30 days in California Itinerary

30 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

30 days in California Itinerary

Start: New York City
bus + Fly:  8​h
1
San Diego
— 6 nights
Fly:  4​h
2
St. Helena
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
3
San Francisco
— 9 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
4
Yosemite National Park
— 8 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
5
Carmel
— 3 nights
Fly + bus:  11​h 45​min
End: New York City

6
nights
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.
Appreciate the collections at USS Midway Museum and San Diego Model Railroad Museum. Get some historical perspective at Old Point Loma Lighthouse and Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial. When in San Diego, make a side trip to see Oceanside Pier in Oceanside, approximately 1h 05 min away. Next up on the itinerary: tour the pleasant surroundings at La Jolla Cove, explore the striking landscape at Point Loma, kick back and relax at Mission Beach Park, and meet the residents at San Diego Zoo.

To find other places to visit, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read our San Diego vacation planner.

New York City to San Diego is an approximately 8-hour combination of bus and flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight; or drive. The time zone difference when traveling from New York City to San Diego is minus 3 hours. When traveling from New York City in June, plan for little chillier days in San Diego, with highs around 72°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 63°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Thu) so you can travel to St. Helena.

Things to do in San Diego

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Oceanside Pier
Highlights from your plan
USS Midway Museum ©
USS Midway Museum
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve ©

2
nights
St. Helena

St. Helena ©
The city of St.
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Fri): learn about winemaking at V. Sattui, do a tasting at Robert Mondavi Winery, then appreciate the views at Artesa Vineyards & Winery, and finally explore the world behind art at The Hess Collection Winery. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: soar above the sights with a balloon tour, explore the historical opulence of Castello di Amorosa, and then do a tasting at Pride Mountain Vineyards.

For where to stay, maps, ratings, and more tourist information, use the St. Helena road trip app .

You can do a combination of flight and taxi from San Diego to St. Helena in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight, subway, and bus; or drive. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from San Diego in June: highs in St. Helena hover around 82°F, while lows dip to 51°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Sat) early enough to drive to San Francisco.

Things to do in St. Helena

Wineries Outdoors Tours

Side Trips

Napa, Robert Mondavi Winery, Castello di Amorosa
Highlights from your plan
Pride Mountain Vineyards ©
Pride Mountain Vineyards
Robert Mondavi Winery ©
Robert Mondavi Winery
Artesa Vineyards & Winery ©
Artesa Vineyards & Winery

9
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Museum-lovers will appreciate Exploratorium and California Academy of Sciences. Alcatraz Island and SS Jeremiah O'Brien will appeal to history buffs. Change things up with a short trip to Fitzgerald J V Marine Reserve in Moss Beach (about 40 minutes away). And it doesn't end there: take a stroll through Fisherman's Wharf, enjoy the sand and surf at Baker Beach, take some stellar pictures from Twin Peaks, and explore the world behind art at Asian Art Museum.

For traveler tips, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the San Francisco trip planning tool .

You can drive from St. Helena to San Francisco in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and flight; or do a combination of bus and subway. While traveling from St. Helena, expect little chillier days and about the same nights in San Francisco, ranging from highs of 71°F to lows of 55°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Mon) early enough to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Fitzgerald J V Marine Reserve
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
SS Jeremiah O'Brien ©
SS Jeremiah O'Brien

8
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.
Escape the urban bustle at Glacier Point and Tuolumne Meadows. When in Yosemite National Park, make a side trip to see Bodie State Historic Park in Bridgeport, approximately 1h 05 min away. The adventure continues: take in the dramatic natural features at Sentinel Dome, stroll through Nevada Falls Loop, trek along May Lake Trailhead, and explore the activities along Gaylor Lake.

To see maps, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the Yosemite National Park planner .

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of subway, flight, bus, and taxi. While traveling from San Francisco, expect a bit warmer days and slightly colder nights in Yosemite National Park, ranging from highs of 82°F to lows of 45°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 17th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Carmel.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Bodie State Historic Park
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Tuolumne Meadows ©
Tuolumne Meadows
Sentinel Dome ©
Sentinel Dome

3
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. Kick off your visit on the 18th (Wed): don't miss a visit to San Carlos Cathedral, then stroll through Carmel City Beach/Carmel River Beach, and then immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos State Reserve. On the 19th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: cruise along 17-Mile Drive, then get to know the fascinating history of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard, and then get to know the fascinating history of Cannery Row.

For other places to visit, where to stay, more things to do, and tourist information, go to the Carmel trip itinerary tool .

You can drive from Yosemite National Park to Carmel in 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of taxi, bus, and train. Traveling from Yosemite National Park in July, expect nights in Carmel to be somewhat warmer, around 55°F, while days are a bit cooler, around 68°F. On the 20th (Fri), you'll have the morning to explore before heading back home.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Beaches Parks

Side Trips

Monterey, Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard ©
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach

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