15 days in California Itinerary

15 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in California Itinerary

Start: Lisbon
Fly:  16​h 30​min
1
Palm Springs
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
2
Death Valley National Park
— 2 nights
Drive + bus:  5​h 45​min
3
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
4
Carmel
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
5
San Simeon
— 2 nights
bus + Fly:  22​h
End: Lisbon

3
nights
Palm Springs

Palm Springs ©
Palm Springs is a desert resort city in Riverside County, California, United States, within the Coachella Valley. Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Indian Canyons and The River at Rancho Mirage. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and Old Town Temecula. Step out of Palm Springs with an excursion to Briar Rose Winery in Temecula--about 1h 05 min away. There's still lots to do: explore the galleries of Palm Springs Air Museum, get a taste of the local shopping with Motif, and explore the world behind art at Palm Springs Art Museum.

To see other places to visit, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Palm Springs route planner.

Lisbon, Portugal to Palm Springs is an approximately 16.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 8 hours traveling from Lisbon to Palm Springs. In February, Palm Springs is a bit warmer than Lisbon - with highs of 29°C and lows of 13°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 13th (Thu) so you can go by car to Death Valley National Park.

Things to do in Palm Springs

Nature Parks Scenic Drive

Side Trips

Temecula, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, The River at Rancho Mirage
Highlights from your plan
Indian Canyons ©
Indian Canyons
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park ©
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
Old Town Temecula ©
Old Town Temecula

2
nights
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Fri): explore the striking landscape at Artists Palette, take a memorable drive along Artists Dr, and then discover the riches below the earth's surface at Eureka Mine. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: explore the striking landscape at Zabriskie Point and then contemplate the waterfront views at Badwater Basin.

To find maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Death Valley National Park online sightseeing planner .

You can drive from Palm Springs to Death Valley National Park in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, train, and car; or take a bus. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Palm Springs in February, with highs in Death Valley National Park at 20°C and lows at 3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Sat) early enough to travel to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Nature Parks Scenic Drive
Highlights from your plan
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point
Artists Palette ©
Artists Palette
Artists Dr ©
Artists Dr

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.
Get in touch with nature at Bridalveil Fall and Yosemite Falls. There's still lots to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias, make a trip to Washburn Point, take in the dramatic natural features at Glacier Point, and look for all kinds of wild species at Cathedral Beach Picnic Area.

To see traveler tips, photos, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Yosemite National Park travel route planner .

Getting from Death Valley National Park to Yosemite National Park by combination of car and bus takes about 6 hours. In February, Yosemite National Park is a bit cooler than Death Valley National Park - with highs of 10°C and lows of -9°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Carmel.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Yosemite Falls ©
Yosemite Falls
Bridalveil Fall ©
Bridalveil Fall
Mariposa Grove ©
Mariposa Grove

3
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. Explore hidden gems such as Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and McWay Falls. Take a break from the city and head to Pfeiffer State Beach and Point Lobos. And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Carmel River State Beach, see majestic marine mammals with a dolphin and whale watching tour, and explore the activities along Monterey Bay.

To see ratings, reviews, photos, and other tourist information, read Carmel tour builder app .

Traveling by car from Yosemite National Park to Carmel takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of car, flight, and shuttle. When traveling from Yosemite National Park in February, plan for a bit warmer days and warmer nights in Carmel: temperatures range from 20°C by day to 8°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 21st (Fri) so you can go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Big Sur, Monterey
Highlights from your plan
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park ©
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park
Pfeiffer State Beach ©
Pfeiffer State Beach
McWay Falls ©
McWay Falls

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.
Start off your visit on the 22nd (Sat): get a new perspective on nature at Greenspace Creekside Reserve, step into the grandiose world of Hearst Castle, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery. Here are some ideas for day two: appreciate the extensive heritage of East Village, enjoy the sand and surf at Moonstone Beach, and then pause for some serene contemplation at Santa Rosa Catholic Church.

For traveler tips, reviews, maps, and tourist information, you can read our San Simeon trip website .

Traveling by car from Carmel to San Simeon takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and car. Traveling from Carmel in February, plan for slightly colder nights in San Simeon, with lows around 3°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Sun) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Historic Sites Beaches

Side Trip

Cambria
Highlights from your plan
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Santa Rosa Catholic Church ©
Santa Rosa Catholic Church
Greenspace Creekside Reserve ©
Greenspace Creekside Reserve

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