29 days in Arizona, California & Colorado Itinerary

29 days in Arizona, California & Colorado Itinerary

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Route & dates

29 days in Arizona, California & Colorado Itinerary

Start: Chicago
Fly:  8​h 45​min
1
Williams
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
2
Grand Canyon National Park
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
3
Sedona
— 5 nights
taxi + Fly:  7​h
4
Carmel
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 45​min
5
Cambria
— 3 nights
+2
bus + Fly + Drive:  5​h 15​min
6
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h
7
San Francisco
— 4 nights
Fly + taxi:  4​h
8
Steamboat Springs
— 4 nights
taxi + Fly:  4​h 45​min
End: Chicago

2
nights
Williams

Williams ©
A tiny town with big tourist appeal, Williams lies on one of the first highways ever built in America, the iconic "Route 66." The town boasts many inns, motels, restaurants, and shops, although its most important feature is serving as the southern terminus of a scenic railway leading to the area's most famous tourist attraction, the World Heritage-listed Grand Canyon.
On the 8th (Sat), stop by Addicted to Route 66. On your second day here, stop by The Gallery in Williams, look for gifts at Colors of the West, then admire nature's extreme beauty at Painted Desert, and finally take in breathtaking views at Walnut Canyon National Monument.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, refer to the Williams trip itinerary planner.

Chicago to Williams is an approximately 9-hour combination of flight and bus. You can also do a combination of flight, bus, and train; or drive. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Chicago to Williams due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Chicago in December, you will find days in Williams are somewhat warmer (47°F), and nights are slightly colder (20°F). Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Grand Canyon National Park.

Things to do in Williams

Parks Nature Shopping

Side Trips

Walnut Canyon National Monument, Painted Desert
Highlights from your plan
Walnut Canyon National Monument ©
Walnut Canyon National Monument
Painted Desert ©
Painted Desert
Bearizona Wildlife Park ©
Bearizona Wildlife Park

4
nights
Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park ©
The size, shape, and color of Grand Canyon National Park combine to leave an impression on visitors as deep as the canyon itself.
Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Lower Antelope Canyon and Lookout Studio. Shop till you drop at Canyon Village Marketplace and Hopi House. On the 13th (Thu), hike the day away at Bright Angel Trail. And it doesn't end there: explore the stunning scenery at Grand Canyon South Rim, trek along South Kaibab Trail, tour the pleasant surroundings at Rim Trail, and take some stellar pictures from Mather Point.

To see traveler tips, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Grand Canyon National Park tour planner.

Traveling by car from Williams to Grand Canyon National Park takes 1.5 hours. Traveling from Williams in December, Grand Canyon National Park is slightly colder at night with lows of 15°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Fri) so you can drive to Sedona.

Things to do in Grand Canyon National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trip

Lower Antelope Canyon
Highlights from your plan
Grand Canyon South Rim ©
Grand Canyon South Rim
South Kaibab Trail ©
South Kaibab Trail
Bright Angel Trail ©
Bright Angel Trail

5
nights
Sedona

Sedona ©
Despite its relatively small size, Sedona overflows with tourist appeal.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Greg Lawson Galleries - Passion for Place and Honshin Fine Art. Take a break from the city and head to Bell Rock and Devil's Bridge Trail. Venture out of the city with trips to Coyote Trails Golf Course (in Cottonwood) and Jerome (Made in Jerome Pottery, Jerome Artists Cooperative Gallery, & more). The adventure continues: explore the striking landscape at Cathedral Rock, stop by The Melting Point, cruise along Red Rock Scenic Byway (SR 179), and shop like a local with Village Gallery of Local Artists.

To find maps, reviews, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Sedona trip itinerary planning app .

Traveling by car from Grand Canyon National Park to Sedona takes 2.5 hours. While traveling from Grand Canyon National Park, expect somewhat warmer days and much hotter nights in Sedona, ranging from highs of 54°F to lows of 38°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 19th (Wed) early enough to travel to Carmel.

Things to do in Sedona

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Jerome, Absolute Bikes, Coyote Trails Golf Course
Highlights from your plan
Cathedral Rock ©
Cathedral Rock
Oak Creek Canyon ©
Oak Creek Canyon
Broken Arrow Trail ©
Broken Arrow Trail

1
night
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. Kick off your visit on the 20th (Thu): take a memorable drive along Seventeen Mile Drive, enjoy the sand and surf at Carmel River State Beach, then take in the exciting artwork at Gallery by the Sea Carmel, and finally browse for treasures at The Pilgrims Way Books and Secret Garden. Keep things going the next day: admire the majestic nature at Point Lobos, stop by The Cheese Shop, then view the masterpieces at Carmel Art Association, and finally look for gifts at Trio Carmel.

