101 Funny and Inspiring Quotes About California (+ Instagram Captions)

palm trees in Santa Barbara

With stunning natural landscapes and endless opportunities, California inspires authors, artists, and dreamers. Here, you can find a variety of quotes about California to use as Instagram captions and artwork!

I’ve lived in California my whole life, moving here as a toddler from the Philippines. Every time Cecilio and I visit a new destination in California, I am just so in awe of the state’s beauty and God’s creation. No matter how far abroad I want to go, California’s giant redwoods, deep blue seas, and candy-coated flowers still blow my mind.

Alongside nature, California is the perfect state for city breaks. If you want to immerse yourself in culture, the arts, and food, you can find that in world-class cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles. You can even experience all of that in my hometown, Sacramento!

Whether you’re looking to sunbathe by the coast or tasting gourmet wines, I hope these images and quotes about California inspire you to book a trip to my beloved state! Heads up: you will absolutely need to rent a car in California. The train system isn’t all that great, and a road trip will lead you to some of California’s most epic points of attraction.

Inspiring Quotes About California

  • “California is a place of invention, a place of courage, a place of vision, a place of the future. People who made California what it is were willing to take risks, think outside convention and build.”—Nicolas Berggruen
  • “If they can’t do it in California, it can’t be done anywhere.”—Taylor Caldwell
  • “I like living in California. I think it’s the best state, although we’re supposedly the most hated state of all.”—Madeline Zima
  • “I am very lucky to live in California, which is not only filled with very entrepreneurial people who don’t wait around for success, but who make their own.”—Benjamin Stone
  • “All my life I’ve felt like somebody’s wife, or somebody’s mother or somebody’s daughter. Even all the time we were together, I never knew who I was. And that’s why I had to go away. And in California, I think I found myself.”—Robert Benton
  • “California has always led the way on environmental protection and always reaped the benefits, pioneering everything from catalytic convertors on cars to stationary source reduction.”—Ed Begley, Jr.
  • “Well, my thoughts about California are kind of mythological. To me, as well as being a real place, it’s a place where people go to find something – to find happiness or to realize their dreams. So it has that kind of quality of heroism and heartache, and Australia has that, as well.”—Colin Hay
  • “California has always led the way on environmental protection and always reaped the benefits, pioneering everything from catalytic convertors on cars to stationary source reduction.”—Ed Begley, Jr.
  • Our message to leaders from every continent was simple: California has succeeded on climate and clean energy because we’ve emphasized local, human values and built a coalition that includes community and environmental leaders, working families, and communities of color – as well as unions and progressive businesses.”—Tom Steyer
  • “The travel and tourism industry is the lifeblood of many states around the country – including Florida, California, New York, and Nevada, to name a few.”—Mark Foley
  • “When I came to California, it was the mecca of the world. Every young person on the planet wanted to be there.”—Joni Mitchell
  • “One of my reasons for living in California is its close proximity to Mexico. The Latin influence is in every corner of the community. My love of Spanish music hasn’t wavered since the ’50s. I could hear the blues voicing from the Flamenco families and I always dig for inspiration in Latin music.”—Eric Burdon
  • “California has everything it needs to be successful: world-class universities, pioneering innovators, diverse cultures, vast resources and people working hard to build a better future.”—Kevin Faulconer
  • Everything is just better in California – the wine, the food, fruits and vegetables, the comforts of living. Even the instrumentalists are generous and curious. Everything is wonderful.”—Beth Anderson
  • “As goes California, so goes the rest of the nation”—Gavin Newsom
  • “For me, California is all about rest, relaxation, space.”—Karen O.

