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  1. #1

    Default Roundtrip Sonoma - Grand Canyon - San Fransisco

    Dear all,

    first of all I'd like to thank you for all the posts about this subject on this forum - I've read them intensely the last weeks. I know this is a well-debated subject, but I have a need to get some answers to my questions.

    The plan: My wife-to-be and I are planning a US holiday for our honeymoon. We've made some plans, but most parts are open for discussion.

    Arrive San Fransisco 13th september
    Leave San Fransisco 28th september
    Leave NY 2nd october

    Sonoma 13th-17th september (romantic honeymoon)
    Roadtrip 17th-24/25th september (busy honeymoon)
    San Fransisco 24/25th - 28th september (sightseeing honeymoon)
    New York 28th september - 2nd october (shopping honeymoon)

    What I need your opinion on is, obviously, the roadtrip. What I have planned, to get everything that we want included, is the following:

    17-18 Sonoma - Bishop (via Yosemite)
    18-19 Bishop - Las Vegas
    19-20 Las Vegas - Grand Canyon
    20-21 Grand Canyon - Barstow
    21-22 Barstow - Springville (via Sequoia)
    22-23 Springville - Somewhere along HW1
    23-24 Somewhere along HW1 - San Fransisco

    I know this schedule means that we'll have to drive past a lot of sights that we ideally should have stopped at, but it's the only way I can squeeze in everything we want to see (Yosemite, Death Valley, Grand Canyon, Sequoia and HW1).
    Also, we could also accept getting to San Fran on the 25th - that gives us one more day on the road.

    One alternative is that we get a helicopter ride from LV to Grand Canyon. This will save us a day and a lot of driving. Would anyone reccomend this option? If so, can you reccomend an operator/tour that would be suitable?

    The longest stages are Sonoma-Bishop and Grand Canyon-Barstow. The first one is to get within fair distance of Las Vegas they day after. The latter to get close enough to Sequoia to enjoy the drive to Springville the day after.

    So, any comments to my plans? All opionions/comments will be highly appreciated!

    Best regards,


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default perhaps too brisk

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    You've got a pretty limited amount of time to work with, and thus there is always a balance of trying to fit things in vs. trying to do so much that you get to everywhere without seeing anything - and I think that's really what you are in danger of here. You're going to be constantly on the move and while what you've proposed certainly isn't impossible, I think its going to leave you exhausted and a little disappointed.

    If it were me, I think I'd drop Sequoia (you can still see a grove of Sequoia Trees inside Yosemite) and save at least one day there. Also, I think I would try to take at least one more day - if not two - from elsewhere in your trip. Right now, for example, you're spending at most a half day in Vegas, a city with tons of sightseeing and shopping opportunities, but you're spending 4 days each in SF and NY. I'd recommend driving to the Grand Canyon, but if you can't or are unwilling to cut more time from elsewhere in your trip then I would take the helicopter tour.

    I think you'd be better off doing something like this.
    Spend one night right in Yosemite.
    a night in Death Valley
    a night (or 2) in Las Vegas
    Leave late in the afternoon from Vegas to the Grand Canyon, and then spend 2 nights there (or Williams about an hour south)
    Spend all day driving from GC to the Coast (Cambria area)
    Drive up the coast to SF, spending a night in Monterey.

  3. #3


    Thanks for the input, Michael. I'm certain that we'll have to change our plans somehow and your thoughts will be considered. The original plan I had in my previous post includes quite a bit of driving all days, whilst I'm tempted to put in a couple of days with more driving in order to get some more quiet days in Las Vegas or GC.

    With your ideas still in mind, could this work perhaps?:

    17-18 Sonoma - Yosemite
    18-19 Yosemite - Death Valley (where would you suggest us to spend the night?)
    19-20 Death Valley - Las Vegas
    20-21 Las Vegas
    21-22 Las Vegas - Grand Canyon Village
    22-23 Grand Canyon Village - Flagstaff/Williams
    23-24 Flagstaff/Williams - Cambria-area (long drive)
    24-25 Cambria-area - Monterey (or even San Fransisco

    This leaves us with more time at the sights we want to see (Yosemite, Las Vegas and GC) and also fewer days with long drives.

    Do you agree on this assesment?

    Thanks again!


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Looks good.

    Your itinerary looks fine to me !

    Depending on the time of day you leave Yosemite, [allow plenty of time to sight see along the Tioga pass [CA120]] you could either head direct into Death valley, where you will find lodgings at Panamint springs and Stovepipe Wells, or stay 1 night at Bishop or Lone Pine on 395 and another night in the park, at the above options, or Furnace creek. If you want to stay in DV, there are limited options, so it would be worth booking in advance

  5. #5


    Cheers Dave.
    I'll look into the possibilities of staying one night in DV somewhere.


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