To see more things to do, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Carmel online holiday planner .

You can do a combination of shuttle, flight, and bus from Sedona to Carmel in 7 hours. Other options are to do a combination of taxi, flight, and bus; or drive. The time zone changes from Mountain Standard Time to Pacific Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. Traveling from Sedona in December, expect nights in Carmel to be about the same, around 43°F, while days are a bit warmer, around 62°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Fri) so you can drive to Cambria.

Things to do in Carmel

Beaches Outdoors Parks
Highlights from your plan
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Carmel Art Association ©
Carmel Art Association

3
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). Do your shopping at Rons and Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa Museum & Gift Shop. Visit Moonstone Beach and Piedras Blancas for some beach relaxation. Get out of town with these interesting Cambria side-trips: Morro Bay (Morro Rock & The Shell Shop) and Alapay Cellars (in Avila Beach). There's lots more to do: look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery, get a taste of the local shopping with Ephraim Pottery West Gallery, stop by Lucia Apothecary, and take in nature's colorful creations at Cambria Nursery & Florist.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, use the Cambria driving holiday planner.

You can drive from Carmel to Cambria in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, train, and taxi; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Expect slightly colder evenings in Cambria when traveling from Carmel in December, with lows around 33°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Cambria

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Morro Bay, San Simeon, Alapay Cellars, Old Mission Gift Shop and Museum, Rons
Highlights from your plan
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Morro Rock ©
Morro Rock

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.
Explore hidden gems such as Glacier Point and Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes. Take a break from the city and head to Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center and Yosemite Falls. On the 27th (Thu), spend an exhilarating day on the slopes at Yosemite Ski and Snowboard Area. There's much more to do: take some stellar pictures from Tunnel View, get answers to all your questions at Yosemite Conservation Heritage Center, explore the striking landscape at Sentinel Dome, and make a trip to Olmsted Point.

For reviews, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our Yosemite National Park route builder site .

Traveling by car from Cambria to Yosemite National Park takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Prepare for a bit cooler weather when traveling from Cambria in December: high temperatures in Yosemite National Park hover around 46°F and lows are around 14°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 28th (Fri) so you can go by car to San Francisco.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Winter Sports

Side Trip

Mammoth Lakes
Highlights from your plan
Yosemite, Tunnel View ©
Yosemite, Tunnel View
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome

4
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Bring the kids along to Ghirardelli Square and Exploratorium. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Castello di Amorosa and Ramini Mozzarella. Go for a jaunt from San Francisco to St. Helena to see V. Sattui Winery about 1h 25 min away. There's much more to do: explore and take pictures at Alcatraz Island, browse the range of quality goods at Nordstrom, snap pictures at Golden Gate Bridge, and take a leisurely stroll along Fisherman's Wharf.

To find other places to visit, maps, ratings, and tourist information, go to the San Francisco road trip planning app .

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. While traveling from Yosemite National Park, expect somewhat warmer days and much hotter nights in San Francisco, ranging from highs of 59°F to lows of 45°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Tue) to allow enough time to travel to Steamboat Springs.

Things to do in San Francisco

Shopping Historic Sites Neighborhoods

Side Trips

V. Sattui Winery, Castello di Amorosa, Ramini Mozzarella
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Exploratorium ©
Exploratorium

4
nights
Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs ©
An internationally known ski resort, Steamboat Springs sits in the shadow of Mount Werner in north central Colorado.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Steamboat Ski Resort and Howelsen Hill Ski Area. Step out of the city life by going to Mount Werner and Fish Creek Falls. Go for a jaunt from Steamboat Springs to Grand Lake to see Never Summer Mountain Products about 2 hours away. Next up on the itinerary: fly down the slopes at Steamboat Powdercats, stop by Off the Beaten Path Bookstore, and take in the natural beauty of Strawberry Park Hot Springs.

To find photos, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the Steamboat Springs trip itinerary planning website .

Getting from San Francisco to Steamboat Springs by combination of flight and taxi takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of subway, flight, and taxi; or drive. The time zone difference when traveling from San Francisco to Steamboat Springs is 1 hour. Traveling from San Francisco in January, things will get cooler in Steamboat Springs: highs are around 27°F and lows about 7°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Steamboat Springs

Parks Outdoors Winter Sports

Side Trip

Never Summer Mountain Products
Highlights from your plan
Steamboat Ski Resort ©
Steamboat Ski Resort
Fish Creek Falls ©
Fish Creek Falls
Strawberry Park Hot Springs ©
Strawberry Park Hot Springs

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