12 days in California Itinerary

12 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California trip itinerary planner

This plan was created by another user. Make it your plan

Route & dates

12 days in California Itinerary

Start: Phoenix
Fly:  3​h
1
Anaheim
— 1 night
Fly:  4​h
2
San Francisco
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h
3
Yosemite National Park
— 4 nights
+2
Drive + Fly + Bus:  5​h 30​min
4
San Simeon
— 1 day
Drive:  3​h
5
Carmel
— 2 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
End: Phoenix

1
night
Anaheim

Anaheim ©
Anaheim's major attractions are its world-famous Disney entertainment complex, sports teams, and convention center.
Kick off your visit on the 24th (Mon): find something for the whole family at Disneyland Park. Here are some ideas for day two: discover the magic at Disney California Adventure Park.

To see traveler tips, reviews, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Anaheim tour itinerary planner.

Phoenix to Anaheim is an approximately 3-hour combination of flight and bus. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or drive. The time zone difference moving from Mountain Standard Time to Pacific Standard Time is minus 1 hour. Plan for a bit cooler temperatures traveling from Phoenix in September, with highs in Anaheim at 88°F and lows at 66°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Tue) so you can travel to San Francisco.

Things to do in Anaheim

Theme Parks
Highlights from your plan
Disneyland Park ©
Disneyland Park
Disney California Adventure Park ©
Disney California Adventure Park

3
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Step off the beaten path and head to Food Tours and San Francisco Bay. Go for a jaunt from San Francisco to Mill Valley to see Muir Woods National Monument about 46 minutes away. And it doesn't end there: step off the mainland to explore Alcatraz Island, wander the streets of Fisherman's Wharf, take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge, and explore the engaging exhibits at Exploratorium.

To find traveler tips, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, read San Francisco trip builder tool .

Traveling by combination of bus and flight from Anaheim to San Francisco takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, flight, and subway; or drive. Prepare for slightly colder weather when traveling from Anaheim in September: high temperatures in San Francisco hover around 76°F and lows are around 58°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Fri) so you can drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trip

Muir Woods National Monument
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Muir Woods National Monument ©
Muir Woods National Monument
San Francisco Bay ©
San Francisco Bay

4
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.
Explore hidden gems such as Glacier Point and El Capitan. There's still lots to do: admire the sheer force of Yosemite Falls, take in the dramatic natural features at Taft Point, don't miss a visit to Olmsted Point, and take some stellar pictures from Tunnel View.

For ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Yosemite National Park trip itinerary app .

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of subway, flight, bus, and taxi. Traveling from San Francisco in September, expect much colder with lows of 38°F in Yosemite National Park. Cap off your sightseeing on the 2nd (Tue) early enough to go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome
El Capitan ©
El Capitan

1
day
San Simeon

San Simeon ©
When you arrive 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.
On the 3rd (Wed), take in the waterfront at San Simeon Pier, tour the pleasant surroundings at Moonstone Beach, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery.

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

Drive from Yosemite National Park to San Simeon in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of taxi, bus, and ferry. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Yosemite National Park in October, with highs in San Simeon at 83°F and lows at 46°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Wed) so you can drive to Carmel.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Moonstone Beach
Highlights from your plan
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
San Simeon Pier ©
San Simeon Pier

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. Kick off your visit on the 4th (Thu): kick back and relax at Del Mar Beach, admire all the interesting features of Seventeen Mile Drive, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Breakwater. Here are some ideas for day two: stop by The Cheese Shop, tour the pleasant surroundings at Point Lobos, and then stroll through Carmel River State Beach.

To find ratings, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, read our Carmel trip planner .

Getting from San Simeon to Carmel by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and bus. Expect slightly colder weather when traveling from San Simeon in October: highs in Carmel hover around 70°F, while lows dip to 52°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Fri) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Carmel

Beaches Outdoors Parks

Side Trip

Breakwater
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
Breakwater ©
Breakwater

Similar Plans

13 days in California & Las Vegas BY A USER FROM COSTA RICA October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 15 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: August, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 14 days in California BY A USER FROM DENMARK July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 15 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 13 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 14 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 11 days in California BY A USER FROM LITHUANIA September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, fast-paced, popular sights PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Fast-paced 15 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 13 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM August, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife, popular sights PREFERENCES: August, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 15 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in California BY A USER FROM VIETNAM July, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife, hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium
View more plans