15 days in California Itinerary

15 days in California Itinerary

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15 days in California Itinerary

Ottawa
Fly:  14​h 15​min
Yosemite National Park
— 4 nights
Drive:  7​h 15​min
Mendocino
— 3 nights
Drive:  5​h 30​min
Carmel
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
Santa Barbara
— 1 night
Fly:  11​h 45​min
Ottawa

3
days
Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park ©
Massive granite mountains, towering waterfalls, groves of Giant Sequoia trees, and wilderness as far as the eye can see distinguish the landscape of Yosemite National Park.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Bodie and Olmsted Point. Popular historic sites such as Bodie State Historic Park and Big Trees Lodge, National Historic Landmark are in your itinerary. There's much more to do: take some stellar pictures from Tunnel View, explore the striking landscape at El Capitan, and explore the striking landscape of Bridalveil Fall.

Make your Yosemite National Park itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

Ottawa, Canada to Yosemite National Park is an approximately 14.5-hour flight. You can also drive. Traveling from Ottawa to Yosemite National Park, you'll gain 3 hours due to the time zone difference. Expect slightly colder evenings in Yosemite National Park when traveling from Ottawa in May, with lows around 1°C. You will have some time to spend on the 11th (Fri) before leaving for Mendocino.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Nature Historic Sites

Side Trips

Bodie State Historic Park, Bodie
Accommodations
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Bodie State Historic Park ©
Bodie State Historic Park
Olmsted Point ©
Olmsted Point

2
days
Mendocino

Mendocino ©
Mendocino is an unincorporated community in Mendocino County, California, United States. Kick off your visit on the 12th (Sat): get engrossed in the history at Kelley House Museum, enjoy the sea views from Point Arena Lighthouse and Museum, and then enjoy the sea views from Manchester Beach / Mendocino Coast KOA. On your second day here, take in nature's colorful creations at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens, then stroll through Noyo Headlands Park, and then visit a coastal fixture at Point Cabrillo Light Station.

To see more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, read our Mendocino journey planner.

Traveling by car from Yosemite National Park to Mendocino takes 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, bus, and train; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Traveling from Yosemite National Park in May, things will get somewhat warmer in Mendocino: highs are around 29°C and lows about 9°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 14th (Mon) to allow time for the car ride to Carmel.

Things to do in Mendocino

Historic Sites Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

Point Arena, Fort Bragg
Accommodations
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Point Cabrillo Light Station ©
Point Cabrillo Light Station
Point Arena Lighthouse and Museum ©
Point Arena Lighthouse and Museum

3
days
Carmel

Carmel ©
Carmel-by-the-Sea, often simply referred to as Carmel, is a city in Monterey County, California, United States, founded in 1902 and incorporated on October 31, 1916. Relax by the water at Pfeiffer State Beach and Carmel City Beach/Carmel River Beach. Step off the beaten path and head to Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and San Carlos Cathedral. Change things up with a short trip to McWay Falls in Big Sur (about 58 minutes away). The adventure continues: immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos State Reserve, steep yourself in history at Cannery Row, look for gifts at The Cheese Shop, and indulge your taste buds at The Wharf Marketplace.

For more things to do, maps, reviews, and other tourist information, use the Carmel travel route planning website .

Traveling by car from Mendocino to Carmel takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, flight, and taxi; or take a bus. While traveling from Mendocino, expect slightly colder days and about the same nights in Carmel, ranging from highs of 21°C to lows of 12°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Thu) so you can go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Carmel

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Monterey, Big Sur
Accommodations
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Point Lobos State Reserve ©
Point Lobos State Reserve
Carmel City Beach/Carmel River Beach ©
Pfeiffer State Beach ©
Pfeiffer State Beach

2
days
San Simeon

San Simeon ©
When you arrive in tiny San Simeon, which lies halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, you can see why William Randolph Hearst chose this coastal locale for his famous hilltop castle.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Fri): kick back and relax at Moonstone Beach, examine the collection at Coastal Discovery Center at San Simeon Bay (Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary), and then step into the grandiose world of Friends of Hearst Castle. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station and then identify plant and animal life at Elephant Seal Rookery.

Ask Inspirock to suggest an itinerary and make planning a trip to San Simeon fast, fun, and easy.

Drive from Carmel to San Simeon in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. When traveling from Carmel in May, plan for slightly colder days in San Simeon, with highs around 15°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 11°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Santa Barbara.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Historic Sites Wildlife

Side Trip

Cambria
Accommodations
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Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach
Piedras Blancas Light Station ©
Piedras Blancas Light Station
Friends of Hearst Castle ©
Friends of Hearst Castle

1
day
Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara
Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, Santa Barbara is a solid vacation destination with its wide beaches, renowned wineries, and some of California's finest shopping and dining options.
Kick off your visit on the 20th (Sun): take a stroll through State Street, learn about winemaking at Grassini Family Vineyards, then contemplate the long history of Casa de la Guerra, and finally steep yourself in history at Old Mission Santa Barbara.

To see photos, other places to visit, ratings, and other tourist information, refer to the Santa Barbara online trip builder .

Getting from San Simeon to Santa Barbara by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and train; or take a bus. Traveling from San Simeon in May, you will find days in Santa Barbara are a bit warmer (24°C), and nights are about the same (13°C). Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Historic Sites Scenic Drive Outdoors
Accommodations
Get expert advice on where to stay in Santa Barbara.
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Highlights from your plan
Old Mission Santa Barbara
Old Mission Santa Barbara
Casa de la Guerra ©
Casa de la Guerra
Grassini Family Vineyards ©
Grassini Family Vineyards

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