21 days in California Itinerary

21 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California trip itinerary planner

Plan created by another user. Make it yours

Route & dates

1
San Francisco
— 4 nights
2
Carmel
— 3 nights
3
San Simeon
— 2 nights
4
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
— 4 nights
5
Yosemite National Park
— 6 nights

4
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Muir Woods National Monument and Armstrong Redwood State Reserve. Visiting Alcatraz Island and Fishing Charters & Tours will get you outdoors. The adventure continues: snap pictures at Golden Gate Bridge, admire the natural beauty at Japanese Tea Garden, take in the spiritual surroundings of The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi, and contemplate the long history of SS Jeremiah O'Brien.

To find reviews, ratings, photos, and tourist information, read San Francisco trip planner.

Chicago to San Francisco is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. You can also drive; or do a combination of train and subway. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time (CST) to Pacific Standard Time (PST) is minus 2 hours. In July, San Francisco is little chillier than Chicago - with highs of °F and lows of °F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Fri) early enough to drive to Carmel.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Historic Sites Nature

Side Trips

Armstrong Redwood State Reserve, Muir Woods National Monument
Highlights from your plan
Muir Woods National Monument ©
Muir Woods National Monument
Armstrong Redwood State Reserve ©
Armstrong Redwood State Reserve
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island

3
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. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Point Lobos and Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park. Get outdoors at Dolphin & Whale Watching and Pfeiffer State Beach. Step out of Carmel with an excursion to McWay Falls in Big Sur--about 56 minutes away. There's still lots to do: appreciate the extensive heritage of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard, contemplate the waterfront views at Monterey Bay, take in the views from Bixby Bridge, and kick back and relax at Carmel River State Beach.

Start your trip to Carmel by creating a personalized itinerary on Inspirock.

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Carmel takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around °F in July, and nighttime lows around °F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Mon) to allow time to drive to San Simeon.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Big Sur, Monterey, Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard
Highlights from your plan
Pfeiffer State Beach ©
Pfeiffer State Beach
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach

2
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.
On the 30th (Tue), visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station, thenlook for all kinds of wild species at Friends of the Elephant Seal, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Piedras Blancas. Keep things going the next day: explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, cruise along Moonstone Beach Dr, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Moonstone Beach.

To plan San Simeon vacation without wasting time, ask Inspirock to design an itinerary.

You can drive from Carmel to San Simeon in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and car. Traveling from Carmel in July, you will find days in San Simeon are much hotter (°F), and nights are about the same (°F). Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Wed) early enough to drive to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Cambria
Highlights from your plan
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle

4
nights
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park ©
With mountain peaks reaching past 4,250 m (14,000 ft) and trees stretching to over 75 m (250 ft) high, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks present nature on a grand scale.
Take a break from the city and head to Giant Forest and Kings Canyon National Park. Explore hidden gems such as General Sherman Tree and Lakes Trail in Sequoia National Park. Next up on the itinerary: stroll through General Grant Tree Trail, take in the dramatic natural features at Moro Rock, trek along Congress Trail, and admire all the interesting features of Generals Hwy.

To see more things to do, maps, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park trip planner.

Drive from San Simeon to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, bus, and car; or do a combination of bus and car. Traveling from San Simeon in July, plan for a bit warmer nights in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park, with lows around °F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sun) so you can take a bus to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails
Highlights from your plan
Giant Forest ©
Giant Forest
Moro Rock ©
Moro Rock
Kings Canyon National Park ©
Kings Canyon National Park

6
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 off the beaten path and head to Glacier Point and Mariposa Grove. Escape the urban bustle at Yosemite, Tunnel View and El Capitan. Spend the 7th (Wed) exploring nature at Bridalveil Fall. There's much more to do: take in the dramatic scenery at Yosemite Falls, stroll through Four Mile Trail, trek along Mono Pass Trail, and explore the striking landscape at Taft Point.

To see reviews, maps, where to stay, and tourist information, read Yosemite National Park road trip planning app.

Traveling by bus from Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park to Yosemite National Park takes 8.5 hours. When traveling from Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park in August, plan for a bit cooler days and much colder nights in Yosemite National Park: temperatures range from °F by day to °F at night. On the 11th (Sun), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Nature
Highlights from your plan
El Capitan ©
El Capitan
Bridalveil Fall ©
Bridalveil Fall
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point

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