11 days in California Itinerary

11 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

11 days in California Itinerary

Start: Bristol
train + Fly:  16​h
1
Los Angeles
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
2
Santa Barbara
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 45​min
3
San Simeon
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
4
Carmel
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
5
San Francisco
— 1 night
Fly + train:  15​h 45​min
End: Bristol

4
nights
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.
Step out of Los Angeles to go to Anaheim and see Disneyland Park, which is approximately 30 minutes away. Pack the 2nd (Wed) with family-friendly diversions at Universal Studios Hollywood. There's much more to do: see the interesting displays at The Getty Center, admire all the interesting features of Staples Center, admire the landmark architecture of Bradbury Building, and look and learn at Griffith Observatory.

To find where to stay, reviews, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Los Angeles trip itinerary website .

Bristol, UK to Los Angeles is an approximately 16-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight. The time zone changes from Greenwich Mean Time to Pacific Standard Time, which is usually a -8 hour difference. Expect a daytime high around 28°C in April, and nighttime lows around 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Santa Barbara.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Theme Parks Museums Childrens Museums

Side Trip

Disneyland Park
Highlights from your plan
Disneyland Park ©
Disneyland Park
Staples Center ©
Staples Center
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center

1
night
Santa Barbara

Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, Santa Barbara is a solid vacation destination with its wide beaches, renowned wineries, and some of California's finest shopping and dining options.
Start off your visit on the 4th (Fri): indulge your senses at some of the top wineries in the area. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 5th (Sat): take in panoramic vistas at Santa Barbara County Courthouse, don't miss a visit to Old Mission Santa Barbara, and then learn about winemaking at Jaffurs Wine Cellars.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Santa Barbara day trip planner.

You can drive from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara in 2 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. Plan for a bit cooler nights when traveling from Los Angeles in May since evenings lows in Santa Barbara dip to 13°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sat) so you can go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Tours Historic Sites Wineries
Highlights from your plan
Wine Tours & Tastings
Santa Barbara County Courthouse ©
Santa Barbara County Courthouse
Old Mission Santa Barbara ©
Old Mission Santa Barbara

1
night
San Simeon

San Simeon ©
When you arriveĀ in tiny San Simeon, which lies halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, you can see why William Randolph Hearst chose this coastal locale for his famous hilltop castle.
Kick off your visit on the 6th (Sun): visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station and then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery.

For traveler tips, other places to visit, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our San Simeon online tour planner .

Drive from Santa Barbara to San Simeon in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of train and bus. Expect a bit cooler weather when traveling from Santa Barbara in May: highs in San Simeon hover around 15°C, while lows dip to 11°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Sun) so you can go by car to Carmel.

Things to do in San Simeon

Wildlife Parks Historic Sites

Side Trip

Piedras Blancas Light Station
Highlights from your plan
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Piedras Blancas Light Station ©
Piedras Blancas Light Station

2
nights
Carmel

Carmel ©
Carmel-by-the-Sea, often simply called Carmel, is a city in Monterey County, California, United States, founded in 1902 and incorporated on October 31, 1916. On the 7th (Mon), tour the pleasant surroundings at Carmel City Beach/Carmel River Beach, then immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos State Reserve, and then look for gifts at The Cheese Shop.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, traveler tips, and other tourist information, refer to the Carmel route maker site .

You can drive from San Simeon to Carmel in 3 hours. Another option is to do a combination of car and bus. When traveling from San Simeon in May, plan for a bit warmer days and about the same nights in Carmel: temperatures range from 21°C by day to 12°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) to allow time to drive to San Francisco.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Beaches Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
The Cheese Shop ©
The Cheese Shop

1
night
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 8th (Tue): make a trip to Lombard Street, snap pictures at Golden Gate Bridge, and then stroll through Golden Gate Park. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 9th (Wed): head off the coast to Alcatraz Island, then wander the streets of Fisherman's Wharf, and then take a memorable ride with Cable Cars.

To see ratings, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, read our San Francisco trip planning tool .

Getting from Carmel to San Francisco by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and flight; or take a bus. May in San Francisco sees daily highs of 24°C and lows of 13°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Historic Sites Nature
Highlights from your plan
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Park ©
Golden Gate Park

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