10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (2023)

1. Fort Point National Historic Site

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (1)

Source:Photoby userElisa.rolleused under CC BY-SA 3.0

Popularly known as the pride of the Pacific, Fort Point National Historic Site dates back to the American Civil War and will give you a slice of local history. This fort was built to fend off enemy warships looking to attack the San Francisco Bay. The fort is built on the Bay’s entrance and has been featured in several notable Hollywood flicks such as Dawn of the Planet of Apes and Vertigo to name a few. When in California make sure you visit this historical site!

Fort Point National Historic Site

Address: Long Ave & Marine Dr, San Francisco, CA 94129, United States

Website: Fort Point National Historic Site

Opening hours: Fri - Sun: 10am - 5pm (closed from Mon - Thu)

2. Venice Canals

Built by Abbot Kinney in 1905, Venice Canals offer a completely different side of the famed beachfront neighborhood. Walk past the beautifully lit canals with gondoliers and arched bridges, and spend some romantic moments with your partner. Discover the arching pedestrian bridges, charming beach houses, ducklings and the occasional paddle boarding bulldog, while taking a stroll through the canal-lined blocks. Run away from the hustle and bustle of the city to enjoy the serene atmosphere here.

Venice Canals

Address: Venice, CA 90292, USA

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

3. Jack London State Historic Park

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (2)

Source:Photoby userDaderotused under CC0

One of the best places to visit is Jack London State Historic Park, where you can have a look inside the house of the famous writer. Situated on the eastern slope of Sonoma Mountain, this historical place features the ruins of a burned house, as well as the graves of Jack London and his wife. Popularly known as the Wolf House, tourists can have a look at the sizable stone structure and Goulding clay loam soils over here. Relax and plan a family picnic at the park, enjoy mountain biking and horseback riding, or take pictures of the stunning landscape and spot the birds flying around.

Jack London State Historic Park

Address: 2400 London Ranch Rd, Glen Ellen, CA 95442, USA

Website: Jack London State Historic Park

Opening hours: 9am - 5pm (daily)

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4. Bradbury Building

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (10)

Source:Photoby userLuke Jonesused under CC BY 2.0

This five-story-high Bradbury Building is a popular architectural landmark. This office complex is located in downtown Los Angeles and is a popular tourist stop. Why? All credits go to its skylit atrium, beautiful staircases and elevators that have intricate work. The building itself exhibits a Romanesque architecture and is a much-photographed spot. It has been featured in several Hollywood movies and TV shows courtesy its old-world charm. So make sure you click some Instagram-worthy pictures when here!

Bradbury Building

Address: 304 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013, USA

Website: Bradbury Building

Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 9am - 6pm; Sat - Sun: 10am - 5pm

5. Fort Baker

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (11)

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Source:Photoby Wikimedia Commons userFabrice Florinused under CC BY-SA 3.0

Located immediately north of Golden Gate Bridge, Fort Baker is a former 1905 U.S. Army post. Previously known as the Lime Point Military Reservation, this hidden gem features 25 historic army buildings in a parade ground, a number of historic gun emplacements, a sheltered harbor protected by a jetty, as well as forested areas and trails heading to the San Francisco Bay. Tourists can enjoy multiple activities over here including, fishing and crabbing off the pier at Horseshoe Cove, or spotting wildlife and plant species at Fort Baker.

Fort Baker

Address: Sausalito, CA 94965, USA

Website: Fort Baker

6. San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (12)

Source:Photoby userBrokenSphereused under CC BY-SA 3.0

Located in the picturesque Fisherman’s Wharf area, make sure you visit the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. Get acquainted with the tales of yore as you soak in the scenic sights of the Pacific Coast. Stroll around the Park and marvel at the wonders stowed away in the maritime museum. Check out the historic vessels on display as you let your mind take flight. There is a visitor center handy in case you get lost or need any assistance. The Maritime Museum also has some brilliant murals by artist Hilaire Hiler.

