26 days in California Itinerary

26 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

26 days in California Itinerary

Start: London
Fly:  14​h 30​min
1
Los Angeles
— 5 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
2
San Simeon
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
3
Carmel
— 5 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
4
Yosemite National Park
— 6 nights
Drive:  4​h
5
San Francisco
— 5 nights
Fly:  14​h
End: London

5
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 some historical perspective at La Brea Tar Pits and Museum and Avila Adobe. Let the collections at The Getty Center and Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County capture your imagination. Step out of Los Angeles to go to Simi Valley and see Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum, which is approximately 1h 05 min away. There's lots more to do: look and learn at Griffith Observatory, examine the collection at The Nethercutt Collection, explore the world behind art at The Museum of Contemporary Art, and have fun and explore at Travel Town.

For photos, other places to visit, ratings, and other tourist information, read Los Angeles online travel route planner .

London, UK to Los Angeles is an approximately 14.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and train; or do a combination of flight and bus. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 8 hours traveling from London to Los Angeles. Traveling from London in April, expect Los Angeles to be somewhat warmer, temps between 28°C and 15°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Thu) so you can go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Museums Childrens Museums Historic Sites

Side Trips

Norton Simon Museum, Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum
Highlights from your plan
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center
Petersen Automotive Museum ©
Petersen Automotive Museum

3
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.
Get outdoors at Elephant Seal Rookery and Moonstone Beach. Museum-lovers will get to explore Coastal Discovery Center at San Simeon Bay (Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary) and artifacts gallery. The adventure continues: kick back and relax at Piedras Blancas, view the masterpieces at Ephraim Pottery West Gallery, cruise along Moonstone Beach Dr, and hike along Bluff Trail.

To see other places to visit, more things to do, maps, and more tourist information, read our San Simeon online driving holiday planner .

You can drive from Los Angeles to San Simeon in 4.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of train and bus. Traveling from Los Angeles in April, expect slightly colder with lows of 7°C in San Simeon. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Sun) to allow time to drive to Carmel.

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
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach

5
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. Visiting Point Lobos and Carmel River State Beach will get you outdoors. Museum-lovers will get to explore Moto Talbott and Pacific House Museum. Explore Carmel's surroundings by going to Monterey Bay (in Monterey) and Big Sur (McWay Falls, Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, & more). Next up on the itinerary: take a memorable drive along Seventeen Mile Drive, tee off at Cypress Point Golf Club, take in the exciting artwork at Venture Gallery, and get a taste of the local shopping with Carmel Art Association.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, read our Carmel online driving holiday planner .

You can drive from San Simeon to Carmel in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and bus. Expect little chillier weather when traveling from San Simeon in April: highs in Carmel hover around 20°C, while lows dip to 10°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

Big Sur, Monterey, Cypress Point Golf Club, Moto Talbott
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

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.
Museum-lovers will get to explore Bodie State Historic Park and Mono County Museum. Explore hidden gems such as Glacier Point and Yosemite Falls. Change things up with a short trip to Mono Lake County Park in Lee Vining (about 48 minutes away). Spend the 30th (Tue) exploring nature at Elizabeth Lake, Yosemite National Park. Spend the 1st (Wed) exploring nature at Bridalveil Fall. And it doesn't end there: take some stellar pictures from Tunnel View, don't miss a visit to Yosemite Conservation Heritage Center, admire the sheer force of Vernal Fall, and hike along North Dome.

To find traveler tips, reviews, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Yosemite National Park route planner.

Getting from Carmel to Yosemite National Park by car takes about 5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus, flight, and car; or do a combination of bus, shuttle, flight, and car. Traveling from Carmel in April, you will find days in Yosemite National Park are slightly colder (17°C), and nights are cooler (-2°C). Cap off your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to go by car to San Francisco.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Bridgeport, Mono Lake County Park
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Bodie State Historic Park ©
Bodie State Historic Park
Bridalveil Fall ©
Bridalveil Fall

5
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Alcatraz Island and Castello di Amorosa will appeal to history buffs. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Exploratorium and Asian Art Museum. Get out of town with these interesting San Francisco side-trips: Sacramento (Old Sacramento & California State Railroad Museum). Next up on the itinerary: snap pictures at Golden Gate Bridge, contemplate the long history of SS Jeremiah O'Brien, admire the masterpieces at Legion of Honor, and examine the collection at Cable Car Museum.

For reviews, traveler tips, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our San Francisco trip itinerary builder site .

Getting from Yosemite National Park to San Francisco by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: take a bus; or do a combination of taxi, bus, flight, and subway. Traveling from Yosemite National Park in May, plan for somewhat warmer nights in San Francisco, with lows around 13°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Tue) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Museums Historic Sites Childrens Museums

Side Trips

Sacramento, Castello di Amorosa
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
California State Railroad Museum ©
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge

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