9 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

9 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California's Central Coast tour itinerary maker

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Santa Barbara
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Santa Maria
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Cambria
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Monterey
— 2 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
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Santa Barbara

— 2 nights

The American Riviera

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.
Venture out of the city with trips to Sunstone Winery (in Santa Ynez) and Artiste Winery & Tasting Studio (in Los Olivos). And it doesn't end there: make a trip to Old Mission Santa Barbara, get to know the resident critters at Santa Barbara Zoo, take a leisurely stroll along Stearns Wharf, and do a tasting at Jaffurs Wine Cellars.

To see where to stay, traveler tips, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Santa Barbara trip planner.

Madison to Santa Barbara is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also drive; or take a bus. Due to the time zone difference, you'll gain 2 hours traveling from Madison to Santa Barbara. In May in Santa Barbara, expect temperatures between 71°F during the day and 52°F at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 31st (Mon) early enough to go by car to Santa Maria.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Wineries · Tours · Historic Sites · Zoos & Aquariums

Side Trips

Find places to stay May 29 — 31:

Santa Maria

— 2 nights
Santa Maria is a city near the Southern California coast in Santa Barbara County. Start off your visit on the 1st (Tue): learn about winemaking at Rancho Sisquoc Winery, do a tasting at Foxen Vineyard & Winery, and then explore the landscape on two wheels at Bob Jones City to Sea Bike Trail. Keep things going the next day: do a tasting at Rusack Vineyards and then sample some tasty brews at 246 Wine & Brew Tours.

For more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Santa Maria trip maker.

You can drive from Santa Barbara to Santa Maria in 1.5 hours. May in Santa Maria sees daily highs of 71°F and lows of 50°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Wed) so you can go by car to Cambria.

Things to do in Santa Maria

Wineries · Breweries & Distilleries · Tours · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay May 31 — Jun 2:

Cambria

— 2 nights
Cambria is a seaside village in San Luis Obispo County, California, United States midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles along California State Route 1 (Highway 1). On the 3rd (Thu), get some jogging in at Bluff Trail, take a memorable tour with Stepladder Ranch & Creamery, then explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, and finally take in the exciting artwork at Amphora Gallery. Keep things going the next day: get great views at Ragged Point Overlook, stop by Friends of the Elephant Seal Visitor Center and Gift Shop, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Piedras Blancas, and finally stroll through Fiscalini Ranch Preserve.

Use Inspirock's suggestions to plan your Cambria trip and find the best activities and attractions for your vacation.

You can drive from Santa Maria to Cambria in 1.5 hours. When traveling from Santa Maria in June, plan for a bit warmer days in Cambria, with highs around 93°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 53°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 4th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Monterey.

Things to do in Cambria

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Trails

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jun 2 — 4:

Monterey

— 2 nights
Monterey is a city in the U.S. state of California, on the southern edge of Monterey Bay on California's Central Coast. Start off your visit on the 5th (Sat): observe the fascinating underwater world at Monterey Bay Aquarium, then take a memorable drive along 17-Mile Drive, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail.

For photos, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, you can read our Monterey trip itinerary builder.

Traveling by car from Cambria to Monterey takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, train, and bus. When traveling from Cambria in June, plan for colder days in Monterey, with highs around 68°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 53°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 6th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Monterey

Outdoors · Parks · Zoos & Aquariums · Tours
Find places to stay Jun 4 — 6: