25 Magical Mammoth Lakes Hikes You Must Do

Mammoth Lakes in the Eastern Sierras is an outdoor adventurer’s year round playground. From skiing in the winter, hot springs and a variety of Mammoth Lakes hikes the rest of the year, there is no shortage of fun. With everyone looking for safe outdoor fun these days, we have compiled a list of our favorite Mammoth Lakes hikes that all ages can enjoy. There are an unlimited number of amazing hikes to do from multi-day treks to simple lake walks.  There really is a trail (or few) for everyone no matter your fitness level.

The combination of majestic mountains, lakes and relatively cool summer weather make hiking in Mammoth Lakes one of our favorite things to do every year. Not to mention that this is also where two of the most famous California trails pass through. The John Muir Trail goes from Yosemite Valley to Mount Whitney passing near to Mammoth Lakes (more specifically Devil’s Postpile) which is also near to where the famous Mexico to Canada Pacific Crest Trail goes. 

Below I outline some of our favorite hikes in Mammoth Lakes by area to help you plan your next visit.

Don’t forget to check out all the other amazing things to do in Mammoth while you are in town!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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21 Spectacular Things To Do in Mammoth Lakes CA

Mammoth Lakes California is one of the most beautiful regions in the western US. Known for its wealth of outdoor activities, there are so many amazing things to do in Mammoth Lakes CA regardless of what time of year you visit. This stunning town offers an abundance of hiking trails and mountain biking adventures in the summer while providing world class skiing in the winter. Well loved by Californians, but not always on the tourist maps for visitors, though it should be!

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Kings Canyon Camping Advice You Need To Know

Camping in Kings Canyon is one of the best ways to really experience the magic of the Giant Sequoia trees and the rushing rivers found deep within the park.  Kings Canyon National Park is truly one of the most underrated parks in the national park system, with visitors often just skimming the surface, rushing ahead to Yosemite to the north or Sequoia National Park to the south. However for those of you in the know, this is the place to beat the crowds and to experience towering trees, cold snow melt rivers and spy a few bears along the way too.

Below we share all you need to know for planning the best Kings Canyon camping experience- with information on the best sites, which campgrounds to choose and how to book it all.

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Kings Canyon Scenic Byway: 10 Surprising Places You Will Love

Kings Canyon Scenic Byway is one of the most beautiful drives in all of California. Located in Kings Canyon National Park, the drive takes visitors through massive canyons, past raging waterfalls, all while following a beautiful roaring river. Visiting the sights along the Kings Canyon Scenic Byway is one of the most best things you … Read more

7 Easy, Fun & Uplifting Things to Do in Visalia California

Have you driven through Visalia in the Central Valley but wondered what all there might be to do there? Well, let me share with you there are so many great things to do in Visalia that makes it a great stop on a longer road trip or even as a base for a few days … Read more

17 Spectacular Things to Do in Death Valley

Looking for a spectacular place to visit that feels out of this world? Then, check out our favorite things to do in Death Valley to consider for an out of this planet trip.

What do you think of when you hear Death Valley? Hottest Place on Earth. Yep. Desolate and barren. Yep. Even though Death Valley is synonymous with these images, I think that like most people, I didn’t really have a clear image in my head of what it would look like. I’m not quite sure what I was expecting, but what I got definitely wasn’t it.

The following is our rundown with our thoughts on the best Death Valley things to do, where to stay and eat and one day itinerary suggestions for those just passing through Death Valley on a day trip.

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20+ Tips for Visiting Sequoia National Park in Winter

If you are looking for a magical getaway, consider visiting Sequoia National Park in winter. The majestic red giants are covered in glistening white snow creating a breathtaking landscape that is hard to beat.

Sequoia National Park is one of our favorite national parks during the busy summer months, but now that we have visited in winter we are even more in love.  Have you been to see the giants of Sequoia National Park in winter? If not, put it on your bucket list and get busy planning your trip with our tips below.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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Ultimate Guide to the Best Hiking in Los Angeles

When we moved to Los Angeles more than 8 years ago, the first thing we got into was hiking. Hiking in Los Angeles is *the* thing to do and we dove head first right into it. My son was only 3 so we didn’t do a ton of difficult hikes at that time, focusing on the best hikes for toddlers, but as the years have progressed, we have added more and more to our arsenal.

