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  1. Default 20 days with child West US - advise please!

    Hi you all,

    We are planning our first trip to the us, is it also the first time with our daughter (3 years in sept 2015).
    We planned the following:

    1. Los Angeles Aankomst
    2. LA – Palm Springs
    3. Palm Springs
    4. Palm Springs – Phoenix
    5. Phoenix – Sedona
    6. Sedona
    7. Sedona – Grand Canyon
    8. Grand Ganyon
    9. Grand Canyon – Monument Valley
    10. Monument Valley – Bryce canyon (stop Lake Powell horsebendshoe)
    11. Bryce C. – Las Vegas
    12. Las Vegas
    13. Las Vegas
    14. Las Vegas ( vlucht San F)
    15. San Francisco
    16. San Francisco
    17. San Francisco – Monterey (stop Santa Cruz)
    18. Monterey – San Luis Obispo/ of Santa Barbara met stop Obispo
    19. San Luis – Los Angeles ( stop Santa Barbara (of slapen ipc obispo) Malibu?)
    20. Los Angeles
    21. Los Angeles –home
    22. Los Angeles – Home


    We are doubting the route Grand C - Monument Valley - Bryce: is this a long route? Is one night oke or can we just pass-by? We are not taking a hike or something because or our girl.

    Are there other 'off road' things we must see?
    Do you have tips for a trip with a little child?
    Nice hotels or places to stay?
    ... advice and feedback very welcome!

    Thanks a lot!! and happy 2015 ;)


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Looks good !

    Hello and welcome to RTA !

    You have a wonderful trip to look forward to and as long as your child gets the chance to run anround and play she will enjoy it as much as you.

    You can travel from MV to Bryce canyon and then to Vegas, but it is a little rushed. You also haven't included Zion NP which has lovely riverside walks and wildlife that your young one will enjoy, probably more than the amazing rock formations at Monument valley and Bryce canyon. I would consider doing either MV or Bryce and then stay near Zion NP [Springdale UT] for before heading to Vegas. I would also consider taking a day or 2 froim the City to allow more time in the natural surroundings. For example, from Vegas to SF you could drive through Death Valley and stop over in Bishop or Mammoth on US395 and then drive into Yosemite NP via Tioga Pass. Yosemite is a favourite of mine and a beautiful NP and if you could spend another night here on route it would be most rewarding. It is your trip and whatever suits you is most important, but you could head direct to Sedona from PS unless there was some particular reason you wanted to spend a night in Phoenix.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    While what you've got would work, I also think you've got some opportunities to see a few more natural wonders.

    Your GC-MV-BC segment is ok, although you aren't leaving much time to see Bryce Canyon right now. You've got a fairly long day to get from MV to BC (about 6 hours before stops) and then 4 hours the next day to get back to Vegas.

    Between BC and Vegas you'd also be going right past Zion National Park, which would also be worth your time, but you don't have it in your plans right now.

    However, the bigger oversight, to me, is between Vegas and San Francisco. With only 1 day for the drive, you pretty much have to drive directly there on the freeway, however there are several amazing national parks in between. A route going through Death Valley and then Yosemite National Parks would be a very popular and scenic route that I'd strongly consider, however, you'd really need at least 1 more overnight, and 2 nights would be better.

    I'd also say that just because you're traveling with a child, it doesn't mean you have to skip on nature, or even eliminate hiking. Obviously you won't be doing any major treks, but National Parks have lots of opportunities for exploration for people of all ages and abilities. The rangers have lots of helpful information to get the most out of these places on a family trip.

  4. Default

    Thanks for the advice! Good to know your experiences!
    To be honest, we would book a flight Las Vegas - SF ... :) I know we are skipping Yosemite then... but I don't know how to put it all together in our 3 weeks...

    I start my puzzle again!! :)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Personally, I'd look at the start of your trip, if you're looking for places to trim.

    Palm Spring, Sedona, and even the Grand Canyon are places where you could potentially shorten by a day or two from your current plans. If it were me, I might even skip Palm Springs and/or Phoenix to get more time at the other places we've mentioned.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    You will be adding considerable extra costs if you do 2 one way car rentals (LA-LV and SF-LA) and airfare (LV-SF) over keeping just one car for a loop trip. There are drop fees involved with renting a car in one city and returning it in a different city. It would be a shame to miss Death Valley and Yosemite.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default No real need to fly.

    Quote Originally Posted by babbske View Post
    Thanks for the advice! Good to know your experiences!
    To be honest, we would book a flight Las Vegas - SF ... :) I know we are skipping Yosemite then... but I don't know how to put it all together in our 3 weeks...

    I start my puzzle again!! :)
    Planning is part of the fun ! ;-) You have made a good start and you have a nice amount of time to do this trip without having to worry about flights midway through it. You do have time to take a couple of nights between LV and Yosemite if you wanted to and I can't recommend it highly enough.

  8. Default The Traveler

    Hi babbske,

    It looks like you have a very exciting trip planned and Im happy so happy for you. Having been to each of the places on your itinerary, I would like to recommend a few adjustments. First, I would drive the entire loop and not fly from Las Vegas to San Francisco. The reason I say this is because you would need 2 one way car rentals, which would include very expensive drop off fees, and second, A flight in the middle of your trip would add even more to your cost. I would also make just a few adjustments to your itinerary. Here is what i would recommend:

    1- Los Angeles( Disney or Universal )
    2- San Diego( San Diego Zoo or Legoland )
    3- San Diego( Sea World )
    4- Phoenix( overnight )
    5- Sedona( Pink Jeep Tours )
    6- Sedona( exploring Sedona, or perhaps nearby Clarksdale for a ride on the Verde Canyon Railroad )
    7- Grand Canyon National Park- South Rim( if your are staying near the rim, book accomodations months ahead )
    8- Grand Canyon National Park- South Rim( you may also want to consider using the Grand Canyon Railway to the Rim )
    9- Lake Powell( consider one of the many lake tours on this beautiful lake, maybe overnight at the Lake Powell Resort )
    10- Kanab( great base for accomodations with close proximity to 3 National Parks- Visit Bryce Canyon 1st )
    11- Kanab( Grand Canyon North Rim )
    12- Kanab ( Zion National Park )
    13- Las Vegas( overnight, sightseeing, Hoover Dam )
    14- Mammoth Lakes( Overnight on way to Yosemite National Park, via Death Valley )
    15- Yosemite National Park ( arrive at Yosemite Valley via Tioga Pass Rd )
    16- San Francisco( overnight, sightseeing )
    17- Coastal Route 1 to Monterey( via Santa Cruz boardwalk, overnight in Monterey )
    18- San Simeon ( Hearst Castle )
    19-Santa Barbara
    20- Los Angeles

    So as you can see, I eliminated Palm Springs and Monument Valley and replaced with San Diego and Lake Powell, with your child in mind. Hope this helps.

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