13 days in California Itinerary

13 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California holiday planner

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Route & dates

13 days in California Itinerary

Start: Newark
Fly:  10​h 30​min
1
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
2
Carmel
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
3
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
4
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
5
Tahoe City
— 3 nights
Drive + Fly:  10​h 45​min
End: Newark

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.
Escape the urban bustle at Tuolumne Meadows and Yosemite Falls. Discover out-of-the-way places like Bodie State Historic Park and Glacier Point. Take a break from Yosemite National Park with a short trip to Mono Lake County Park in Lee Vining, about 48 minutes away. And it doesn't end there: get great views at Tunnel View, tour the pleasant surroundings at Panorama Trail, take in the views from Pohono Bridge, and make a trip to Tuolumne Grove of Giant Sequoias.

To find traveler tips, ratings, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Yosemite National Park tour itinerary website .

Newark to Yosemite National Park is an approximately 10.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train, flight, and bus; or do a combination of train and bus. The time zone difference moving from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Pacific Standard Time (PST) is minus 3 hours. Traveling from Newark in August, Yosemite National Park is cooler at night with lows of 43°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 27th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Carmel.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Trails

Side Trips

Mono Lake County Park, Bodie State Historic Park
Highlights from your plan
Yosemite Falls ©
Yosemite Falls
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Bodie State Historic Park ©
Bodie State Historic Park

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 28th (Wed), stroll through Pacific Grove Shoreline Parkway Marine Refuge, kick back and relax at Carmel River State Beach, and then admire the majestic nature at Point Lobos.

For other places to visit, photos, more things to do, and tourist information, read our Carmel holiday planner.

Drive from Yosemite National Park to Carmel in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, flight, and bus; or do a combination of car, flight, shuttle, and bus. When traveling from Yosemite National Park in August, plan for little chillier days in Carmel, with highs around 70°F, while nights are somewhat warmer with lows around 57°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 28th (Wed) early enough to go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Carmel

Beaches Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Pacific Grove Shoreline Parkway Marine Refuge
Highlights from your plan
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos

2
nights
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.
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Thu): steep yourself in history at Hearst Castle, cruise along Moonstone Beach Dr, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Moonstone Beach. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station, then look for all kinds of wild species at Piedras Blancas, and then identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery.

For other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the San Simeon trip itinerary tool .

You can drive from Carmel to San Simeon in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and car. Traveling from Carmel in August, expect nights in San Simeon to be about the same, around 55°F, while days are much hotter, around 94°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Fri) early enough to go by car to San Francisco.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Outdoors Wildlife

Side Trip

Cambria
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach

2
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Kick off your visit on the 31st (Sat): step off the mainland to explore Alcatraz Island, get curious at Exploratorium, and then appreciate the extensive heritage of Filbert Steps.

To find reviews, maps, ratings, and other tourist information, use the San Francisco road trip planning app .

Getting from San Simeon to San Francisco by car takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and train; or do a combination of bus and flight. Traveling from San Simeon in August, you will find days in San Francisco are colder (73°F), and nights are about the same (59°F). Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 1st (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Tahoe City.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Shopping Museums
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Exploratorium ©
Exploratorium
Fort Funston National Park ©
Fort Funston National Park

3
nights
Tahoe City

Tahoe City ©
Tahoe City is an unincorporated community in Placer County, California. Here are some ideas for day two: contemplate the long history of Hellman-Ehrman Mansion, enjoy some diversion at Commons Beach Park, and then enjoy the sea views from Lake Tahoe.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Tahoe City itinerary website .

You can drive from San Francisco to Tahoe City in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of subway, flight, and bus; or do a combination of flight and bus. Traveling from San Francisco in September, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be much colder in Tahoe City, with lows of 34°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 4th (Wed) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Tahoe City

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trips

Lake Tahoe (Nevada), Sand Harbor, Clearly Tahoe, Lake Tahoe
Highlights from your plan
Lake Tahoe ©
Lake Tahoe
Hellman-Ehrman Mansion ©
Hellman-Ehrman Mansion

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