8 days in Santa Cruz, Pismo Beach & San Luis Obispo Itinerary

8 days in Santa Cruz, Pismo Beach & San Luis Obispo Itinerary

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Route & dates

8 days in Santa Cruz, Pismo Beach & San Luis Obispo Itinerary

Start: Ontario
+2
Drive + Fly + Drive:  5​h 45​min
1
Santa Cruz
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
2
Pismo Beach
— 1 night
Drive:  15​min
3
San Luis Obispo
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h
End: Ontario

3
nights
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.
Venture out of the city with trips to Monterey (Dolphin & Whale Watching, 17-Mile Drive, & more) and Carmel (Seventeen Mile Drive & Point Lobos). Next up on the itinerary: get in on the family fun at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and don't miss a visit to S.S. Palo Alto Concrete Ship.

For more things to do, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Santa Cruz road trip planning site .

Ontario to Santa Cruz is an approximately 6-hour flight. You can also drive. Traveling from Ontario in November, expect Santa Cruz to be slightly colder, temps between 68°F and 45°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 14th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Pismo Beach.

Things to do in Santa Cruz

Outdoors Wildlife Tours

Side Trips

Monterey, S.S. Palo Alto Concrete Ship, Point Lobos
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk ©
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
Dolphin & Whale Watching

1
night
Pismo Beach

Pismo Beach ©
Pismo Beach is a city in San Luis Obispo County, in the Central Coast area of California, United States. Start off your visit on the 15th (Thu): take in the waterfront at Pismo Pier, then learn about winemaking at Talley Vineyards, and then identify plant and animal life at Monarch Butterfly Grove.

To see other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, you can read our Pismo Beach trip itinerary planning site .

Traveling by car from Santa Cruz to Pismo Beach takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle, flight, and bus; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 73°F in November, and nighttime lows around 48°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Thu) early enough to drive to San Luis Obispo.

Things to do in Pismo Beach

Wildlife Parks Wineries

Side Trip

Talley Vineyards
Highlights from your plan
Monarch Butterfly Grove ©
Monarch Butterfly Grove
Talley Vineyards ©
Talley Vineyards

3
nights
San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo ©
San Luis Obispo, or SLO for short, is a city in the U.S. Kick off your visit on the 16th (Fri): explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, then take in the waterfront at San Simeon Pier, and then hike along Fiscalini Ranch Preserve. Keep things going the next day: take in the dramatic natural features at Morro Rock, then identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery, and then view the masterpieces at Fiona Bleu Gallery.

To see ratings, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the San Luis Obispo online attractions planner .

San Luis Obispo is just a stone's throw from Pismo Beach. November in San Luis Obispo sees daily highs of 73°F and lows of 48°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 18th (Sun) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in San Luis Obispo

Parks Historic Sites Wildlife

Side Trips

San Simeon, Morro Bay, Fiscalini Ranch Preserve
Highlights from your plan
Hearst Castle ©
Hearst Castle
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Morro Rock ©
Morro Rock

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