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  1. Default


    I moved to LA a few months ago, from the UK and my Dad's coming into town to visit. We want to drive up to San Fran, and I heard that Highway 1 is a very scenic route. He is only here for a week and we have a lot of other stuff to do so I was hoping we could make this a two day trip.

    Our plan is to leave LA very early one morning, take Highway 1 up to San Fran, taking our time - basically the whole day - making some stops at the best points. Spend the night in San Fran, then the next morning seeing a few sights, then drive back to LA the next afternoon but this time via a quicker route (101?).

    So my questions are,
    What are the best places to stop on Highway 1? How long would it take us to drive if we made, say 3 1 hour stops?
    - I'm very interested in the Redwood National forest?
    The best sights to see in San Fran?
    The quickest way back to LA?

    Hope someone can help me out!

    I would like to drive through and stop someone in Big Sur, if anyone has any suggestion where to stop that would be good.
    Last edited by Midwest Michael; 11-28-2009 at 12:19 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default more than you're bargaining

    Physically, it is possible to drive CA-1 in one day, but it is an extremely long day on the road. You're looking at a solid 12 hours before you make any stops, so throw in 3 one hour stops (which will barely allow you to scratch the surface) you've already got yourself a 15 hour day - which is probably more hours than you've got daylight for a winter trip.

    The fastest route back to LA would be I-5, and that trip can be done in about 6 hours, if you don't hit any traffic. However, I think you really are being too optimistic to try to drive up the coast, see any of SF, and make it back to LA in two days. At best, it would require a very exhausting pace. I'd strongly recommend either adding a day, or not going all the way to SF - perhaps just getting as far as Cambria or perhaps Monterey.

    The Redwood National Park is located another full days drive north of San Francisco. However, The muir woods located just north of the Golden Gate Bridge would be a good alternative.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia


    Since the recent hiccups have made some posts go MIA, I will try to repeat my post here.

    May I suggest that you go the other way round. Anti clockwise. Up I-5, 46 and 101 and then down highway 1. That way the coast will be on your side and considerable time can be saved by not having to wait for oncoming traffic when turning in and out of the many (not to be missed) viewpoints. It also means that if you take longer than anticipated and arrive back late in LA, chances are you will be in familiar territory, and will not need to look for your accommodation when tired and in the dark.

    If you have only the two days, why not stop short of SF, maybe Santa Cruz, and head down the coast from there through Monterey to Cambria. Then take 46 across to I-5. You will still be arriving in LA after dark.

    Lifey who was up that way only last month

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Good idea.

    I like Lifey's idea but just to add to it, could you leave the day before, even if it was afternoon and arrived late in SF. At least it would give you a couple of days to make your way back and have a few hours in SF. This would work better time wise even if SF wasn't a "must do" for you or your Dad and went to somewhere like Monterey before turning around.

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