41 days in California Itinerary

41 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California trip planner

Plan created by another user. Make it yours
1
Carmel
— 1 day
2
Cambria
— 2 nights
3
Santa Barbara
— 2 nights
4
Los Angeles
— 2 nights
5
Palm Springs
— 2 nights
6
Death Valley National Park
— 2 nights
7
Mammoth Lakes
— 2 nights
8
Yosemite National Park
— 2 nights
9
Truckee
— 2 nights
10
Sacramento
— 2 nights
11
Mount Shasta
— 2 nights
12
Arcata
— 1 night
13
San Francisco
— 19 nights

1
day
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. On the 12th (Thu), grab your bike and head to Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail, then appreciate the extensive heritage of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard, then enjoy the sand and surf at Point Lobos, and finally look for gifts at The Cheese Shop.

To find maps, photos, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Carmel attractions planner.

San Francisco to Carmel is an approximately 2.5-hour car ride. You can also fly; or take a bus. In December in Carmel, expect temperatures between 19°C during the day and 7°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Thu) early enough to drive to Cambria.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches

Side Trips

Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard, Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail
Highlights from your plan
Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail ©
Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard ©
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard

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). Kick off your visit on the 13th (Fri): admire the majestic nature at Leffingwell Landing, tour the pleasant surroundings at Piedras Blancas, then examine the collection at Coastal Discovery Center at San Simeon Bay (Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary), and finally look for gifts at Artifacts Gallery. Keep things going the next day: identify plant and animal life at Sweet Springs Nature Preserve, then trek along Bluff Trail, and then immerse yourself in nature at Montana de Oro State Park.

To find reviews, where to stay, ratings, and other tourist information, read Cambria tour planning app.

Traveling by car from Carmel to Cambria takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, train, and taxi; or do a combination of bus and car. Traveling from Carmel in December, plan for a bit cooler nights in Cambria, with lows around 0°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Santa Barbara.

Things to do in Cambria

Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors

Side Trips

Los Osos, San Simeon
Highlights from your plan
Leffingwell Landing ©
Leffingwell Landing
Montana de Oro State Park ©
Montana de Oro State Park
Bluff Trail
Bluff Trail

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 15th (Sun): look for all kinds of wild species at Carpinteria Harbor Seal Preserve and Rookery, kick back and relax at Carpinteria State Beach, wander the streets of State Street Underpass, then identify plant and animal life at Douglas Family Preserve, and finally learn about winemaking at Margerum Wine Company Tasting Room. Keep things going the next day: get a new perspective on nature at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, then take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Cold Spring Tavern, then learn more about the world around you at Wildling Museum of Art and Nature, and finally take in the history at Old Mission Santa Ines.

To see where to stay, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Santa Barbara road trip site.

You can drive from Cambria to Santa Barbara in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus, taxi, and train. Traveling from Cambria in December, expect somewhat warmer with lows of 5°C in Santa Barbara. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Los Angeles.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Parks · Nature · Outdoors

Side Trips

Carpinteria, Solvang
Highlights from your plan
Cold Spring Tavern ©
Cold Spring Tavern
Old Mission Santa Ines ©
Old Mission Santa Ines
Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History ©
Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History

2
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.
Start off your visit on the 17th (Tue): take a leisurely stroll along Santa Monica Pier, stroll through Venice Beach and Boardwalk, examine the collection at The Getty Center, then stop by LA Farmers' Market, and finally shop like a local with The Grove. Here are some ideas for day two: make an unforgettable trip to Disneyland Park.

For maps, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Los Angeles day trip planning site.

Traveling by car from Santa Barbara to Los Angeles takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. Expect somewhat warmer evenings in Los Angeles when traveling from Santa Barbara in December, with lows around 11°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 18th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Palm Springs.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Theme Parks · Shopping · Beaches

Side Trips

Santa Monica Pier, Disneyland Park
Highlights from your plan
Disneyland Park ©
Disneyland Park
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center
Santa Monica Pier ©
Santa Monica Pier

2
nights
Palm Springs

Palm Springs ©
Kick off your visit on the 19th (Thu): get engrossed in the history at Cabot's Pueblo Museum, stop by Brandini Toffee, then stroll through Indian Canyons Hiking Trails, then explore the ancient world of Indian Canyons, and finally stop by Motif. Keep things going the next day: identify plant and animal life at South Lykken Trail, then skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour, and then get to know the fascinating history of Las Palmas.

