Northern California May 17, 2018
7 Lesser-Known State Parks In Northern California That Will Absolutely Amaze You
There’s no better way to spend your time than by exploring our Northern California state parks. However, what do you do after you’ve exhausted the most notable ones? Check out the lesser known parks, of course! These underrated state parks may not be as famous as our many redwoods-centric parks, but you’ll find that they actually have a lot to offer. And better yet, you might just avoid the tourist crowds! Check them out.
1. Manchester State Park
Located in Mendocino County is a little known gem known as Manchester State Park. This place includes a breathtaking 18,000 feet of protected beachfront along State Route 1. Not only does this park boast epic coastal views but plenty of wildflowers and wildlife as well. You'll find the park's entrance at 44500 Kinney Lane, just north of the town of Manchester.
2. Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park
Located 26 miles northeast of Nevada City, this historic park is full of treasures. In fact, it's home to the largest hydraulic mining site in California. Here you can see with your own eyes towering cliffs which have been carved by hydraulic mining in order to wash out gold. Along with preserving an important part of Gold Rush history, the park is comprised of over 3,200 acres and contains approximately 20 miles of scenic hiking trails. This place is a must for both nature and history enthusiasts. Find it at 23579 N Bloomfield Rd, Nevada City, CA 95959.
3. Weaverville Joss House State Historic Park
Located in Weaverville, the park is home to the oldest Chinese temple in all of California. Originally built in 1874, you'll find all sorts of items such as weapons, mining tools, pictures, and more on display here. The temple is still a place of worship and acts as a reminder to the huge influence of California's early Chinese immigrants. You'll find it at 630 Main St, Weaverville, CA 96093.
4. Robert Louis Stevenson State Park
Named after the famed author, this state park is situated within Sonoma, Napa, and Lake counties. The landscape is utterly gorgeous and in fact looks like it could be a scene out of a storybook. Covered in evergreen forests and overlooking humongous fields of green, the park's most notable feature is Mount Saint Helena which boasts an incredible view of the Bay Area at the summit. You'll find it at Lake County Hwy, Calistoga, CA 94515.
5. Tolowa Dunes State Park
If wetlands are your thing, you'll want to stop by Crescent City's Tolowa Dunes State Park. Here you can find an ancient sand dune complex that contains several distinct ecological regions including ocean beaches, wooded areas, and stunning wetlands. This 5,000-acre hidden gem can be found at Kellogg Rd, Crescent City, CA 95531.
6. Ahjumawi Lava Springs State Park
Ahjumawi is one of the least visited parks in Northern California. However, that doesn't mean that this place isn't downright magical. The park probably goes unnoticed because the only way to get to it is by boat. This place is exceptionally beautiful, containing stunning tree-covered islets that are loaded with interesting lava formations. You'll find this heavenly park located in McArthur.
7. Bidwell-Sacramento River State Park
Located in Chico,the Sacramento River is the highlight of this park. Here you'll often find people fishing for steelhead, salmon, and shad. During the summertime, the river is great for floating on in inner tubes or kayaks. The park is an excellent example of a prime river habitat with endless natural beauty and wildlife. You'll find it at 12105 River Rd, Chico, CA 95973.
How many of these underrated state parks have you been to? Be sure to check out these
14 Hidden Gems In Northern California for even more little known destinations that you’re sure to love.