The Perfect Fourth of July in California

California is a big state, so every major city and small town has their own way of celebrating this fantastic nation’s independence! From fireworks over California’s magnificent waters, to county fairs, to festive parades, the Golden State sure does things big. Check out the ways that you can enjoy fireworks and have some fun this Fourth of July in California! 

1. Big Bay Fireworks, San Diego, CA

Big Bay Fireworks is one of the biggest Independence Day Celebrations in California. Make a reservation to get out on the water for a great view, or bring your own lawn chair and enjoy the show from a recommended location on the shore. You can also time your dinner at Bali Hai or Costerra or another restaurant sponsor so that you can eat and enjoy the show at the same time.

2. Pier 39, San Francisco, CA

When it comes to celebrating July 4, Pier 39 does it big! This year, find events ranging from sunset yacht cruises, live music, and of course, an unbelievable firework display for the whole family to enjoy! 

3. Annual John Olguin July 4th Spectacular, Cabrillo Beach, CA

A rare free event in Los Angeles, head to Cabrillo Beach on the Fourth of July to enjoy live music, food trucks, and activities, before viewing fireworks on the water once the sun goes down.

4. Conejo Recreation and Park District and City of Thousand Oaks Fourth of July, Thousand Oaks, CA

For this July 4 event, there is a whole slate of activities scheduled—perfect for the entire family. In the morning, enjoy a pancake breakfast at Newbury Park, followed by a homerun derby. Up next, visit Conejo Community Park in Thousand Oaks for a Concert in the Park, as well as games and crafts. Cap off the day with a spectacular firework display—with the best viewing being from the Oaks & Janss Marketplace parking lots. 

5. Reagan Library Presidential Library 4th of July Celebration, Simi Valley, CA

As America turns 242 years-old, celebrate at a bastion of American life, the Reagan Library. You don’t need a reservation, but there is a fee to enjoy a full day of activities ranging from patriotic music to food and fun.

6. Fireworks by the Sea, Channel Islands Harbor, CA

The Fireworks by the Sea includes a full day of activities, kicking off with a charity run and children’s parade and later an electric boat parade and fireworks, with activities, food booths, rock climbing walls, and more in between! 

7. Rancho Cordova 4th of July Celebration, Rancho Cordova, CA

The Rancho Cordova 4th of July Celebration is so big that it actually starts on July 3. Concerts featuring Bruno Mars tribute groups, a carnival, a cornhole tournament, petting zoo, and parade, are all part of the celebration! 

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8. Lights on the Lake Fireworks, Lake Tahoe, CA

Lake Tahoe’s Lights on the Lake Fireworks is so big and spectacular that it has landed in the pages of national publications as one of the best ways to celebrate. Fireworks are choreographed to tunes that are broadcast through a local radio station and you can hike through Tahoe’s trails and towns to get glimpse of the action.

9. Napa County Fair, Calistoga, CA

The Napa County Fair coincides with the Fourth of July—what fun! In keeping with Napa’s reputation as a food destination, the fair also includes a Chef’s Showcase with the area’s most acclaimed chefs, including reality television competitors. There is also a parade with lavish floats and a firework show with live music.

10. Annual Fourth of July Parade, Mammoth, CA

Skip the snow and head to Mammoth in the sunny summer to snag a seat along the annual parade route that goes through town. The mountains look different in the summer, but there is still plenty of outdoor activity to enjoy.

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