San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

Address: San Francisco, CA 94109, USA

Website: San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

7. Mormon Battalion Historic Site

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (13)

Source:Photoby userRoman Eugeniuszused under CC BY-SA 3.0

Built in honor of the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mormon Battalion Historic Site is located in Old Town. Learn about the Mormon Battalion’s journey. The group of about 500 Latter-day Saints has served in the United States Army’s Mormon Battalion and gave up their lives fighting the Mexican–American War of 1846. Take an interactive video tour at this site featuring historical artifacts, and demonstrations on gold panning and brick making.

Mormon Battalion Historic Site

Address: 2510 Juan St, San Diego, CA 92110, USA

Website: Mormon Battalion Historic Site

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 10am - 8pm; Sun: 1pm - 8pm

8. Winchester Mystery House

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (14)

Source:Photoby userRoxanna Salcedaused under CC BY-SA 2.0

When in San Jose make sure you visit the Winchester Mystery House. This spectacular and apparently built in 1884 and was home to Sarah Winchester. Sarah was a widow and was married to William Wirt Winchester. This spooky mansion is known for its lonely corridors and labyrinthical architectural style. You can opt for a tourist tour and get acquainted with the curiosities of this once-opulent home. If you get lucky (or not!) you may encounter a spirit roaming the dark alleyways of the massive mansion!

Winchester Mystery House

Address: 525 S Winchester Blvd, San Jose, CA 95128, USA

Website: Winchester Mystery House

Opening hours: Fri - Wed: 9am - 4pm; Thu: 9am - 3pm

9. Golden Gate Bridge (from USD 38.0)

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (15)

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Sail under the Golden Gate Bridge, the highlight of any visit to San Francisco for over 75 years. Board the ship and experience San Francisco’s awe-inspiring waterfront, listening to interesting audio commentary. Watch out for pelicans, sea lions, dolphins, and whales, while the cruise passes below the magnificent Golden Gate. Marvel at the suspension bridge that connects the San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. Declared one of the Wonders of the Modern World, this bridge is a popular landmark in California. Sit back and relax with a drink on the cruise, while clicking Instagram-worthy pictures of this architectural masterpiece.

San Francisco: Golden Gate Bay Cruise

Duration: 1 hour


10. Hearst Castle (from USD 159.0)

10 Historical Places In California, USA - Updated 2022 (17)

Discover the history and stories of the historic Hearst Castle and learn interesting facts about this American castle. Built between 1919 and 1947 for newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, tourists can gain knowledge about the guests and friends of Hearst who graced the halls with their presence. Get the feeling of the 1920’s on the ground floor of Casa Grande, watch a film about the building at National Geographic Theatre, or browse through a huge collection of art and antiques. Walk in the footsteps of the ghosts of the past, while exploring the Grand Rooms of the house.

Hearst Castle and Central Coast Tour

Duration: 5.5 to 7.5 hour


Discover the historical sites of California

Tourism is a large-scale industry in California and it makes an enormous profit throughout the year. Take a stroll through Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, which showcases majestic granite peaks, or unwind and relax at Lake Tahoe. Make sure you ride the California Street Cable Car, which will make this trip a memorable one. Do visit some fascinating ghost towns and bird sanctuaries as well. Boasting amazing nightlife, popular landmarks, culture, art, and a picturesque view of the Pacific Ocean, California is perfect for a summer getaway.

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Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


What is the most historical place in California? ›

1. Fort Point National Historic Site. Popularly known as the pride of the Pacific, Fort Point National Historic Site dates back to the American Civil War and will give you a slice of local history. This fort was built to fend off enemy warships looking to attack the San Francisco Bay.

How many historical sites are in California? ›

The table below lists all 146 sites, along with added detail and description. The sites are distributed across 36 of California's 58 counties.

What are the major historical locations? ›

15 Best Historical Places in the World
  • Qutub Minar. With a height of 73 metres, Qutub Minar is one of India's tallest minarets. ...
  • Ajanta Caves. ...
  • The Colosseum. ...
  • Chichen Itza. ...
  • Great Sphinx of Giza. ...
  • Aqueduct of Segovia. ...
  • Mogao Grottoes. ...
  • Mahabalipuram.
1 Nov 2021

What is the first historical landmark in California? ›

California Historical Landmark #1: Old Custom House in Monterey, California. Commodore John Drake Sloat raised the American flag over this building on July 7, 1846 to signal the passing of California from Mexican to American rule.

