25 days in California Itinerary

25 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

25 days in California Itinerary

Start: Chicago
Fly + bus:  6​h 30​min
1
Sonoma
— 5 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
2
Redwood National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 30​min
3
Mendocino
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
4
Bodega Bay
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
5
Monterey
— 3 nights
bus:  1​h
6
Big Sur
— 1 night
Drive:  5​h 15​min
7
Santa Barbara
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h 30​min
8
San Juan Capistrano
— 2 nights
Travel:  3​h 30​min
9
Avalon, Catalina Island
— 2 nights
+2
ferry + foot + bus:  4​h 30​min
10
San Diego
— 1 night
Fly:  6​h 15​min
End: Chicago

5
nights
Sonoma

Sonoma ©
Set in the heart of one of the United States' most esteemed wine-producing regions, just 45 minutes from San Francisco, Sonoma boasts colonial Mexican architecture, including a mission.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Sonoma Valley and Mumm Napa. Step out of Sonoma to go to Calistoga and see Bothe-Napa State Park, which is approximately 40 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: don't miss a visit to Sonoma Plaza.

To see other places to visit, reviews, photos, and tourist information, read Sonoma attractions planner.

Chicago to Sonoma is an approximately 9.5-hour combination of flight and bus. You can also do a combination of flight, shuttle, and bus; or drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 2 hours traveling from Chicago to Sonoma. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Chicago in November, with highs in Sonoma at 65°F and lows at 41°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 10th (Sat) to allow time for travel to Redwood National Park.

Things to do in Sonoma

Parks Nature Wineries

Side Trips

Mumm Napa, Bothe-Napa State Park
Highlights from your plan
Bothe-Napa State Park ©
Bothe-Napa State Park
Mumm Napa ©
Mumm Napa
Sonoma Valley ©
Sonoma Valley

1
night
Redwood National Park

Redwood National Park ©
Redwood National Park is home to a tremendous collection of the world's tallest type of tree.
You've now added Trees of Mystery to your itinerary. Kick off your visit on the 11th (Sun): see the interesting displays at Trees of Mystery.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, read our Redwood National Park tour website .

You can drive from Sonoma to Redwood National Park in 6 hours. Alternatively, you can fly. When traveling from Sonoma in November, plan for slightly colder days and about the same nights in Redwood National Park: temperatures range from 59°F by day to 44°F at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Mon) early enough to travel to Mendocino.

Things to do in Redwood National Park

Theme Parks Nature Parks

Side Trip

Trees of Mystery
Highlights from your plan
Trees of Mystery ©
Trees of Mystery

2
nights
Mendocino

Mendocino ©
Mendocino is an unincorporated community in Mendocino County, California, United States. Kick off your visit on the 12th (Mon): admire the majestic nature at MacKerricher State Park. Here are some ideas for day two: kick back and relax at Glass Beach, then enjoy the sea views from Point Cabrillo Light Station, and then cruise along Mendocino Coast.

To find other places to visit, more things to do, and tourist information, read our Mendocino online trip itinerary planner .

Traveling by car from Redwood National Park to Mendocino takes 4.5 hours. Traveling from Redwood National Park in November, expect nights in Mendocino to be about the same, around 41°F, while days are a bit warmer, around 65°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Wed) so you can travel to Bodega Bay.

Things to do in Mendocino

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Fort Bragg, Albion River Bridge, B Bryan Preserve
Highlights from your plan
Point Cabrillo Light Station ©
Point Cabrillo Light Station
B Bryan Preserve ©
B Bryan Preserve
MacKerricher State Park ©
MacKerricher State Park

3
nights
Bodega Bay

Bodega Bay ©
Bodega Bay is a town and census-designated place (CDP) in Sonoma County, California, United States. Here are some ideas for day two: admire all the interesting features of Fort Ross State Historic Park, identify plant and animal life at Tomales Bay State Park, and then don't miss a visit to James E Potter Elementary School.

To see traveler tips, maps, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Bodega Bay trip planner .

Drive from Mendocino to Bodega Bay in 3 hours. Expect a daytime high around 67°F in November, and nighttime lows around 41°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel to Monterey.

Things to do in Bodega Bay

Parks Nature Beaches

Side Trips

Limantour Beach, Fort Ross State Historic Park, Tomales Bay State Park
Highlights from your plan
Fort Ross State Historic Park ©
Fort Ross State Historic Park
Tomales Bay State Park ©
Tomales Bay State Park
Limantour Beach ©
Limantour Beach

3
nights
Monterey

Monterey ©
Monterey is a city in the U.S. You've added Lovers Point, 17-Mile Drive, Monterey Movie Tours, and other attractions to your itinerary. The adventure continues: take in the architecture and atmosphere at San Carlos Cathedral.

Planning Monterey trip won't be overwheling when you use's Insprock itinerary maker.

