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  1. #1

    Default Las Vegas - San Fran - LA. 3 weeks. 1 car and a 4 year old.


    I'm new and very very very excited about July - August 2011. I have been looking into various routes, places etc to see and do and I have settled for the following but need some help filling in the gaps!

    Fly into Las Vegas and stay for 3 nights. A day trip to visit the Grand Canyon and maybe a visit to the Hoover Dam this feasible? Any hotel which is a must or a must not considering we will have a nearly 5 year old.

    From Las Vegas head on up to Yosmite Park. Shall we just hit the road and do it in one drive or are there places in between for an overnight break anyone would recommend? Would zig zagging across to the Sequoia National Park be too much before heading up to Yosmite?

    From Yosmite heading to San Fran.....plan is to stay here for 3 nights also.

    From San Fran we intend to spend the remaining time heading down the Hwy 1...Monterey, Carmel Big Sur, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and finally finishing in LA as we would be leaving from here to fly home. I'm not too fussed about LA...the only thing I would want to do whilst down in that area would be to do Disney Land.

    Any comments, recommendations, dos and aboslutley do nots would be greatly appreciated!


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

    Default size and scope

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    With 3 weeks you should have plenty of time for a very nice trip, although I'm a little confused about your timeline. You mentioned 3 days each in Vegas and SF, but it sounds like you were thinking of doing Vegas to Yosemite in one day, and "the rest of your time" heading down the coast - however, it sounds to me like you've got somewhere between 10 days and 2 weeks of extra time?

    The Grand Canyon is not recommended as a daytrip from Vegas - its simply too far away to do it in one day and see much anything. Its 5-6 hours of driving each way, though the route does go right over the hoover dam. Spending at least one night there (either at the rim, or an hour away in Williams) is really a must if you want to see anything, before you have to turn around.

    Alternatively, there are several great destinations that are good daytrips from vegas.

    Going to Yosemite, the most popular route goes through Death Valley, then up US-395 which goes by several interesting stops like Mt. Whitney, Mammoth Lakes, and the Bodie ghost town, before crossing Tioga Pass through Yosemite National Park.

    Sequoia is still an option, but it must be accessed from the west side of the Sierras, so you'd either have to cross the mountains near Bakersfield and go up, or make that stop after Yosemite, and then double back a bit for the trip onto San Francisco.

    This is the single most popular topic/trip discussion on the board, so this is just a start. You can get a whole lot more in the way of ideas and suggestions if you just spend a little time looking around at the hundreds of other threads about traveling in this part of the world.

  3. Default

    The grand canyon is magnificent, but the kids might like Zion better. It is closer to Vegas, and has more hikes and things to "do", including the amazing narrows hike.

    One option would be to Leave LV in the morning and drive to the GC. Spend the night there and part of the next day. Leave to drive to Kanab UT via page az. Spend the night in Kanab and go through Zion the next day. Zion to LV is 2.5 hrs, so you can stay in Hurricane/St George. Or go part way and stay in Mesquite (cheap rooms!) or all the way back, although both would likely mean negotiating the gorge at night.

    Just know that it is incredibly hot in Las vegas in July/August. This year is hotter than most, but the highs are 105-110 degrees, with night time temps in the 90s. It is a "dry" heat, but just know that kids fade quickly in the sun, and dehydration should be a concern.

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