To see other places to visit, traveler tips, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Palm Springs trip planner.

You can drive from Los Angeles to Palm Springs in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. In December, daily temperatures in Palm Springs can reach 24°C, while at night they dip to 10°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Death Valley National Park.

Things to do in Palm Springs

Parks · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trips

Canyoning & Rappelling Tours, Cabot's Pueblo Museum
Highlights from your plan
Indian Canyons ©
Indian Canyons
Cabot's Pueblo Museum ©
Cabot's Pueblo Museum
Indian Canyons Hiking Trails ©
Indian Canyons Hiking Trails

2
nights
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
Kick off your visit on the 21st (Sat): take in the dramatic natural features at Zabriskie Point, then explore the stunning scenery at Twenty Mule Team Canyon, then contemplate the long history of Harmony Borax Works, and finally contemplate the long history of Eureka Mine. On the 22nd (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: explore the stunning scenery at Mosaic Canyon, explore the activities along Salt Creek Interpretive Trail, then take in breathtaking views at Titus Canyon, and finally don't miss a visit to Ashford Mill Ruins.

To find where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Death Valley National Park driving holiday planner.

Traveling by car from Palm Springs to Death Valley National Park takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, train, and car; or take a bus. Expect little chillier temperatures when traveling from Palm Springs in December; daily highs in Death Valley National Park reach 15°C and lows reach 0°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Sun) to allow time to drive to Mammoth Lakes.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Nature · Parks · Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
Twenty Mule Team Canyon ©
Twenty Mule Team Canyon
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point
Titus Canyon ©
Titus Canyon

2
nights
Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes ©
Mammoth Lakes is a town in Mono County, California, the county's only incorporated community. On the 23rd (Mon), fly down the slopes at Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center, then take an in-depth tour of Mammoth Museum at the Hayden Cabin, then trek along Crystal Lake trail, and finally see the interesting displays at Eleven53 Interpretive Center. On the 24th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at June Mountain, then trek along Parker Lake Trail, and then stop by Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes.

To see more things to do, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Mammoth Lakes trip itinerary builder tool.

Getting from Death Valley National Park to Mammoth Lakes by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and bus. Plan for a bit cooler temperatures traveling from Death Valley National Park in December, with highs in Mammoth Lakes at 9°C and lows at -11°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Tue) so you can take a bus to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Mammoth Lakes

Outdoors · Parks · Winter Sports

Side Trip

June Lake
Highlights from your plan
Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center ©
Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center
June Mountain ©
June Mountain
Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes ©
Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes

2
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.
Start off your visit on the 25th (Wed): hike along Panorama Trail, admire the sheer force of Vernal Fall, then admire the masterpieces at Yosemite Museum Gallery, then identify plant and animal life at Cathedral Beach Picnic Area, and finally explore the striking landscape at Glacier Point. On the 26th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: fly down the slopes at Badger Pass Ski Area.

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

You can take a bus from Mammoth Lakes to Yosemite National Park in 3.5 hours. Expect a daytime high around 9°C in December, and nighttime lows around -11°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Thu) to allow time to take a bus to Truckee.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks · Outdoors · Winter Sports
Highlights from your plan
Vernal Fall ©
Vernal Fall
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Badger Pass Ski Area ©
Badger Pass Ski Area

2
nights
Truckee

Truckee ©
Truckee is an incorporated town in Nevada County, California, United States. On the 27th (Fri), fly down the slopes at Diamond Peak Ski & Snowboard School, then kick back and relax at Sand Harbor, and then contemplate the long history of Thunderbird Lodge Preservation Society. On your second day here, fly down the slopes at Northstar California.

To see photos and tourist information, you can read our Truckee vacation builder tool.

You can take a bus from Yosemite National Park to Truckee in 5.5 hours. When traveling from Yosemite National Park in December, plan for slightly colder days in Truckee, with highs around 5°C, while nights are about the same with lows around -11°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sat) so you can drive to Sacramento.

