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California tips

(20 Posts)
MissionImpossible3 Wed 22-Apr-15 19:37:51

Have been reading some of the old threads about road trips in California and want to ask some of you for some tips. Firstly when is best to go, taking into account it has to be during school holidays - weather etc? Where are the must go to places? Don't especially want theme parks as have done Florida. San Francisco is definitely on my list but otherwise need some advice please. Thanks ��

Loletta Wed 22-Apr-15 23:35:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Loletta Wed 22-Apr-15 23:36:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bunbaker Sat 25-Apr-15 15:10:09

San Francisco is decidedly not scorching in August. We had to wear jackets when we were there.

SmashleyHop Sat 25-Apr-15 15:23:19

June - August will be unbearably hot but yes there is air conditioning as long as your happy to remain indoors for most of your trip. Nov- Feb will be rainy and cold. So anything in between would be ideal.

San Fran is a must to see. San Diego is amazing as well, the zoo is one of the best in the country and even in January the beaches are packed. Monterey Bay is my personal favorite. Yosemite I haven't been to (why is it when you live some where you never do the touristy stuff?) but I've heard it's lovely. I think going up north to see the Redwoods is worth the trip. They have the tree you can drive your car through and it's a nice to see that part of Cali. Lovely coastal towns, great sea food, art, and beaches that are less crowded and commercial. Tahoe is great if you like the idea of casinos, ski resorts and lake side dining.

Sigh.. I need to go back soon for another visit.

clam Sat 25-Apr-15 15:25:01

Ditto, re: SF. Alcatraz is chuffing freezing, especially in that windy exercise yard.
We did pretty much what Loletta did, minus San Diego, and it was fabulous. Loved every minute. Travelling south on the PCH from Monterey to LA, it only really started getting very hot just north of Malibu. And when we drove from Yosemite (book accommodation there as far ahead as you can because it gets rammed in summer - also book Alcatraz if it's on your must-see list) to Monterey the temperature dipped from 104 degrees to 54 in the few hours it took us to drive.

Hotel rooms are usually big enough for a family of 4, if that suits you. 2 double beds and big rooms.

Loletta Sat 25-Apr-15 17:56:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CMOTDibbler Sat 25-Apr-15 17:59:50

I love San Fran and San Diego, but my new must see is Monterey as the wildlife in the bay there is astounding. I could have stood forever on the hotel deck watching the sea otters

clam Sat 25-Apr-15 19:48:28

There's a reason so many people have sweatshirts with 'San Francisco' on them! They were all caught short in August, thinking it would be hot.

CrystalCove Wed 13-May-15 21:53:20

I started one of those threads under an old name, we went in September 2013 - a once in a life time holiday..except we are going back this September!

We were lucky as it was glorious when we were in San Francisco, sunny and warm. In the mornings it was really foggy though. I remember we drove from Santa Barbara to LA and stopped at a petrol Station just outside LA - and got a real shock as the heat hit you the minute you stepped out the car.

This time we are starting at Phoenix and visiting the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas before driving to SF and doing the Pacific Coast Highway road trip again, cant wait.

dingit Sun 31-May-15 15:19:30

Just found this thread, what do you people think of Hearst Castle. My two are teens 16 and 14, i fear they may be bored.
We are doing SF, Yosemite, Monterey, Pismo Beach, La And San Diego.

BrilliantlyStupid Tue 02-Jun-15 14:32:56

Have you booked accom yet dingit? I'm planning a similar trip so am very interested!

dingit Tue 02-Jun-15 14:52:30

Yes we have brilliantlystupid, mainly because we are going in peak season with our dc. We are also staying in Yosemite. We still have lots of armchair planning to do!

3nationsfamily Tue 02-Jun-15 22:51:32

My DC are the same age and we are doing a similar trip this summer and they have knocked back Hearst castle in favour of a kayaking trip from Pismo beach www.centralcoastkayaks.com/tours.html

AcrossthePond55 Wed 03-Jun-15 00:15:25

I'm a native Californian and have lived here all my life. What are you interested in? Scenic drives? History? Nature? Cuisine? Sports?

Heels99 Wed 03-Jun-15 00:20:31

Hearst castle is well worth a visit

dingit Wed 03-Jun-15 07:40:45

3nations, my lot will love that.

ragged Wed 03-Jun-15 08:06:46

I went to Hearst castle at about age 15, and I was well impressed. Maybe not if they don't like history or haven't been dragged around looking at pretty furniture & old buildings before. It's far out of the way.

Watch for sea otters in the surf as you're driving there and back!

AmericasTorturedBrow Thu 25-Jun-15 05:33:26

We live in LA and love SF, Big Sur, Monterey, Yosemite&Sequioa, San Diego, Joshua Tree, Big Bear....

SoCal is hot in August, north of San Luis Obispo is not. Yosemite is.

NCIS Thu 25-Jun-15 07:06:41

We're going to San Francisco in October just me and DH. So far we've just booked flights and have got two weeks to fill, want to see Yosemite and Monterey but not sure about anywhere else.
Any tips for hotels in those three places plus must sees gratefully received, it's a trip for our 25th anniversary and my 50th so want to make it special.

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