7 days in California Itinerary

7 days in California Itinerary

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Route & dates

7 days in California Itinerary

Start: Washington DC
Fly:  7​h
1
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Monterey
— 1 night
Fly + bus:  4​h 30​min
3
Santa Monica
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 30​min
4
San Diego
— 2 nights
+2
Fly + bus + train:  7​h 15​min
End: Washington DC


2
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
We've included these beaches for you: Marshall’s Beach and China Beach. Get some cultural insight at Alcatraz Island and SS Jeremiah O'Brien. Step out of San Francisco to go to Pacifica and see Rockaway Beach, which is approximately 32 minutes away. There's still lots to do: snap pictures at Golden Gate Bridge, enjoy the sand and surf at Baker Beach, and take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Twin Peaks.

To see photos, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, read our San Francisco travel route planner.

Washington DC to San Francisco is an approximately 7-hour flight. You can also do a combination of subway, bus, and flight; or drive. You'll gain 3 hours traveling from Washington DC to San Francisco due to the time zone difference. In October, daily temperatures in San Francisco can reach 73°F, while at night they dip to 56°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Monterey.

Things to do in San Francisco

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trip

Rockaway Beach
Highlights from your plan
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
SS Jeremiah O'Brien ©
SS Jeremiah O'Brien
Twin Peaks ©
Twin Peaks

1
night
Monterey

Monterey ©
Monterey is a city in the U.S. Kick off your visit on the 21st (Sun): enjoy the sand and surf at Carmel River State Beach and then immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos.

For other places to visit, ratings, maps, and tourist information, read Monterey trip planner .

Getting from San Francisco to Monterey by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: fly; or take a bus. In October, plan for daily highs up to 70°F, and evening lows to 52°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Sun) to allow time to travel to Santa Monica.

Things to do in Monterey

Beaches Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Carmel
Highlights from your plan
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach

1
night
Santa Monica

Santa Monica ©
A famed resort town since the early 20th century, Santa Monica sits on the picturesque Santa Monica Bay, bordered on three sides by the city of Los Angeles.
On the 22nd (Mon), enjoy the sand and surf at Venice Beach and Boardwalk, get to know the fascinating history of Venice Canals Walkway, then enjoy the sand and surf at Will Rogers State Beach, and finally appreciate the extensive heritage of Santa Monica Pier.

For more things to do, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, read our Santa Monica tour itinerary planner.

You can do a combination of flight and bus from Monterey to Santa Monica in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of shuttle, flight, and bus. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from Monterey in October, with highs in Santa Monica at 77°F and lows at 61°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Mon) early enough to drive to San Diego.

Things to do in Santa Monica

Beaches Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Los Angeles
Highlights from your plan
Will Rogers State Beach ©
Will Rogers State Beach
Santa Monica Pier ©
Santa Monica Pier
Venice Canals Walkway ©
Venice Canals Walkway

2
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.
Kick off your visit on the 23rd (Tue): enjoy the sand and surf at Mission Beach Park and then enjoy the sand and surf at La Jolla Cove.

To find other places to visit, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the San Diego trip planner.

You can drive from Santa Monica to San Diego in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of tram and train; or do a combination of bus and flight. In October in San Diego, expect temperatures between 78°F during the day and 64°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 24th (Wed) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in San Diego

Beaches Parks Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
Mission Beach Park ©
Mission Beach Park
Children's Pool ©
Children's Pool

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