26 days in California Itinerary

26 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California trip itinerary maker

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Route & dates

26 days in California Itinerary

Start: Chennai
Fly:  23​h 30​min
1
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h
2
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
bus:  1​h 30​min
3
Mammoth Lakes
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
4
Death Valley National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 45​min
5
Palm Springs
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h
6
Los Angeles
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
7
Cambria
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
8
Carmel
— 6 nights
shuttle + Fly:  28​h
End: Chennai

2
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Shop till you drop at Ferry Building Marketplace and City Lights Booksellers. Exploratorium and Asian Art Museum will appeal to museum buffs. And it doesn't end there: head off the coast to Alcatraz Island, wander the streets of Union Square, steep yourself in history at SS Jeremiah O'Brien, and explore and take pictures at Golden Gate Park.

For traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our San Francisco trip planner .

Chennai, India to San Francisco is an approximately 23.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight. You'll gain 13 hours traveling from Chennai to San Francisco due to the time zone difference. In May, San Francisco is cooler than Chennai - with highs of 24°C and lows of 13°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Shopping Museums Parks
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Union Square ©
Union Square

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.
Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Ansel Adams Gallery and Yosemite Museum Gallery. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Glacier Point and Yosemite Falls. Venture out of the city with trips to Bridgeport (Mono County Museum & Bodie State Historic Park). There's lots more to do: get great views at Tunnel View, grab your bike and head to Yosemite Valley Biking, and explore the striking landscape at El Capitan.

To find ratings, traveler tips, photos, and more tourist information, use the Yosemite National Park trip planner .

Getting from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of flight and car; or do a combination of flight and bus. Traveling from San Francisco in May, plan for little chillier nights in Yosemite National Park, with lows around 1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Tue) so you can take a bus to Mammoth Lakes.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Museums

Side Trip

Bridgeport
Highlights from your plan
Yosemite, Tunnel View ©
Yosemite, Tunnel View
Bodie State Historic Park ©
Bodie State Historic Park
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point

2
nights
Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes ©
Mammoth Lakes is a town in Mono County, California, the county's only incorporated community. Kick off your visit on the 8th (Wed): identify plant and animal life at Mono Lake County Park, then look for all kinds of wild species at McGee Creek, then stop by Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes, and finally get engrossed in the history at Mammoth Museum at the Hayden Cabin. On the 9th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: fly down the slopes at Mammoth Mountain.

For more things to do, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Mammoth Lakes trip site .

Take a bus from Yosemite National Park to Mammoth Lakes in 1.5 hours. May in Mammoth Lakes sees daily highs of 21°C and lows of 1°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) so you can go by car to Death Valley National Park.

Things to do in Mammoth Lakes

Parks Outdoors Winter Sports

Side Trip

Mono Lake County Park
Highlights from your plan
Mammoth Mountain ©
Mammoth Mountain
Mono Lake County Park ©
Mono Lake County Park
Mammoth Museum at the Hayden Cabin ©

1
night
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
Start off your visit on the 10th (Fri): contemplate the waterfront views at Badwater Basin, steep yourself in history at Eureka Mine, and then explore the striking landscape at Zabriskie Point.

For reviews, maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Death Valley National Park online visit planner .

Traveling by car from Mammoth Lakes to Death Valley National Park takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and car. When traveling from Mammoth Lakes in May, plan for somewhat warmer days in Death Valley National Park, with highs around 33°C, while nights are much hotter with lows around 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Palm Springs.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Parks Nature Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
Badwater Basin ©
Badwater Basin
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point
Eureka Mine ©
Eureka Mine

3
nights
Palm Springs

Palm Springs ©
Palm Springs is a desert resort city in Riverside County, California, United States, within the Coachella Valley. Let the collections at Palm Springs Art Museum and CODA Gallery capture your imagination. Escape the urban bustle at Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and Palm Springs Museum Trail. Venture out of the city with trips to Borrego Art Institute (in Borrego Springs) and Heather James Fine Art (in Palm Desert). The adventure continues: take an in-depth tour of Palm Springs Air Museum, indulge your thirst for a good beer at Coachella Valley Brewing Company, get a taste of the local shopping with El Paseo Shopping District, and view the masterpieces at Antique Galleries of Palm Springs.

For traveler tips, more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Palm Springs trip tool .

Drive from Death Valley National Park to Palm Springs in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, bus, and train; or take a bus. Traveling from Death Valley National Park in May, things will get somewhat warmer in Palm Springs: highs are around 39°C and lows about 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Mon) early enough to drive to Los Angeles.

Things to do in Palm Springs

Shopping Museums Outdoors

Side Trips

Palm Desert, Borrego Springs, Coachella Valley Brewing Company
Highlights from your plan
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park ©
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
Palm Springs Art Museum
Palm Springs Art Museum
Palm Springs Air Museum ©
Palm Springs Air Museum

3
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.
Head to Montana Avenue and Abbot Kinney Boulevardfor plenty of shopping. The Getty Center and La Brea Tar Pits and Museum will appeal to museum buffs. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Los Angeles: Two Rodeo Drive (in Beverly Hills) and Santa Monica Farmers Market (in Santa Monica). And it doesn't end there: see the sky in a new way at Griffith Observatory, buy something for everyone on your list at The Grove, see the interesting displays at Petersen Automotive Museum, and get a taste of the local shopping with Hammer Museum.

To find photos, other places to visit, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Los Angeles attractions tool .

Traveling by car from Palm Springs to Los Angeles takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. Traveling from Palm Springs in May, expect Los Angeles to be a bit cooler, temps between 28°C and 17°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Thu) early enough to drive to Cambria.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Museums Shopping Childrens Museums

Side Trips

Santa Monica, Two Rodeo Drive
Highlights from your plan
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center
Petersen Automotive Museum ©
Petersen Automotive Museum
Los Angeles County Museum of Art ©
Los Angeles County Museum of Art

2
nights
Cambria

Cambria ©
Cambria is a seaside village in San Luis Obispo County, California, United States midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles along California State Route 1 (Highway 1). Start off your visit on the 17th (Fri): step into the grandiose world of Hearst Castle, then look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery, then view the masterpieces at Ephraim Pottery West Gallery, and finally view the masterpieces at artifacts gallery. On the next day, admire the natural beauty at Cambria Nursery & Florist, then enjoy the sand and surf at Moonstone Beach, then get a taste of the local shopping with Fiona Bleu Gallery, and finally take in the dramatic natural features at Morro Rock.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, read our Cambria trip itinerary planning website .

Drive from Los Angeles to Cambria in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or take a train. While traveling from Los Angeles, expect somewhat warmer days and a bit cooler nights in Cambria, ranging from highs of 32°C to lows of 10°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Sat) early enough to drive to Carmel.

Things to do in Cambria

Parks Outdoors Wildlife

Side Trips

Morro Bay, San Simeon
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach

6
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. Step out of the city life by going to Monterey Bay and Point Lobos. Museum-lovers will get to explore Carmel Art Association and Coast Gallery Big Sur. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Carmel: Big Sur (McWay Falls, Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, & more). Spend the 21st (Tue) observing fascinating marine mammals with a dolphin and whale watching tour. And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Carmel River State Beach, view the masterpieces at Photography West Gallery, get a taste of the local shopping with Steven Whyte's Sculpture Studio and Gallery, and look for gifts at The Cheese Shop.

To see maps, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, refer to the Carmel trip itinerary maker .

Traveling by car from Cambria to Carmel takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and bus; or do a combination of car and bus. Traveling from Cambria in May, you will find days in Carmel are little chillier (21°C), and nights are about the same (12°C). Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Fri) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

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

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