13 days in California Itinerary

13 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California route planner
Make it your trip
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Big Sur
— 2 nights
— 2 nights
— 6 nights


San Simeon — 2 nights

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.
Start off your visit on the 24th (Wed): enjoy the sand and surf at William Randolph Hearst Memorial Beach, explore the historical opulence of Hearst Castle, then learn about winemaking at Hearst Ranch Winery, and finally look for gifts at Sebastian General Store. Here are some ideas for day two: visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station, get answers to all your questions at Friends of the Elephant Seal Visitor Center, enjoy the sand and surf at Piedras Blancas, then make a trip to Ragged Point Overlook, and finally take a leisurely stroll along San Simeon Pier.

To find other places to visit, photos, ratings, and tourist information, use the San Simeon online holiday planner.

Use the Route module to find travel options from your starting location to San Simeon. In March in San Simeon, expect temperatures between 72°F during the day and 41°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 26th (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Big Sur.
Parks · Outdoors · Shopping · Beaches
Find places to stay Mar 24 — 26:

Big Sur — 2 nights

Big Country of the South

A sparsely populated area with stunning views, Big Sur attracts artists and tourists traveling California’s scenic Highway 1.
On the 26th (Fri), admire the sheer force of McWay Falls, then kick back and relax at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, then do a tasting at Joullian Vineyards & Winery, and finally kick back and relax at Pfeiffer State Beach. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 27th (Sat): take in nature's colorful creations at Hawthorne Gallery, then take in the views from Bixby Bridge, and then enjoy the sea views from Point Sur State Historic Park.

To see maps, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Big Sur road trip planning site.

You can drive from San Simeon to Big Sur in 2 hours. Expect a bit cooler weather when traveling from San Simeon in March: highs in Big Sur hover around 64°F, while lows dip to 47°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Monterey.
Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Outdoors
Side Trip
Find places to stay Mar 26 — 28:

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 28th (Sun): observe the fascinating underwater world at Monterey Bay Aquarium, get to know the fascinating history of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard, and then kick back and relax at Asilomar State Beach. On the 29th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: kick back and relax at Carmel River State Beach, immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos, then take a memorable drive along 17-Mile Drive, and finally explore the world behind art at Casa Serrano, Historic Adobe.

For traveler tips, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, you can read our Monterey online trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Big Sur to Monterey by car takes about an hour. Other options: take a bus. In March, daily temperatures in Monterey can reach 64°F, while at night they dip to 47°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Tue) so you can drive to Solvang.
Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature
Side Trips
Find places to stay Mar 28 — 30:

Solvang — 6 nights

Solvang is a city in Santa Barbara County, California. Get a sense of the local culture at Sanford Winery & Vineyards and Elverhoj Museum of History & Art. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Solvang: Sevtap Winery Tasting Room (in Santa Barbara) and Zaca Mesa Winery (in Los Olivos). There's much more to do: learn about winemaking at Rusack Vineyards, pause for some serene contemplation at Bethania Lutheran Church, take in the history at La Purisima Mission State Historic Park, and indulge your senses at some of the top wineries in the area.

For maps, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the Solvang tour itinerary planner.

Getting from Monterey to Solvang by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: drive; or fly; or take a bus. When traveling from Monterey in March, plan for a bit warmer days in Solvang, with highs around 71°F, while nights are little chillier with lows around 42°F.
Wineries · Parks · Historic Sites · Museums
Side Trips
Find places to stay Mar 30 — Apr 5:

California travel guide

Specialty Museums · Wineries & Vineyards · Beaches
The Golden State
The country's most populous state, California includes landscapes that range from the forested northern coast to harsh southern deserts. Sandwiched right in the middle of the state is a fertile valley, home to farms, vineyards, and orchards. California's cities offer diverse attractions, from amusement parks and upscale shops to award-winning restaurants and innovative art galleries. Outside the state's big urban centers, places to visit include some of the nation's most rugged national parks, ancient forests, towering mountain peaks, and ski resorts. More than just a surfing destination famous for its beaches and winding coastal roads, California also boasts one of the world's largest economies, bolstered by the booming tech industries.