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  1. Default LV-LA and SF in 8 days with this itinerary? Help needed :D

    Hi everybody,

    This is my first post on tripadvisor and I hope to get a lot out of it :D
    Im Aroen from Holland and im planning a trip to the US for two weeks beginning of september.

    The trip will end with 6 night in NY en before that we wanna go to LV-LA and SF by car.
    This is what I've come up with so far:

    day 1 - arr LV
    day 2 - LV sightseeing The strip etc..
    day 3 - leave early in the morning for GC Skywalk, come back late afternoon/early evening to LV
    day 4 - leave early in the morning for Death Valley and after that drive to LA (arr early evening?)
    day 5 - LA sightseeing, maybe go to an amusementpark, Walk of fame, Hollywood sign.
    day 6 - in the morning Warner Brothers Studio tour and after to Sequoia NP. Spend the night somewhere in Three Rivers
    day 7 - early morning drive to Yosemite NP and after that drive to SF (arrive late afternoon?) In the evening some sightseeing, maybe GG bridge.
    day 8 - in the morning trip to Alcatraz, rest of the day sightseeing.
    night flight to NY for the rest of the trip..

    What do you guys think of the schedule? is it do-able?
    Any suggestions are welcome!

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

    Default some issues

    Welcome to the RTA Forum - although if you are looking for tripadvisor, you've come to the wrong place! (aka, if you're going to cut and paste the same post across multiple forums, you might want to be more careful in the future!)

    There are a few other things where you either need to plan to make some changes, or should at least give some things another look.

    I'd start with the Grand Canyon. The Skywalk is not a part of the National Park, it is on Indian Reservation Land and the sites there just aren't as spectacular as the famous images you're likely more familiar with found in the National Park. You should also know that the skywalk is very expensive, and you likely can not drive your rental car all the way there, without violating the terms of your rental contract because the road is in such poor condition. I believe they do have a shuttle bus for the final leg. No Cameras are allowed on the skywalk, and you're looking at about $90 per person to go on it. For comparison, the National Park is $25 for everyone in your car. Having said that, the National Park is a longer drive, and really is too far to do as a daytrip.

    I will also say that I think you are pretty significantly underestimating your drive times on the other legs of your trip. Vegas to LA via Death Valley is going to be a long day, but the LA-SF section is really pushing things too far. If you don't leave LA until afternoon, you're just not going to have time to see Sequoia National Park the same day and then make it back to Three Rivers. Your next day is even worse. Yosemite really deserves at least full day, and if you want to get from Three River to San Francisco in the same day, then you'd barely have enough time to snap a few pictures before you'd have to get back out on the road.

    For this area, often times a loop trip is actually a better bet, as it would allow you to go over Tioga Pass, the scenic mountain drive through Yosemite, as well as also take in the scenic coastal highway. However, that would really require more time that the 8 days you've currently got planned. If it were me, I'd skip New York and spend your entire two weeks here, or at the very least spend a couple less days in the big apple. However, if the 6 days in NYC is a priority for you, then I think you're going to have to cut some things out of your west coast leg.

  3. Default

    Hahahaha, you got me there ;) Looks like RTA is checking out Tripadvisor as well ;)

    Anyway, thanks for your reply.
    As you can see this is my first time planning a roadtrip.

    I was indeed a little concerned about the drive times. Im not sure where I can actually see the correct drive times since I dont trust google maps that much.

    The six days in NYC is already set. The west coast leg we can still adjus a lot.
    We want to see LV, LA and SF and at least one NP (two would be great)
    Do you have any advice in what order its best to do it?
    BTW, we didnt book the tickets yet, so we can start and finish in any of the three cities but within the time limit of 8 days.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Wat denk je hier van?

    Coming from Nederland, as you (and I) do, you probably do not have a concept of just how great the distances are, and the amazing beauty of the spectacular National Parks of the south west USA. It is also common for Europeans to underestimate just how much there is to see along the way from one attraction to another.

    If you would like to see the sites you listed, follow Michael's suggestion and cut down on your time in NYC, if you are able to.

    You could make this trip into a loop which would be more practical. It would have you visiting much of the best America has to offer. However, I would be inclined to skip LA on your tight schedule.

    Day 1 LV
    Day 2 Death Valley to Lone Pine / Bishop area
    Day 3 Yosemite via Tioga Pass
    Day 4 Yosemite till after lunch, to SF
    Day 5 SF
    Day 6 SF
    Day 7 Sequoia NP (staying somewhere south of there)
    Day 8 Drive to GC
    Day 9 GC
    Day 10 Back to LV, possibly via Hoover Dam and / or a small section of Historic Route 66

    This would give you four days in NYC. If you wanted to include LA, you'd probably have to cut down the time in NYC to two days.


    Edit: I see you were typing while I was, and can't cut back on time in NYC

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default Computers vs real world.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aroen81 View Post
    Im not sure where I can actually see the correct drive times since I dont trust google maps that much.
    Computer program drive times are notoriously optimistic. Best add up to 20% to them. That still does not allow for a great deal of sight seeing. It also pays to stay flexible with your timing. Many a time have I been held up because of congestion or an accident up ahead. On my last trip, there was a delay and detour of more than two hours, late in the day.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Eight days from LA

    If you are still flexible with your start point in the southwest, I would Suggest starting from LA and do something along these lines; LA [Day 1 and 2] > Drive to GC Nationl park [3] >Explore GC drive to Vegas [4] Vegas to Lone Pine or Bishop via Death valley] [5] Into Yosemite NP via Tioga Pass [6] Yosemite to SF [7] SF/Alcatraz [8]

    You won't make it to Seqouia, but there is a Maripose Grove in Yosemite with the giant Sequoia trees. The big bonus is you would get to see the 'real' Grand canyon. You will still be on the move a lot bur you should have time to get an overview and the drive through Death valley to Yosemite via Tioga Pass is wonderful !

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    If visiting the cities are your biggest priorities, then going Vegas - Death Valley/Yosmemite - SF - LA would probably be your best bet.

    Depending upon how much time you want for the cities, that could give you time to drive down the coast, just keep in mind it is a 2 day drive from SF to LA via the coast. It can be done in a day via the freeway.

    If the Grand Canyon is a priority, the you could do something like Vegas - Grand Canyon - LA - SF, either going up the coast or making a relatively brief stop in Yosemite if you can afford two days driving from LA to SF.

    Those aren't your only options, but that's where I would start.

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