The 12 Most Instagrammable Destinations in Northern California

There are just so many beautiful destinations in Northern California that everyone should see once in their lifetime, and what good is a visit without a stellar photo to go with it? Even if you’re not a great photographer, we’ve picked out some of the most photogenic destinations in NorCal that make for the perfect model in any photoshoot.

Here are the 12 most Instagrammable destinations in NorCal:

Heart Lake, Mount Shasta

Photo by Stephen Leonardi

Mount Shasta is a popular place for photography, with multiple places to get incredible angles of the Crown of California. But the most popular spot is overlooking Heart Lake, with gorgeous views of Castle Lake, Black Butte and Mount Shasta.

Let’s see some of the photos you can get from this area:

Learn about Heart Lake

Cypress Tree Tunnel, Point Reyes National Seashore

Photo by Shakti Rajpurohit

Point Reyes National Seashore is home to some amazing beach areas and wildlife, but if you look for it on Instagram, you’re bound to see some mesmerizing photography of the Cypress Tree Tunnel. Planted in the 1930’s, the Cypress trees along a small road create a beautiful “tree tunnel” that will make you think you’re in a fairy tale.

Let’s see some photos of this magical place:

Learn more about the Cypress Tree Tunnel

Yosemite Falls, Yosemite National Park

Photo by Michael Block

Yosemite Falls, the tallest waterfall in North America, is arguably the centerpiece of one of the world’s most popular parks, Yosemite National Park. It actually consists of three separate falls: Upper Yosemite Fall, the Middle Cascades, and Lower Yosemite Falls. The Upper and Lower sections of the waterfall are some of the most popular and beautiful destinations in the park.

Let’s check out some photography from all the different angles of the falls:

Learn all about Yosemite Falls

4. Burney Falls

President Theodore Roosevelt dubbed Burney Falls the “Eighth Wonder of the World” so you can see why people flock to the destination for photography. Standing at 129-feet of pure glory, the glorious, year-round falls dwarfs anyone who stands in front of it.

Let’s see some photos of the Eighth Wonder of the World:

Read all about Burney Falls – the Eighth Wonder of the World

5. Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe

Emerald Bay is a National Natural Landmark, and when you see it in person you’ll know why. The bay is known for it’s pristine waters, isolated island and 180 degrees of overhead views to bask in its beauty. This area provides one of the most gorgeous views of Lake Tahoe and is a very popular destination for tourists.

Let’s take a look at its beauty:

Learn about Emerald Bay

6. Manzanita Lake, Lassen Volcanic National Park

Manzanita Lake is one of the most photographed lakes in Lassen and the centerpiece of the park’s main visitor area. With a large campground nearby and a picturesque view of the active volcano in the background, it can provide the perfect experience for a budding photographer. The lake is most notably photographed with a reflection of Lassen Peak.

See it’s epic beauty for yourself:

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We literally ran to catch this sunset!

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Won’t you stop and remember me

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Learn more about visiting Lassen’s Manzanita Lake

7. Fern Canyon, Redwood National Park

Flickr/Kirt Edblom

Walking through Fern Canyon, hikers are greeted with 40-50 foot high walls covered in five fingered ferns, sword ferns, and delicate lady ferns. The unique destination has been featured in blockbuster films like Star Wars and Jurassic Park 2, and is one of the top NorCal destinations for hotshot Instagrammers. Although the fern-laden walls are awesome in photos, it’s probably a place you should see in person.

See the photos:

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5 days ago I set off to live out of my tiny red car and travel full time. And most of that time I'll be in Oregon! So that means all my Oregon friends and follows are invited to come and hangout any step of the way. Maybe show me your favorite spots, take some cool shots, and keep me from being a loner the entire time. I'd really love to meet and hangout with you! So DM me! 🙂 ______________________ #ferncanyon #fern #canyon #canon #wildcalifornia #canonusa #earthfocus #ourplanetdaily #thisworldexists #rei1440project #statepark #castatepark #travel #summer #wanderlust #coast #explore #carlifestyle #backpack #hike #followmefaraway #outdoorproject #nature #carlifestyle

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The best things in life are tree(s)

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Learn about Humboldt’s illustrious Fern Canyon

8. Mossbrae Falls

Flickr/Michael Moore

Sitting at 50 feet high and 150 feet wide, Mossbrae Falls might be Northern California’s most unique waterfall. Although difficult to get to, the presence of the river beneath the falls, which is actually a series of springs, enhances the scene and makes for one of the prettiest sights in the Shasta area. Located in Dunsmuir, the difference between Mossbrae and other NorCal waterfalls is that it seems the rock and moss are continually bleeding fresh, mountain water. It’s quite a sight to behold.

Here are some photos of the unique waterfall:

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Spending this women’s day with somebody who has just entered my life this year. And has already taken on the roles of my travel buddy, adventure buddy, my companion for life, my muse, my best friend and my wife. @nbya21 🤗 . Our first trip happened to be an adventure of all sorts, from waterfall hikes to snowball fights, from hiking in light snow, to getting caught in the night in a snow storm. Driving for over 12 hours would not have been possible without her constantly by my side without a wink trying to constantly keep me focused and motivated. . Happy Women’s day to all the women out there who constantly inspire, motivate and lead every single day in every aspect of life possible. Another of my biggest strengths in this life having been my mom @zkhais. . #wildcalifornia #master_shots #theoutbound #travelbug #bbcearth #usatoday #yourtake #pocket_allnature #wildernessculture #stayandwander #agameoftones #earthpix #awesomeearth #roamtheplanet #justgoshoot #neverstopexploring #visualsoflife #livetoexplore #bbctravel #waterfall #nabsamalways #greatshotz #longexposure_shots

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Happy birthday 🥔

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Learn more about the Mossbrae Falls

9. Lake Aloha, Desolation Wilderness

Photo by Ryan Loughrey

Lake Aloha in the Desolation Wilderness just west of Lake Tahoe is an azure splendor set amidst a sea of slate gray rock. The lake is home to crystal clear snowmelt water surrounded by the pristine mountains of the Sierra Nevada. As the most popular and easiest hike in the Desolation Wilderness, the unique views at the lake at 8,000 feet do not disappoint.

See the photos:

Learn more about Tahoe’s Lake Aloha

10. Yosemite Valley

We’ve already mentioned Yosemite Falls on this list, but I’d be remised not to include the insane views provided over the valley at Yosemite National Park. Typically shot from the overlook at Glacier Point, an overhead view of the valley, which includes views of El Capitan and Half Dome, is a view you’ll remember for the rest of your life. If you can pull off a high-quality photo of the valley, you’ll find jealousy from whoever see it.

See the photos:

Learn about 3 world-renown day hikes in Yosemite National Park

11. Golden Gate Bridge

We know that grabbing a photo of the Golden Gate Bridge is the most “touristy” thing you can do in NorCal, but you can’t deny just how famous the bridge is around the world. And there are just so many ways to capture the beautiful bridge that can show its surroundings of Marin County, the San Francisco Bay, Baker Beach and the city of San Francisco. It really is the perfect model for any photoshoot.

Here are a few angles you can get of the bridge:

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