Quotes about California Nature

  • “When California was wild, it was the floweriest part of the continent.”—John Muir
  • “Growing up in northern California has had a big influence on my love and respect for the outdoors. When I lived in Oakland, we would think nothing of driving to Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz one day and then driving to the foothills of the Sierras the next day.”—Tom Hanks
  • “In California in the early Spring, there are pale yellow mornings, when the mist burns slowly into day, the air stings like autumn, clarifies like pain. Well, I have dreamed this coast myself.”—Robert Hass
  • “I tell people that I represent the district with a third of the California coast, the biggest trees in the world, some of the best wine grapes in the world, and about 60 percent of the marijuana produced in America.”—Jared Huffman

Quotes About California Beaches

  • “California has a beautiful coastline. It can be a rough coastline. The waves are huge. The rocks are steep. Same thing in Vancouver. It has a beautiful coastline. It’s dramatic.”—Jennifer Granholm
  • “I always said that if I moved to California, I’d live by the ocean.”—Bob Baffert
  • “Myths that need clarification: “Everyone in California lives on a white, sandy beach.” False. The only people who live on California beaches are vacationers from Arizona, Utah, and Nevada who own condos.”—Erma Bombeck

Quotes About California Weather

  • “The weather in California is so much hotter than it is in England that it’s absolutely changed my style. I have many more dresses and shorts than I ever thought I would coming from UK! It’s so much easier to dress femininely in a warm climate.”—Tamsin Egerton
  • “If there was any other place I would live, other than Miami, it would be California. It’s beautiful. The weather is just gorgeous, I love being here, too.”—Jon Secada
  • “Everyone here seems to appreciate the sunshine way more than we do in California. We tend to take it for granted, but in Chicago, it’s like Woodstock love every time it gets above 70 degrees.”—Miranda Rae Mayo
  • “Helsinki may not be as cold as you make it out to be, but California is still a lot nicer. I don’t remember the last time I couldn’t walk around in shorts all day.”—Linus Torvalds
  • “Growing up in Northern California, I’ve only seen snow at Christmas maybe twice in my life! I was always jealous of my cousins on the East Coast with their white Christmases.”—Guy Fieri
  • “Move to California. Malibu is paradise.”—David Geffen

Quotes About California People

  • “I’m not really a Hollywood person. Not that I don’t like LA, but I’m just a Northern California guy.”—Clint Eastwood
  • “I left Chicago many years ago to move to California. You can’t help but live a healthy lifestyle here if you want to fit in. I find myself eating chicken and salad and chicken and salad and salad and chicken, like a monk.”—James Belushi
  • “I grew up in Northern California – Marin County, Tiburon. And it’s interesting. It’s a very rich place, but a lot of the affluent people are, they’re not as showy. So, like, they might have, like, a Saab or a Volvo. And then comes my dad from Iran. He buys a Rolls-Royce.”—Maz Jobrani

Funny Quotes About California

  • “I’m always tan and blonde and don’t really fit in New York. I’m a California girl, even if I try and cover it up with leather.”—Gigi Hadid
  • “California is a fine place to live—if you happen to be an orange.”—Fred Allen
  • “In California, the lines on the road are just a suggestion. They’re in the left lane with the left indicator on, so naturally it’s time to turn right! Are you kidding me? In your Prius? I know, you’re saving the Earth by trying to kill the people!”—Adam Ferrara
  • “Southern California, where the American Dream came too true.”—Lawrence Ferlinghetti
  • “One of the things I had a hard time getting used to when I came to California in ’78 was Santa Claus in shorts.”—Dennis Franz
  • “In California everyone goes to a therapist, is a therapist, or is a therapist going to a therapist.”—Truman Capote
  • “In California, they don’t throw their garbage away – they make it into TV shows.”—Woody Allen
  • “The rain is giving much-needed relief to California’s crops. By that I mean ‘marijuana.'”—Craig Ferguson

