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    Calico Ghost Town: for the nostalgic of the Old West!

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    Lluis Enric Mayans

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    Those who grew up with the films of Bud Spencer and Terence Hill or with the epic spaghetti western production of Sergio Leone, will not be able to resist the temptation to visit at least one of the American ghost towns, villages of the old west well preserved that still retain their old and dusty western charm.

    In California there is more than one (we have already talked about one of the best preserved cities, Bodie) and today we are talking about Calico, also known as Calico ghost town, mining town near Barstow, the perfect stopover for those traveling from Los Angeles to La Vegas.

    The city, founded in March 1881, grew rapidly thanks to deposits of silver, borax and gold, reaching 1200 inhabitants, 500 mines and 22 saloons, but the decline was equally rapid, which transformed it into a ghost city starting in 1907, when borax deposits were discovered in nearby Death Valley.


    • Appearance of the city and attractions to visit
    • Entertainment in Calico Ghost Town
    • Useful Information

    Appearance of the city and attractions to visit

    Unlike Bodie, the current appearance of Calico Ghost Town is not exactly the authentic one, as the city has undergone restoration work that has led to the removal of the original buildings and their replacement with the typical architecture and facades that tourists experience. expect to find in one western town.

    However, some original structures and dating back to gold fever are still standing: for example Lil and Joe's Saloons, the city office, the house of Lucy Lane (which originally housed the post office and courthouse and which is now an interesting museum), the Smitty and the shop.


    In Calico you will also find a replica of the old school rebuilt on the original site as well as the ruins of Chinese citizens. In the school, lessons are re-enacted during the week, while on Sundays you can enjoy the sermon of the preacher on duty. Finally, don't miss the ride in the locomotive, which will allow you to see the old mines up close.

    Entertainment in Calico Ghost Town

    If from a historical point of view this tourist destination has lost part of its value, the same cannot be said from the point of view of entertainment: in Calico it is not uncommon to find souvenir shops, moments of animation, actors dressed as cowboys, historical reconstructions and various events. Among these you can enjoy a film festival, Civil War reenactments and a bluegrass music festival. To find out more, check the events on the official website.

    Useful Information

    • Opening hours: everyday
    • Reservation request : not required
    • Entrance ticket: $ 8 for adults, $ 5 for children from 6 to 15, free for the little ones
    • Duration of the visit: an hour or two may be enough
    • Best time to visit: all seasons can go, even if in summer you could suffer from the heat. Some attractions may be closed during the week.
    • Where is it? Calico Ghost Town, Yermo, CA, east of Barstow. Exit I-15 on Ghost Town Road.

    Is this information not enough for you? Here's a nice video below:

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