing and the inside is even more beautiful.  They provide tours for small and large groups. You can learn more about the temple here.
6. Fern Canyon
Located in Prairie Creek Redwood State Park, Fern Canyon is a narrow passageway with the canyon walls covered in a variety of mosses and ferns. It was famously used in Jurassic Park Lost World. To learn more about Fern Canyon click here.
7. ARK 2000 Sanctuary
ARK 200o is a sanctuary for elephants that provides them with hundreds of acres in central California. Most of the elephants have been saved from being performance animals that are either ill equipped or unable to return to their natural habitats. About once a month they have open farm days and give guided tours starting at $50 per adult. For more information visit their website here.
8. Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua tree will not only make you feel like you’re in another country, but maybe even on another planet. With strange flora and fauna, Joshua tree is a unique destination for anyone looking for a great staycation. Plan your vacation to Joshua Tree here.
9. Big Sur
When I visited the Amalfi Coast a couple of years ago someone on our tour bus kept  on saying, “It looks just like Big Sur!” I wouldn’t go that far, but Big Sur does make you feel like you are somewhere exotic. All that said, Sig Sur is a bit of a tourist trap, bring your own food and snacks but pay to stop at all of the scenic highlights. Find out more about Big Sur here.
10. Mono Lake
Just like Joshua Tree, Mono Lake will make you feel like you are in another planet. Mono Lake is a saline lake with no fish. It is home to flies, shrimp, and algae . It is also visited by many migratory birds per year.  Mono Lake is located on Highway 395, 13 miles east of Yosemite, in northern California. To learn more about Mono Lake click here.

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One thought on “10 Places in California that will make you feel like you’re halfway around the world.

  1. jen

    awesome post! we live in chino hills 🙂

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