There are few places in the world as perfect for motorcycle riders as California. With warm, temperate weather and a wide range of terrains to enjoy, the Golden State has great destinations for the casual rider and avid motorcyclist alike. With roadside country stores, unspoiled wilderness, and reservoirs to discover, you can spend years exploring just California astride a bike and never finish seeing everything there is to see along the highways. Though Cali is famous for its traffic jams, there are plenty of ways to skirt the big cities and avoid the cars for a great ride.
- Mojave National Preserve – Here is where mountains and desert meet. This high desert has glorious pink sand, shaped into dunes, and plenty of unique desert plants unfamiliar to someone who has never spent time in the dry heat. The road around the preserve is a twisty, well-kept ride.
- Uvas Reservoir – The reservoir sits poised between two sets of hills, reflecting the blue of the sky on a clear day. The road that gets you to and around the reservoir has been freshly resurfaced and is a fairly straight shot, allowing you to focus on the roadside views.
- Titlow Hill – This hill is actually a mountain, with thick forests, frequented by deer. Stopping off the side of the road by Titlow Hill—and because the ride is challenging, many people do stop to take a breather half way through—you will fall in love with cool, clean mountain air.
- Ben Lomond – Ben Lomond is a small town on the edge of the redwood forest. Getting to this charming little hamlet will take you past some of the world’s oldest and most beautiful trees and the town can be either the end or the beginning of a lovely ride through these forests.
- Rock Store – Once a small, roadside grocery story, Rock Store has blossomed into a gathering place for motorcycle enthusiasts. Getting to Rock Store via Mulholland Highway (the recommend method) will take you through some of California’s most twisty and beautiful scenery. Don’t forget to pull off and take in the rock cliff faces and green forests.
- Big Bear – Big Bear has always been a gathering place for those who love the outdoors, but the look around the lap is also great for motorcycle riders. Whether you want to camp along the water or splurge on a fancy hotel, don’t forget to take in the panoramic views of the water and forests.
- Death Valley – If you want to feel to feel completely transported, completely removed from the world, the very best destination in California is Death Valley. There is something eerily alien about the desert here, and standing alongside the road, you will feel as though you’ve left earth behind. The ride is twisty, but not too involved that you can’t enjoy the scenery.