California is much more than the consistent smoggy heat of Los Angeles and the foggy crispness of San Francisco. The state occupies nearly 164,000 square miles, where you'll find everything from dry deserts and pristine beaches to snowy mountaintops and humid swamps. And, in some parts of California, you can even experience four distinct seasons. Visitors looking for a warm California vacation in March can easily make it happen, but not without a little research. Here are the Golden State's warmest cities in March, separated by region.

Northern California

Starting with the warmest, the warmest cities in Northern California in March are:

  1. Porterville, with an average high of 71 degrees F
  2. Modesto, with an average high of 69 degrees F
  3. Fresno, Merced, Stockton and Vacaville, tied, with an average high of 68 degrees F

All of these cities stretch along California's Central Valley, which runs through Redding, Sacramento, Fresno and Bakersfield. The area is inland, so you won't find any beaches here. It's the state's most-productive agricultural region, producing more than half of the United States' fruits, vegetables and nuts. It's also one of the hottest and driest, with a semi-arid desert climate in its southern end.

Fresno is the largest of the cities listed, with more than half a million residents. It's home to seven sports stadiums and two arenas, the annual Woodward Shakespeare Festival and California State University, Fresno, giving visitors options for activities while they're there. But agriculture is the city's most distinct quality, as displayed on its 62-mile Blossom Trail and the Fresno County Fruit Trail.

Southern California

The hottest cities in Southern California during March are:

  1. El Centro, with an average high of 80 degrees F
  2. Anaheim, Riverside and San Bernardino, tied, with an average high of 73 degrees F
  3. Irvine, Pasadena and Santa Ana, tied, with an average high of 72 degrees F

Located in Orange County, Anaheim has plenty to offer its visitors, such as theme parks (Disneyland, anyone?), beaches, professional sports and top-notched eateries. It's the perfect place to escape the end of a bitterly cold winter, whether you're with friends or family or going it alone. So if you're looking to catch weather in the mid-70s this March and spend some quality time with Mickey Mouse, Anaheim might make the ideal vacation destination.