We (me and my wife) are going to travel next July to US. Below is our trip plan:
day 01 – Jul/19 - San Francisco (city tour)
day 02 – Jul/20 - San Francisco (Golden Gate, bicycle tour)
day 03 – Jul/21 - San Francisco (Fisherman´s Wharf and Alcatraz)
day 04 – Jul/22 – San Francisco to Yosemite National Park
day 05 – Jul/23 – Yosemite National Park (bicycle or hiking, Mariposa Groove)
day 06 – Jul/24 – Yosemite National Park to Death Valley (car tour)
day 07 – Jul/25 – Death Valley to Las Vegas (city tour)
day 08 – Jul/26 – Las Vegas (city tour, see some show at night)
day 09 – Jul/27 – Las Vegas (city tour, cassino)
day 10 – Jul/28 – Las Vegas to Grand Canyon (via route 66)
day 11 – Jul/29 – Grand Canyon (south rim)
day 12 – Jul/30 – Grand Canyon to Los Angeles (crossing Joshua Tree National Park)
day 13 – Jul/31 – Los Angeles (city tour - Hollywood)
day 14 – Aug/01 - Los Angeles (city tour – beaches – Venice, Santa Monica, Malibu)
day 15 – Aug/02 - Los Angeles (Universal Studios or Six Flags)
day 16 – Aug/03 – Los Angeles to San Diego (city tour)
day 17 – Aug/04 – San Diego (work during the day, visit some place at night)
day 18 – Aug/05 – San Diego (work during the day, visit some place at night)
day 19 – Aug/06 – San Diego (work during the day, visit some place at night)
Here is the itinerary from Google Maps: Map
I know it´s not the best time to visit (more expensive and very crowded), but we have only this time. We are planning to make all the itinerary by car. I know that its a too short time to visit all these places, but I have done a similar trip on March,2006 and I think we can support it.
So we have a few questions:
1. San Francisco: is it necessary to rent a car, or can we visit the city by foot/bus/cable car and rent a car only before go to Yosemite? I have been to SF another time (March,2006) by car and it was very easy to drive through the city, but I don´t know how it is on Summer.
2. Death Valley: i know its VERY VERY hot, but I´d like to visit. Is it necessary to make a reservation for a hotel or is it easy to find a good motel near the visitors center?
3. Grand Canyon: I´d like to visit Skywalk on West Rim, but I have read that it´s very far from way, expensive and a little unorganized. Is it worth or in South Rim I can see the same stuff?
4. Grand Canyon: Is it necessary to make a hotel reservation or is it easy to find a good motel near South Rim?
5. Grand Canyon: has anyone traveled by helicoper inside the canyon? Is it worth? How much is it?
6. Joshua Tree national Park: is there enough time on day 12 to make a fast visit into the park (Key views) when going from Las Vegas to Los Angeles?
7. Las Vegas: I have read that it is the best place to buy eletronics. Is it true?
8. San Diego: what are the good places to visit at night?
Thanks in advance and sorry for the long post. I have read a lot of threads in this forum to plan our trip.