Redlands, California arose from the red clay hills of the San Bernardino valley near the end of the 19th century. In an area first occupied by indigenous Cahuilla peoples, the soil proved favorable to citrus. Groves spread and became very productive. When word of the town’s growing prosperity and claims of a healthful dry climate reached the east coast of the US, people with diverse interests and skills began migrating to Redlands and adding to its success.

Ever since its founding in 1888, Redlands has maintained a firm commitment to preserving evidences of its history in the form of natural spaces and built environments. In addition, Redlanders pride themselves in their appreciation of the arts. This city offers historic architecture, public contemporary sculptures, murals, and more.

Redlands also boasts several seasonal events that attract people from all over the globe. These include the Run Through Redlands in March, Redlands Bicycle Classic in April, the acclaimed Redlands Bowl Summer Music Festival, Redlands Theatre Festival, and more.

Combining Redlands’ historic features with its lust for the arts produces a broad array of photo ops, with something for every photographer. Here we present a few standouts.

Redlands Places

1. Orange Street Alley

420 multicolored umbrellas covering a pedestrian walkway in the historic downtown district. 

Photo © Dave Garner.

2. Ed Hales Park

A small park with pavilion and stage, sister cities clock, and historic artwork in downtown Redlands.


3. Murals and Wall Art

Many buildings downtown and beyond have been decorated in various ways with creative artworks. Begin with the murals in Umbrella Alley, then expand to State Street and its cross streets.

Photo © Donald Purdey.

4. Historic Santa Fe Depot

Built in 1909-10, the Santa Fe train depot in downtown Redlands served the community until 1938.

Photo © Judith Sparhawk.

5. University of Redlands

Established in 1907, the University of Redlands campus features a palm-lined main street, lush green lawns, and canopy of 100-year-old trees, where colonnaded buildings share space with modern structures. 

Photo © Stephanie Billings.

6. A.K. Smiley Public Library

Established in 1894, A.K. Smiley Public Library is an official point of historical interest designated by the California Historical Landmarks Advisory Committee, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Photo © Dave Card.

7. Lincoln Memorial Shrine

A memorial and research center dedicated to the memory of Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States of America. 

Photo © Russell Trozera.

8. Prospect Park

An 11-acre space with trails, picnic facilities, and an outdoor amphitheater which is home to the Redlands Summer Theater Festival.

Photo © Heidi Wilson.

9. Kimberly Crest

A national historic landmark, the home is a one-of-a-kind example of life during the Gilded Age in Southern California. 

Photo © Deborah Seibly.

10. Morey Mansion

This five-bedroom, four-bathroom Victorian house was built in 1890 and is popular for its onion dome construction.

Photo © Carl Detrow.

12. Caroline Park

Caroline Park was envisioned to be a native plant botanical park that has been revegetated with attractive shrubs, trees, and wildflowers covering almost 17 acres of open space.

Photo © Deborah Seibly.

13. Oakmont Park

Fourteen acres of almost 100 percent natural landscape, with a beautiful grove of oak trees giving way to dry scrub along trails punctuated with scrub oak, sage, wildflowers and a variety of wildlife.

Photo © Julie Lowe.

Redlands Events

Run Through Redlands (March)

Every year, runners, walkers and riders (wheelchair) take part in these 5K, 10K and Half-Marathon competitions. The courses wind through Redlands’ tree-lined streets, past historic homes with breathtaking views of the San Bernardino Mountains. 

Photo © Bruce Herwig.

Redlands Bicycle Classic (April)

The Redlands Bicycle Classic is the longest continuous running stage race in American bike racing. From humble beginnings on a Memorial Day weekend in 1985 hosting future stars for the Olympics, Tour de France, and world championships, the Redlands Bicycle Classic has earned its position in history “Where Legends Are Born.”

Photo © Deborah Seibly.

Firefighters' Classic Car Show (May)

The heart of historic downtown Redlands provides the perfect backdrop for snapshots of gorgeous classic cars.

Photo © Michael Livingston.

Redlands Bowl (summer)

At 8:00 p.m. every Tuesday and Friday evening during the summer, the Redlands Bowl Summer Music Festival draws thousands to its world-class performances.

Photo © Bruce Herwig.

July Fourth Celebration

All-day activities at Sylvan Park set up this Independence Day celebration. Evening festivities tend to include displays from aircraft and skydivers followed by ground firework displays and a long session of impressive aerials.

Photo © Judith Sparhawk.