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Summer vacation, here we come! What's new for you in California -- and beyond

Does your summer vacation planning need a kickstart? You’ve come to the right place. Here are scores of ideas for new and different places to stay and places to play. Make your picks and pack your bags for summer of ’15 fun.

Skip to: San Francisco | Catalina | Sierra | California | U.S.A. | The World | New apps


Urban Putt in San Francisco. (Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times)

Why, San Francisco, you've changed!

You'll leave your heart in San Francisco all over again when you see what’s new in the City by the Bay: Boozy mini-golf, neo-Mexican cuisine, new lights on the Ferry Building and fire pits -- and picnickers -- on the Presidio's parade lawn. Here’s your excuse to head on back.

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The Trans-Catalina Trail runs from one end of the island to the other. (Daniel A. Anderson)

There's plenty new to do on Santa Catalina Island

One instant favorite: A new -- hiccup -- happy hour hike of Avalon that hits watering holes serving up specialty island drinks. There's also a new destination day spa, and a tour that asks the question "Is Catalina a UFO hot spot?" The answer is out there...

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Mammoth Mountain chairlifts will bring the public up to the June Meadows Chalet Summer Cafe. (Peter Morning / Mammoth Mountain)

Ready for an action-packed summer adventure? Sierra is calling...

The summer attractions just keep coming: Biking, hiking, sushi bistros and gastro pubs, tram rides and more. Here's the 411 on Sierra fun.

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The Laguna Beach House is dotted with vintage surf and California memorabilia.(Mark Epstein / Laguna Beach House)

Think you've 'done' SoCal and California? Think again

Travel the Golden State this summer and find yourself enchanted by a changing slate of hotels, spas, museums and more, from San Diego to the Coachella Valley to Napa Valley.

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Mary Heilmann's painted chairs on a terrace at New York's Whitney Museum of American Art. (Mark Lennihan / AP Photo)

What summer '15 has in store for you all across the U.S.A.

Traveling across the Pacific or across the country, you’ll find much to tickle your travel fancy, from rum tasting in Hawaii to New York’s amazing One World Observatory.

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Dinosaurs Alive at the Calgary Zoo. (Calgary Zoo)

Fancy a bit of globetrotting this summer?

If the world is your oyster, get ready to dine. We found new luxe hotels in Los Cabos, Mexico, life-size animatronic "dinosaurs" at Alberta's Calgary Zoo, a mountain-to-mountain zip-line in British Columbia and so much more.

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The FotoSketcher app takes a photograph of the Norwegian Dawn, docked in Bermuda, and makes it seems like a sketch. (Catharine Hamm / Los Angeles Times)

15 apps guaranteed to make your summer vacation easier -- and a lot more fun

Raise your vacation to a new level with the help of a variety of travel, music, video apps and more.

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