Kern County Museum

San Joaquin Valley

This museum brings local history to life with a pioneer village of more than 50 restored and replicated buildings (including Merle Haggard's childhood home) and courtyard with beautifully restored vintage neon signs. The main structure has a large (and fairly disturbing) display of taxidermy wildlife and pristine memorabilia from Bakersfield’s musical heyday.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby San Joaquin Valley attractions

1. Five & Dime Antique Mall

1.29 MILES

Three stories hold vintage wares that date back to at least the same era as the Woolworth building they're housed in. Try to go when the diner is open.

2. California Living Museum

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The zoo and botanical gardens showcase over 200 native animals and a rattlesnake house, which has every type of rattler in the state. It’s about a 20…

3. Cesar E Chavez National Monument

28.53 MILES

This newly designated national monument, Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz, is the national headquarters of the United Farmworkers of America and was the…