5 days in California Itinerary

5 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

5 days in California Itinerary

Start: Sacramento
Drive:  1​h 45​min
1
San Francisco
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h
2
Yosemite National Park
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 45​min
3
Carmel
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h
4
San Simeon
— 1 night
Drive:  5​h 30​min
End: Sacramento

1
night
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Start off your visit on the 13th (Mon): stroll around Golden Gate Park and then browse the different shops at Ferry Building Marketplace. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Alcatraz Island, then wander the streets of Fisherman's Wharf, and then take in the views from Golden Gate Bridge.

To find maps, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our San Francisco driving holiday planner.

Sacramento to San Francisco is an approximately 2-hour car ride. You can also take a bus; or fly. Traveling from Sacramento in April, expect nights in San Francisco to be about the same, around 51°F, while days are little chillier, around 67°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Historic Sites Nature
Highlights from your plan
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Golden Gate Park ©
Golden Gate Park

1
night
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.
On the 15th (Wed), admire the sheer force of Yosemite Falls, get great views at Yosemite, Tunnel View, then don't miss a visit to Washburn Point, and finally explore the striking landscape at Glacier Point.

To find traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, read Yosemite National Park trip planner .

Traveling by car from San Francisco to Yosemite National Park takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and car; or do a combination of flight and bus. While traveling from San Francisco, expect a bit cooler days and colder nights in Yosemite National Park, ranging from highs of 59°F to lows of 28°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Wed) so you can drive to Carmel.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Yosemite, Tunnel View ©
Yosemite, Tunnel View
Yosemite Falls ©
Yosemite Falls

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 16th (Thu): see majestic marine mammals with a dolphin and whale watching tour and then enjoy the sand and surf at Point Lobos.

To see traveler tips, photos, ratings, and other tourist information, read Carmel trip itinerary builder website .

Traveling by car from Yosemite National Park to Carmel takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of car, flight, and shuttle. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from Yosemite National Park in April since evenings lows in Carmel dip to 48°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Thu) so you can drive to San Simeon.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trip

Dolphin & Whale Watching
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Dolphin & Whale Watching

1
night
San Simeon

San Simeon ©
When you arriveĀ 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.
Start off your visit on the 17th (Fri): identify plant and animal life at Friends of the Elephant Seal, explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, and then kick back and relax at Moonstone Beach.

To see maps, ratings, reviews, and more tourist information, use the San Simeon sightseeing planner .

Traveling by car from Carmel to San Simeon takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and car. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Carmel in April: highs in San Simeon hover around 78°F, while lows dip to 43°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Fri) early enough to drive back home.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Historic Sites Beaches

Side Trip

Moonstone Beach
Highlights from your plan
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach

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