10 days in California Itinerary

10 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

10 days in California Itinerary

Start: Chicago
Fly:  6​h 15​min
1
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
2
Philo
— 2 nights
Drive:  6​h
3
Cambria
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 15​min
4
Los Angeles
— 1 night
Fly:  7​h
End: Chicago

2
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Fri): buy something for everyone on your list at Ferry Building Marketplace, enjoy the sand and surf at Fitzgerald J V Marine Reserve, and then immerse yourself in nature at Marin Headlands. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 22nd (Sat): stroll through Pescadero State Beach, tour the pleasant surroundings at Pescadero State Beach, then kick back and relax at Fort Funston National Park, and finally wander the streets of Union Square.

To find maps, reviews, photos, and tourist information, refer to the San Francisco trip planner.

Chicago to San Francisco is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and subway; or drive. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time to Pacific Standard Time is minus 2 hours. When traveling from Chicago in December, plan for much warmer days and somewhat warmer nights in San Francisco: temperatures range from 59°F by day to 45°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Sun) so you can travel to Philo.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Bodega Head, Fitzgerald J V Marine Reserve, Ramini Mozzarella, Marin Headlands, Pescadero State Beach
Highlights from your plan
Ferry Building Marketplace ©
Ferry Building Marketplace
Marin Headlands ©
Marin Headlands
Fitzgerald J V Marine Reserve ©
Fitzgerald J V Marine Reserve

2
nights
Philo

Philo ©
Philo is a census-designated place in Mendocino County, California. On the 23rd (Sun), learn about winemaking at Phillips Hill Winery. Here are some ideas for day two: do a tasting at Barra of Mendocino Winery, learn about winemaking at Nelson Family Vineyards, do a tasting at McFadden Farm Stand & Tasting Room, then do a tasting at Yorkville Cellars, then do a tasting at BobDog Winery, and finally learn about winemaking at Steele Winery.

For photos, maps, and other tourist information, read our Philo vacation planner .

You can drive from San Francisco to Philo in 2.5 hours. Traveling from San Francisco in December, Philo is a bit cooler at night with lows of 35°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Cambria.

Things to do in Philo

Wineries Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Steele Winery, B Bryan Preserve, McFadden Farm Stand & Tasting Room, Nelson Family Vineyards, Yorkville Cellars
Highlights from your plan
Phillips Hill Winery ©
Phillips Hill Winery
B Bryan Preserve ©
B Bryan Preserve
Lula Cellars ©
Lula Cellars

1
night
Cambria

Cambria ©
Cambria is a seaside village in San Luis Obispo County, California, United States midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles along California State Route 1 (Highway 1). Start off your visit on the 26th (Wed): enjoy the sand and surf at William Randolph Hearst Memorial Beach, do a tasting at Niner Wine Estates, then do a tasting at J. Lohr Vineyards and Wines, then learn about winemaking at San Antonio Winery, and finally take in the history at Mission San Antonio de Padua. On your second day here, identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery, enjoy the sand and surf at Piedras Blancas, then learn about winemaking at Hearst Ranch Winery, then learn about winemaking at Castoro Cellars, and finally visit a coastal fixture at Point San Luis Lighthouse.

To see ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Cambria day trip planning tool .

You can drive from Philo to Cambria in 6 hours. In December, plan for daily highs up to 63°F, and evening lows to 33°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 27th (Thu) so you can go by car to Los Angeles.

Things to do in Cambria

Parks Wineries Beaches

Side Trips

Paso Robles, San Simeon, Point San Luis Lighthouse, Mission San Antonio de Padua
Highlights from your plan
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas
J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines ©
J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines
Niner Wine Estates ©
Niner Wine Estates

1
night
Los Angeles

Los Angeles ©
Surrounded by mountain ranges, forests, valleys, beaches, and deserts, the metropolitan area of Los Angeles is home to over 17 million people.
Kick off your visit on the 28th (Fri): buy something for everyone on your list at Universal CityWalk Hollywood, then browse the different shops at The Grove, then stop by The Original Farmers Market, and finally get some fabulous bargains at Citadel Outlets. On the 29th (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: see the interesting displays at The Getty Center, don't miss a visit to Santa Monica Pier, then enjoy the sand and surf at Venice Beach and Boardwalk, and finally identify plant and animal life at Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area.

To find other places to visit, photos, maps, and tourist information, go to the Los Angeles journey planning site .

You can drive from Cambria to Los Angeles in 4.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of bus and train. Traveling from Cambria in December, things will get somewhat warmer in Los Angeles: highs are around 69°F and lows about 49°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Shopping Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

Santa Monica Pier
Highlights from your plan
LA Farmers' Market ©
LA Farmers' Market
Venice Beach and Boardwalk ©
Venice Beach and Boardwalk
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center

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