20 days in California Itinerary

20 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

20 days in California Itinerary

Start: Manchester
Fly:  14​h
1
San Francisco
— 5 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
2
Yosemite National Park
— 5 nights
Drive:  5​h 30​min
3
Carmel
— 1 night
Fly:  3​h
4
San Diego
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
5
Los Angeles
— 4 nights
Fly:  15​h
End: Manchester

5
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Step out of San Francisco with an excursion to Wine Tours & Tastings in Napa--about 1h 05 min away. There's still lots to do: step off the mainland to explore Alcatraz Island, snap pictures at Golden Gate Bridge, get a taste of the local shopping with Exploratorium, and admire the natural beauty at Japanese Tea Garden.

To see ratings, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, read our San Francisco trip planner .

Manchester, UK to San Francisco is an approximately 14-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight; or do a combination of flight and train. The time zone difference when traveling from Manchester to San Francisco is minus 8 hours. Traveling from Manchester in December, expect San Francisco to be somewhat warmer, temps between 17°C and 8°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Tours Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Wine Tours & Tastings
Highlights from your plan
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Fisherman's Wharf ©
Fisherman's Wharf

5
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.
Yosemite National Park is known for nature, trails, scenic drive, wildlife, and museums. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: take in the dramatic natural features at Glacier Point, hike along Nevada Falls Loop, tour the pleasant surroundings at Lembert Dome, and take in the dramatic scenery at Vernal Fall.

For where to stay, maps, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Yosemite National Park day trip site .

You can drive from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and car; or do a combination of flight, bus, and taxi. While traveling from San Francisco, expect a bit cooler days and much colder nights in Yosemite National Park, ranging from highs of 9°C to lows of -11°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Thu) so you can drive to Carmel.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Tuolumne Meadows ©
Tuolumne Meadows
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome

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. On the 2nd (Thu), look for all kinds of wild species at Point Lobos.

To see ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Carmel itinerary planning website .

Getting from Yosemite National Park to Carmel by car takes about 5 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of car, flight, and shuttle. While traveling from Yosemite National Park, expect somewhat warmer days and much hotter nights in Carmel, ranging from highs of 19°C to lows of 7°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri) early enough to travel to San Diego.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Nature Beaches
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos

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.
Spend the 3rd (Fri) exploring the fascinating underwater world at SeaWorld San Diego. There's lots more to do: admire nature's wide array of creatures at San Diego Zoo, let little ones run wild at Balboa Park, examine the collection at Timken Museum of Art, and admire the majestic nature at Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve.

To find more things to do, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our San Diego trip planner .

You can fly from Carmel to San Diego in 4 hours. Other options are to do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. Expect a bit warmer evenings in San Diego when traveling from Carmel in January, with lows around 12°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Mon) so you can drive to Los Angeles.

Things to do in San Diego

Parks Zoos & Aquariums Theme Parks
Highlights from your plan
San Diego Zoo ©
San Diego Zoo
Balboa Park ©
Balboa Park
Cabrillo National Monument ©
Cabrillo National Monument

4
nights
Los Angeles

Los Angeles ©
Surrounded by mountain ranges, forests, valleys, beaches, and deserts, the metropolitan area of Los Angeles is home to over 17 million people.
Get out of town with these interesting Los Angeles side-trips: Anaheim (Disneyland Park & Disney California Adventure Park). Pack the 8th (Wed) with family-friendly diversions at Universal Studios Hollywood. There's still lots to do: look and learn at Griffith Observatory, get to know the fascinating history of Santa Monica Pier, see the interesting displays at The Getty Center, and explore the fascinating underground world of Bronson Caves.

To see other places to visit, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the Los Angeles trip itinerary planner.

Drive from San Diego to Los Angeles in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or fly. Expect a daytime high around 24°C in January, and nighttime lows around 11°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 10th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Theme Parks Museums Childrens Museums

Side Trips

Anaheim, Santa Monica Pier
Highlights from your plan
Disneyland Park ©
Disneyland Park
Universal Studios Hollywood ©
Universal Studios Hollywood
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center

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