What are the 10 oldest cities in California? ›

FYI: We went by the year these dear old towns were “incorporated” NOT “founded”.
  • Stockton, 1850. ...
  • Yreka, 1857. ...
  • Arcata, 1858. flickr/fishermansdaughter. ...
  • Petaluma, 1858. flickr/chris dehram. ...
  • San Francisco, 1850. Joanne Kraft. ...
  • San Jose, 1850. flickr/daniel hoherd. ...
  • Santa Clara, 1852. flickr/ Jim G. ...
  • Sonora, 1852. flickr/stefa hundhammer.
18 Apr 2016

Which city has the best history? ›

Best Historical Cities to Visit in the USA
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Boston.
  • Gettysburg.
  • Philadelphia.
  • Williamsburg.
  • Jamestown.
  • Charleston, SC.
  • Plymouth.

What is the most popular site in California? ›

The Golden Gate Bridge near San Francisco is one of the most visited tourist attractions in California and the US. Spanning over the San Francisco Bay for more than a mile, this famous landmark is one of the world's most photographed bridges.

What is a historical site in the US? ›

10 Historic Sites in the U.S. Even Non-History Buffs Will Like
  • George Washington's Home. ...
  • Gettysburg. ...
  • Ford's Theatre. ...
  • Colonial Williamsburg. ...
  • Ellis Island. ...
  • Paul Revere's House and The Old North Church. ...
  • Harvard University. ...
  • Independence Hall and The Liberty Bell.

What is the oldest historical place? ›

Dating back to 3600 BC and 700 BC, the Megalithic Temples of Malta are considered to be the oldest free-standing structures on earth. The temples were built during three phases of cultural revolution – Ġgantija (3600-3200BC), Saflieni (3300-3000BC) and Tarxien (3150BC-2500BC).

Which is a historical city? ›

Glimpses of colonial architecture can be seen in cities such as Goa, Kolkata and Pondicherry. The Great Living Chola Temples are another example of India's rich history. Konark, Mysore, Orchha, Hyderabad, Bijapur and Lucknow are few other cities that are of historical significance.

What is the oldest house in California? ›

The Ávila Adobe

What history are in California? ›

The history of California can be divided into the Native American period (about 10,000 years ago until 1542), the European exploration period (1542–1769), the Spanish colonial period (1769–1821), the Mexican period (1821–1848), and United States statehood (September 9, 1850–present). California was one of the most ...

What is the oldest neighborhood in California? ›

The Los Rios Historic District is an historic district and neighborhood in the city of San Juan Capistrano, California. With buildings dating to 1794, it is the oldest continually occupied neighborhood in the state.

What is America's oldest city? ›

St. Augustine, founded in September 1565 by Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles of Spain, is the longest continually inhabited European-founded city in the United States – more commonly called the "Nation's Oldest City."

What is the newest city in California? ›

The City of Jurupa Valley has the notoriety of being the newest incorporated municipality in the State of California, due to the volition of its citizens.

Where is oldest house in USA? ›

1. Taos Pueblo. The Tao Pueblo is an active Native American community that is situated at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountain range. The rich oral history of the Tao expresses the longevity of the Tao people and scientific data dates the oldest buildings as being built between 1000 and 1450 AD.

What is the #1 city in the world? ›

Overall, Edinburgh, Scotland was named the best city in the world.

What's the number 1 city in California? ›

Los Angeles

How many historic sites are there in the US? ›

National Historic Landmarks (NHLs) are historic properties that illustrate the heritage of the United States. The over 2,600 NHLs found in the U.S. today come in many forms: historic buildings, sites, structures, objects, and districts.

Why historical places are important? ›

They connect us to the past. Through visiting these places where history occurred we find our roots. History allows us to feel like we are part of something much bigger.

