California: Catalina Island
Chewing-gum tycoon William Wrigley Jr. purchased Santa Catalina Island in 1919 and turned it into a tourist destination and the spring-training home of the Chicago Cubs. Once an idyllic playground for Hollywood royals like Marilyn Monroe and John Wayne, sunny Catalina still retains an earnest SoCal vibe with a rich and unusual wildlife population, including wild bison (brought to the island for a movie in the 1920s) and flying fish. The best way to explore Catalina is on a rented golf cart or flying 300 feet above sea level via five zip lines that span 3/4 of a mile. For a hearty meal with sunset views, check out Steve’s Steakhouse. And for a sweet treat on-the-go, you can’t go wrong with saltwater taffy at Lloyd’s of Avalon Confectionery.