Biking, wine tasting, wildflower gazing, and more ways to enjoy California's greenest season
Andrea Gómez Romero
Irvine's Great Park has so much more to offer than idyllic picnics on the lawn. The green space also features an art gallery, community gardens, soccer fields, balloon and carousel rides, movies on the lawn, garden workshops, a working farm, outdoor concerts, everything.
Take your eco geekdom to new heights at a course at Hopland's Solar Living Insitute, where the green curriculum covers a range of topics such as growing your own mushrooms and biodiesel brewing. Afterwards, enjoy a shaded picnic and some sipping at a carbon-neutral tasting room.
The beauty of Anza-Borrego's wildflower bloom―one of the best in all the West―is not just the physical display but its ephemeral nature.
Start your day at the Green Gulch Farm with a Zen meditation class, then head outdoors for a hike around the center's 115 acres of pristine Marin coastal ridgeline. Circle back to the center for a tea break and walk in the gardens, and don't forget to pick up some of their freshly farmed produce to take home.
Locals come to this Southern California bay year-round to hike, bike, and escape the sound of freeway traffic. But with wildflowers like California sagebrush at their peak, the wetlands are at their best in April.
Mild weather and a spectacular seaside bike route make thr low-key, lost-in-time Monterey Peninsula town of Pacific Grove ideal for a springtime pedal.
Palm Desert's mood is mod, its art amazing, and it does the whole midcentury modern thing perfectly.And of all California's desert resorts, it's also probably the most pedestrian- and bike-friendly.
Bold botanical displays and a nursery stocked for spring are at the heart of this Newport Beach neighborhood’s best attractions.
The small town of Templeton, just six miles south of Paso Robles, has all the wine cred of its neighbor, but with a farm-friendly bent. Try your hand at making goat cheese, eat locally grown food, and stay at a cozy bed and breakfast that just happens to double as a vineyard.
Andrea Gómez Romero
Don't let it's beach-town disguise fool you. Grab your shovel and rake and get ready for spring gardening in Goleta (but fret not, you can still kick back on the shore after a hard day of working your green thumb).
Find everything you could ever need for your garden, plus amazing fresh local food, in Half Moon Bay.
Thomas J. Story
Smell the flowers while you bask in the botanical oasis of a San Gabriel Valley town. The Huntington Gardens are only the beginning.
More: San Marino spring escape
Check out Union City, where over 20 miles of trails will have you zipping through the area's best waterfront parks.
Early spring brings a green freshness to the vineyards of Sonoma's Dry Creek Valley. Discover the ultimate picnic spot and more finds from our wine editor’s off-season escape to a quiet corner of California's wine country.
More: Explore Dry Creek Valley
You may know Livermore for its wines, but you’ll love a day spent wandering its nurseries. Spring doesn’t get any better than this: Grapevines leafing out and roses in mad bloom leave you itching to get your hands in the earth.
Blooming gardens brighten the foothill city of La Cañada Flintridge, located just east of L.A. Explore the beauty of the town's Descanso Gardens and beyond.
More: Explore Descanso Gardens