Getting from Bodega Bay to Monterey by car takes about 3.5 hours. Traveling from Bodega Bay in November, Monterey is a bit warmer at night with lows of 47°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Tue) so you can take a bus to Big Sur.

Things to do in Monterey

Outdoors Parks Tours

Side Trips

Point Lobos, Lovers Point
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Dolphin & Whale Watching
17-Mile Drive ©
17-Mile Drive

1
night
Big Sur

Big Sur ©
A sparsely populated area with stunning views, Big Sur attracts artists and tourists traveling California’s scenic Highway 1.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Pfeiffer State Beach as well as McWay Falls. On the 20th (Tue), admire the sheer force of McWay Falls, tour the pleasant surroundings at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, visit a coastal fixture at Point Sur State Historic Park, then take in the views from Bixby Bridge, and finally stroll through Pfeiffer State Beach. Keep things going the next day: step into the grandiose world of Hearst Castle and then identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery.

To find traveler tips, maps, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Big Sur trip planning app .

You can take a bus from Monterey to Big Sur in an hour. Another option is to drive. In November, plan for daily highs up to 65°F, and evening lows to 47°F. On the 21st (Wed), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to San Simeon.

Things to do in Big Sur

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trip

San Simeon
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park ©
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park
Pfeiffer State Beach ©
Pfeiffer State Beach

4
nights
Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara ©
Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, Santa Barbara is a solid vacation destination with its wide beaches, renowned wineries, and some of California's finest shopping and dining options.
Get outdoors at Zuma Beach and Salt Cave. Explore Santa Barbara's surroundings by going to Ojai Meadows Preserve (in Ojai) and San Buenaventura State Beach (in Ventura). There's more to do: meet the residents at Santa Barbara Zoo.

To see where to stay, ratings, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Santa Barbara trip maker site .

You can drive from San Simeon to Santa Barbara in 3 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. Plan for somewhat warmer nights when traveling from San Simeon in November since evenings lows in Santa Barbara dip to 46°F. You'll set off for San Juan Capistrano on the 26th (Mon).

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

San Buenaventura State Beach, Zuma Beach, Ojai Meadows Preserve
Highlights from your plan
Zuma Beach ©
Zuma Beach
Ojai Meadows Preserve ©
Ojai Meadows Preserve
San Buenaventura State Beach ©
San Buenaventura State Beach

2
nights
San Juan Capistrano

San Juan Capistrano ©
San Juan Capistrano is a city in Orange County, California, United States. Kick off your visit on the 25th (Sun): examine the collection at Mission San Juan Capistrano and then kick back and relax at Newport Beach. Keep things going the next day: enjoy the sand and surf at Corona Del Mar State Beach and then take a memorable tour with Tours.

For traveler tips, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, read San Juan Capistrano trip planner .

Getting from Santa Barbara to San Juan Capistrano by car takes about 2.5 hours. Expect a bit warmer evenings in San Juan Capistrano when traveling from Santa Barbara in November, with lows around 55°F. You will have some time to spend on the 27th (Tue) before leaving for Avalon.

Things to do in San Juan Capistrano

Outdoors Beaches Parks

Side Trips

Newport Beach, Dana Point
Highlights from your plan
Newport Beach ©
Newport Beach
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Mission San Juan Capistrano ©
Mission San Juan Capistrano

2
nights
Avalon, Catalina Island

Avalon ©
Avalon is the only incorporated city on Santa Catalina Island of the California Channel Islands, and the southernmost city in Los Angeles County. Catalina Island Museum has been added to your itinerary.

To find other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Avalon sightseeing planner.

Explore your travel options from San Juan Capistrano to Avalon with the Route module. When traveling from San Juan Capistrano in November, plan for slightly colder days and about the same nights in Avalon: temperatures range from 67°F by day to 57°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Thu) so you can travel to San Diego.

Things to do in Avalon

Fun & Games Casinos Museums
Highlights from your plan
Catalina Island Museum ©
Catalina Island Museum
Airport in the Sky ©
Airport in the Sky

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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes Coronado Beach as well as La Jolla Cove. On the 28th (Wed), kick back and relax at La Jolla Cove, then snap pictures at Coronado Bridge, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Coronado Beach.

For ratings, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, use the San Diego trip app .

Do a combination of ferry, taxi, and train from Avalon to San Diego in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of ferry and bus; or do a combination of ferry, bus, and flight. When traveling from Avalon in November, plan for somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in San Diego: temperatures range from 73°F by day to 57°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Thu) so you can travel to Point Reyes National Seashore.

Things to do in San Diego

Beaches Outdoors Parks

Side Trip

Coronado Beach
Highlights from your plan
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
Coronado Beach ©
Coronado Beach
Coronado Bridge ©
Coronado Bridge

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