Quotes About San Francisco Bay Area

  • “I think Northern California is the most beautiful place on earth. And I adore New Orleans, but there’s something about the air in San Francisco, for instance. It changes from moment to moment, like one’s thoughts.”—Hilton Als
  • “No city invites the heart to come to life as San Francisco does. Arrival in San Francisco is an experience in living.”—William Saroyan
  • “The writer loves the fog as it pours in; he loves the sun when the fog pours out. The rest of California is Beach Boys country, but San Francisco has that moody thing going on, those blues notes wrapped in moisture, an atmosphere that tempers California dreaming and makes life more real. The fog brings reality, but it is still a California reality, one spent outdoors the whole year round.”—Eric Maisel
  • “You wouldn’t think such a place as San Francisco could exist. The wonderful sunlight there, the hills, the great bridges, the Pacific at your shoes. Beautiful Chinatown. Every race in the world. The sardine fleets sailing out. The little cable cars whizzing down The City hills. And all the people are open and friendly.”—Dylan Thomas
  • “Leaving San Francisco is like saying goodbye to an old sweetheart. You want to linger as long as possible.”—Walter Cronkite
  • “San Francisco itself is art, above all literary art. Every block is a short story, every hill a novel. Every home a poem, every dweller within immortal. That is the whole truth.”—William Saroyan
  • “There is more grace per square foot in San Francisco than any place on earth.”—Fulton J. Sheen
  • “The Bay Area is so beautiful, I hesitate to preach about heaven while I’m here.”—Billy Graham
  • “I don’t know of any other city where you can walk through so many culturally diverse neighborhoods, and you’re never out of sight of the wild hills. Nature is very close here.”—Gary Snyder
  • “I grew up in Oakland, California, and there was a really active scene in the Bay Area. Everyone else knew it as the ‘Hyphy Movement’ of Mac Dre, E-40, and The Pack.”—G-Eazy

Quotes About Sacramento

  • “I think maybe L.A. or San Francisco could be rushed, but Sacramento is just laid back!”—Nick Johnson
  • “It kills me when people talk about California hedonism. Anybody who talks about California hedonism has never spent a Christmas in Sacramento.”—Joan Didion
  • “One thing I’ll tell you is the food in Sacramento is off the charts. You’ve got good Asian food, the farm system where everything is natural, which I believe in. I like organic.”—George Karl
  • “The Sacramento area boasts one of the most vibrant business communities in Northern California, along with residential growth fueled by affordable housing and strong employment. We see it as a natural opportunity for growth. Expansion within Sacramento and neighboring counties is a top priority for us in the next few years.”—Steve Buster

Quotes About Los Angeles

  • “My favorite drive is Highway 101 in California between Los Angeles and San Luis Obispo. I love the 101; Highway 1 is too windy, and 5 is too boring – the 101 is just right. It’s like the Mama Bear of scenic drives.”—Art Alexakis
  • “In Los Angeles, by the time you’re 35, you’re older than most of the buildings.”—Delia Ephron
  • “I love Los Angeles. I love Hollywood. They’re beautiful. Everybody’s plastic, but I love plastic. I want to be plastic.”—Andy Warhol
  • “I’m attracted to creative people and train wrecks, and there’s no shortage of that in Los Angeles.”—Pete Wentz
  • “I think for a lot of people, acting becomes a lifestyle, especially when you’re living in Los Angeles.”—Blake Lively
  • “I like all the clichés. I mean, I love someone who lives in Los Angeles – so that’s a big draw. But I love the weather. It does feel like a slightly healthier lifestyle, being able to hike and do all that crap.”—Justin Theroux
  • I love the Latin neighborhoods in Los Angeles. It’s like traveling all over Latin America without ever leaving LA.”—Mauricio Cienfuegos
  • “Los Angeles is a very magical place when you take the entertainment industry out of it. You have beautiful beaches and amazing mountains here. I’m a big rock climber. I head out into the mountains whenever I have free time. It’s amazing.”—Alex Pettyfer
  • “I just feel like growing up in Los Angeles, you learn, ‘Well you’re never gonna be the prettiest girl in the room, so just don’t even try.’ I mean, I care about being pretty, but it’s not my most valued thing.”—Zooey Deschanel
  • “Tip the world over on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles”—Frank Lloyd Wright

