15 days in California Deserts & San Diego Itinerary

15 days in California Deserts & San Diego Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in California Deserts & San Diego Itinerary

Start: Kuala Lumpur
Fly + bus:  28​h
1
Death Valley National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  5​h
2
Joshua Tree National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
3
Palm Desert
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
4
San Diego
— 4 nights
Fly:  23​h 30​min
End: Kuala Lumpur

2
nights
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
Death Valley National Park is known for nature, scenic drive, historic sites, museums, and trails. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: take some stellar pictures from Dante's View, take in the dramatic natural features at Zabriskie Point, cruise along Artists Dr, and steep yourself in history at Eureka Mine.

To see other places to visit, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, read Death Valley National Park road trip site .

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Death Valley National Park is an approximately 28-hour combination of flight and bus. Traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Death Valley National Park, you'll gain 16 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Kuala Lumpur in July, expect nights in Death Valley National Park to be about the same, around 26°C, while days are somewhat warmer, around 45°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Joshua Tree National Park.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Nature Parks Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point
Dante's View ©
Dante's View
Badwater Basin ©
Badwater Basin

2
nights
Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park ©
Joshua Tree National Park takes its name from the Joshua tree, a twisted, spiky tree with bayonet-shaped leaves at the top that's one of the few plant species hardy enough to thrive in the extreme climate of the Mojave Desert.
On the 10th (Wed), admire the verdant scenery at Hidden Valley Nature Trail and then take in the awesome beauty at Eureka Peak. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 11th (Thu): trek along Lost Palms Oasis Trail and then take in the dramatic natural features at Keys View.

To see photos and tourist information, read Joshua Tree National Park trip planner .

Drive from Death Valley National Park to Joshua Tree National Park in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus and car. In July, daily temperatures in Joshua Tree National Park can reach 46°C, while at night they dip to 30°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Palm Desert.

Things to do in Joshua Tree National Park

Parks Nature Trails
Highlights from your plan
Hidden Valley Nature Trail ©
Hidden Valley Nature Trail
Keys View ©
Keys View

3
nights
Palm Desert

Palm Desert ©
Palm Desert is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, in the Coachella Valley, approximately 14 miles (23 km) east of Palm Springs and 122 miles (196 km) east of Los Angeles. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Palm Desert: Joshua Tree National Park (in Joshua Tree) and Mount San Jacinto State Park and Wilderness (in Idyllwild). There's still lots to do: have fun and explore at Children's Discovery Museum, tee off at Toscana Country Club, explore and take pictures at Eldorado Polo Club, and see a world frozen in time at Family Golf Center of Palm Desert.

Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for Palm Desert using our trip planner.

You can drive from Joshua Tree National Park to Palm Desert in 1.5 hours. Another option is to do a combination of taxi and bus. In July, daytime highs in Palm Desert are 49°C, while nighttime lows are 32°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Sun) to allow time to drive to San Diego.

Things to do in Palm Desert

Nature Parks Golf

Side Trips

Mount San Jacinto State Park and Wilderness, Toscana Country Club, Children's Discovery Museum, Eldorado Polo Club, Joshua Tree National Park
Highlights from your plan
Toscana Country Club ©
Toscana Country Club
Children's Discovery Museum ©
Children's Discovery Museum
Eldorado Polo Club ©
Eldorado Polo Club

4
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.
San Diego is known for museums, zoos & aquariums, beaches, parks, and historic sites. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: tour the pleasant surroundings at San Diego Zoo, examine the collection at USS Midway Museum, pause for some photo ops at Cabrillo National Monument, and enjoy the sand and surf at La Jolla Cove.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and other tourist information, read our San Diego trip planner .

Traveling by car from Palm Desert to San Diego takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. Traveling from Palm Desert in July, expect nights in San Diego to be a bit cooler, around 23°C, while days are much colder, around 29°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Thu) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Diego

Parks Zoos & Aquariums Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
San Diego Zoo ©
San Diego Zoo
USS Midway Museum ©
USS Midway Museum
Balboa Park ©
Balboa Park

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