15 days in United States Itinerary

15 days in United States Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in United States Itinerary

Start: San Francisco
Fly + Bus:  8​h 30​min
1
Grand Canyon National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
2
Scottsdale
— 1 night
Fly:  4​h
3
San Diego
— 3 nights
Fly:  2​h 45​min
4
San Jose
— 1 night
Drive:  45​min
5
Santa Cruz
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
6
San Francisco
— 4 nights
End: San Francisco

3
nights
Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park ©
The size, shape, and color of Grand Canyon National Park combine to leave an impression on visitors as deep as the canyon itself.
Escape the urban bustle at Rim Trail and Grand Canyon South Rim. There's lots more to do: surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, trek along Bright Angel Trail, take in breathtaking views at Yavapai Point, and admire the landmark architecture of Grand Canyon Railway Depot.

To find reviews, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Grand Canyon National Park tour itinerary maker website .

San Francisco to Grand Canyon National Park is an approximately 8.5-hour combination of flight and bus. You can also do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. The time zone changes from Pacific Standard Time to Mountain Standard Time, which is usually a 1 hour difference. When traveling from San Francisco in December, plan for a bit cooler days in Grand Canyon National Park, with highs around 45°F, while nights are cooler with lows around 15°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Wed) early enough to drive to Scottsdale.

Things to do in Grand Canyon National Park

Outdoors Parks Trails
Highlights from your plan
Rim Trail ©
Rim Trail
Grand Canyon South Rim ©
Grand Canyon South Rim
Bright Angel Trail ©
Bright Angel Trail

1
night
Scottsdale

Scottsdale ©
Scottsdale is a city in the eastern part of Maricopa County, Arizona, adjacent to the Greater Phoenix Area. Kick off your visit on the 19th (Thu): look for all kinds of wild species at McDowell Sonoran Preserve, identify plant and animal life at Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Liberty Wildlife.

For where to stay, traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Scottsdale online holiday planner .

Traveling by car from Grand Canyon National Park to Scottsdale takes 4 hours. In December, Scottsdale is warmer than Grand Canyon National Park - with highs of 68°F and lows of 46°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to San Diego.

Things to do in Scottsdale

Wildlife Parks

Side Trip

Liberty Wildlife
Highlights from your plan
Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center ©
Liberty Wildlife ©
Liberty Wildlife

3
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.
You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at La Jolla Cove and Children's Pool. Do some cultural sightseeing at USS Midway Museum and Mingei International Museum. Take a break from San Diego with a short trip to Lions, Tigers & Bears in Alpine, about 48 minutes away. There's still lots to do: hike along Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, shop like a local with Spanish Village Art Center, examine the collection at San Diego Model Railroad Museum, and explore the activities along Scripps Institute of Oceanography Coastal Reserve.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the San Diego day trip planning site .

Traveling by flight from Scottsdale to San Diego takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 1 hour traveling from Scottsdale to San Diego. In December, plan for daily highs up to 68°F, and evening lows to 51°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sun) early enough to travel to San Jose.

Things to do in San Diego

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Lions, Tigers & Bears
Highlights from your plan
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve ©
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve
Lions, Tigers & Bears ©
Lions, Tigers & Bears

1
night
San Jose

San Jose ©
The metropolitan center of Silicon Valley, San Jose considers itself a global city.
On the 23rd (Mon), delve into the mystery of Winchester Mystery House, engage your brain at The Tech Interactive, and then pause for some serene contemplation at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral.

To find ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the San Jose itinerary planning app .

Traveling by flight from San Diego to San Jose takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and train; or drive. Plan for a bit cooler temperatures traveling from San Diego in December, with highs in San Jose at 61°F and lows at 41°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Mon) so you can drive to Santa Cruz.

Things to do in San Jose

Childrens Museums Museums Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
The Tech Interactive ©
The Tech Interactive
Winchester Mystery House ©
Winchester Mystery House
Trinity Episcopal Cathedral ©
Trinity Episcopal Cathedral

2
nights
Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz ©
Santa Cruz remains synonymous with surfing, but this counterculture bastion offers plenty even if you don't plan to catch any waves.
On the 24th (Tue), get up close to creatures of the deep with a dolphin and whale watching tour, enjoy the sand and surf at Point Lobos, and then look for gifts at AiX. Here are some ideas for day two: enjoy the sand and surf at Asilomar State Beach, then take a memorable drive along 17-Mile Drive, and then get to know the fascinating history of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard.

To find photos, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the Santa Cruz online trip builder .

Traveling by car from San Jose to Santa Cruz takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In December, daily temperatures in Santa Cruz can reach 63°F, while at night they dip to 40°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to San Francisco.

Things to do in Santa Cruz

Outdoors Nature Beaches

Side Trips

Pacific Grove, Point Lobos, 17-Mile Drive, Dolphin & Whale Watching, AiX
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard ©
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard
Dolphin & Whale Watching

4
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Popular historic sites such as Alcatraz Island and City Lights Booksellers are in your itinerary. Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Union Square and Ferry Building Marketplace. And it doesn't end there: take a leisurely stroll along Fisherman's Wharf, see the interesting displays at GLBT Historical Society Museum, take a stroll through The Castro, and take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge.

To find traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and tourist information, you can read our San Francisco road trip planning site .

Traveling by car from Santa Cruz to San Francisco takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. In December, plan for daily highs up to 59°F, and evening lows to 45°F. You will have some time to spend on the 29th (Sun) before leaving for home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Neighborhoods Historic Sites Shopping
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Fisherman's Wharf ©
Fisherman's Wharf

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