21 days in California Itinerary

21 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock United States journey planner

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Route & dates

21 days in California Itinerary

Start: London
+2
Fly + bus + taxi:  16​h 30​min
1
Death Valley National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
— 4 nights
bus:  4​h
3
Paso Robles
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
4
Carmel
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 30​min
5
Healdsburg
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h
6
Mendocino
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
7
Ukiah
— 1 night
Fly:  18​h 45​min
End: London

3
nights
Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park ©
Extreme heat and dryness create extreme landscapes in Death Valley National Park.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Mosaic Canyon and Salt Creek Interpretive Trail. Escape the urban bustle at Zabriskie Point and Artists Dr. When in Death Valley National Park, make a side trip to see Harmony Borax Works in Death Valley Junction, approximately 30 minutes away. There's lots more to do: contemplate the waterfront views at Badwater, don't miss a visit to Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, and get great views at Dante's View.

Before you visit Death Valley National Park, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.

London, UK to Death Valley National Park is an approximately 16.5-hour flight. The time zone difference moving from Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) to Pacific Standard Time (PST) is minus 8 hours. While traveling from London, expect a bit warmer days and a bit cooler nights in Death Valley National Park, ranging from highs of 16°C to lows of -1°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 12th (Wed) early enough to travel to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park.

Things to do in Death Valley National Park

Nature Parks Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 9 — 12:
Highlights from your plan
Mosaic Canyon ©
Mosaic Canyon
Harmony Borax Works ©
Harmony Borax Works
Zabriskie Point ©
Zabriskie Point

4
nights
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park ©
With mountain peaks reaching past 4,250 m (14,000 ft) and trees stretching to over 75 m (250 ft) high, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks present nature on a grand scale.
Take a break from the city and head to Manzanar National Historic Site and Giant Forest. Step off the beaten path and head to Lone Pine Film History Museums and Kings Canyon National Park. Step out of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park to go to Independence and see Eastern California Museum, which is approximately 40 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: don't miss a visit to General Sherman Tree.

To find photos, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park travel route builder tool .

Explore your travel options from Death Valley National Park to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park with the Route module. Traveling from Death Valley National Park in December, expect slightly colder with lows of -7°C in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Sun) so you can drive to Paso Robles.

Things to do in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park

Nature Parks Historic Sites

Side Trips

Independence, Museum of Western Film History
Find places to stay Dec 12 — 16:
Highlights from your plan
Manzanar National Historic Site ©
Manzanar National Historic Site
Museum of Western Film History ©
Museum of Western Film History
Kings Canyon National Park ©
Kings Canyon National Park

4
nights
Paso Robles

Paso Robles ©
A town of hot springs and wine, Paso Robles (or "Pass of the Oaks") feels like a desert paradise to those who travel here.
Get a sense of the local culture at Piedras Blancas Light Station and Ecluse Wines. Visiting Moonstone Beach and Morro Rock will get you outdoors. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Paso Robles: San Simeon (Friends of Hearst Castle & Elephant Seal Rookery). Next up on the itinerary: learn about winemaking at San Marcos Creek Vineyards & Winery.

To see photos and more tourist information, you can read our Paso Robles online travel route planner .

Traveling by car from Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park to Paso Robles takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car, shuttle, and bus. Expect a bit warmer temperatures when traveling from Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park in December; daily highs in Paso Robles reach 18°C and lows reach 1°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Thu) to allow time to drive to Carmel.

Things to do in Paso Robles

Wineries Parks Historic Sites

Side Trips

Cambria, Templeton, San Simeon, Morro Rock
Find places to stay Dec 16 — 20:
Highlights from your plan
San Marcos Creek Vineyard ©
San Marcos Creek Vineyard
Piedras Blancas Light Station ©
Piedras Blancas Light Station
Adelaida Vineyards & Winery ©
Adelaida Vineyards & Winery

1
night
Carmel

Carmel ©
Carmel-by-the-Sea, often simply called Carmel, is a city in Monterey County, California, United States, founded in 1902 and incorporated on October 31, 1916. Kick off your visit on the 20th (Thu): trek along Point Lobos State Reserve and then appreciate the extensive heritage of Cannery Row.

