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  1. Default NYC - California round trip in 10 days


    After browsing through a number of topics on this forum I take that this is a great place to ask for expert opinion on roadtrips routes, which is something I am currently in great need of advice for.
    I am planning a relatively light cross country trip from New York City to California and back in early June. The thing is, due to scheduling issues, I will only have 10 days to carry it out. I will be traveling in a total party of 3 adults in a mid-size vehicle. The car is relatively new (2500 miles on it), so I take it this should not be a concern. However, what we have in mind is a safe yet scenic route through the states with ultimate goal of getting a flavor of California, specifically LA and San Francisco. We are also very interested in exploring Grand Canyon sight (not particularly Vegas itself).

    Would it be possible to make it happen over the course of 10 days? I'd like to point out that we are prepared to spend 10+ hours of daylight driving and only comfortably stopping at rest areas and local hotels for the night sleepovers. Again, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Grand Canyon areas are of main interest to us. Can anybody kindly offer some guidelines on things we may need to know about before embarking on the trip of this sort?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default More Work Than It's Worth

    Welcome to the RoadTrip Americas forums!

    Yes, I suppose that technically it would be possible to drive from New York to the Grand Canyon to Los Angeles to San Francisco and back to New York in 10 days, but it would require driving over 600 miles each and every one of those 10 days. That in turn would require driving 11 hours or so each day. There simply would be no time for anything other than the most cursory visit to anywhere along the way. There would be no time, for example, to see any of the sights that Los Angeles and San Francisco have to offer, just their traffic; no time to drive the Pacific Coast Highway; and barely enough time to do anything other than take a couple of pictures at the Grand Canyon. I just don't see the point of spending 10 days and over a thousand dollars in gas just to say you did it.

    Still, if you're determined to go through with it, here are some tips on how to do it.


  3. Default

    Thank you so much for the advice, AZBuck.

    Based on some preliminary planning I've done I did feel we would be a bit pressed for time in our journey. However, to our dismay this is just the maximum amount of time we all can allocate for such vacation at this point in time (we can thank the nature of our jobs for that). To alleviate some stress we are willing to exclude LA from the trip and focus on San Francisco and Grand Canyon. Also, thankfully, the car we are taking is getting an average of 31 mpg, so we should fit within $500-600 budget as far as gas goes. We are really excited about the getaway because we don't know if we will get a chance to do something like that any time soon (unfortunately, we just can't afford 2, 3 week vacation straight in our line of work).
    Based on the above and from your expertise, do you still think we would be able to get good fun out of this venture.

    PS: My party is mostly interested in

    1) Grand Canyon area tour
    2) San Francisco Bay tour (Golden Gate Park/Bridge, Cable Cars, Civic Center - there seems to be a 3.5 hour tour package)


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Sorry...

    ...but dropping Los Angeles gains you essentially nothing since the shortest route between New York and San Francisco that includes the Grand Canyon comes within 50 miles of Los Angeles anyway. Even just hitting your two major destinations would be a 6000 mile drive. And even at 31 mpg, you will need at least $800 for gas for such a trip. Those are the cold, hard facts, but it's better to face them now and plan accordingly than to assume that reality will alter itself just because you want it to.


  5. Default

    have you considered flying out there? what about flying into vegas, renting a car, spending 8 days on a slow journey from grand canyon through california to LA and SF? you could then fly out of san francisco and have a lot of time to explore california.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Welcome to the RTA Forum, Ladylac9704!

    That's for sharing your advice, and a fly and drive trip could have been an option, but if you look at the date, this question was asked way back in 2008, so whatever trip was taken has long since come and gone.

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