2-week west coast usa trip summer 2014
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Aug 28, 2013 7:54 AM Last Post By: nutraxfornerves
Aug 27, 2013 7:54 AM
2-week west coast usa trip summer 2014Hello!
I am looking for some advice on a 2-week trip myself and a friend hope to make to the west coast next summer. We aim to fly into San Francisco and out of LA, hopefully visiting Las Vegas as well. We wont have time to visit Yosemite, so I was thinking of driving down the coast from San Francisco to LA, heading straight to LV and then back to LA for a few days before we fly home. Does anyone have any recommendations/suggested itineraries? Thanks so much!
Aug 27, 2013 9:04 AM
3 nights SF
1 night Monterey
2 nights Yosemite
1 night Las Vegas
1 night Grand Canyon
1 night Las Vegas
3 nights LA
With one or two nights (depending on how long "two weeks" really is) to spare.
On a map, roughly.
Aug 27, 2013 9:24 AM
2drop off fees for one way car rentals is a lot in the usa. i'd try to do a circle to avoid the fee. las vegas is very hot in the summer. depending how much you like hot should play into your route. you don't tell us what you like to do so hard to tell you how long to stay in each place. for me, i'd want 3-4 nights in san fran, 2-3 nights along the coast (monterey, carmel, etc), outside of a day at disneyland, i have no use for la...prefer san diego, and 2-3 nights in vegas - but, that city can be dangerous if you like to gamble - can kill the budget quickly.
Aug 27, 2013 11:50 AM
3You have two whole weeks, yet can't spare two days for Yosemite?
Depending on the one-way car rental drop-off fee, mileage fee, time saved, and plain old cost of gas, it might actually make sense to plot a driving loop from SF or LA and back, then fly to Vegas before flying home. This would allow you to take both an inland and coastal route as you tour California.
What month do you have in mind?
Aug 27, 2013 12:17 PM
Aug 27, 2013 6:32 PM
5Please be aware that summers on the coast from SF to LA usually mean fog, frequently all day long. It is a fabulous trip but the fog frequently prevents seeing anything but the white line in the middle of the road. If you can do it late Sept. and Oct. are generally clear and sunny.
Having said that, be sure to take time to see Carmel. You will also drive past Hearst Castle, worth seeing but hard to get into during the summer months without a advance reservation. Morro Bay is also quite nice as is San Luis Obispo right next to it. You will see California's largest prison, located between the two towns.
Another consideration is the train to LA. It follows the coast and you will see areas off limits otherwise including Vandenberg Air Force base where they launch the majority of the satellites.
Aug 27, 2013 7:34 PM
Aug 28, 2013 12:15 AM
7Bzookaj has the classic itinerary. I have three brief comments:
(1) try not to do this in July or August - we have found May-June and September-October very good for weather (and fewer people), (2) definitely find the time for Yosemite NP (and drive from SF to Las Vegas via Hwy 120 through YNP, or the reverse), and (3) we use carhire3000.com to pre-book and pre-pay a US rental car, and there are no drop-off fees between any pair of your three cities (SF, LA, Las Vegas).
Comment (2B): if you did not stay right in the YNP Valley, you could book a room on the west side of YNP for one night, and a second night on the east side of YNP, to eliminate any backtracking at all.
Aug 28, 2013 4:35 AM
Also, there is only one train per day between the Bay Area and LA, and it is often late.
Aug 28, 2013 7:54 AM
Take a look at this map. AMTRAK trains run pretty much along highway 101. AMTRAK also has trains that go between SF and LA along highway 99, in the middle of the state.
If a route takes you through Bakersfield, it will be down the Central Valley.
The plural of anecdote is not data.
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