15 days in California Itinerary

15 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California trip planner
Make it your trip
1
San Simeon
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Big Sur
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Monterey
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Solvang
— 8 nights

S M T W T F S
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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.
Kick off your visit on the 28th (Wed): contemplate the long history of Hearst Castle, do a tasting at Hearst Ranch Winery, then cruise along Moonstone Beach Dr, and finally kick back and relax at Moonstone Beach. Here are some ideas for day two: look for all kinds of wild species at Piedras Blancas, shop like a local with Friends of the Elephant Seal Visitor Center, then steep yourself in history at Nitt Witt Ridge, and finally trek along Fiscalini Ranch Preserve.

To find maps, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, use the San Simeon day trip app.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from your home destination to San Simeon. Expect a daytime high around 78°F in April, and nighttime lows around 43°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Fri) to allow time to drive to Big Sur.
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Outdoors · Parks · Wildlife · Beaches
Side Trip
Find places to stay Apr 28 — 30:

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.
Start off your visit on the 30th (Fri): kick back and relax at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, admire the sheer force of McWay Falls, 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 next day: take in nature's colorful creations at Hawthorne Gallery, snap pictures at Bixby Bridge, and then enjoy the sea views from Point Sur State Historic Park.

To find ratings, more things to do, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read Big Sur road trip app.

Traveling by car from San Simeon to Big Sur takes 2 hours. While traveling from San Simeon, expect little chillier days and about the same nights in Big Sur, ranging from highs of 64°F to lows of 48°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Sun) so you can drive to Monterey.
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Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Outdoors
Side Trip
Find places to stay Apr 30 — May 2:

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. On the 2nd (Sun), get up close and personal with brilliant marine life at Monterey Bay Aquarium, then admire all the interesting features of 17-Mile Drive, and then appreciate the extensive heritage of Pacific Grove Oceanview Boulevard. On the next day, contemplate the long history of Cannery Row, do a tasting at Dawn's Dream Winery, immerse yourself in nature at Point Lobos, then pause for some serene contemplation at San Carlos Cathedral, and finally admire the masterpieces at Casa Serrano, Historic Adobe.

For where to stay, photos, maps, and more tourist information, read our Monterey attractions planning tool.

Traveling by car from Big Sur to Monterey takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In May in Monterey, expect temperatures between 65°F during the day and 51°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 4th (Tue) so you can go by car to Solvang.
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Parks · Historic Sites · Zoos & Aquariums · Outdoors
Side Trips
Find places to stay May 2 — 4:

Solvang — 8 nights

Solvang is a city in Santa Barbara County, California. Do some cultural sightseeing at 246 Wine & Brew Tours and Old Mission Santa Ines. Change things up with these side-trips from Solvang: Lompoc (Melville Winery, Babcock Winery & Vineyards, &more). The adventure continues: do a tasting at Rusack Vineyards, take in the history at La Purisima Mission State Historic Park, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Bethania Lutheran Church, and examine the collection at Elverhoj Museum of History & Art.

To see reviews, maps, ratings, and tourist information, use the Solvang trip tool.

You can drive from Monterey to Solvang in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or fly; or take a bus. When traveling from Monterey in May, plan for somewhat warmer days in Solvang, with highs around 76°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 48°F.
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Wineries · Parks · Historic Sites · Breweries & Distilleries
Side Trips
Find places to stay May 4 — 12:

California travel guide

4.2
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.
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