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Classic California

Visit San Francisco, Napa Valley, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite, Monterey Bay, Big Sur, Santa Barbara & LA

Got two weeks to see the very best of California? Then take our Classic California road trip from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

Along the road trip, you’ll drive through California’s best National Park, along California’s best road and into the States two most iconic cites. This California road trip thrills all that take it, due to its world-class destinations, superb scenic drives and the perfect California climate.


Classic California 14 nights

All our road trips can be tailored to meet your specific requirements. Do you have more or less than 14 days for your road trip? No problem, we can bolt on extra nights to allow more time to explore or shorten the number of destinations as required. Just let us know when requesting your quote.

I simply can't wait to road trip in California again...


San Fran Skyline

Day 1

America's favourite city - San Francisco

Arrive in California for the beginning of your road trip adventure. After taking a convenient cab from the airport to find your hotel in San Francisco, why not enjoy an evening meal in one of the city's excellent restaurants before settling in for the night, so you are ready and refreshed for two full days exploring this wonderful city by the Bay.

  • Key location: San Francisco, CA
  • San Francisco, CA

The Painted Ladies

Day 2

So much to see and do in San Fran

Once the morning fog lifts, one of America’s favourite cities will be revealed. Ride a cable car, climb the steep streets and get into the vibe that only this city can offer. Packed with Victorian charm, remarkable restaurants, spectacular shopping and famous movie locations, this iconic city really has it all.

  • Key location: San Francisco, CA
  • San Francisco, CA

Alcatraz Island

Day 3

Another day in The Golden Gate City

Alcatraz Island is often near the top of people's to-do lists when visiting the west coast of America. Not only will you enjoy the unique experience of Alcatraz, but you'll also take in spectacular views of San Francisco, Angel Island and the Golden Gate Bridge as you ferry across the Bay to this iconic tourist destination. Once you're back on the mainland, you should grab a meal in Fisherman's Wharf before riding a cable car back to your hotel.

  • Key location: San Francisco, CA
  • San Francisco, CA

Golden Gate Bridge

Day 4

Cross the Golden Gate Bridge to find the area’s wine region

Spanning the headlands of San Francisco and Marin County, one of the world’s most beautiful bridges is a delightful experience whether you walk, bike or drive across. You can see stunning views by driving up Conzelman Road on the north side of the Golden Gate Bridge. After crossing the bridge you'll be driving through the rolling landscape that is Marin County. Here you'll find treasures including Tiburon, Sausalito and Muir Woods National Monument. You’ll then continue on until you reach Sonoma Valley and neighbouring Napa Valley.

  • Key location: Napa Valley, CA
  • Napa Valley, CA
  • 55 Miles

Napa Valley Wineries

Day 5

Explore California's premier Wine Country

You don't have to like wine to enjoy this area. These two neighbouring valleys offer stunning scenery made up of perfectly manicured vineyards stretching across rolling hills that can be enjoyed by car, train or even by an early morning hot air balloon ride. This is food heaven too, with places like Thomas Keller’s French Laundry and the rather more affordable Gott’s Roadside burger joint. Additionally, you can take a drive along one of our favourite roads in California, The Silverado Trail parallels the St. Helena Highway passing through scenic wine country.

  • Key location: Napa Valley, CA
  • Napa Valley, CA

Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe

Day 6

Onto beautiful Lake Tahoe

Follow I-80 and iconic Lincoln Highway to find the beautiful blue waters of Lake Tahoe and the epic mountains that surround it. Spend the afternoon kayaking on the lake, skiing in the mountains or simply relax on one of the lake's lovely beaches. If you fancy a drive, then you can circle Lake Tahoe along scenic highways in around 2 hours.

  • Key location: Lake Tahoe, CA
  • Lake Tahoe, CA
  • 160 Miles

Yosemite's Half Dome

Day 7

Majestic Yosemite National Park awaits

The second drive of this California road trip will have you cruising through the rolling hills of the old Gold Country. Next, you climb up the curvy roads to Yosemite National Park. Once in Yosemite, you’ll have 2 days to experience nature at its most breathtaking.

