California is one of the fifty states of the United States of America. The state is located in the Western United States region and has 37,253,956 inhabitants (2010). The capital is Sacramento.
California is bordered to the north by the state of Oregon and to the east by the states of Arizona and Nevada.
The state borders the Pacific Ocean to the west and southwest. To the south, California borders the state of Baja California in neighboring Mexico.
California is the third largest state in the United States after Alaska and Texas.
In northwestern California are the Klamath Mountains, which have an elevation of up to 2,600 meters. East of this are the Cascade Mountains, with the highest peak being Mount Shasta. This is an extinct volcano with a height of 4,317 meters.
To the east is also the ‘Basin and Range region’. This is part of the Great Basin, with the Mojave Desert and Death Valley to the south.
There are mountain ranges along the coast. The Central Valley is an agricultural area between the coastal mountains and the Sierra Nevada.
The Sierra Nevada is a mountain range with a number of very high peaks, especially in the High Sierra, including Mount Whitney, which with a height of 4,418 meters is the second highest mountain in the United States.
San Andreas Fault
The San Andreas Fault stretches along the coast of California for about 1,000 kilometers.
The San Andreas Fault is a large fault line that runs roughly parallel to the North American west coast. The fault forms the boundary between the Pacific Plate, the North American Plate and the small Juan de Fuca Plate.
The fault is notorious for the large and severe earthquakes it produces. The most famous of these is the earthquake in San Francisco in 1906, which largely destroyed the city.
The largest rivers in California are the Sacramento and the San Joaquin. The Colorado is the border with the state of Arizona.
Climate and holidays
California has a moderate maritime climate on the coast. The interior has a subtropical climate.
The western sides of the mountain ranges have abundant precipitation, the eastern sides very little precipitation.
California has dry desert areas to alpine high mountains.
For a vacation, California offers mountain ranges with ski areas, glaciers, lakes, beaches, deserts, forests and versatile cities.
A number of major cities in California are next to the capital Sacramento: Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco, Fresno, Long Beach, Oakland, Bakersfield.
Anaheim, Santa Ana, Riverside, Stockton, Chula Vista, Fremont, Irvine, San Bernardino, Modesto, Oxnard, Fontana.
According to countryaah.com, the state of California is administratively divided into 58 counties. The map below shows the counties in the north of the state.
The western American state of California borders the states of Oregon, Arizona and Nevada. In the west, the state lies on the Pacific Ocean. To the south, it borders the state of Baja California in neighboring Mexico.
Venice – American Venice
The town of Venice, located on the outskirts of Los Angeles, was founded in 1900 by tobacco magnate Abbot Kinney as the American equivalent of Italian Venice. He wanted to stimulate the cultural rebirth of Southern California. He even built a network of canals and imported gondolas and gondolas.
Unfortunately, Kinney forgot about the repeated ebb and flow, so Venice often suffered from sewage problems. Nevertheless, this district has attracted bohemians since the beginning of its existence. In the first decade of the 20th century, rioters who visited the local dance hall and spa house moved here, and in the 1950s, beatniks came here. Even today, there is a large population of artists who have built their studios here.
To this day, only a few of the original 11 kilometers of canals have been preserved, the rest was backfilled in 1927. There, going there today at Winward Avenue Roundabout, used to be the main lagoon. From there, the head of Grand Boulevard follows the former Grand Canal. The best place to watch the remaining canals is Dell Avenue. It is here that waterways still enliven old bridges, boats and ubiquitous ducks.
Venice Beach does not lack a circus atmosphere, on weekends, half-naked athletes ride bikes and skates on the local wooden sidewalk. At almost every step, you come across a crazy street artist, such as a juggler with a chainsaw or a solo musician who attracts the attention of the crowds. Muscle Beach, where Arnold Schwarzenegger trained, still attracts bodybuilders. Venice Beach is completely safe during the day, but at night you need to be very careful of pickpockets and rioters.
Devils Postpile National Monument
The beautiful lake and mountain landscape near Yosemite National Park in California hides a unique natural attraction – Devils Postpile National Monument. This giant organ-like rock formation is situated at an altitude of 2,500 meters. The age of the organ is estimated at more than 900,000 years and was formed by volcanic activity. The lava layer cooled over time, creating mostly hexagonal columns. The basalt columns were then uncovered by glaciers. To this day, it is possible to see regular grooves on the top of the columns caused by the glacier. The gray-blue basalt formation is 300 meters long and 70 meters high.
The whole area near the Sierra Nevada mountains is unique for its rich geological past. The Devils Postpile was declared a national monument in 1911 and is currently open to the public only during the summer. The first snow will fall here in mid-October.
Visitors must leave their cars in the Mammoth Mountain car park and then take a paid bus to the park. There are also three campsites in the area where it is possible to camp. The bus leaves from Mammoth Mountain Main Lodge Gondola Building and stops at Minaret Station.
One of the attractions of the park is also the 30-meter-high Rainbow Falls, located on the Middle River. The Rainbow Falls Trailhead is about 2.5 miles from Devils Postpile. You can get to the waterfall itself by stone steps, so you can see it both from below and from the viewpoint at its upper edge. The waterfall got its name from the rainbow, which is often created here. There is also solidified lava around the waterfall.