Road trip ....San fran to LA ??????
Replies: 10 - Last Post: Feb 28, 2013 4:13 PM Last Post By: willysnoutredux
Feb 26, 2013 8:36 AM
Road trip ....San fran to LA ??????HI GUYS
So I have decied to got to San Fran and LA in September for my 30th....... I have 10 days. We are going to take the scenic route on highway 1, but would like your advise on a few things :
1) recommendations on your 'Must Sees' allong the way.- Amazing views etc. Beautiful beaches and scenery
2) where is the best place to stop over on the way and where to stay.
3) And would you agree with the time i have chosen for each place:
2 days San fran....
2 day road trip---
6 days LA.....
any advise would be brilliant.
Feb 26, 2013 9:11 AM
1I would add more days to San Francisco and fewer days to LA. The former is beautiful, charming, walkable, and intimate. The latter is huge and spread out where you'll be spending a good chunk of your time in a car stuck in traffic. However, it depends on your interests and how you like to experience a city. For me, I would do 4 days in SF, 3 days in LA, and 3 days in between.
Feb 26, 2013 9:48 AM
2No, the breakdown you have chosen is not good. It should be:
4 nights/3 full days SF
2 nights coast (stops in Monterey, Carmel, Big Sur, Hearst Castle, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara)
4 nights/3 full days LA
We need budget in dollars to recommend places to stay and exact dates since hotel rates vary by date. We also know whether you'll have a car the entire time in LA.
Feb 26, 2013 10:35 AM
Yes i will have a car in LA, and budget doesnt matter at the momet as would just like advise on good areas to stop over at on the road trip if possible.
i thought that if LA is bigger i would need more time there so I am not so rushed, as San fran smaller lesss time ?
the things id really like to do in San fran are, nice food, jazz bar, shopping, as I am there on my actual birthday.
Road tri sight seeing, beautiful beaches scenery...
La touristy things, santa monica beach, hollywood, farmers grove.
so you would suggest to stop over in carmel over night ? i guess money wise no more than £150 per night
Feb 26, 2013 10:44 AM
- Don't plan to have a car in SF. You can stay anywhere near Union Square and will be within easy access to everything. Average hotel price is $200-300 per night depending on dates
- Hotels in LA in good walkable areas are not cheap. Try to stay in Santa Monica if you can afford it. Since you'll have a car, a good budget place is Seashore Motel on Main Street. There are also nicer looking places like Holiday Inn and Viceroy Hotel in Santa Monica, but those will be $200-300 per night. If budget doesn't matter, staying somewhere in that area is best. Keep in mind parking costs.
- Yes, SF is more compact, but there is a ton to do and see. The difference between SF and LA is that you have to drive between various areas because they're spread out. But in terms of things and areas to see, it's about similar.
- I would suggest two stops somewhere in any of the places I listed on the coastal drive. For example, you can stop in Carmel in the north and Santa Barbara in the south.
Feb 26, 2013 11:54 AM
Feb 26, 2013 12:17 PM
6You have picked a good time for the trip. Mid-September to mid-October is when SF and the Central Coast have their best weather--warmest and most likely to be fog-free. Beaches south of SF are mostly going to be beautiful in a rocky, craggy way; there are sandy beaches in Santa Cruz, Monterey, and Carmel. Don't expect warm water for swimming.
Since scenery is important, you really will want 3 days for that drive. You'll be stopping a lot to look at something, take pictures, or hike down to the water. You can easily spend half a day at the Monterey Bay Aquarium or visiting Hearst Castle. (Stop just north of Hearst Castle at Piedras Blancas and watch elephant seals. The price is right--free.)
Carmel is one place to stay. I find it a overly "precious" for my taste, but others love it. It's only a few minutes to two other cities in the area--Monterey and Pacific Grove.
You might want to look into staying at Asilomar in Pacific Grove. It is a part of a protected reserve that is part of the state parks system. It is primarily a conference center, so rooms for travelers are not always available. If you want peace & quiet, this is it. It's a collection of small buildings, set among trees. There are paths to wander and Asilomar State Beach is just over the sand dunes. Deer and other wildlife will wander past your room; birds chirp in the trees. Some of the buildings were designed by the same architect who did Hearst Castle. Some rooms have fireplaces or balconies. Many of the cottages have a common room with a fireplace. Rooms have private baths. There is a heated swimming pool and you can rent bicycles.
It isn't for everyone. Rooms do not have phones or TVs. There is Wi-Fi internet access in the rooms & some common buildings, and a T-1 line in the main lobby. The dining hall is sort of a cross between a restaurant and a college dining hall, but meal packages are optional. Most rooms include breakfast.
I like San Luis Obispo, about an hour & a half north of Santa Barbara, for an overnight. Others prefer Cambria or Morro Bay or Pismo Beach.
Are you interested in visiting wineries? You will pass through a number of wine regions on the route.
The Ferry Building is a foodie destination in itself.
The plural of anecdote is not data.
Feb 26, 2013 12:42 PM
Feb 28, 2013 11:17 AM
8For lodging recs, you need to say how much money you're comfortable spending per night, and what your maximum is. Over the years, I've spent as little at $50 and as much as $1,600 per night. One was somewhat better than the other! These days, I'd say $100 a night is probably rock bottom in that region.
Feb 28, 2013 11:41 AM
Feb 28, 2013 4:13 PM
10Thanks, #9, I missed that. For $240 a night, I'd suggest trying to save some dough in S.F. and L.A. by using Hotwire, and using the extra funds for a splurge at Big Sur. You could probably find perfectly acceptable lodgings in S.F. and L.A. for $150 a night, which would leave you with $720 extra for Big Sur. That's a budget of $600 a night.
You could stay at Ventana for that amount of money. If you were willing to stretch it to maybe $750 or so a night, the "butterfly" lodgings at Post Ranch Inn are out of this world and truly worth the splurge. To save money while you were there, you could have your meals at Nepenthe.
The one thing to point out is that September and the first half of October is peak season on the California coast, so whatever you do, you need to reserve as early as possible, especially in San Francisco and Monterey/Big Sur.
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