  • Key location: Yosemite NP
  • Yosemite NP
  • 175 Miles

Yosemite Valley

Day 8

Enjoy a full day in glorious Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park is over 1180 square miles of nature at its very best. The most visited area of the park is Yosemite Valley, vast rock faces, crystal clear waters, staggering views and stunning waterfalls combine to make Yosemite Valley a real national treasure. Leave enough time to visit Glacier Point, which is best viewed during sunset and offers the best views in all of Yosemite.

  • Key location: Yosemite NP
  • Yosemite NP

Monterey Bay

Day 9

Drive over to Monterey Bay

Monterey was once California’s capital, however, today its best known for the world-class Monterey Bay Aquarium that resides on Cannery Row. This town was also famous for its whaling and sardine industry, it now focuses on marine education and preservation through the world-class Monterey Bay Aquarium. In the early evening, cruise along the famous “17-Mile Drive” on your way to Carmel-by-the-Sea. You’ll pass millionaire mansions, Pebble Beach Golf Club and a beautiful rugged coastline along the way.

  • Key location: Monterey, CA
  • Carmel, CA
  • 195 Miles

Carmel Beach

Day 10

A full day enjoying California’s prettiest small town

If it’s good enough for Clint Eastwood then It’s good enough for us. Carmel offers two world class beaches backed by a small town made up of beautiful homes, quaint streets and fabulous restaurants. The wild and wonderful Point Lobos is just a couple of miles south of Carmel. Here you can see Seal Lions give birth to pups on beautiful beaches, sea otters frolicking in the ocean and whales slowly migrating through the 750 acre under water State Natural Reserve. Point Lobos offers pure beauty that can be enjoyed through the many short hikes, a wonderful afternoon indeed.

  • Key location: Carmel, CA
  • Carmel, CA

Bixby Bridge, Big Sur

Day 11

Big Sur - The drive of your life

Arguably, the most scenic 100 miles of this California road trip are on Highway 1 through what is known as Big Sur. Twisting roads curve around steep cliff faces, and pass by beautiful State Parks and spectacular vista points that look out over the vast Pacific Ocean. Further down the coast, you can visit Hearst Castle which perches on “The Enchanted Hill”. If you wish to visit Hearst Castle, then please request an extra overnight stop in Cambria when you build your road trip. Next is Santa Barbara further down the coast, built in a charming Mediterranean style, this upmarket town is one of the trip's highlights.

  • Key location: Big Sur, CA
  • Santa Barbara, CA
  • 235 Miles

Santa Monica Pier

Day 12

Continue along Highway 1 to Los Angeles

Spend the morning in sunny Santa Barbara. After lunch you’ll continue driving south along the Pacific Coast Highway passing Malibu’s beaches and coastal homes until you reach Santa Monica in Los Angeles. Santa Monica with its “Baywatch” beaches and old-fashioned Pier is a worthy finish to the day. Hire a bike and cruise the boardwalk down to Venice Beach or shop your heart out on 3rd Street Promenade.

  • Key location: LA's Beach Cities, CA
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • 95 Miles

Griffith Observatory

Day 13

Spend the day enjoying Hollywood

Tinseltown is synonymous with glitz and glamour, and although many of the studios have now moved on to other parts of the city, it's still fun to visit the home of the Oscars and walk Hollywood Boulevard looking for the handprints of your favourite movie stars. Just a short drive northeast of here lies the Griffith Observatory, perched high on a hill overlooking the city. The landmark is well worth a visit and is great for views of the legendary Hollywood sign.

  • Key location: Hollywood, CA
  • Los Angeles, CA

Rodeo Dr - Beverly Hills

Day 14

A third day in LA LA Land

Beverly Hills offers the chance to see movie star homes on palm tree-lined streets and Rodeo Drive, where you can shop with the rich and famous. The next day you’ll complete your California road trip experience by spending the morning by the pool or finishing off any remaining sightseeing, before flying home to the UK from LAX.

  • Key location: Beverly Hills, CA
  • Los Angeles, CA

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