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  1. Default 2 weeks in June - any opinions on our schedule?

    Me and my significant other have booked flights to LAX in June, 15/16 days total. I've never been to the west coast before.

    I have two different schedules set up:

    #1 (SF first, Vegas last)

    Day 1: Arrive late (around 8 PM I believe) by plane, sleep in LA hotel
    Day 2: Explore/stay in LA and surroundings, sleep in LA hotel
    Day 3: Explore/stay in LA and surroundings, sleep in LA hotel
    Day 4: Head for SF via state highway 1, sleep in some town midway between the two big cities
    Day 5: Arrive in SF, sleep in SF hotel
    Day 6: Explore SF, sleep in SF hotel
    Day 7: Explore SF, sleep in SF hotel
    Day 8: Explore SF, sleep in SF hotel
    Day 9: Head for LV, sleep somewhere along the way
    Day 10: Still heading for LV, sleeping along the way
    Day 11: Arrive in LV, sleep in LV
    Day 12: Explore LV, sleep in LV
    Day 13: Head for Grand Canyon, sleep in a lodge there
    Day 14: Head back to Vegas, sleep there
    Day 15: Either go back to LA or stay in Vegas for the last night
    Day 16: Go back by plane from LAX at around 4 PM

    #2 is slightly different:


    Day 1: Arrive late (around 8 PM I believe) by plane, sleep in LA hotel
    Day 2: Explore/stay in LA and surroundings, sleep in LA hotel
    Day 3: Explore/stay in LA and surroundings, sleep in LA hotel
    Day 4: Head for LV, sleep there
    Day 5: Stay in LV, sleep there
    Day 6: Go to Grand Canyon, stay there in lodge
    Day 7: Go back to Vegas, sleep there
    Day 8: Head for SF, sleep somewhere along the way
    Day 9: Still heading for SF, sleep somewhere along the way
    Day 10: Arrive in SF, sleep there
    Day 11: Explore SF, sleep there
    Day 12: Explore SF, sleep there
    Day 13: Explore SF, sleep there
    Day 14: Head for LA on highway 1, sleep somewhere along the way
    Day 15: Stay in LA the last night
    Day 16: Go back by plane from LAX at around 4 PM

    Any comments or suggestions? Is the time sufficient for these distances? Maybe we should save the Canyon for some other time? Should we spend more time in any of the great cities (LV/LA/SF?). I've heard that there isn't too much to see in LA, therefore just 2 whole days there. Maybe we should bake in a visit to San Diego as well?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default direct options

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Option 2 does have you heading south along the coast, which means you'll be on the side closer to the ocean, and won't have to cross traffic to stop at the overlooks. I don't think its a big deal, but its one of the only real differences I see between the options you've laid out.

    Instead of going back to Vegas after the Grand Canyon, I might head straight back for LA. There would still be options of places to stay along the way, and backtracking to Vegas at least a 1-2 hour drive out of your way if you are just heading directly back to LA.

    Otherwise, I think you look fine, although I might add even one more day between SF and Vegas to explore Yosemite and Death Valley, but that's not essential, just an option.

  3. Default

    Thank you very much for sharing your views! :-) I was starting to fear that our schedule was getting too ambitious, but I suppose not.

    I guess we'll let hotel prices and availability decide which direction we go.

    I have some other questions though;

    1. Where do you people suggest we stay between LA and SF?

    2. What route, and where should we stay en route from LV to SF (or vice versa)?

    3. Do you suggest going to the North or South rim of the Grand Canyon?

    4. Would going over the border to Mexico be an idea?
    Last edited by all_in; 03-16-2008 at 01:12 PM. Reason: Typo

  4. #4

    Default Monterey

    I would suggest that Monterey could be a good place to stop between LA and San Fran. There'll be a lot of decent hotels there. If you're feeling very flush you might find a place to stay at Pebble Beach. Alternatively you might like to check out the State Parks in the area. I am planning a trip to Laguna Seca in July and will be stopping at Limekiln State Park. I'll be camping but you might check if any of the surrounding parks offer cabins?

  5. Default

    Thanks for your suggestions.

    After surfing a little, I was maybe thinking about a resort in the Big Sur area.

    Maybe we could spend a couple of nights doing the highway 1 (second one in Santa Barbara for example) so that we won't have to lodge in L.A. for our last night.

    I played around a little with Google maps and ended up with thisThis route leaves out GC, but saves us around 600 miles of driving. What do you people think? Is the GC worth those miles?
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 03-16-2008 at 08:20 PM. Reason: Preferred URL format herein

  6. #6

    Default That'll work

    That's a very solid route. You'll have a lot of fun driving there. It's awesome. Have a read of one of my favourite roadtrip reports to get you in the mood!

    The only thing you'll need to check is that Tioga Pass is open...

    The Grand Canyon is very much doable but I'd maybe leave it on a back burner if you are concerned about the miles. See how you feel when you are on the ground. I honestly think you'll be inspired by the scenery but you may feel differently on the ground. Or if Tioga Pass happens to be closed and you have to take the long way round.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default Let me throw in a little wrinkle

    Why Vegas? You mention that you will probably leave the Grand Canyon for another visit. If so, you might consider seeing Vegas then.

    And there is tons to do in LA. There's Disneyland, Universal Studios, Knott's Berry Farm, La Brea Tar Pits, Pacific Aquarium, Rodeo Drive, Hollywood, the various beaches, several good museums, and more. If it was me, I'd plan to spend more time there.

    And I think your time would be better spent exploring more of the parks in California. You might go a bit north of San Francisco to visit the Redwoods and then take in Yosemite. If you have time, check out King's Canyon and Sequoia, then head down to San Diego before returning to LA to come home.

    Now, if you don't think you'll get back to this part of the world then, yeah, do Vegas but do try to fit in the Grand Canyon while you're in that area. It's worth it.

    Having said all that, there's nothing at all wrong with the routes you've laid out. I'm just trying to throw out some other ideas. Use 'em or lose 'em as you see fit.

  8. Default

    Plans have changed; I called my airline and added two more days, just to fit in the Grand Canyon and add an optional day that we maybe will spend in LA. :-)

    Thanks everyone for your suggestions and opinions, the are very much welcome!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default I'm thrilled for you

    The Grand Canyon is amazing and it would be a shame to miss it.

    You will want to figure about 6 hours to go from Las Vegas to the Grand Canyon. And about 9 hours, maybe more if LA traffic is thick, to get from the Grand Canyon to LA.

    Anything else we can help you with?

  10. Default

    Our trip just keeps growing for every day, doesn't it. Now we're up to 19 days, 18 nights total. I guess that's the number we'll stick to.

    I have some questions that hope you fine people maybe can answer for me:

    1. Is it smart to have a rental car in LA? We were thinking about staying there for 4 nights, most likely in Hollywood. Is parking expensive there? Is it possible to get around without a car to the main sights and attractions? Renting the car for just two whole weeks would save us some cash.

    2. We were also thinking about spending a night in San Diego, maybe with a daytrip to Tijuana (leaving the rental car at the boarder). Is this something you recommend?

    3. Also, I thought about staying over in Williams, AZ, when going to the Grand Canyon. What do you think of that?

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