Kern County is often referred to as the “Golden Empire” and for good reason. The Kern River is the gateway to the Sequoia National Monument and offers numerous day trip destinations. The area was first settled in 1866 has a rich history of oil – black gold, and agriculture. Today Kern county attracts thousands every year.
To the east is the Mojave Desert, home to several natural wonders and interesting places to visit. Red Rock Canyon is great for rock hounds with its majestic rock formations and unique landscape.
There are remnants of Kern County’s historic past strewn throughout the desert floor and one of the best places to experience this is the real living ghost town of Randsburg. But the past is not all that is alive in Kern County.
Just to the south of Randsburg, in the heart of the Mojave desert is Edwards Air Force Base. Visitors can explore and learn about the history of flight and developments in military advancements at the Vernon P. Saxon Flight Museum, or the U.S. Naval Museum of Armament and Tech in China Lake.
To the west of Edwards and just on the other side of the Tehachapi Mountains, is the City of Bakersfield, the birthplace of the “Bakersfield Sound”, and the epicenter for Basque food restaurants. Further to the west are the Tule Elk State Reserve, McKittrick tar pits and the Kern Oil Museum.
Where to Stay: The Kern River Inn, Kernville, Ca.- This charming inn is nestled in the Southern Sierra Nevada mountains in the town of Kernville, and has treating guests to a comfortable room on the banks of the Kern River for almost a decade.
The atmosphere is relaxed and comfortable. Guests can enjoy a bountiful breakfast Virginia’s famous “eye opening” breakfasts and you have the perfect start to a beautiful time in the mountains.
The Cottage Hotel, Randsburg, Ca.- It’s like stepping back in time to the turn of the century when the gold boom was in full stride and the town of Randsburg was the epicenter. The inn has survived three, flu epidemics and many rough customers. Guest will awake and be treated to a continental breakfast served in the Tea Room.
Where to Eat: Woolgrowers, Bakersfield, Ca. – For 50-years Woolgrowers has offered an authentic sampling of Basque culture. These include lamb stews, bean dishes, sparkling wine, and Basque cider. There are dozens of Basque dining choices in the City of Bakersfield, but Woolgrowers is number one.
Dewar’s, Bakersfield, Ca. – After you have concluded your dining or perhaps to satisfy your craving for something sweet, a visit to the Dewar’s family Candy and Ice Cream Parlor is a traditional old-fashioned soda fountain experience.
Dewer’s has been serving up homemade ice cream, an assortment of taffy chews and hand dipped chocolate candies for over 100 years. You can even take a tour of the candy and ice cream production center.
Domingo’s, Boron, Ca. – This is one of Kern County’s hidden gems, located off the beaten path in the small town of Boron. They have been serving authentic Mexican food for over two decades. Signed photos of Astronauts are posted on the walls, along with a great Mexican atmosphere.
Kern County is located in the southern Central Valley of the U.S. state of California. It extends east beyond the southern slope of the eastern Sierra Nevada range into the Mojave Desert, and includes parts of the Indian Wells Valley, and the Antelope Valley.
Bakersfield is the largest city in Kern County. Lake Isabella, the Sequoia National Monument and the Wild and Scenic Kern River are some of the most visited destinations in Kern County. Plan on spending several days exploring Kern County, California.
Kern county is about a three hour drive from Los Angeles or San Francisco.