8 days in California Itinerary

8 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California visit planner
Make it your trip
Fly
1
Palm Desert
— 1 day
Fly
2
San Francisco
— 2 nights
Drive
3
San Simeon
— 1 night
Fly
4
Anaheim
— 2 nights
Drive
5
San Diego
— 2 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
26
27
28
29
30
31
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8

Palm Desert — 1 day

Palm Desert is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, in the Coachella Valley, approximately 14 miles (23 km) east of Palm Springs and 122 miles (196 km) east of Los Angeles. On the 1st (Sat), admire the natural beauty at Sunnylands Center & Gardens, then get to know the resident critters at The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, and then get a taste of the local shopping with El Paseo Shopping District.

For maps, ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Palm Desert holiday builder app.

Phoenix to Palm Desert is an approximately 3-hour flight. You can also drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Phoenix to Palm Desert, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. In January, plan for daily highs up to 71°F, and evening lows to 48°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Sat) to allow enough time to fly to San Francisco.
Shopping · Parks · Neighborhoods · Wildlife
Side Trip

San Francisco — 2 nights

San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Start off your visit on the 2nd (Sun): admire the natural beauty at Japanese Tea Garden, engage your brain at Exploratorium, and then browse the different shops at Ferry Building Marketplace. On the next day, head off the coast to Alcatraz Island, then take in the waterfront at Fisherman's Wharf, and then don't miss a visit to Golden Gate Bridge.

For where to stay, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, read our San Francisco trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by flight from Palm Desert to San Francisco takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Palm Desert in January, expect nights in San Francisco to be about the same, around 46°F, while days are little chillier, around 59°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Mon) so you can go by car to San Simeon.
Childrens Museums · Museums · Historic Sites · Parks

San Simeon — 1 night

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 4th (Tue): look for gifts at Friends of the Elephant Seal Visitor Center and Gift Shop and then step into the grandiose world of Hearst Castle.

For more things to do, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our San Simeon trip planner.

You can drive from San Francisco to San Simeon in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of train and taxi; or do a combination of bus and car. Plan for a bit cooler nights when traveling from San Francisco in January since evenings lows in San Simeon dip to 37°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Tue) so you can fly to Anaheim.
Historic Sites · Wildlife · Shopping · Parks

Anaheim — 2 nights

Anaheim's major attractions are its world-famous Disney entertainment complex, sports teams, and convention center.
Start off your visit on the 5th (Wed): make an unforgettable trip to Downtown Disney District and then make an unforgettable trip to Disney California Adventure Park. On the 6th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: find something for the whole family at Disneyland Park.

For maps, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the Anaheim sightseeing tool.

You can fly from San Simeon to Anaheim in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus, taxi, and train. Plan for a bit warmer temperatures traveling from San Simeon in January, with highs in Anaheim at 71°F and lows at 48°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Thu) early enough to go by car to San Diego.
Theme Parks

San Diego — 2 nights

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.
Start off your visit on the 7th (Fri): examine the collection at USS Midway Museum, then enjoy the sand and surf at La Jolla Cove, and then admire the natural beauty at Self Realization Fellowship Hermitage & Meditation Gardens. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 8th (Sat): see the sky in a new way at Fleet Science Center and then learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at San Diego Zoo.

To see maps, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our San Diego visit planning site.

Drive from Anaheim to San Diego in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. January in San Diego sees daily highs of 67°F and lows of 51°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Sat) so you can fly back home.
Parks · Zoos & Aquariums · Museums · Outdoors
Side Trip

California travel guide

4.1
Specialty Museums · Wineries & Vineyards · Theme Parks
The Golden State
The country's most populous state, California includes landscapes that range from the forested northern coast to harsh southern deserts. Sandwiched right in the middle of the state is a fertile valley, home to farms, vineyards, and orchards. California's cities offer diverse attractions, from amusement parks and upscale shops to award-winning restaurants and innovative art galleries. Outside the state's big urban centers, places to visit include some of the nation's most rugged national parks, ancient forests, towering mountain peaks, and ski resorts. More than just a surfing destination famous for its beaches and winding coastal roads, California also boasts one of the world's largest economies, bolstered by the booming tech industries.