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Your guide to Bakersfield
All About Bakersfield
Situated in California’s San Joaquin Valley, one of the world’s largest agricultural areas, the city of Bakersfield boasts a unique combination of rural and urban flair. The Kern River running through town lends itself to rafting and tubing excursions, and at the heart of the city you’ll find numerous parks, public pools, and golf courses to keep you busy outdoors. The arts district in Bakersfield is dotted with art galleries, museums, music venues, and a performance theatre that stages shows throughout the year.
Vineyards, orchards, and almond and citrus groves cover its outlying regions, providing the bounty for the area’s famous farmers’ markets. Beyond the farmland, the mountains that partially surround Bakersfield offer the perfect landscape for hiking and biking.
The best time to stay in a vacation rental in Bakersfield
Bakersfield’s hot, dry summers and mild, rainy winters are typical of its arid subtropical climate. Spring and fall are a pleasant time to book vacation rentals in Bakersfield if you’re looking to avoid the summer heat. Not only are the temperatures pleasant during these seasons, they’re also popular times for events and festivals in the area. In September, the Bakersfield Village Fest features food booths, local beer and wine, and several music stages. The Bakersfield Greek Food Festival is another popular fall event, with live music, traditional dancing, and authentic Greek delicacies. Spring means colorful blooms of wildflowers in Kern County’s wild spaces. The Arvin Wildflower Festival in spring, a 30-minute drive away, features a carnival, entertainment, food, and crafts.
Top things to do in Bakersfield
Hart Memorial Park
Located 15 minutes northeast of downtown Bakersfield, Hart Memorial Park is a sprawling green oasis on the Kern River, home to California wildlife including kit foxes, beavers, egrets, and blue herons. Its 370 acres are crisscrossed by numerous bike paths and equestrian trails, while its two lakes are popular for boating and fishing for trout, catfish, and bass. Bring a picnic, or prepare your own at one of the grills and barbecue pits.
Kern County Museum
Just north of downtown, Kern County Museum features more than 50 original historic buildings across 16 acres arranged to create the town of Pioneer Village, including a general store, a jail, an oil derrick, and a one-room schoolhouse. On display throughout are artifacts from the history of the San Joaquin Valley, including farming tools, furnishings, and neon signs. The museum offers guided tours and hosts events throughout the year.
Sequoia National Park
Two hours north, Sequoia National Park is a natural fairyland of striking boulders, pristine rivers, cascading waterfalls, and the park’s main feature, giant sequoias. Hiking, biking, and horseback riding are all popular ways to explore the diverse landscape. The park is also the natural habitat of owls, pikas, lizards, turtles, bats, and black bears.