9 days in California Itinerary

9 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California holiday maker

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Route & dates

9 days in California Itinerary

Start: Charlotte
Fly:  8​h 15​min
1
Palm Springs
— 1 night
Drive:  6​h
2
Cambria
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 45​min
3
Carmel
— 2 nights
Fly:  5​h 30​min
4
Mammoth Lakes
— 1 day
Drive:  3​h 15​min
5
Death Valley National Park
— 1 night
bus + Fly:  11​h
End: Charlotte

1
night
Palm Springs

Palm Springs ©
Palm Springs is a desert resort city in Riverside County, California, United States, within the Coachella Valley. Start off your visit on the 22nd (Sun): shop like a local with Antique Galleries of Palm Springs and then steep yourself in history at Tennis Club District.

For where to stay, other places to visit, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Palm Springs trip planning tool .

Charlotte to Palm Springs is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also drive; or take a bus. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 3 hours traveling from Charlotte to Palm Springs. Traveling from Charlotte in December, expect Palm Springs to be a bit warmer, temps between 70°F and 48°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 23rd (Mon) to allow time to drive to Cambria.

Things to do in Palm Springs

Shopping Museums Neighborhoods

Side Trip

Palm Desert
Highlights from your plan
Antique Galleries of Palm Springs ©
Antique Galleries of Palm Springs
Tennis Club District ©
Tennis Club District
Heather James Fine Art ©
Heather James Fine Art

1
night
Cambria

Cambria ©
Cambria is a seaside village in San Luis Obispo County, California, United States midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles along California State Route 1 (Highway 1). Kick off your visit on the 24th (Tue): look for all kinds of wild species at Elephant Seal Rookery, then explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, and then shop like a local with artifacts gallery. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: view the masterpieces at Ephraim Pottery West Gallery, tour the pleasant surroundings at Moonstone Beach, then view the masterpieces at Fiona Bleu Gallery, and finally view the masterpieces at Harmony Pottery Works.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, use the Cambria trip itinerary builder website .

You can drive from Palm Springs to Cambria in 6 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of bus and train. Plan for slightly colder temperatures traveling from Palm Springs in December, with highs in Cambria at 63°F and lows at 33°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Wed) so you can go by car to Carmel.

Things to do in Cambria

Parks Museums Historic Sites

Side Trips

San Simeon, Fiona Bleu Gallery, Harmony Pottery Works
Highlights from your plan
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Harmony Pottery Works ©
Harmony Pottery Works
Artifacts Gallery ©
Artifacts Gallery

2
nights
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. Start off your visit on the 26th (Thu): stroll through Carmel River State Beach, then hike along Point Lobos, and then shop like a local with Coast Gallery Big Sur. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 27th (Fri): take in the exciting artwork at Gallery by the Sea Carmel, take in the exciting artwork at Steven Whyte's Sculpture Studio and Gallery, get a taste of the local shopping with Carmel Art Association, then explore the activities along Monterey Bay, and finally take in the exciting artwork at Venture Gallery.

For more things to do, other places to visit, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Carmel trip itinerary planner .

You can drive from Cambria to Carmel in 3 hours. Other options are to do a combination of train and bus; or do a combination of car and bus. Traveling from Cambria in December, Carmel is somewhat warmer at night with lows of 43°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Fri) to allow time to travel to Mammoth Lakes.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Monterey, Coast Gallery Big Sur
Highlights from your plan
Point Lobos ©
Point Lobos
Coast Gallery Big Sur ©
Coast Gallery Big Sur
Carmel Art Association ©
Carmel Art Association

1
day
Mammoth Lakes

Mammoth Lakes ©
Mammoth Lakes is a town in Mono County, California, the county's only incorporated community. Start off your visit on the 28th (Sat): hit the slopes at Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center, get engrossed in the history at Mammoth Museum at the Hayden Cabin, and then stop by Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes.

To find maps, other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Mammoth Lakes attractions planner .

You can fly from Carmel to Mammoth Lakes in 5.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. Expect a bit cooler weather when traveling from Carmel in December: highs in Mammoth Lakes hover around 46°F, while lows dip to 14°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sat) so you can drive to Death Valley National Park.

Things to do in Mammoth Lakes

Outdoors Winter Sports Parks
Highlights from your plan
Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes ©
Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes
Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center ©
Tamarack Cross Country Ski Center
Mammoth Museum at the Hayden Cabin ©

1
night
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Sun): contemplate the waterfront views at Badwater Basin, discover the riches below the earth's surface at Eureka Mine, and then explore the striking landscape at Zabriskie Point.

For photos, maps, reviews, and tourist information, go to the Death Valley National Park trip planner .

You can drive from Mammoth Lakes to Death Valley National Park in 3.5 hours. Another option is to do a combination of bus and car. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Mammoth Lakes in December, with highs in Death Valley National Park at 56°F and lows at 33°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Nature Parks Historic Sites
Highlights from your plan
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point
Eureka Mine ©
Eureka Mine
Badwater Basin ©
Badwater Basin

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