Did you know California has a miniature Grand Canyon and it's less than 1.5 hours from Los Angeles? Red Rock Canyon State Park is an enchanting outdoor adventure, offering miles of scenic trails and spectacular rock formations to explore.
The most popular things to do there are hiking, stargazing, and photography. The spectacular night skies are free of light pollution; the park is a prime spot to see the Milky Way Galaxy and spectacular meteor showers.
To get there, you'll need to take California Highway 14 from Los Angeles past Mojave and on the way to the Eastern Sierras.
After a wet winter, you may also find wildflowers blooming in spring.
This state park in Cantil is just a short drive from SoCal's beautiful beaches and most famous attractions.
It's well worth the drive and you can visit any time since the park is open year-round. However, it's best to avoid visiting in the summer when temperatures are high.
Everywhere you turn, there are rust and cream-colored rocks warped by wind and rain. The resulting scenery is breathtaking! You'll get amazing views as you wander through the brightly colored canyon walls.
During the spring and fall, the Red Rock Canyon Interpretive Association offers guided tours throughout the park. You can register here. You can choose from events such as Campfire Talk: Survival Mojave, spring hikes, and astronomy tours.
Make sure to bring your camera; you'll want to take lots of photos. The park is famous for its scenic desert cliffs and dramatic buttes.
While there are plenty of trails to explore, we love Hagen Canyon Nature Trail.
This 1.2-mile loop trail is good for all skill levels, dog-friendly, and offers beautiful views of the surrounding scenery.
For more hiking inspiration, you can also check out the best beginner hikes in California. These trails will lead you to amazing views without having to break a sweat!
Red Rock Canyon State Park
Price: $15 per car admission fee
Address: 37749 Abbott Dr, Cantil, CA
Why You Need To Go: You can take a short road trip to the "Little Grand Canyon" and enjoy spectacular views and a break from the city.
Editor's Note: Exploring off the trail is allowed. However, we strongly recommend exercising caution, as many parts of the ground are uneven and the rock may crumble.
We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.