The Places to Visit in Northern California          

Northern California has a little bit of everything: beaches, snow-capped mountains, and an inland valley with a diverse population of people and things to do.


As you look for Oakland houses for sale or apartments for rent in San Francisco, check out these NorCal hot spots.

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

Perhaps one of the most famous landmarks in the nation, this 1.7-mile-long bridge connects the San Francisco Bay area to California.


The iconic red suspension bridge has a welcome center that houses historical information, exhibits, and commemorative merchandise.


Free walking tours are offered by San Francisco City Guides weekly, or you can explore this architectural wonder by yourself.

Yosemite National Park, Yosemite

Yosemite is home to the tallest waterfalls in the world as well as the forest of towering ancient Sequoia trees.


It covers 1,200 square miles of vast wilderness, meadows, and deep valleys.


Mariposa Grove is the largest sequoia grove in Yosemite with over 500 mature sequoias. Glacier Point is an overlook with a view of Yosemite Valley and Yosemite Falls as well as Half Dome, a behemoth rock formation in the shape of a half dome.


The best time to enjoy the waterfalls is in spring when the snow melts. Hetch Hetchy is an area that is wonderful year-round, a valley good for hiking, boating, and swimming.

Alcatraz Island, San Francisco

Want to see one of the few prisons in the world that no one has ever successfully escaped from?


Alcatraz is surrounded on all sides by frigid waters. It was home to many notorious criminals between 1934 and 1963, including Al Capone and George “Machine Gun” Kelly.


It was a fort that evolved into a military prison, then a maximum security federal penitentiary. In 1969, the Indians of All Tribes occupied the area for a year and a half in the name of Native American civil rights.


There are currently many exhibits to explore, as well as presentations and audio tours.

Lassen Volcanic National Park, Mineral

If you like it hot, check out this park that’s home to volcanoes that are considered active.


Lassen is an education in all things geothermal. It has four types of volcanoes within: shield, composite, cinder cone, and plug dome. Other geothermal areas include mud pots, boiling pools, roiling fumaroles, and steaming ground.


Outside of this, Lassen has gorgeous crystalline lakes for swimming, fishing, or kayaking.

The park has some of the most educated and enthusiastic rangers around, so be sure to sign up for a ranger-led tour when visiting.

Napa and Sonoma County Wineries

Napa and Sonoma are home to well over 500 wineries and are the second most visited areas after Disneyland in NorCal.


Napa’s wineries include Robert Mondavi, Beringer, Screaming Eagle, Duckhorn, and Rombauer. Sonoma has Ridge, Ravenswood, Kendall-Jackson, Korbel, and Francis Coppola.


Napa tends to be on the more expensive side and favors varieties like Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon.


Sonoma has a relaxed atmosphere and is more spread out, catering to fans of Zinfandels, Pinot Noirs, and sparkling wines.