Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. Default LA to LA road trip via San Diego , Tuscon , Phoenix and Vegas

    Hi All
    My better half and I have booked our flights , and are flying into LAX on the 21st November from London , return flight is for Saturday 5th December , departs in the evening . OK please bare with me .
    We are going to rent an suv , and do a road trip. I have very recently joined this forum and have been reading a lot of the posts , but thought id post this . and get any feedback from the experts.

    As the flight arrives into LAX quite late , was thinking of getting an airport hotel and then picking up the rental car in the morning , and then driving down to the San Diego area . The missus would like to do some scuba diving . So after a couple of days in that area , get on the road and head east to wards Tuscon . I am a big aircraft enthusiast so intend to make visits here and there to places of interest to me in this field and also to see other touristy sites.

    I have booked a flight on the next Saturday to take us up and over the storage facility at Davis Monthan in Tuscon . obviously need to do Pima as well . Tombstone while we are down that way .

    Skipping forward , Friday the 4th would be spent travelling from Vegas tp LA . so Wednesday and Thursday 2nd and 3rd in Vegas .

    So would I have time to see Phoenix area , Flagstaff , Maybe GC then Kingman on the way to Vegas ?.

    And I have a few days after I leave San Diego to fill up on way to Tuscon .
    Apologies if this all sounds a bit messy , but it really is in the rough stages of planning at the moment .
    Yuma seems a popular place to stop en route , is it worth overnighting there , or should I push on ?.

    Are the suv vehicles to rent 4 wheel drive ?.
    Would appreciate any help , Routes , places to stay etc . Motel 6 or that kind of accommodation .

    Thoughts good or bad are most welcome.

    Look forward to hearing from you all


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    Welcome to RTA!

    You could feasibly drive from San Diego to Tucson in one day -- it's only about 400 miles. Stay overnight in Yuma? That depends.

    On the way out of San Diego, you could stop at any of these interesting places:
    * Cuyamaca State Park. There's a lake up there, a museum, and a couple of nice hikes if you are so inclined. Just get off I-8 at exit 40, CA-79.
    * Mount Laguna and the Sunrise Highway -- get off I-8 at exit 47 and head north on Sunrise Hwy. There are some beautiful viewpoints of the desert from up there. You will have to have a recreation pass, $5.
    * Campo - if you'd like to see into Mexico (without going into it), take exit 65 and head towards Campo on CA-94. At Campo, there's an interesting museum, but the only road south out of Campo will take you to the trailhead of the Pacific Crest Trail (a trail that goes from the Mexican border to the Canadian border). At the trailhead, you can stick your foot under the barbed wire fence and touch Mexican soil (or at least, you used to be able to do that).
    * At exit 77, In-Ko-Pah Road, follow the signs to the Desert Tower. Very lovely view!
    * At exit 89, take CA-98 and County Road S2 up to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. This is beautiful, especially at that time of the year when it's a lot cooler than summertime
    * At exit 156, Grey's Well Road, leave the highway and follow the dirt frontage road along the south side of the freeway heading back west. In about a mile and a half, you'll find a fenced off area where the old board highway has been preserved.
    * At exit one in Arizona, you can follow the signs to the Yuma Territorial Prison where you can see the museum there and what's been preserved of the old prison. It's right next to the freeway, too.

    So whether you stay in Yuma, depends if you want to stop and see any of those things. It's only about 170 miles from San Diego to Yuma, easily driven in about 3 hours. (BTW, there are three rest areas along I-8. One is at Buckman Springs between Sunrise Highway exit and Campo exit, as described above. Another is about 18 miles before you get to El Centro, and the third one is in the rest area in the Yuma Dunes area, right before the Grey's Well Rd exit.)

    Yuma has lodging to meet every budget, and food to meet every budget and style as well.


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


    Welcome to the RTA Forum!

    The jumping around makes your plan a bit hard to follow, but it seems like you've got a good start.

    Are you planning to completely skip LA for actually touring on this trip? It doesn't seem like you've planned any time there.

    Waiting to the next day to pick up your car could work, although just getting the car when you arrive might not be much more of a hassle than waiting for the shuttle to a hotel. Either way, staying around the airport is a very good idea.

    Based on your timeline, I don't think I would do anything from SD to Tucson. You can make some small stops, certainly, but that's close to a full day drive and I don't think you'd want to take more time there - especially if you want to squeeze in Phoenix and the Grand Canyon on your way back to Vegas.

    Not all rental SUVs will have 4 wheel drive, but it's really not something you need to worry about. You can't take a rental SUV off road, without violating your rental contract. And in the remote chance you see weather so bad that you'd need 4 wheel drive (Northern AZ is the only spot this is even somewhat likely), you're probably better off waiting for conditions to improve anyway.

  4. Default

    Thank you both for the warm welcome .
    I do apologise for the " jumping around " in my original post .
    As far as LA is concerned , we were not planning on doing anything there , its a big city and cities are not really our thing , but saying that a visit to santa monica may be happening .
    But I do realise , that we have taken on quite a large area to visit , and some things will have to wait until another time .
    What you have mentioned Donna sounds great , a lot of interesting things to see in that first part of our journey .
    I think our trip will be done on a how we feel on the day basis , but keeping to the main places in the time available , and fitting other stuff around this .

    Thank you for your help so far , im sure I will have more questions for you .


Similar Threads

  1. Las Vegas to San Diego - via San Simeon and Los Angeles
    By Larraine in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 04-19-2015, 08:49 AM
  2. San Francisco to Phoenix via LA and Vegas in November
    By Royce911 in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 09-10-2013, 06:51 AM
  3. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-19-2012, 03:30 PM
  4. San Diego to Phoenix to Grand Canyon to Las Vegas and back to San Diego
    By curiouslizzy in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-09-2010, 02:26 AM
  5. Road trip from Phoenix - Las Vegas/San Diego
    By mike54 in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-03-2008, 10:34 AM


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name