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Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Dublin, Ireland
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Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

We are a couple (early 50's) travelling from Ireland in Oct 14. We like sightseeing, easy hiking and good food. Hotel budget is 200 - 220 usd approx per night.

We have flights booked and arrive LAX Oct 9th -18.30. fly home from Las Vegas on Oct 23rd.

Our Itinerary at the moment is:

9th Oct -Collect car and stay in Santa Monica

10th Oct Santa Barbara

11th Oct Cambria

12th Oct Monterey

13th 14th 15th San Fran - Hotel booked- Drop off car on arrival and collect car on 15th a.m.

16th 17th Yosemite N P - hotel booked

18th Lone Pine

19th Death Valley

20th 21st 22nd Las Vegas (Day trip to Grand Canyon on 21st)

23rd Fly home

Does this seem reasonable?

Santa Fe, New Mexico
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1. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Modify the Las Vegas-Grand Canyon to a least two days ... Use the car to drive to the South Rim GCNP ... and spend the night ! Most any "tour' based from Vegas and returning the same day will be poor value for money AND will probably viisit a section of River canyon of lesser quality outside the Park ... Should the "tour' include "skywalk" Or Grand Canyon, West" flee !!! carracar

Washington State
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for Yosemite National Park
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2. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

I think the itinerary looks okay. I might move the Lone Pine night to someplace further north as your next night is so close (Death Valley.) How about June Lake?

There is a fixed wing flight to the South Rim from Las Vegas that seems okay. I'd prefer an overnight, but it's your trip. The Top Questions on the Las Vegas forum has info about visiting GCNP from LV. But this is different than one of your original plans that included an overnight at the South Rim.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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3. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Looks & sounds like a great trip. The above advise is also very, very good! Enjoy your trip/drive and have fun!

Lewes, United...
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4. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Hi

Overall, it's not a bad plan, and certain can work. Based on what I know, I'd agree that you should move the Lone Pine night to somewhere further north on the 395 like Bishop or June Lakes, if you want time to visit locations such as Bodie ghost town and Mono Lake. That said, we stopped in Lone Pine last time we drove from Yosemite towards Vegas as we'd done the atractions I mentioned and wanted time to check out the Alabama Hills and Witney Portal area before heading into Death Valley.

Also, is your trip to Grand Canyon a tour or self drive? As said, avoid the land or heli tours to the rip off tourist trap that is GC West for all sorts of good reasons. As a self drive one day trip it's too far to allow much time at South Rim, enjoying the views, etc. However, if you stop in DVNP at the most easterly stop, Furnace Creek Ranch, having done most of the touring the day before, you could drive straight to LV direction via Pahrump with just a stop at Zabriskie Point or Dante's View, and stay not on the Strip but Henderson area, so the next morning, with an early start you can drive yourselves to GC South Rim via the Hoover Dam, back late and drop the car (if you don't plan to keep in for Vegas) and then have a few carless days to enjoy the Vegas attractions. Or, if you're prepared to forfeit a night in Vegas for a night at South Rim, even better. Less of a rush on that drive and you'd get the best times at the rim, sunset and sunrise.

Just a different option!

SWT

Uden, The...
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5. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Arriving 6.30 pm on a direct flight to LA you'll have to go through immigration and pick up the car. You won't be at your SM hotel before 9pm driving in the dark. Arriving that late we find it much easier to take the free shuttle from Lax to a Lax hotel and pick up the car next morning but it's your trip of course.

Tioga pass can be temporarily closed in october due to snow. In that case you'll best take the route south of the Sierra via Bakersfield and stay Ridgecrest ut that route is far less scenic than the drive via 395.

With a daytrip from LV to GC and back you'll be on the road for 10 hours and will miss sunset, sunrise and stargazing at the rim.

Tet

Dublin, Ireland
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6. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Thanks everyone for your comments,

We originally planned for an overnight at GC south rim but got daunted by the driving times! This is the section of current plan I am least happy with , From all my reading we will avoid west rim/skywalk so was considering bus trip or flight to south rim as an option,

We are flying home from Vegas early on 23rd Oct so the only night we need to stay in Vegas is the 22nd.

Any ideas on route to include overnight at south rim (we leave Yosemite on the 18th?

Thanks

Mod

Lewes, United...
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7. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Well, it's up to you, but if you plan still stand as per the OP, then you could spend the night of 21st at South Rim. assuming you are keeping the car until the end of the trip.

However, you need to contact the lodging concessionaire directly to see what availability is like. You may find availability determines whether you can spend the night there or not.

SWT

London, United...
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8. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Mod, I have a contrary opinion of Grand Canyon West that I would be happy to share if you think you'd still benefit from hearing it. But only if you haven't already made up your mind. Firstly, I don't want to waste my time writing it or your time reading it and, secondly, and most importantly, I don't want to start a ruckus with the gang here who don't hate me.

Rest of the itinerary looks pretty good to me. Apart from perhaps not spending enough time in the Los Angeles area.

Lewes, United...
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9. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

I wasn't aware that any of us hate you, LDN? :-) As to GCWest, that's a different matter!

SWT

London, United...
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10. Re: Itinerary LA to San Fran to Vegas

Exactly. You don't. But there are a few in the California rooms who've started with some really vile behaviour towards me. It's water off a duck's back from them. It would rather upset me from you kind lot. So I shan't share my minority views (among TripAdvisor members and not, it has to be said, visitors voting with their feet) about Grand Canyon West unless the OP really wants me to...