Is Museum a historical place? ›

A museum (/mjuːˈziːəm/ mew-ZEE-əm; plural museums or, rarely, musea) is a building or institution that cares for and displays a collection of artifacts and other objects of artistic, cultural, historical, or scientific importance.

What are 5 world heritage sites in the USA? ›

Properties inscribed on the World Heritage List 24
  • Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site (1982)
  • Chaco Culture (1987)
  • Independence Hall (1979)
  • La Fortaleza and San Juan National Historic Site in Puerto Rico (1983)
  • Mesa Verde National Park (1978)
  • Monticello and the University of Virginia in Charlottesville (1987)

Which U.S. city has the most historic sites? ›

Most landmark designations are in one of the 50 states. New York is the state with the most (270), and New York City, with 114 designations, is the city with the largest number of designations.

Which state has the most historical places? ›

Uttar Pradesh has the maximum number of monuments in India that count a total number of 3,685 monuments. The place is known as the 'heartland of India' due to its cultural heritage and historical relevance.

What's the oldest thing in USA? ›

The Inyo National Forest is home to many bristlecone pines, thought to be the oldest living organisms on Earth. Bristlecone pines are a small group of trees that reach an age believed by many scientists to be far greater than that of any other living organism known to man -- up to nearly 5,000 years.

Where is the oldest house in the world? ›

5 Oldest Houses In The World, And One Of Them Is In Penang!
  • 1) Cave Houses of Sassi di Matera, Basilicata, Italy.
  • 2) Kandovan Cave Houses, Osku, Iran.
  • 3) Viking farmhouse, Kirkjubøur, Faroe Islands.
  • 4) Suffolk House, Penang, Malaysia.
  • 5) Knap of Howar, Papa Westray, Orkney, Scotland.
31 Dec 2020

How old is the oldest house in the world? ›

First, we have a stone house, which is believed to date back to 3500 BC and is thought to be the oldest home in the world. Next is the Palace of Minos, estimated to have been built in around 1700 BC, followed by Villa Almerico Capra, which has roots dating back to 1580.

What is the oldest city still standing? ›

Jericho, a city in the Palestine territories, is a strong contender for the oldest continuous settlement in the world: it dates back to around 9,000 B.C., according to Ancient History Encyclopedia.

What is the oldest human site? ›

Middle Paleolithic

The oldest known evidence for anatomically modern humans (as of 2017) are fossils found at Jebel Irhoud, Morocco, dated about 360,000 years old.

What are the 3 types of historical? ›

Contemporary history: the study of recent historical events. Counterfactual history: the study of historical events as they might have happened in different causal circumstances. Cultural history: the study of culture in the past.

What are five of the greatest cities in history? ›

Read on to see the 16 greatest cities in human history:
  • Jericho: The world's largest city in 7000 BC. ...
  • Uruk: The world's largest city in 3500 BC. ...
  • Mari: The world's largest city in 2400 BC. ...
  • Ur: The world's largest city in 2100 BC. ...
  • Yinxu: The world's largest city in 1300 BC. ...
  • Babylon: The world's largest city in 700 BC.
6 Mar 2018

Which city is known as Old city? ›

The Old City of Hyderabad is a walled city of Hyderabad, Telangana, India, located on the banks of the Musi River built by Qutb Shahi sultan Muhammed Quli Qutb Shah in 1591 AD.

What is the richest house in California? ›

Nicknamed "The One," this 115,000-square-foot home that was marketed as the most expensive U.S. home. The megamansion sold for $141 million.

What is the biggest house in California? ›

Largest houses by floor space
RankSquare footage (Square meterage)Name
1120,000 square feet (11,000 m2)The One
255,005 square feet (5,110.1 m2)The Manor at Holmby Hills
351,000 square feet (4,700 m2)Hacienda De La Paz
449,300 square feet (4,580 m2)The Pritzker Estate
12 more rows

What is the oldest bridge in California? ›

Bridgeport Covered Bridge

Who first lived in California? ›

Tribes included the Karok, Maidu, Cahuilleno, Mojave, Yokuts, Pomo, Paiute, and Modoc.

What is the most important event in California history? ›

The Gold Rush

Just prior to California becoming a state in the union, the most well known and impactful event in the history of California took place: the discovery of gold in 1848.

