20 days in West Coast, Las Vegas & New York City Itinerary

20 days in West Coast, Las Vegas & New York City Itinerary

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Route & dates

20 days in West Coast, Las Vegas & New York City Itinerary

Start: Denver
Fly:  4​h 45​min
1
San Francisco
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h
2
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
+2
Drive + Fly + bus:  5​h 30​min
3
San Simeon
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
4
Carmel
— 2 nights
Fly:  4​h 30​min
5
Las Vegas
— 2 nights
+2
Fly + shuttle + ferry:  7​h 30​min
6
Friday Harbor, San Juan Island
— 1 night
+4
Fly + foot + bus + train + bus:  8​h 30​min
7
Cannon Beach
— 2 nights
+3
bus + tram + Fly + bus:  12​h
8
New York City
— 3 nights
Fly:  7​h
End: Denver

1
night
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 14th (Fri): buy something for everyone on your list at Ferry Building Marketplace and then wander the streets of Union Square. Keep things going the next day: hunt for treasures at Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, head off the coast to Alcatraz Island, and then indulge in some culinary diversions at a local gastronomic tour.

To see maps, photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the San Francisco travel planner .

Denver to San Francisco is an approximately 5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and subway; or drive. The time zone changes from Mountain Standard Time to Pacific Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from Denver in September since evenings lows in San Francisco dip to 58°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Shopping Historic Sites Tours
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Union Square ©
Union Square
Ferry Building Marketplace ©
Ferry Building Marketplace

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.
Step out of the city life by going to Glacier Point and Taft Point. Discover out-of-the-way places like Bodie State Historic Park and Mono Lake County Park. Next up on the itinerary: hike along Tuolumne Meadows, explore the striking landscape at Lembert Dome, and don't miss a visit to Olmsted Point.

To find photos, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Yosemite National Park journey planner .

You can drive from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park in 4 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or do a combination of subway, flight, bus, and taxi. Plan for colder nights when traveling from San Francisco in September since evenings lows in Yosemite National Park dip to 38°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Tue) so you can drive to San Simeon.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Trails

Side Trips

Bodie State Historic Park, Mono Lake County Park
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Bodie State Historic Park ©
Bodie State Historic Park
Taft Point ©
Taft Point

1
night
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.
Start off your visit on the 19th (Wed): steep yourself in history at Hearst Castle, then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery, and then visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station. Here are some ideas for day two: shop like a local with Cambria Nursery & Florist, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Moonstone Beach, and then kick back and relax at Piedras Blancas.

To find ratings, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the San Simeon sightseeing planner .

You can drive from Yosemite National Park to San Simeon in 5.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of taxi, bus, and ferry. Traveling from Yosemite National Park in September, expect San Simeon to be somewhat warmer, temps between 90°F and 53°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Thu) so you can drive to Carmel.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Beaches Wildlife

Side Trip

Cambria
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas

2
nights
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. Kick off your visit on the 21st (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at Del Mar Beach, look for gifts at The Cheese Shop, and then immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 22nd (Sat): meet the residents at Monterey Bay Aquarium, then take in the exciting artwork at Gallery by the Sea Carmel, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at China Cove and Gibson Beach.

To see where to stay, reviews, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Carmel trip itinerary builder app .

You can drive from San Simeon to Carmel in 3 hours. Another option is to do a combination of car and bus. Traveling from San Simeon in September, you will find days in Carmel are a bit cooler (72°F), and nights are about the same (56°F). Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sat) early enough to travel to Las Vegas.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Monterey Bay Aquarium
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
The Cheese Shop ©
The Cheese Shop
Gallery by the Sea Carmel ©
Gallery by the Sea Carmel

2
nights
Las Vegas

Las Vegas ©
Nicknamed the "Entertainment Capital of the World," Las Vegas sits in the middle of a desert in the southern section of Nevada.
On the 23rd (Sun), examine the collection at The Mob Museum and then shop like a local with The Strip. On your second day here, get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour and then explore the stunning scenery at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

Discover how to plan a Las Vegas trip in just a few steps with Inspirock's itinerary builder.

