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  1. Default LA - Vegas - San Fran - LA

    Hi all,

    My girlfriend and I are coming to the US from New Zealand for a month in September 2010, a year away. Im just starting to do so basic planning now so we make sure we do everything we can and would like any suggestions and thoughts on our time table if its doable or not. I have been to LA and Vegas about 10 years ago but my girlfriend hasnt been to the States at all. We are late 20s to early 30s and want to see and do the tourist things but also get out and see the countryside too.

    We are planing on flying into LA and will have 5 night accomodation there and will also have a rental car for the whole trip. We are planning on spending a maximum of a month in the US.

    So in LA we have 5 nights and will do the tourist thing but its after this i need some suggestions. We will also stay in a mix of backpackers and hotels (Vegas). Would we need to book in advance for these if travelling in September?

    Heres the plan -

    1-5 LA
    6-9 Vegas
    10-11 Grand Canyon
    11-12 Monument Valley
    13-15 Zion
    16-17 Death Valley
    18-20 Yosemite
    21-26 San Fran
    27-30 Down coast to LA
    31 LA

    Is this doable? We dont want to feel like we are dirving all the time so we have time to relax and really check out the areas. What are the 'must not miss' things in those areas?

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks so much
    Last edited by AndrewNZ; 09-21-2009 at 02:16 PM. Reason: Change

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Looking Good

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    Your general itinerary looks good and should allow for plenty of time to see things at a relaxed pace. You're probably only looking at 5 days (more or less) of driving, leaving most of your time to soak up the sights along the way. For some more detailed suggestions regarding places in the general area you'll be visiting, have a read through the discussions links to here. If/while you are traveling in very early September, reservations would be in order as there is a major American holiday, Labor Day, that marks the end of summer, but as you get later into the month and schools start up again, you can usually wing it.


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

    Default A couple of thoughts.

    I agree, that looks good ! A lot of us [myself included] have a habit of trying to fit too much in, in too little time, but your trip looks really relaxed with time to take in these amazing places.
    Two suggestions I would make are firstly, go from LA direct to the Grand canyon as you will be going through Vegas between Zion and Death valley, this will save you some time and miles. Secondly, I would find a day from somewhere [SF perhaps] and visit Bryce canyon.
    From MV you can still head through Page on the way to Zion and then detour to Bryce or you could continue from MV to Mexican hat and head up the 261 and the Moki dugway [use the RTA search button for more info] to Hanksville and then West along 24 to Torrey passing Capitol Reef NP before heading South down the incredibly scenic HWY 12 to Bryce, It's highly recommended although that would soak up another day.
    As you can see it's easy to keep "squeezing" things in and make it busy but I do think that you have plenty of time to do this if you wanted.
    If you want lodgings inside the busier parks such as GC and Yosemite I would consider booking such places.
    Visiting the parks you have listed is right on the verge of making the $80 annual parks fee cheaper than paying individually and if you were to visit Bryce and/or Capitol Reef it would certainly be cheaper, so check that out.

  4. Default

    Thank you so much for your suggestions, we will definately check out the options of heading to GC before Vegas. The reasoning behind going to Vegas first was really down to actually doing the drive from LA to Vegas, a trip so many people must make going through Barstow and Baker. I just remember how cool it was last time I was over there.

    If anyone has anymore suggestions we would love to hear from you.

    Also great advice on the accomodation and booking during the school holidays, that may have saved us a few problems!

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