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  1. Default West Coast Road Trip

    Planning a road trip route San Francisco-LA-Vegas-San Francisco (or LA-Vegas/San Fransisco-LA). 7-9days would be ideal. Any route suggestions, must-see places, etc?
    So far I've come up with this:

    Day1. Arrive to San Fran, tour San Fran.
    Day2. Tour San Fran. Muir Woods.
    Day3. Driving to LA (South Pacific) (any sites we must stop at?)
    Day4. Driving, arriving to LA, tour LA.
    Day5. Tour LA (what's there to see? Santa Monica Beach? Venice Beach? Is it worth going to Santa Barbara or San Diego?)
    Day6. Driving to Vegas. Tour Vegas.
    Day7. Vegas and Grand Canyon.
    Day8. Driving back to San Fran. Stop at Death Valley or Yosemite. (any other parks, sites worth stopping at?)
    Day9. Driving to San Fran. Flying back to NY.

    Any tips would be much appreciated!!

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

    Default Wrong Coast!

    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    Well, first this is the West Coast, you're talking about - so I'll go and change your thread title.

    Your plan looks ok, until the end where it becomes unworkable.

    It looks like you've got 2 days planned to get from SF to LA, which is good, because if you follow the coast, it is a very scenic drive, but a drive that takes time.

    Day 7 won't work because the Grand Canyon is simply too far away from Vegas for a daytrip. It's about 5 hours each way, so you need an overnight if you want to see anything. More to the point, it is faster and easier to drive directly from LA to the Grand Canyon, and then head back to Vegas. Note, there are daytrips advertised from Vegas to the Grand Canyon, but they are usually one of two things - a trip to the "west rim" (most helicopters go here) where you'll find the Skywalk, but it really is the far edge of the Canyon, which is not nearly as deep or spectacular as the National Park. The other tours are bus trips where you barely have time to look over the edge before returning to Vegas - so 10 hours on a bus for maybe 2 at the park.

    Similarly Day 8, you really can't plan a trip from Vegas to SF in one day and expect to see anything. You're looking at 9-10 hour by taking the freeway route via Bakersfield and I-5. Even taking 2 full days to go from Vegas to SF via Death Valley and Yosemite means you are only getting a very quick look at those two magnificent places.

    So you're on the right track, but you're trying to squeeze in a bit too much at the end. You'll either have to find more time, or cut a couple things out, based on what you've got worked up so far.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Late flight ?

    I see that you are actually planning on stopping on route to SF on Day 8 and continuing on day 9 but as Michael said, that would still be pretty rushed but a spectacular drive nontheless. Stopping in Death Valley would leave you to much to do the following day so I would plan on early start and drive through DV before it starts really hotting up and plan on getting to Mammoth Lakes or Lee Vining. The following day you can at least stop along Tioga Pass and enjoy some of the fabulous views. That's still going to leave things tight to get into SF and turn in your car and catch a flight, I hope it's a night flight. I also agree that on day 6 you should drive direct to the south rim of the NP and spend the night before heading to Vegas for a night. I also think Muir woods will be more than you can manage with your time and you could head to Monterey towards the end of day 2. You need to forget about San Diego with your timescale, it's just too tight.

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