Incorporating Native Experiences to Future CA Meetings and Events

Earlier this year, the Visit Native California online hub was launched to showcase the "Golden State’s" diverse Native communities and cultural tourism experiences. California is home to more than 100 federally recognized tribes. When planning excursions, meetings and events for a group, planners can take into consideration an activity to acknowledge the culture, traditions and achievements of the nation’s original inhabitants and of their descendants.

Here are various Native California experiences and educational sites to visit:

  • Walk and learn through one of the trails and hikes that highlight the native land visitors now venture across. In Greater Palm Springs, the Indian Canyons is a nature reserve owned and operated by the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians as reservation land. The park spans over 31,500 acres and is home to canyons, unique rock formations and lush vegetation. Visitors can journey along one of the three Indian Canyons Trails for a glimpse into the history and culture of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. Up further in the Bay Area, visitors can set out along the Ohlone-Portolá Heritage Trail, which identifies the route between Ohlone villages that the Gaspar de Portolá expedition took through San Mateo County. See signage along the way for a self-guided informative tour.
  • While in the Bay Area, head over to Berkley’s Mak-‘amham/Cafe Ohlone for a small group lunch. The cafe is located at the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology. It was founded by Ohlone chefs Louis Trevino and Vincent Medina as a pop-up in 2018 and as a semi-permanent café in 2022.
  • The Autry Museum holds several events throughout the year, honoring and providing a space for native voices. The museum has two events coming up before the end of the year—one in conjunction with the California Indian Heritage Center. Into the summer, the museum’s 33rd annual American Indian Arts Festival will occur in June to celebrate traditional and contemporary Native art, where visitors can experience live music, pow-wow dancing, art and live theatrical performances from Native Voices, the Autry’s resident theater company.
  • Pow wows are a Native American tradition that brings together many different tribes and communities to celebrate culture through dancing, singing, socializing, crafts, arts and food. On March 17, 2024, plan a visit to San Rafael, CA, to witness the 2nd Annual Marin Pow Wow for some amazing drums and dancers, all highlighting the best of Northern California.
  • Visitors can learn about the native land by partnering with Oceanside’s first people, the Luiseño, to honor the ceremonial customs and activities during the event. At a recent tourism summit, Visit Oceanside set the tone by opening with a traditional Luiseño Indian drum circle and land acknowledgment performed by the San Luis Rey Band of Mission Indians. Native American music, culinary and artistic traditions can also be experienced through educational and interactive activities such as basket weaving, storytelling, and gourd painting.

For more information, visit

Related Stories

GBTA: Top Five Business Travel Trends

MEETINGS 2023 Achieves Carbonzero Certification

Montréal Maintains Top Spot as Most Sustainable Destination

BestCities Global Alliance Unveils Details of 2024 Global Forum