Things to do in Truckee

Outdoors · Parks · Winter Sports

Side Trips

Incline Village, Thunderbird Lodge Preservation Society
Highlights from your plan
Sand Harbor ©
Sand Harbor
Northstar California ©
Northstar California
Thunderbird Lodge Preservation Society ©
Thunderbird Lodge Preservation Society

2
nights
Sacramento

Sacramento ©
The capital city of America's most economically significant state, Sacramento is an important stop for any politico.
On the 29th (Sun), admire the masterpieces at Crocker Art Museum, look for all kinds of wild species at Effie Yeaw Nature Center, then get curious at Aerospace Museum of California, and finally look for gifts at Westfield Galleria at Roseville. On the 30th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take an in-depth tour of California State Indian Museum, view the masterpieces at The Artery, see the interesting displays at Old Sacramento Schoolhouse Museum, then examine the collection at California State Railroad Museum, and finally admire the natural beauty at California State Capitol Museum.

For reviews, more things to do, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Sacramento trip tool.

Traveling by car from Truckee to Sacramento takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. When traveling from Truckee in December, plan for a bit warmer days and warmer nights in Sacramento: temperatures range from 17°C by day to 3°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Mon) to allow enough time to travel to Mount Shasta.

Things to do in Sacramento

Museums · Parks · Shopping

Side Trips

Effie Yeaw Nature Center, Aerospace Museum of California, Westfield Galleria at Roseville, The Artery
Highlights from your plan
California State Railroad Museum ©
California State Railroad Museum
Crocker Art Museum ©
Crocker Art Museum
California State Capitol Museum ©
California State Capitol Museum

2
nights
Mount Shasta

Mount Shasta ©
Mount Shasta is a city in Siskiyou County, California, at about 3600ft above sea level on the flanks of Mount Shasta, a prominent northern California landmark. Kick off your visit on the 31st (Tue): look for gifts at The Weed Store, examine the collection at Siskiyou County Museum, then contemplate the geological forces at Mount Shasta, and finally get engrossed in the history at The McCloud Heritage Junction Museum. On your second day here, take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Castle Lake, glide through natural beauty at Mt. Shasta Nordic Center, and then get impressive views of Shasta-Trinity National Forest.

To find maps, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Mount Shasta trip planning website.

Getting from Sacramento to Mount Shasta by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of flight and car. In December, Mount Shasta is a bit cooler than Sacramento - with highs of 8°C and lows of -2°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 1st (Wed) early enough to travel to Arcata.

Things to do in Mount Shasta

Nature · Parks · Outdoors

Side Trips

The Weed Store, Siskiyou County Museum, The McCloud Heritage Junction Museum
Highlights from your plan
Shasta-Trinity National Forest ©
Shasta-Trinity National Forest
Mount Shasta ©
Mount Shasta
Castle Lake ©
Castle Lake

1
night
Arcata

Arcata ©
Arcata, originally Union Town or Union, is a city adjacent to the Arcata Bay portion of Humboldt Bay in Humboldt County, California, United States. On the 2nd (Thu), look for all kinds of wild species at Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary, then stroll through Moonstone Beach, then enjoy the sand and surf at College Cove, and finally appreciate the history behind Trinidad Memorial and Memorial Lighthouse.

To find other places to visit, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Arcata attractions app.

Traveling by car from Mount Shasta to Arcata takes 4 hours. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Mount Shasta in January, with highs in Arcata at 15°C and lows at 5°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Thu) so you can travel to San Francisco.

Things to do in Arcata

Parks · Beaches · Outdoors

Side Trip

Trinidad
Highlights from your plan
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary ©
Arcata Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary
College Cove ©
College Cove

19
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Step out of the city life by going to Marin Headlands and Muir Woods National Monument. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Armstrong Redwood State Reserve and Grace Cathedral. Change things up with these side-trips from San Francisco: Bodega Dunes (in Bodega), Sonoma Coast State Beach (in Sonoma) and Bodega Bay (Hagemann Ranch Trout Fishing, Bodega Head, &more). Spend the 19th (Sun) exploring nature at San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. And it doesn't end there: step off the mainland to explore Alcatraz Island, take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge, don't miss a visit to Ferry Building Marketplace, and shop like a local with Union Square.

To find more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the San Francisco day trip app.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Arcata to San Francisco. In January, daily temperatures in San Francisco can reach 17°C, while at night they dip to 9°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 21st (Tue) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches

Side Trips

Half Moon Bay, Bodega Bay, Santa Rosa, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, Armstrong Redwood State Reserve
Highlights from your plan
Marin Headlands ©
Marin Headlands
Armstrong Redwood State Reserve ©
Armstrong Redwood State Reserve
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island

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