My girlfriend and I are planning a trip through California, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Nevada for this coming summer. We would be traveling for 22 days around July. The places we plan on visiting are listed here below. Any comments/suggestions on the amount of time to be spent in specific areas or other places to visit would be greatly appreciated! The total mileage we would cover is about 3,500 mi. We are going to be landing in San Francisco and doing a (relatively large) loop to end up in San Francisco again at the end of our trip. Let me know what you all think!
1) San Francisco, CA (2 nights)
2) Santa Barbara, CA
3) Santa Monica, CA (1 night)
4) Los Angeles, CA (2 nights)
5) Joshua Tree National Park, CA
6) Phoenix, AZ (1 night)
7) Apache Trail (Apache Junction), AZ
8) Tucson, AZ (1 night)
9) Saguaro National Park, AZ
10) White Sands National Monument, NM
11) Somewhere between White Sands and Santa Fe (1 night)
12) Santa Fe, NM (1 night)
13) Somewhere between Santa Fe and Lake Powell (1 night)
14) Lake Powell, UT
15) Monument Valley, UT
16) Tuba City, AZ (1 night)
17) Grand Canyon National Park
18) Somewhere between Grand Canyon and Page, AZ (1 night)
19) Page - Horseshoe bend and Antelope Canyon
20) Kanab, AZ (1 night)
21) Bryce Canyon, UT
22) Las Vegas, NV (2 nights)
23) Death Valley National Park, CA (it's only 122 degrees Fahrenheit....... so do I need a sweater? winter coat maybe? ;))
24) Mount Whitney, CA
25) Big Pine or Lone Pine (1 night)
26) Yosemite National Park, CA
27) Napa Valley, CA (1 night)
28) San Francisco, CA (2 nights)
We will be renting a car in San Francisco and driving the entire way. We will both be able to drive so should be able to cover relatively long distances without too much trouble. One thing to note is that we'll be arriving from Belgium so we'll have 9 hours of time difference to deal with.
Do you think it is possible to get around San Francisco without a car for the first few days? Or is it absolutely imperative to have a car in San Francisco?
Any comments/suggestions welcome.
Thank you for your help!