15 days in West Coast & Grand Canyon National Park Itinerary

15 days in West Coast & Grand Canyon National Park Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in West Coast & Grand Canyon National Park Itinerary

Start: Newark
Fly:  6​h 15​min
1
San Diego
— 1 night
Fly + bus:  7​h 45​min
2
Grand Canyon National Park
— 2 nights
Drive:  10​h 15​min
3
San Simeon
— 1 day
Drive:  3​h
4
Monterey
— 4 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
5
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h
6
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Fly:  7​h
End: Newark

1
night
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.
On the 23rd (Mon), admire nature's wide array of creatures at San Diego Zoo. On the next day, enjoy the sand and surf at La Jolla Shores Park and then tour the pleasant surroundings at La Jolla Cove.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, read San Diego day trip tool .

Newark to San Diego is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight; or drive. Traveling from Newark to San Diego, you'll gain 3 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Newark in September, plan for somewhat warmer nights in San Diego, with lows around 68°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Tue) early enough to travel to Grand Canyon National Park.

Things to do in San Diego

Outdoors Parks Beaches
Highlights from your plan
La Jolla Shores Park ©
La Jolla Shores Park
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
San Diego Zoo ©
San Diego Zoo

2
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.
Visiting Rim Trail and Grand Canyon South Rim will get you outdoors. Explore hidden gems such as Bright Angel Trail and Lookout Studio. There's still lots to do: trek along South Kaibab Trail, explore the stunning scenery at Yavapai Point, and stroll through North Kaibab Trail.

To see more things to do, maps, other places to visit, and other tourist information, use the Grand Canyon National Park holiday planner .

Traveling by combination of flight and bus from San Diego to Grand Canyon National Park takes 8 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and shuttle. You'll lose 1 hour traveling from San Diego to Grand Canyon National Park due to the time zone difference. Expect cooler evenings in Grand Canyon National Park when traveling from San Diego in September, with lows around 43°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 27th (Fri) early enough to go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Grand Canyon National Park

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

1
day
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 28th (Sat), explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, then do a tasting at Hearst Ranch Winery, then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery, and finally enjoy the sand and surf at Moonstone Beach.

For reviews, more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, you can read our San Simeon itinerary builder site .

You can drive from Grand Canyon National Park to San Simeon in 10.5 hours. Traveling from Grand Canyon National Park to San Simeon, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Grand Canyon National Park in September, expect San Simeon to be somewhat warmer, temps between 90°F and 53°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sat) so you can drive to Monterey.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Beaches Wildlife

Side Trip

Moonstone Beach
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Hearst Ranch Winery ©
Hearst Ranch Winery

4
nights
Monterey

Monterey ©
Monterey is a city in the U.S. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Carmel River State Beach and Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park. Escape the urban bustle at Monterey Bay and Dolphin & Whale Watching. Step out of Monterey to go to Big Sur and see Pfeiffer State Beach, which is approximately 1 hour away. And it doesn't end there: admire the majestic nature at Point Lobos, tour the pleasant surroundings at China Cove and Gibson Beach, enjoy the sand and surf at Pacific Grove Shoreline Parkway Marine Refuge, and cruise along Seventeen Mile Drive.

Inspirock's itinerary builder makes planning a Monterey trip simple and quick.

You can drive from San Simeon to Monterey in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of car and bus. While traveling from San Simeon, expect a bit cooler days and about the same nights in Monterey, ranging from highs of 72°F to lows of 56°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Wed) so you can drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Monterey

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Carmel, Big Sur, Pacific Grove Shoreline Parkway Marine Refuge
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park ©
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park

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.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Tunnel View and Glacier Point. Visiting Tuolumne Meadows and Vernal Fall will get you outdoors. There's still lots to do: take in the dramatic natural features at Taft Point, make a trip to Yosemite Village, admire all the interesting features of Tioga Pass, and explore the striking landscape of Swinging Bridge Picnic Area Yosemite National Park CA.

To see photos, maps, and tourist information, read Yosemite National Park online trip builder .

Getting from Monterey to Yosemite National Park by car takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of shuttle, flight, and car; or do a combination of flight and car. Traveling from Monterey in October, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be cooler in Yosemite National Park, with lows of 28°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sat) to allow time to drive to San Francisco.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome
Tioga Pass ©
Tioga Pass

2
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Kick off your visit on the 6th (Sun): step off the mainland to explore Alcatraz Island, wander the streets of North Beach, then explore the wealth of natural beauty at Muir Woods National Monument, and finally take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge.

To find more things to do, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, read our San Francisco trip itinerary planning site .

Traveling by car from Yosemite National Park to San Francisco takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of bus and flight. When traveling from Yosemite National Park in October, plan for a bit warmer days in San Francisco, with highs around 73°F, while nights are much warmer with lows around 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 7th (Mon) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Nature Parks Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Muir Woods National Monument
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Muir Woods National Monument ©
Muir Woods National Monument
Fisherman's Wharf ©
Fisherman's Wharf

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