Have you ever considered going on a road trip to an authentic ghost town? We can all agree there is something breathtaking about a town frozen in time. It gives us a chance to travel back in time and see what life was like over a century ago. Today’s TV series like Westworld trigger our curiosity even more. Angelenos are lucky to have such ghost town relatively close to the city! We can embark on our own journey to visit these places and create our own adventures. Here are the three most authentic ghost towns within road trip distance of Los Angeles:
PIONEER TOWN, CA
(2 HOURS FROM L.A.)
Built as a Western movie set in the 1940s, the buildings were created to provide a place for the actors to stay while on location for shoots. The town was partly foundead by actors Roy Rogers and Gene Autry – it features 1880s facades on the outside and modern interiors hiding behind them, including an ice cream parlor, a bowling alley and motels. More than 50 movies and television shows were filmed there.
(2 HOURS FROM L.A.)
Calico is a former silver-mining town that was on its rise in the 1880s. However, the price of silver began to drop in 1980s. It became a ghost town around 1907, but was restored in the 1950s by Walter Knott, director of Knott’s Berry Farm. Today, the town is protected as a San Bernadino County Park. On your trip you’ll be able to enjoy about a third of the original buildings including one of the mines, the post office and a schoolhouse.
(2 HOURS 30 MINUTES FROM L.A.)
Allensworth has its own story: in 1908, four black men purchased 20 acres of land along the Santa Fe Railway at a stop called Solita, and formed the first town in California to be founded, financed and governed by blacks. It was then known as California’s first African American school district. Unfortunately, the Santa Fe Railway moved its rail stop from Allensworth to Alpaugh, which restricted the commerce as Colonel Allen Allensworth, one of the founders of this town, was killed by a motorcycle. That was then clear that the town’s reputation was on the decline.
In 1974, Allensworth was preserved as the Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park, home to special events throughout the year. We definitely recommend taking a trip there and breathing in its rich history!