12 days in California Itinerary

12 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California tour builder

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Route & dates

12 days in California Itinerary

Start: Washington DC
Fly:  8​h 45​min
1
Palm Springs
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h
2
Los Angeles
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
3
Cambria
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 45​min
4
Carmel
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
5
Yosemite National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h
6
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Fly:  7​h
End: Washington DC

1
night
Palm Springs

Palm Springs ©
Palm Springs is a desert resort city in Riverside County, California, United States, within the Coachella Valley. On the 29th (Mon), admire the masterpieces at Palm Springs Art Museum.

To see ratings, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Palm Springs online route builder .

Washington DC to Palm Springs is an approximately 9-hour flight. You can also drive; or do a combination of train and bus. The time zone changes from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Pacific Standard Time (PST), which is usually a -3 hour difference. Traveling from Washington DC in April, you will find days in Palm Springs are much hotter (89°F), and nights are somewhat warmer (61°F). Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Los Angeles.

Things to do in Palm Springs

Museums Shopping

Side Trip

Palm Desert
Highlights from your plan
Palm Springs Air Museum ©
Palm Springs Air Museum
Palm Springs Art Museum ©
Palm Springs Art Museum
Antique Galleries of Palm Springs ©
Antique Galleries of Palm Springs

3
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.
Head to Hammer Museum and Montana Avenuefor plenty of shopping. Museum-lovers will appreciate The Getty Center and La Brea Tar Pits and Museum. There's lots more to do: look and learn at Griffith Observatory, examine the collection at The Hollywood Museum, admire the masterpieces at Diorama-museum of Bhagavad-gita, and take in the exciting artwork at Craft & Folk Art Museum.

To find more things to do, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Los Angeles trip planner .

Drive from Palm Springs to Los Angeles in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or do a combination of bus and train. Traveling from Palm Springs in April, things will get little chillier in Los Angeles: highs are around 75°F and lows about 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri) to allow time to drive to Cambria.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Museums Shopping Childrens Museums

Side Trip

Montana Avenue
Highlights from your plan
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center
La Brea Tar Pits and Museum ©
La Brea Tar Pits and Museum
Los Angeles County Museum of Art ©

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 4th (Sat): contemplate the long history of Hearst Castle, identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery, then take in the exciting artwork at Ephraim Pottery West Gallery, and finally get a taste of the local shopping with artifacts gallery.

To find ratings, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, refer to the Cambria online holiday planner .

Traveling by car from Los Angeles to Cambria takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of train and bus. Traveling from Los Angeles in May, expect nights in Cambria to be a bit cooler, around 48°F, while days are a bit warmer, around 82°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sat) so you can go by car to Carmel.

Things to do in Cambria

Historic Sites Parks Wildlife

Side Trip

San Simeon
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Artifacts Gallery ©
Artifacts Gallery

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. Start off your visit on the 5th (Sun): explore the activities along Monterey Bay, then take in the exciting artwork at Gallery by the Sea Carmel, then take in the exciting artwork at Weston Gallery, and finally tour the pleasant surroundings at Carmel River State Beach. Keep things going the next day: shop like a local with The Pilgrim's Way Community Bookstore and Secret Garden, shop like a local with Steven Whyte's Sculpture Studio and Gallery, then shop like a local with Carmel Art Association, then view the masterpieces at Photography West Gallery, and finally immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos.

For traveler tips, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Carmel trip itinerary builder app .

Traveling by car from Cambria to Carmel takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, train, and bus; or do a combination of car and bus. When traveling from Cambria in May, plan for a bit cooler days in Carmel, with highs around 65°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 51°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Mon) so you can drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Beaches Shopping

Side Trip

Monterey Bay
Highlights from your plan
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Monterey Bay ©
Monterey Bay

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Tue): take in the dramatic natural features at Glacier Point, take some stellar pictures from Tunnel View, and then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Mt. Hoffmann. Here are some ideas for day two: take in the awesome beauty at Cathedral Beach Picnic Area, take in the exciting artwork at Ansel Adams Gallery, then admire the masterpieces at Yosemite Museum Gallery, and finally take in the dramatic scenery at Yosemite Falls.

For more things to do, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Yosemite National Park tour planner.

You can drive from Carmel to Yosemite National Park in 5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus, flight, and car; or do a combination of bus, shuttle, flight, and car. Traveling from Carmel in May, Yosemite National Park is little chillier at night with lows of 34°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) so you can go by car to San Francisco.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Nature Parks Museums
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Yosemite Falls ©
Yosemite Falls
Yosemite, Tunnel View ©
Yosemite, Tunnel View

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 9th (Thu): head off the coast to Alcatraz Island, then hunt for treasures at Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, then buy something for everyone on your list at Ferry Building Marketplace, and finally shop like a local with Union Square.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, read San Francisco road trip site .

Getting from Yosemite National Park to San Francisco by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of taxi, bus, flight, and subway. Traveling from Yosemite National Park in May, expect a bit warmer with lows of 53°F in San Francisco. On the 10th (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Shopping Historic Sites Nature
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Union Square ©
Union Square

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