Getting from Carmel to Las Vegas by combination of bus and flight takes about 4.5 hours. Other options: drive. When traveling from Carmel in September, plan for much hotter days in Las Vegas, with highs around 93°F, while nights are somewhat warmer with lows around 71°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Mon) early enough to travel to Friday Harbor.

Things to do in Las Vegas

Historic Sites Shopping Nature
Highlights from your plan
The Strip ©
The Strip
The Mob Museum ©
The Mob Museum

1
night
Friday Harbor, San Juan Island

The tiny town of Friday Harbor is the largest village on the San Juan Islands, and it fits within just 2.6 km (1 sq mi) of space.
On the 25th (Tue), look for gifts at Serendipity the used book place, then stop by Pelindaba Lavender Friday Harbor, then shop like a local with Arctic Raven Gallery, and finally see majestic marine mammals with a dolphin and whale watching tour. Here are some ideas for day two: get outside with Springtide Paddlesports, explore the striking landscape at Cattle Point, and then immerse yourself in nature at Lime Kiln Point State Park.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, read Friday Harbor trip itinerary planner .

The Route module can help you plan travel from Las Vegas to Friday Harbor. Plan for much colder temperatures traveling from Las Vegas in September, with highs in Friday Harbor at 68°F and lows at 49°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Wed) to allow time to travel to Cannon Beach.

Things to do in Friday Harbor

Wildlife Nature Parks
Highlights from your plan
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Lime Kiln Point State Park ©
Lime Kiln Point State Park
Arctic Raven Gallery ©
Arctic Raven Gallery

2
nights
Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach ©
Cannon Beach is a city in Clatsop County, Oregon, United States. For shopping fun, head to Adelaide's Coffee and Sweet Shoppe or Jack's Country Store. You'll get in some beach time at Cannon Beach and Haystack Rock. Get out of town with these interesting Cannon Beach side-trips: Wheeler Station Antiques (in Wheeler) and Rockaway Beach Wayside (in Rockaway Beach). The adventure continues: stroll through Manzanita Beach, admire the majestic nature at Ecola State Park, and look for gifts at Bronze Coast Gallery.

Plan trip to Cannon Beach with our itinerary maker to find out where to go and what to do.

Traveling by combination of flight, train, and bus from Friday Harbor to Cannon Beach takes 8.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of ferry, train, and bus. In September, daytime highs in Cannon Beach are 69°F, while nighttime lows are 52°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Sat) early enough to travel to New York City.

Things to do in Cannon Beach

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Ocean Park, Wheeler Station Antiques, Rockaway Beach Wayside, Manzanita Beach
Highlights from your plan
Cannon Beach ©
Cannon Beach
Ecola State Park ©
Ecola State Park
Manzanita Beach ©
Manzanita Beach

3
nights
New York City

New York City ©
Writer Pearl Buck once called New York City “a place apart,” and this giant urban center remains unlike any other in the world.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and American Museum of Natural History. Get some historical perspective at 9/11 Memorial and Ellis Island. The adventure continues: make a trip to Fifth Avenue, pause for some serene contemplation at St. Patrick's Cathedral, admire the masterpieces at The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and admire all the interesting features of Central Park.

To find more things to do, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, read our New York City road trip planning website .

Traveling by combination of bus and flight from Cannon Beach to New York City takes 12 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Traveling from Cannon Beach to New York City, you'll lose 3 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Cannon Beach in September, things will get somewhat warmer in New York City: highs are around 80°F and lows about 66°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Wed) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in New York City

Museums Parks Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
The Metropolitan Museum of Art ©
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
9/11 Memorial ©
9/11 Memorial
New York Public Library ©
New York Public Library

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