12 days in California Itinerary

12 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California itinerary planner

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Route & dates

12 days in California Itinerary

Start: New York City
bus + Fly:  8​h 15​min
1
San Diego
— 3 nights
Fly:  4​h
2
Carmel
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 15​min
3
San Francisco
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h
4
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
+2
Drive + Fly + bus:  11​h 15​min
End: New York City

3
nights
San Diego

San Diego ©
Divided into neighborhoods with distinct characters and cultural heritages, San Diego sits just north of the Mexican border and offers visitors a blend of tourist attractions, including a lively nightlife, diverse cuisine, and a thriving musical scene.
USS Midway Museum and Fort Rosecrans Cemetery are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Visit Old Town San Diego State Historic Park and Our Lady of the Rosary Church for their historical value. Go for a jaunt from San Diego to Alpine to see Lions, Tigers & Bears about 58 minutes away. And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at La Jolla Cove, take a leisurely stroll along Embarcadero, contemplate the long history of Marston House Museum, and appreciate the history behind Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial.

To see maps, ratings, and tourist information, go to the San Diego vacation planner.

New York City to San Diego is an approximately 8.5-hour combination of bus and flight. You can also fly; or drive. Traveling from New York City to San Diego, you'll gain 3 hours due to the time zone difference. When traveling from New York City in June, plan for little chillier days in San Diego, with highs around 73°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 64°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Wed) so you can travel to Carmel.

Things to do in San Diego

Parks Historic Sites Zoos & Aquariums

Side Trip

Lions, Tigers & Bears
Highlights from your plan
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
Lions, Tigers & Bears ©
Lions, Tigers & Bears
USS Midway Museum ©
USS Midway Museum

1
night
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 6th (Thu), cruise along 17-Mile Drive, then appreciate the extensive heritage of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard, and then immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos.

To see photos, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Carmel road trip website .

Traveling by flight from San Diego to Carmel takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. Prepare for slightly colder weather when traveling from San Diego in June: high temperatures in Carmel hover around 68°F and lows are around 53°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Thu) early enough to go by car to San Francisco.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Beaches Nature

Side Trips

17-Mile Drive, Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard ©
17-Mile Drive ©
17-Mile Drive

3
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Escape the urban bustle at Alcatraz Island and Fishing Charters & Tours. You'll get in some beach time at Fort Funston National Park and Ocean Beach. Next up on the itinerary: take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Twin Peaks, take a leisurely stroll along Fisherman's Wharf, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Baker Beach.

Make your San Francisco itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

You can drive from Carmel to San Francisco in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. In June, plan for daily highs up to 71°F, and evening lows to 55°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Sun) so you can drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Outdoors Parks Beaches
Highlights from your plan
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Fisherman's Wharf ©
Fisherman's Wharf

3
nights
Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park ©
Massive granite mountains, towering waterfalls, groves of Giant Sequoia trees, and wilderness as far as the eye can see distinguish the landscape of Yosemite National Park.
Take a break from the city and head to Glacier Point and Vernal Fall. Next up on the itinerary: hike along Tuolumne Meadows, admire all the interesting features of Tioga Pass, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Cathedral Beach Picnic Area, and admire the sheer force of Yosemite Falls.

For reviews, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Yosemite National Park trip itinerary builder app .

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and car; or do a combination of flight and bus. Traveling from San Francisco in June, you will find days in Yosemite National Park are somewhat warmer (79°F), and nights are little chillier (43°F). Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Wed) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Nature
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Tuolumne Meadows ©
Tuolumne Meadows
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome

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