7 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

7 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California's Central Coast trip maker

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Route & dates

7 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

Start: San Francisco
Drive:  2​h 15​min
1
Monterey
— 1 night
Drive:  1​h
2
Santa Cruz
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 15​min
3
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
4
Santa Barbara
— 1 night
Fly:  11​h 15​min
End: Toronto

1
night
Monterey

Monterey ©
Monterey is a city in the U.S. On the 15th (Fri), get to know the fascinating history of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard.

Start your trip to Monterey by creating a personalized itinerary on Inspirock.

Toronto, Canada to Monterey is an approximately 10-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. The time zone changes from Eastern Standard Time to Pacific Standard Time, which is usually a -3 hour difference. Traveling from Toronto in February, expect Monterey to be much warmer, temps between 20°C and 8°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Sat) early enough to drive to Santa Cruz.

Things to do in Monterey

Historic Sites Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Carmel, Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Cannery Row ©
Cannery Row
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard ©
Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard

1
night
Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz ©
Santa Cruz remains synonymous with surfing, but this counterculture bastion offers plenty even if you don't plan to catch any waves.
On the 17th (Sun), kick back and relax at Natural Bridges State Beach, make a trip to S.S. Palo Alto Concrete Ship, and then get up close to creatures of the deep with a dolphin and whale watching tour.

To see reviews, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Santa Cruz road trip planner.

Getting from Monterey to Santa Cruz by car takes about an hour. Other options: take a bus. In February, daytime highs in Santa Cruz are 21°C, while nighttime lows are 7°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 17th (Sun) early enough to go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Santa Cruz

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trips

S.S. Palo Alto Concrete Ship, Dolphin & Whale Watching
Highlights from your plan
Natural Bridges State Beach ©
Natural Bridges State Beach
Dolphin & Whale Watching
S.S. Palo Alto Concrete Ship ©
S.S. Palo Alto Concrete Ship

2
nights
San Simeon

San Simeon ©
When you arrive 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.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Mon): identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery, kick back and relax at Piedras Blancas, and then enjoy the sea views from Piedras Blancas Light Station.

To find reviews and other tourist information, use the San Simeon trip site .

Getting from Santa Cruz to San Simeon by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus, train, and taxi; or do a combination of bus and car. Traveling from Santa Cruz in February, plan for slightly colder nights in San Simeon, with lows around 3°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 19th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Santa Barbara.

Things to do in San Simeon

Wildlife Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Piedras Blancas Light Station
Highlights from your plan
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Piedras Blancas ©
Piedras Blancas
Piedras Blancas Light Station ©
Piedras Blancas Light Station

1
night
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.
Start off your visit on the 19th (Tue): take a stroll through State Street Underpass, enjoy the sand and surf at Carpinteria State Beach, then don't miss a visit to Old Mission Santa Barbara, then admire the natural beauty at Alice Keck Park Memorial Gardens, and finally identify plant and animal life at Douglas Family Preserve.

To find ratings, maps, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the Santa Barbara trip maker app .

Traveling by car from San Simeon to Santa Barbara takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train. Plan for a bit warmer nights when traveling from San Simeon in February since evenings lows in Santa Barbara dip to 7°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 20th (Wed) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Parks Outdoors Nature

Side Trip

Carpinteria State Beach
Highlights from your plan
Carpinteria State Beach ©
Carpinteria State Beach
Old Mission Santa Barbara ©
Old Mission Santa Barbara
Douglas Family Preserve ©
Douglas Family Preserve

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