In 2021, we started the year with a goal of hiking (and biking!) 100 miles for the month of January and 1000 for the year. For our own purposes to keep track of the hikes we have done and would recommend, we started this guide on all the hiking trails in Los Angeles that we have been on or have on our list!

We will cover the best hikes in LA (according to popular consensus), waterfall hikes in Los Angeles as well as some great hiking near Los Angeles. Read on for more information for each. Check back often for updates as well.

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Backpacking In California: 20 Amazing Spots You Must Visit

Our two favorite things to do in the outdoors in California is hike and camp. Why not combine the two with a backpack camping trip? We know camping in Southern California is very popular with families to couples and folks with their dogs, but for the more adventurous, finding cool spots for backpacking in California is even more exciting.

There are some amazing spots for backpacking in California, from the Bay Area of San Francisco to Southern California and everywhere in between. Some favorite places for backpack camping include Joshua Tree, the Lake Tahoe area, Yosemite National Park and the Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Park areas. Much of these wilderness areas are more ‘hard core backpacking’ for those with experience and the legs to carry themselves further than a couple of mile hike.

For those of you who are new to this outdoor adventure, we share relatively easy, doable backpacking trails here in California to consider for your first (or second or third!) backpacking camping trip with or without kids. As we explore more of the backcountry camping options throughout California, we will update this list.

Don’t miss our top tips and backpacking hacks for beginners!

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Epic Family Weekend in San Luis Obispo County (SLOCAL)

The California Coast is filled with amazing destinations making it difficult to decide just where to go when you are looking for a quick escape. We have found the answer with a weekend in San Luis Obispo County (SLOCAL). Sitting in the middle of the Central Coast, SLOCAL offers tons of adventure, nature and of course some luxury too!

San Luis Obispo County is a fun place to visit for families as there is no shortage of beautiful nature scapes, awesome food, and plenty of family fun that will easily keep you busy for several days. Read on for our recommendations on how to have an epic family weekend getaway in San Luis Obispo County.

ADVENTURE: A California Family Weekend in San Luis Obispo County // NATURE:  Sailing with Captain Mark // CRAZY FUN: Sand Dune Buggies // LUXURY: The Cliffs Spa & Hotel

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15+ Beautiful Things to Do in Lake Tahoe Year Round

Whether you arrive in winter or summer or anytime in between, there are so many amazing things to do in Lake Tahoe that you could easily spend months here without getting bored. Lake Tahoe truly is one of California’s (and Nevada’s) most magical destinations.

Below we share some of the best things to do in Tahoe from summer to winter.  That said, we highly recommend visiting during the shoulder seasons as the crowds are thinned out and you can get the best of both seasons often in a week visit!

Check out SierraSafely for more information on how to experience Lake Tahoe during COVID, including a trail list with various businesses and activities to safely explore on your visit. 

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Finding Fall Colors in Bishop, California

Growing up in Texas and spending most of my adult life in places that do not experience fall, I had had enough and wanted to find some cooler air and pretty fall foliage in Southern California! My nature loving sidekick was game as he has been searching for fallen leaves representing all the colors of fall. So off we went.

You may not think of Southern California as a place to see fall colors, and you are right! To really experience it, we had to drive several hours away. After doing our diligent research, the closest place to Los Angeles to see the true turning of the seasons from hot summer days to brisk cool mornings is in the Eastern Sierras, specifically around Bishop, California. 

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7 Reasons to Visit the Bass Lake Yosemite Area

Looking to visit Yosemite but don’t want to stay inside the park? Our favorite place to stay outside the park is in the Bass Lake Yosemite area. The area is cute, quaint, offers a new dimension to your Yosemite visit and is well worth the drive into the park. Read on for our favorite things to do in and around the Bass Lake California as well as where to stay and eat.

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The Ultimate Guide to Exploring Yosemite with Kids

A family trip to Yosemite National Park is the quintessential American summer holiday. Exploring Yosemite with kids while camping (or glamping as it is for us!), splashing through rivers, and spying out some of the best natural scenes in the US is one of the best trips you can do with your family.

