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California State Parks

The California State Parks system is the oldest in the nation and dates back to the year 1864, when President Abraham Lincoln signed an Act of Congress, ceding the Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias to the state of California. This action contributed to the start of the American park movement that would gain support by the American people at the turn of the century. However, Yosemite never became a state park but instead was returned to federal control and became a national park in 1906. The first state park in the present day system was Big Basin Redwoods, founded in 1902.

Today, there are 278 parks and more than a thousand State Historical Landmarks all over California.

Big Basin Redwoods
California's oldest State Park
We have so far been to about two dozen state parks and to many of the Historical Landmarks.
In due time, they will all be listed here.

If you only want to see some pictures, check out the Traveling California page in our Photo Album.
If you want a more detailed description, select any of the sites listed below.

State Parks and State Beaches

Calaveras Big Trees State Park

California's oldest toursit attraction -
The grove where the world's first Giant Sequia was discovered.

Caspar Headland State Natural Reserve

A small strip of rugged coastline and sculpted rocks just
south of Judy's birth town Caspar.

Columbia State Historic Park

An old Gold Rush town, complete with saloons, stores and
hotels invites to a time-travel back to the 1850s.

Hearst San Simeon State Historic Monument

Randolph Hearst's Castle and collection of
20,000 pieces of ancient European art.

Hendy Woods State Park

Saving two of the last remaining old growth redwood forests.

Mendocino Headlands State Park

A long stretch of undeveloped seaside bluffs and islets
surrounding the town of Mendocino.

Morro Bay State Park

State Park around the largest vocanic rock along the California coast.

Morro Strand State Beach

Some call this rock "The Gibraltar of the Pacific."

Navarro Redwoods State Park

A beautiful stretch of redwoods along the Navarro River.

State Historical Landmarks

SHL # 165 - Weber Point

Marking the location of the house of Stockton's founding father.

SHL # 821 - Morro Rock

Honoring the role of "The Gibraltar of the Pacific" as a navigational aid.

ECV # 69-72/04/15 - Head of Navigation

Commemorating Stockton's role as California's largest inland harbor.

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