15 days in California Itinerary

15 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California journey builder

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Route & dates

15 days in California Itinerary

Start: Tucson
Fly:  5​h
1
San Francisco
— 4 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
2
Yosemite National Park
— 4 nights
bus + Fly:  5​h 45​min
3
Big Sur
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
4
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
5
Santa Barbara
— 1 night
Fly + shuttle:  6​h
End: Tucson

4
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Do your shopping at Union Square and Ferry Building Marketplace. Your inner history buff will appreciate Alcatraz Island and Castello di Amorosa. Change things up with a short trip to Muir Woods National Monument in Mill Valley (about 38 minutes away). There's lots more to do: contemplate the long history of City Lights Booksellers & Publishers, engage your brain at Exploratorium, hunt for treasures at Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, and wander the streets of The Embarcadero.

To see maps, reviews, more things to do, and tourist information, use the San Francisco trip itinerary maker site .

Tucson to San Francisco is an approximately 5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or drive. The time zone changes from Mountain Standard Time to Pacific Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. While traveling from Tucson, expect much colder days and little chillier nights in San Francisco, ranging from highs of 71°F to lows of 55°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Wed) so you can drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Historic Sites Shopping Parks

Side Trips

Castello di Amorosa, Muir Woods National Monument
Highlights from your plan
Castello di Amorosa ©
Castello di Amorosa
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge

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.
Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Bodie State Historic Park and Bodie. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Glacier Point and Tioga Pass. The adventure continues: take some stellar pictures from Tunnel View, explore the striking landscape at El Capitan, trek along Tuolumne Meadows, and admire the sheer force of Bridalveil Fall.

For ratings, more things to do, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Yosemite National Park driving holiday planner.

Getting from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park by car takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of subway, flight, bus, and taxi. While traveling from San Francisco, expect a bit warmer days and little chillier nights in Yosemite National Park, ranging from highs of 82°F to lows of 45°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Sun) early enough to drive to Big Sur.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Bodie State Historic Park
Highlights from your plan
Bridalveil Fall ©
Bridalveil Fall
Bodie State Historic Park ©
Bodie State Historic Park
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point

3
nights
Big Sur

Big Sur ©
A sparsely populated area with stunning views, Big Sur attracts artists and tourists traveling California’s scenic Highway 1.
Take a break from the city and head to Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and Carmel City Beach/Carmel River Beach. Head to The Cheese Shop and Coast Gallery Big Surfor some retail therapy. Venture out of the city with trips to Cannery Row (in Monterey) and Carmel (Point Lobos State Reserve & Seventeen Mile Drive). The adventure continues: kick back and relax at Pfeiffer State Beach, hike along Partington Cove, and take in the dramatic scenery at McWay Falls.

Plan a trip to Big Sur easily and quickly by telling Inspirock to suggest an itinerary.

Drive from Yosemite National Park to Big Sur in 6 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Expect little chillier weather when traveling from Yosemite National Park in July: highs in Big Sur hover around 68°F, while lows dip to 54°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 11th (Wed) to allow time to drive to San Simeon.

Things to do in Big Sur

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Carmel, Cannery Row
Highlights from your plan
Pfeiffer State Beach ©
Pfeiffer State Beach
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach

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.
On the 12th (Thu), kick back and relax at Moonstone Beach, stop by Lucia Apothecary, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery. On the 13th (Fri), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at Piedras Blancas, learn about winemaking at Moonstone Cellars, and then stop by Sebastian General Store.

To see maps, where to stay, other places to visit, and tourist information, read San Simeon online trip maker .

You can drive from Big Sur to San Simeon in 1.5 hours. When traveling from Big Sur in July, plan for little chillier days and about the same nights in San Simeon: temperatures range from 59°F by day to 53°F at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 13th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Santa Barbara.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Cambria
Highlights from your plan
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas

1
night
Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara ©
Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, Santa Barbara is a solid vacation destination with its wide beaches, renowned wineries, and some of California's finest shopping and dining options.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Sat): hunt for treasures at Santa Barbara Certified Farmers Market, then steep yourself in history at Old Mission Santa Barbara, and then get a taste of the local shopping with State Street.

To find other places to visit, traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Santa Barbara trip builder site .

Traveling by car from San Simeon to Santa Barbara takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and train; or take a bus. Traveling from San Simeon in July, expect nights in Santa Barbara to be about the same, around 58°F, while days are a bit warmer, around 74°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Shopping Historic Sites Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Santa Barbara Certified Farmers Market ©
Old Mission Santa Barbara ©
Old Mission Santa Barbara

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