If you think Southern California is nothing but sandy beaches and palm trees, then you’re in for a real surprise. We have mountains! Lots and lots of gorgeous mountains. Whether you love to climb mountains or just admire them from afar, SoCal does not disappoint. Here’s a small sample of some of the stunning mountains you will find here in Southern California. They are beauties!

Wow! Even if you’re not up for a mountain climbing adventure, you can still enjoy these gorgeous mountains in Southern California by taking a leisurely drive and experiencing them from the car window. Trust us, you’ll want to snap some pictures!

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SoCal Mountains

What mountains are in SoCal? 

To say that California is a mountainous place is kind of an understatement. There happen to be many mountains in SoCal, and they’re all positively magical if you ask us. With so many mountains in Southern California to choose from, how do you know where to begin? Well, why not begin with a few of our all-time favorites, like the jaw-dropping Santa Ana Mountains? The Santa Anas consists of 41 named peaks and feature some of the most beautiful places in Southern California. Others include the San Bernardino Mountains, the San Gabriel Mountains, the Santa Monica Mountains, the Santa Susana Mountains, and MANY more.  

What are some of the best mountains in SoCal for camping?  

Just about every mountain in SoCal you can find will be excellent for camping, hiking, and all the outdoorsy activities your heart could ever desire. Mt. Baldy is the highest peak in the San Gabriels, and it’s one of the most popular places to go hiking in SoCal. If you want, you can camp on the mountain as well, making a whole backpacking trip out of it! The Santa Monicas are one of the most-visited mountain ranges on the west coast, and as a result, they’re one of the most popular (and understandably most beloved) places to go camping in SoCal. Count us in!  

What are some of the best mountain towns in SoCal? 

When it comes to mountain towns in Southern California, there are some you just cannot pass up if you get the chance to check them out. Among our favorite SoCal mountain towns are gems like Big Bear Lake, which is one of the most beautiful places in California, we think. Or you could head out to the Santa Ynez Mountains and check out the tiny Danish town known as Solvang. We also love towns like Mount Laguna, Crestline, Lake Arrowhead, and Julian.