Covering an area of 423,970 sq. km, the State of California is located in the western (Pacific) region of the United States.
As observed on the map, California presents the most diverse series of landforms in the entire United States. The state’s diverse topography ranges from the western Pacific Coast to the eastern Sierra Nevada mountains; and from the giant redwood and conifer trees of the northwest to the arid Mars-like landscapes of the southeast.
Fronted by the sandy beaches of its Pacific Ocean coastline, California's land quickly rises into the steep rocky cliffs and foothills of the Coastal Mountains. The 462-mile-long Central Valley (including the San Joaquin and Sacramento Valleys) is positioned between the Coastal Mountain Ranges in the west, the massive peaks of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in the east, the Cascade Range in the north, and the Tehachapi Mountains in the south. Located in eastern California within the snow-capped mountain peaks of Sierra Nevada is, Mount Whitney. Rising to an elevation of 14,505ft (4,421m) it is the highest point in California as well as the highest point in the 48 (contiguous) U.S. States.
Additional mountains range in California includes the Klamath Mountains and the Los Angeles Ranges, as well as a series of mountains generally running from west to east to the immediate north of the city of Los Angeles.
The Mojave and Colorado Deserts dominate the far south and southeast. This wide, generally flat expanse of land, is punctuated by irregular mountain peaks and occupies about one-sixth of the state’s land area. An arid, inhospitable, and extremely hot desert area called the Death Valley - runs along the eastern border with Nevada. Within it, is located the lowest point in California as well as in the entire United States at (-282ft).
Significant rivers of the state include Colorado, as well as the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers in the Central Valley. Located off California’s southern coast are the Channel Islands. Lake Tahoe is the largest lake of Sierra Nevada, situated across the California-Nevada border. Located to the west of the Sierra Nevada in Lake County is the Clear Lake - the largest natural freshwater lake in California.
The State of California is divided into 58 counties. In alphabetical order, these counties are: Alameda, Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Colusa, Contra Costa, Del Norte, El Dorado, Fresno, Glenn, Humboldt, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Lake, Lassen, Los Angeles, Madera, Marin, Mariposa, Mendocino, Merced, Modoc, Mono, Monterey, Napa, Nevada, Orange, Placer, Plumas, Riverside, Sacramento, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Luis Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Trinity, Tulare, Tuolumne, Ventura, Yolo, and Yuba.
With an area of 423,970 sq. km, California is the 3rd largest and the most populous state in the USA. Located in the north-central part of the state in the Sacramento Valley is Sacramento – the capital and the 6th largest city of California. It serves as the administrative, political, financial, educational, health-care, and tourism center of the state. It is also the cultural, and economic hub of the larger Sacramento Metropolitan Area. Situated in Southern California is Los Angeles – the largest and the most populous city in California. It is also the 2nd most populous city in the United States. The city of Los Angeles has been designated as a global city and is considered to be a leader in the technology, science, entertainment, and medicine industry. Los Angeles County is also the most populous county in the United States.
The State of California is located in the western (Pacific) region of the United States. California is bordered by the state of Oregon in the north, by Nevada and Arizona in the east, and by the Mexican state of Baja California in the south. It is also bounded by the Pacific Ocean in the west.
Regional Maps: Map of North America
|Legal Name||State of California|
|ISO 3166 Code||US-CA|
This page was last updated on February 25, 2021