15 days in California Itinerary

15 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California route planner

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Route & dates

15 days in California Itinerary

Start: London
Fly:  14​h 30​min
1
San Francisco
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Carmel
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
3
San Simeon
— 3 nights
Drive:  7​h 45​min
4
Mammoth Lakes
— 5 nights
Fly:  17​h 30​min
End: London

3
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Get outdoors at Alcatraz Island and Muir Woods National Monument. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Safari West and Cable Car Museum. Step out of San Francisco with an excursion to Pride Mountain Vineyards in St. Helena--about 1h 30 min away. There's lots more to do: take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge, take a leisurely stroll along Fisherman's Wharf, walk around Lincoln Park, and don't miss a visit to Lombard Street.

To see traveler tips, maps, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our San Francisco trip planning site .

London, UK to San Francisco is an approximately 14.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train. Traveling from London to San Francisco, you'll gain 8 hours due to the time zone difference. In August, plan for daily highs up to 26°C, and evening lows to 17°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Fri) so you can go by car to Carmel.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trips

Muir Woods National Monument, Safari West, Pride Mountain Vineyards
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Muir Woods National Monument ©
Muir Woods National Monument
Safari West ©
Safari West

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. Start off your visit on the 7th (Sat): admire the majestic nature at Point Lobos and then kick back and relax at Carmel River State Beach.

To see reviews, where to stay, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Carmel online trip planner .

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Carmel takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. In August, daily temperatures in Carmel can reach 24°C, while at night they dip to 16°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 7th (Sat) so you can go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Outdoors Beaches
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach

3
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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Hearst Castle and Moonstone Beach. Kids will appreciate attractions like Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and Piedras Blancas. Take a break from San Simeon with a short trip to Pfeiffer State Beach in Big Sur, about 1h 30 min away. It doesn't end there: identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery.

To see ratings, reviews, maps, and tourist information, go to the San Simeon tour planner.

You can drive from Carmel to San Simeon in 3 hours. Another option is to do a combination of bus and car. While traveling from Carmel, expect much hotter days and about the same nights in San Simeon, ranging from highs of 40°C to lows of 15°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Tue) so you can go by car to Mammoth Lakes.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Big Sur, Moonstone Beach
Highlights from your plan
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach

5
nights
Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes ©
Mammoth Lakes is a town in Mono County, California, the county's only incorporated community. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Glacier Point and Half Dome. Visiting Yosemite, Tunnel View and Yosemite Falls will get you outdoors. And it doesn't end there: admire the sheer force of Vernal Fall, take in the dramatic natural features at Taft Point, hike along Mariposa Grove, and make a trip to Olmsted Point.

For photos, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Mammoth Lakes trip maker tool .

You can drive from San Simeon to Mammoth Lakes in 8 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of bus and train. Expect slightly colder temperatures when traveling from San Simeon in August; daily highs in Mammoth Lakes reach 32°C and lows reach 7°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 16th (Mon) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Mammoth Lakes

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Yosemite National Park
Highlights from your plan
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Half Dome ©
Half Dome

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