California Instagram Quotes

  • This is what Golden State dreams are made of
  • West Coast is the Best Coast
  • Having fun in the Sun Diego
  • We’ll always have California
  • Going In and Out animal-style
  • It was a California love affair
  • Surfs up beaches!
  • No fun without California sun
  • Salt in my hair, sand in my toes, doesn’t get better than California
  • From snow to sea, life is better in Cali
  • Living in a Golden State of mind
  • Let’s taco-bout these margs
  • Is it Heaven or is it California?
  • In Cali-dise
  • Cali-dreamin’
  • Yo-se-mi-tearing over these mountains
  • Califunia time!
  • Let’s sease the day
  • That Cali sunset glow tho
  • Golden State, Golden Skies, Golden Skin
  • It was such a Big Sur-prise
  • All this wine makes me need a Napa
  • Life in the Bestest Coast
  • Here’s the 101 on Cali

Song Lyrics About Califonia

  • “No mountain’s too high / No stone is too small / I’ll build a bridge through the fire / For you I would crawl / From New York to California”—Mat Kearney, New York to California
  • “Going to California with an aching in my heart / Someone told me there’s a girl out there / With love in her eyes and flowers in her hair”—Led Zeppelin, Going to California
  • “Spend about a week on Venice Beach / Sippin Crist-o, with some freaks from Frisco / I’m going going, back back, to Cali Cali (going back to Cali)”—The Notorious B.I.G, Going Back to Cali
  • “Dream of Californication / Destruction leads to a very rough road but it also breeds creation / And earthquakes are to a girl’s guitar, they’re just another good vibration”—Red Hot Chili Peppers, Californication
  • “California girls / We’re unforgettable / Daisy dukes / Bikinis on top / Sun-kissed skin / So hot / We’ll melt your popsicle“—Katy Perry, California Gurls
  • “When the lights go down in the city / And the sun shines on the bay / Do I wanna be there in my city?”—Journey, Lights (About San Francisco)
  • “I left my heart in San Francisco / High on a hill, it calls to me / To be where little cable cars climb halfway to the stars”—Tony Bennett, I Left My Heart in San Francisco
  • “Let’s you and me make our way just beyond Haight Street / Let’s leave this life behind, forgetting all they say / The time we have (time we have) / Is time well borrowed / Stay out all night (out all night) / Forget tomorrow”—Anberlin, Haight Street
  • “Welcome to the Hotel California / Such a lovely place (such a lovely place) / Such a lovely face / Plenty of room at the Hotel California / Any time of year (any time of year) / You can find it here”—Eagles, Hotel California
  • “The California kids / Will throw you a lifeline / And if you’re up all night / Thinking about something you did / The California kids / Will show you the sunshine”—Weezer, California Kids
  • “You bridge and tunnel crowd / Hanging your trousers down at heel / This is the realest thing / As ancient choirs sing / A rushing rabble revels from above / Los Angeles, my love”—The Decemberists, Los Angeles, I’m Yours
  • “Meet me in California / I’ll be there waiting for your call / I’ll be there waiting for you / ‘Cause you know in California / There’s something better for us all” —Plain White T’s, Meet Me in California
  • “Just don’t go back to Big Sur / Hangin’ around / Lettin’ your old man down / Just don’t go back to Big Sur / Baby, baby, please don’t go / Oh, baby, baby, please don’t go”—Big Sur, The Thrills


If these quotes about California have inspired you, what are you waiting for?! I have some guides to help you start planning for your California trip!

Hannah is a travel writer, graphic designer, and the founder/editor of Hannah on Horizon. She is based in Sacramento, California, living with her husband and two adorable dogs. She shares tips on how to experience luxury travel on any budget, and how to maximize time at each trip or destination, no matter what your budget or amount of vacation time at work. She enjoys making you feel like you have visited each destination with her through her storytelling and informative writing style.

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