To see maps, more things to do, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Carmel trip itinerary tool .

Getting from Paso Robles to Carmel by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of train and bus; or take a bus. Expect a bit warmer evenings in Carmel when traveling from Paso Robles in December, with lows around 7°C. On the 21st (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Healdsburg.

Things to do in Carmel

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Monterey
Find places to stay Dec 20 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Carmel River State Beach ©
Carmel River State Beach
San Carlos Cathedral ©
San Carlos Cathedral
Cannery Row ©
Cannery Row

3
nights
Healdsburg

Healdsburg ©
The quaint city of Healdsburg is one of northern California's wine capitals, serving as the meeting point for three of Sonoma's most important wine-producing regions.
Get some cultural insight at Williamson Wines Tasting Room and Storybook Mountain Vineyards. Discover out-of-the-way places like BobDog Winery and Davis Family Vineyards. Explore Healdsburg's surroundings by going to St. Helena (V. Sattui & Sherwin Family Vineyards), Armstrong Redwood State Reserve (in Guerneville) and Castello di Amorosa (in Calistoga). The adventure continues: do a tasting at Stephen & Walker Winery.

To find reviews, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Healdsburg online tour planner .

Getting from Carmel to Healdsburg by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and flight; or do a combination of bus and flight. Expect little chillier evenings in Healdsburg when traveling from Carmel in December, with lows around 3°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 24th (Mon) so you can go by car to Mendocino.

Things to do in Healdsburg

Wineries Nature Wildlife

Side Trips

Calistoga, St. Helena, BobDog Winery, Armstrong Redwood State Reserve
Find places to stay Dec 21 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Castello di Amorosa ©
Castello di Amorosa
Williamson Wines Tasting Room ©
Williamson Wines Tasting Room
BobDog Winery ©
BobDog Winery

3
nights
Mendocino

Mendocino ©
Mendocino is an unincorporated community in Mendocino County, California, United States. On the 25th (Tue), kick back and relax at Manchester Beach / Mendocino Coast KOA, then enjoy the sea views from Point Arena Lighthouse and Museum, and then get engrossed in the history at Kelley House Museum. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 26th (Wed): cruise along Mendocino Coast, steep yourself in history at Ford House Visitor Center & Museum, and then visit a coastal fixture at Point Cabrillo Light Station.

Take the guesswork out of planning a Mendocino vacation by using our trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Healdsburg to Mendocino by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a bus. In December, plan for daily highs up to 15°C, and evening lows to 3°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Thu) early enough to travel to Ukiah.

Things to do in Mendocino

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Point Arena
Find places to stay Dec 24 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Point Arena Lighthouse & Museum ©
Point Arena Lighthouse & Museum
Mendocino Coast ©
Mendocino Coast
Point Cabrillo Light Station ©
Point Cabrillo Light Station

1
night
Ukiah

Ukiah ©
Ukiah is the county seat and largest city of Mendocino County, California. Start off your visit on the 27th (Thu): learn about winemaking at Saracina Vineyards, learn about winemaking at Toulouse Vineyards & Winery, and then do a tasting at Navarro Vineyards & Winery. Here are some ideas for day two: learn about winemaking at Goldeneye Winery, then learn about winemaking at Handley Cellars Winery, and then learn about winemaking at Husch Vineyards & Winery.

To find other places to visit, where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Ukiah trip itinerary planning tool .

You can drive from Mendocino to Ukiah in 1.5 hours. In December, daytime highs in Ukiah are 15°C, while nighttime lows are 3°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 28th (Fri) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Ukiah

Wineries

Side Trips

Philo, Saracina Vineyards
Find places to stay Dec 27 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Navarro Vineyards ©
Navarro Vineyards
Handley Cellars Winery ©
Handley Cellars Winery
Husch Vineyards ©
Husch Vineyards

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