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My husband and I are visiting California in October and we are planning a road trip from LA to San Francisco, Las Vegas and back. We have only 12 days for all that, but we are most interested in natural attractions, small western style villages and generally places that represent life in western America and are not widely known to the tourists.

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Why unnecessarily rule out touristy places? Yosemite, Lassen, Joshua Tree are amazing, do represent "the West" but I can't say that any "aren't touristy." –  Affable Geek Aug 11 '13 at 20:55
    
We won't rule out touristy places. We plan on visiting many of those you're mentioning, but we would also like to have a little taste of the inland, at places not so famous. –  VassoG Aug 11 '13 at 22:16
    
@VassoG You should visit Yosemite National Park, Lake Tahoe, Carson City & Reno –  Simon Aug 12 '13 at 12:08
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closed as primarily opinion-based by Dirty-flow, choster, Mark Mayo, mindcorrosive Aug 12 '13 at 5:48

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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Driving almost any portion of Highway 1. I used to live in Monterey (which is a really cool town to visit by the way) and would drive up and down Highway 1 on weekends...it's absolutely gorgeous.

Highly recommended! ...not sure if that's touristy or not though haha.

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