22 days in California Itinerary

22 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California trip planner

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Route & dates

22 days in California Itinerary

Start: Melbourne
Fly:  18​h 45​min
1
San Francisco
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
2
Fort Bragg
— 3 nights
Drive:  5​h 30​min
3
Monterey
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
4
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Drive:  6​h 15​min
5
Death Valley National Park
— 2 nights
Drive + bus:  8​h
6
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
Drive + Fly:  20​h 30​min
End: Melbourne

3
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Family-friendly places like Bodega Dunes and Armstrong Redwood State Reserve will thrill your kids. Get outdoors at Alcatraz Island and Goat Rock Beach. Go for a jaunt from San Francisco to Mill Valley to see Muir Woods National Monument about 46 minutes away. The adventure continues: take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge, admire all the interesting features of Twin Peaks, don't miss a visit to Lombard Street, and wander the streets of Fisherman's Wharf.

To see ratings, photos, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our San Francisco route planner.

Melbourne, Australia to San Francisco is an approximately 19-hour flight. You can also do a combination of shuttle and flight; or do a combination of train and flight. The time zone changes from Australian Eastern Standard Time (Victoria) (AEST) to Pacific Standard Time (PST), which is usually a -18 hour difference. Traveling from Melbourne in October, San Francisco is a bit warmer at night with lows of 15°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 5th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Fort Bragg.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Bodega Dunes, Armstrong Redwood State Reserve, Muir Woods National Monument, Goat Rock Beach
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Armstrong Redwood State Reserve ©
Armstrong Redwood State Reserve
Muir Woods National Monument ©
Muir Woods National Monument

3
nights
Fort Bragg

Fort Bragg ©
Fort Bragg is a coastal city along State Route 1 in Mendocino County, California. Visiting Noyo Headlands Park and Manchester Beach / Mendocino Coast KOA will get you outdoors. You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at Seaside Beach and Pudding Creek Beach. Change things up with a short trip to Point Arena - Stornetta Unit of the California Coastal National Monument in Point Arena (about 1h 20 min away). And it doesn't end there: immerse yourself in nature at Jug Handle State Reserve, get outside with All Aboard Adventure, make a trip to Albion River Bridge, and admire the natural beauty at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens.

To see photos, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read our Fort Bragg trip itinerary builder tool .

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Fort Bragg takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or take a bus. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from San Francisco in October: highs in Fort Bragg hover around 30°C, while lows dip to 9°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Monterey.

Things to do in Fort Bragg

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Point Arena, Albion River Bridge, Jug Handle State Reserve
Highlights from your plan
Seaside Beach ©
Seaside Beach
Pudding Creek Beach ©
Pudding Creek Beach

3
nights
Monterey

Monterey ©
Monterey is a city in the U.S. Kids will enjoy Dolphin & Whale Watching and Pfeiffer State Beach. Get in touch with nature at Monterey Bay and Point Lobos. Change things up with these side-trips from Monterey: Big Sur (Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, McWay Falls, & more). There's much more to do: enjoy the sand and surf at Carmel River State Beach, explore and take pictures at Seventeen Mile Drive, and stroll through Pacific Grove Shoreline Parkway Marine Refuge.

To find ratings, reviews, maps, and tourist information, use the Monterey trip builder site .

You can drive from Fort Bragg to Monterey in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, flight, and shuttle; or do a combination of car, flight, and shuttle. Expect little chillier weather when traveling from Fort Bragg in October: highs in Monterey hover around 24°C, while lows dip to 13°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Sat) early enough to drive to San Simeon.

Things to do in Monterey

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Big Sur, Carmel, 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

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 13th (Sun), admire all the interesting features of Moonstone Beach Dr, then enjoy the sand and surf at Moonstone Beach, and then identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 14th (Mon): kick back and relax at Piedras Blancas, then explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, and then steep yourself in history at The Old Santa Rosa Creek Chapel.

For more things to do, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, read our San Simeon online attractions planner .

Drive from Monterey to San Simeon in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of bus and car. When traveling from Monterey in October, plan for somewhat warmer days and slightly colder nights in San Simeon: temperatures range from 33°C by day to 9°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Mon) so you can drive to Death Valley National Park.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

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

2
nights
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Zabriskie Point and Wildrose Peak Trail. Visiting Badwater Basin and Artists Dr will get you outdoors. There's still lots to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Gower Gulch Loop, explore the striking landscape at Devil's Golf Course, contemplate the long history of Eureka Mine, and don't miss a visit to Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Death Valley National Park road trip planner.

Traveling by car from San Simeon to Death Valley National Park takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, train, and car; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Traveling from San Simeon in October, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be a bit warmer in Death Valley National Park, with lows of 13°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Parks Outdoors Nature
Highlights from your plan
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point
Artists Dr ©
Artists Dr
Devil's Golf Course ©
Devil's Golf Course

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 Sentinel Dome. Explore hidden gems such as Tunnel View and Vernal Fall. And it doesn't end there: hike along Tuolumne Meadows, explore the striking landscape at El Capitan, explore the landscape on two wheels at Yosemite Valley Biking, and don't miss a visit to Olmsted Point.

For where to stay, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Yosemite National Park trip itinerary website .

Drive from Death Valley National Park to Yosemite National Park in 8 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and bus. While traveling from Death Valley National Park, expect little chillier days and cooler nights in Yosemite National Park, ranging from highs of 22°C to lows of -2°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Mon) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails
Highlights from your plan
Yosemite Falls ©
Yosemite Falls
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome

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