If you are planning a visit to California’s most iconic park, we have laid out all you need to know in order to have the best trip ever in Yosemite with kids. Below are our top picks for things to do in Yosemite National Park with kids as well as options on where to stay and eat. Trust me, seeing this national treasure through your little one’s eyes is a truly magical experience that you will not want to miss.

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10 Amazing Things to Do in Big Bear for Summer

Often only thought of as Southern California’s place to play in the snow, there are a ton of great things to do in Big Bear throughout the year. As the heat of the summer sets in, Big Bear is the perfect escape. Nestled high in the mountains on the banks of a lake, Big Bear offers cooler temperatures during summer. From water activities to exploring the beautiful scenery, Big Bear is an outdoor lovers dream. I recently had the opportunity to visit Big Bear to learn more about the summer offerings, and I have to say that I was pretty excited with everything there is to do, especially for families. It really is the perfect family vacation destination.

Located less than two hours from Los Angeles, Big Bear offers a multitude of outdoor activities, water sports, mountain biking and more for the perfect summer vacation.

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50+ Amazing Spots for Camping in Southern California

Best beach camping in Southern California

Camping in Southern California is one of the best outdoor, social distance activities available. Lakes, mountains, and beaches – a multitude of campgrounds in Southern California offer an incredible array of places to match the season and everyone’s interests. With vacations being cancelled and people worried about gathering in groups, camping is the in thing to do! Below is a collection of our favorite campgrounds in Southern California that we will continue to update as we come across more.

If you have some favorites that we have missed, please share them with us as we would love to check out more off the beaten path sites around the state.

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11 Must Do Road Trips in California

California is the perfect destination for families, couples and solo adventurers looking to explore everything from national parks to iconic beaches. California is massive which means at some point or another you will find yourself driving around it. For those looking to get out and explore, California is your ideal destination. Below we share some of our favorite road trips in California and some we hope to take soon.

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11 Fun Things to Do at Mission San Juan Capistrano with Kids

For years I have had it on my massive LA bucket list to take the train down to check out Mission San Juan Capistrano. However not being a California native I am not too up on California history so I wasn’t sure exactly why I needed to visit this jewel of missions so it continued to be pushed down my list. We were invited down by the Mission to check it out, so we hopped on the train not quite sure what the day had in store for us.

Boy was it a mistake to put this visit off for so long. The Mission San Juan Capistrano is so much better than I had anticipated and now we can’t wait to visit again. It is a wonderful mixture of history and culture provided in an inspiring and educational package that even the youngest visitors can appreciate. And yes, it’s even engaging for those who aren’t history buffs!

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Bluestem Hotel | One of the Best Hotels in Torrance CA

Heading to Los Angeles’s South Bay area and looking for hotel options? Look no further – the Bluestem Hotel is one of the best hotels in Torrance CA!

Torrance is located just 15 minutes from LAX, and is well situated for various Southern California attractions, making it an excellent place to stay for a visit to Los Angeles. While there are plenty of chain hotel options in the area, in our opinion the best place to stay is at Torrance’s first boutique hotel, Bluestem.

Newly opened in 2019, this chic modern boutique hotel is a welcome addition to the scene in the South Bay. It is just another example of how Torrance is busy reinventing itself. With over 400 eateries, 11 breweries, art galleries and the beach, there are so many things to do in Torrance for your next stay. Read on to find out what we thought about the hotel and why it should be your only choice in Torrance!

Disclosure: My stay at Bluestem was hosted by Discover Torrance as part of a weekend trip to the area to explore all the family friendly things to do in Torrance California. As always, all opinions and thoughts are my own.

Also note, some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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15 Great Things to Do in Torrance: LA’s Hottest Beach Town

Are you looking to visit Torrance in the South Bay of Los Angeles? Whether you are visiting the area or coming on a day trip from somewhere in Los Angeles, we have you covered with all the things to do in Torrance on your visit.

What was once the sleepy step sibling to more popular Southern California neighbors of Redondo and Hermosa Beach, Torrance has come into its own. In the last few years Torrance has blossomed into a happening town full of amazing restaurants, with a burgeoning brewery scene, art galleries and even its first boutique hotel.

We had the opportunity to visit Torrance a few weeks ago and had so much fun! Between being out in nature, exploring the Japanese food and shops of the area and eating our way through some of LA’s best restaurants, we can’t wait to go back and share it with you all too.

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