What California is famous for? ›

One of the most popular destinations in all of North America, California is famous for the Golden Gate Bridge, Disneyland, and Hollywood. Other things unique to California are Coachella, the Wine Country, Silicon Valley, and Surf Culture, in addition to less obvious sights and cultural aspects.

Where do the richest live in California? ›

Los Altos Hills
  • The richest city in California is Los Altos Hills. ...
  • Located in Silicon Valley, Los Altos Hills has 8,000 residents, many of whom work in tech. ...
  • The second wealthiest city in California is Woodside. ...
  • The third wealthiest city in California is Hillsborough.
18 Nov 2022

What is the youngest city in California? ›

Rancho Santa Margarita, California
IncorporatedJanuary 1, 2000
28 more rows

What was the first city built in California? ›

In March 1850 San Jose became the first chartered city in California, by which time it had become a bustling trade depot for the goldfields east of Sacramento.

What is California historically famous for? ›

With millions of acres of farmland, California leads the United States in agricultural production. The state is also home to famous cultural institutions and national parks including Hollywood, Disneyland, Yosemite National Park, Alcatraz, Angel Island and the Golden Gate Bridge.

What is the number 1 tourist attraction in California? ›

Disneyland, located in Anaheim, is California's premier family destination and one of the top family vacation destinations in the US. This massive amusement park is home to all kinds of rides, games, shows, and entertainment, complete with restaurants and hotels.

Who lived in California first? ›

Tribes included the Karok, Maidu, Cahuilleno, Mojave, Yokuts, Pomo, Paiute, and Modoc.

What are 5 things California is known for? ›

One of the most popular destinations in all of North America, California is famous for the Golden Gate Bridge, Disneyland, and Hollywood. Other things unique to California are Coachella, the Wine Country, Silicon Valley, and Surf Culture, in addition to less obvious sights and cultural aspects.

Which part of California is rich? ›

The richest city in California is Los Altos Hills. With a median income of $251,000 at the beginning of 2022, the town just edges out Woodside and Hillsborough. Los Altos Hills has been the wealthiest in California since 2019 (prior, it was in fourth place).

Which city is most beautiful in California? ›

Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara is tucked away on the Pacific Coast, ninety minutes north of Los Angeles. Known as the Queen of Missions, it just might be the most beautiful city in California. The picturesque city was flatted after a major earthquake in 1925.

What was the first city in California? ›

In March 1850 San Jose became the first chartered city in California, by which time it had become a bustling trade depot for the goldfields east of Sacramento.

What are 3 historical facts about California? ›

1781 - The city of Los Angeles is established. 1821 - California becomes part of the country of Mexico. 1840s - Settlers begin to arrive from the east on the Oregon Trail and the California Trail. 1846 - California declares its independence from Mexico.

What are the top 10 most visited? ›

  • France: 89 Million Visitors.
  • Spain: 84 Million Visitors.
  • United States: 79 Million Visitors.
  • China: 66 Million Visitors.
  • Italy: 65 Million Visitors.
  • Turkey: 51 Million Visitors.
  • Mexico: 45 Million Visitors.
  • Thailand: 39.7 Million Visitors.
3 Oct 2022

What part of California is a good place to visit? ›

Tourists flock to San Francisco for sightseeing, shopping, museum hopping, and gourmet dining. Los Angeles dazzles visitors with quintessential Southern California scenery and Hollywood glamour. San Diego and Santa Barbara have perfect balmy weather and golden-sand beaches.

What is the coolest thing in California? ›

Top Attractions in California
  1. Alcatraz Island. 55,840. Historic Sites • Islands. ...
  2. Golden Gate Bridge. 49,629. Historic Sites • Points of Interest & Landmarks. ...
  3. San Diego Zoo. 28,749. Zoos. ...
  4. USS Midway Museum. 25,310. ...
  5. Universal Studios Hollywood. 36,937. ...
  6. The Getty Center. 14,636. ...
  7. Griffith Observatory. 20,487. ...
  8. La Jolla Cove. 13,646.


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