12 days in California Itinerary

12 days in California Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California tour itinerary builder

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Route & dates

12 days in California Itinerary

Start: Charlotte
Fly:  6 h 15 min
1
San Diego
— 1 night
Drive:  2 h 15 min
2
Los Angeles
— 3 nights
Fly + Drive:  4 h 15 min
3
Yosemite National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  4 h
4
San Francisco
— 4 nights
Fly:  7 h
End: Charlotte

1
night
San Diego

San Diego ©
Divided into neighborhoods with distinct characters and cultural heritages, San Diego sits just north of the Mexican border and offers visitors a blend of tourist attractions, including a lively nightlife, diverse cuisine, and a thriving musical scene.
Start off your visit on the 20th (Wed): get a taste of the local shopping with Gaslamp Quarter. Here are some ideas for day two: enjoy the sand and surf at La Jolla Cove, view the masterpieces at Spanish Village Art Center, and then see the interesting displays at Maritime Museum of San Diego.

To find traveler tips, photos, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our San Diego tour itinerary planner.

Charlotte to San Diego is an approximately 6.5- hour flight. You can also drive; or take a bus. You'll gain 3 hours traveling from Charlotte to San Diego due to the time zone difference. When traveling from Charlotte in May, plan for a bit cooler days in San Diego, with highs around 71°F, while nights are about the same with lows around 61°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Thu) early enough to drive to Los Angeles.

Things to do in San Diego

Beaches Parks Outdoors
Find places to stay May 20 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
La Jolla Cove ©
La Jolla Cove
Maritime Museum of San Diego ©
Maritime Museum of San Diego
Gaslamp Quarter ©
Gaslamp Quarter

3
nights
Los Angeles

Los Angeles ©
Surrounded by mountain ranges, forests, valleys, beaches, and deserts, the metropolitan area of Los Angeles is home to over 17 million people.
Attractions like Disneyland Park and Griffith Observatory make great kid-friendly stops. Museum-lovers will appreciate The Getty Center and Petersen Automotive Museum. Next up on the itinerary: tour the pleasant surroundings at Venice Beach and Boardwalk, look for gifts at Amoeba Music, get a taste of the local shopping with The Grove, and explore the world behind art at Diorama-museum of Bhagavad-gita.

To find ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and other tourist information, you can read our Los Angeles online vacation planner.

Drive from San Diego to Los Angeles in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or fly. In May, plan for daily highs up to 75°F, and evening lows to 59°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Yosemite National Park.

Things to do in Los Angeles

Theme Parks Museums Beaches

Side Trips

Disneyland Park, Santa Monica State Beach
Find places to stay May 21 — 24:
Highlights from your plan
Disneyland Park ©
Disneyland Park
The Getty Center ©
The Getty Center
Griffith Observatory ©
Griffith Observatory

3
nights
Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park ©
Massive granite mountains, towering waterfalls, groves of Giant Sequoia trees, and wilderness as far as the eye can see distinguish the landscape of Yosemite National Park.
Museum-lovers will appreciate Ansel Adams Gallery and Yosemite Museum Gallery. Escape the urban bustle at Glacier Point and Cathedral Beach Picnic Area. And it doesn't end there: identify plant and animal life at North Dome, explore the striking landscape at Lembert Dome, don't miss a visit to Olmsted Point, and trek along Panorama Trail.

For where to stay, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, use the Yosemite National Park day trip tool.

Do a combination of flight and car from Los Angeles to Yosemite National Park in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of flight and bus. When traveling from Los Angeles in May, plan for slightly colder days and colder nights in Yosemite National Park: temperatures range from 65°F by day to 34°F at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 27th (Wed) early enough to go by car to San Francisco.

Things to do in Yosemite National Park

Parks Trails Outdoors
Find places to stay May 24 — 27:
Highlights from your plan
Glacier Point ©
Glacier Point
Panorama Trail ©
Panorama Trail
North Dome ©
North Dome

4
nights
San Francisco

San Francisco ©
San Francisco is a top holiday destination featuring scenic beauty and great ethnic and cultural diversity.
Kids will enjoy Exploratorium and Cable Car Museum. Shop till you drop at Ferry Building Marketplace and Union Square. And it doesn't end there: don't miss a visit to Golden Gate Bridge, hunt for treasures at Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, see the interesting displays at de Young Museum, and contemplate the long history of City Lights Booksellers.

For ratings, photos, maps, and tourist information, use the San Francisco journey planning app.

You can drive from Yosemite National Park to San Francisco in 4 hours. Other options are to do a combination of car and flight; or do a combination of bus and flight. Traveling from Yosemite National Park in May, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be a bit warmer in San Francisco, with lows of 53°F. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 31st (Sun) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in San Francisco

Shopping Historic Sites Museums
Find places to stay May 27 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Golden Gate Bridge ©
Golden Gate Bridge
Alcatraz Island ©
Alcatraz Island
Exploratorium ©
Exploratorium

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