Aka the Golden State?
Are you considering a move to one of the many great cities in California? Let KPG Healthcare be the first to say, “Welcome!”
We are so glad you are thinking about moving to California, or if you’re already in the state and just relocating, that’s also great! Regardless of where you end up, we know you’re going to love the Golden State.
The real question is, where are you thinking of? San Francisco? Los Angeles? Ventura? Oakland? Sacramento? San Diego?
Don’t worry, KPG Healthcare is here to provide you with some insight into some of the great regions that make up California.
Aka, “The Golden State,” is the third-largest state in the United States with about 40 million people. The state is so large that one in eight people in the U.S. lives in California. Wild right?
There are about five major cities – San Diego, Los Angeles, San Jose, San Francisco, and Sacramento. San Diego and Los Angeles fall in the south, also known as “SoCal.” San Jose, San Francisco, and Sacramento are located more north in “NorCal.”
California is so large that it stretches over 900 miles along the Pacific Coast. There was a bill to split the state into four individual states, it’s THAT large.
With that being said, we are going to provide some insight for each region – Northern California (NorCal), Southern California (SoCal), and Central California.
Northern California, otherwise known as “NorCal,” is largely associated with The San Francisco Bay Area, also known as “The Bay Area.” Cities like San Jose, Oakland, and Berkeley fall within the region. The Bay Area is also home to some of the world’s biggest technology companies like Facebook, Google, Apple, and Tesla.
The weather in NorCal will vary, depending on where you go. For example, San Francisco experiences fog almost year-round due to their geographic location. Whereas San Jose, which is about 40 miles south of San Francisco, can reach temperatures up to 100F in the summer due to their geographic location/features.
Regardless, the weather in NorCal is great for people who like to experience the cold (50-60F in SF) with the option of warming up driving a little south.
California offers some of the best and diverse food in the world. It is a gateway to Asia with a heavy influence of Latin American cultures, more specifically Mexican culture.
San Francisco’s food scene is some of the best in the world, but you can always find your faithful local taqueria. There’s nostalgic like The House of Prime Rib to the new like Hop on Bart to Oakland and the food scene changes; always groundbreaking and forever delicious. From nostalgic San Francisco foods to up and coming in Oakland, vegan ice cream to Michelin star restaurants, you’ll find something to love.
Natural beauty fills the state from the towering redwoods in The Redwood National Forest to El Capitan in Yosemite, the glorious Pacific Coast Highway to not-so-glorious I-5 Golden State Highway.
In NorCal, you can find the John Muir Woods, Marin Headlands, Lake Tahoe, Mount Diablo, Mission Peaks, and so many other great outdoor activities. You can also kayak in the bay to catch some home runs at Oracle Park (formerly AT&T Park). All within a reasonable distance!
Otherwise known as “SoCal,” is typically what people might imagine what California to be – sunshine, fame, Hollywood, glam, and surfing. You’re not wrong, but that mainly pertains to SoCal and not NorCal. SoCal contains the Los Angeles County, Orange County, San Diego County, Inland Empire, and then you’ve got Palms Springs and the desert.
The weather in SoCal is typically warm, however, you will experience a drop in temperatures during the winter months and during the evenings, especially more inland. But there’s a reason why people decide to move to LA, the weather. The love of being outdoors and in the sun is almost a must while living in SoCal. Just make sure to wear sunscreen!
California is rooted in Mexican history and culture. However, there are so many cultures that make up the California population and it has transformed the way food is perceived, accepted and intertwined with society.
Los Angeles is a huge port for trade and tourism, mix that with the proximity to the US-Mexico border, you get a melting pot of magnificent cultures, beautiful traditions and an abundance of diverse delicious food. The Mexican food scene in LA and SD is insane. Secretly, it’s something Californians like to compare when they travel to other states.
The difference between NorCal and SoCal, in terms of natural beauty, is that if you live in Los Angeles, you are “one hour from the beach and two hours from the snow.” You have access to Big Bear Lake, which is about two-three hours from Los Angeles, Joshua Tree National Park, Angeles National Forest, as well as a handful of state parks.
Additionally, there is an abundance of great beaches stretching from Ventura County down to the US-Mexico border.
For most people, they know it as the place you drive through when you’re on the I-5, but there are hidden gems within Central California. While it’s not compared to Nor/SoCal, you can’t knock it until you’ve been!
Central California is where a handful of agriculture is grown for the entire US, from almonds to nectarines, peaches to grains. When you’re on the I-5 passing through Central California you will an abundance of fruit stands fresh from the fields and it’s worth a try! If that’s not your vibe, pull off to one of many pit stops like the famous Pea Soup Anderson’s Inn.
The weather in Central California is typically dry and hot, but temperatures can drop during the evening times due it being in a valley. Expect the weather to be constant throughout the year. Notably, Yosemite Valley is a Central California staple known worldwide for its spectacular waterfalls, hiking, and natural beauty. The weather here will reflect the changes in the seasons.
The known counties within Central California are Fresno, Merced and Monterey. Merced is an upcoming town with the University of California, Merced being a huge addition to the town. Fresno during the spring when the almond tree blossoms are in bloom is an Instagrammers dream. There are hidden gems in Central California, but you have to be willing to explore and find them!
The food scene in Central California is not what you would expect from the surrounding regions of California. The one thing that you can count on is the amount of fresh produce there is to offer in certain parts of the region. Don’t hold your breath for fresh fish.
Overall, California is a great place to be. There is a place for everyone in California due to the wide variety of things to see, eat and do! Even if you want to explore the rest of California you have the option of cheap flights (when booking appropriately and during sales)!
California might take some adjusting to because neither NorCal, SoCal or Central California are the same. The vibes are the same in some aspects but also very different…but I will let you uncover it for yourself! Happy exploring!