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8 or 9 day California coast driving trip - suggestions?

Toronto, Canada
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8 or 9 day California coast driving trip - suggestions?


I'm planning an 8 or 9 day driving trip for my family of four (two tweens and two adults).

We're planning to start in San Francisco and end in Los Angeles. The itinerary so far is:

3 days in San Francisco (visit Alcatraz, electric bike across Golden Gate Bridge, tour neighborhoods, etc.)

2 days in Monterey (visit the Aquarium, sea kayak, hike, 17-mile highway drive)

1 day - visit Hearst Castle

2 days - Alisal Guest Ranch north of Santa Barbara

I would appreciate any suggestions on this itinerary -- is it too busy, or will this all fit in, and are there other locations/attractions we should see.

Many thanks for your input!

Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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1. Re: 8 or 9 day California coast driving trip - suggestions?

Hi Judy

Looks like a nice plan. Are you planning on spending a night near Hearst Castle? Your post doesn't say. It would be wise to do so, since the drive between Carmel and Hearst Castle is slow and winding and not meant to be rushed.

While staying at the Alisal Guest Ranch, be sure to visit Nojoqui Park a bit down from the ranch and hike up to Nojoqui Falls. You didn't mention when you're coming, so there may or may not be water flowing depending on the timing of your visit. It's still a nice hike, even if the falls have run dry, though.

San Francisco...
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2. Re: 8 or 9 day California coast driving trip - suggestions?

Electric bikes on the GG Bridge ? humm well you will have to pedal over the bridge but there is a lot of info on www.goldengate.org

Each forum has top questions on what to do and see.

Manhattan Beach...
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3. Re: 8 or 9 day California coast driving trip - suggestions?

Two state parks that I like to briefly stop at between Monterey & San Simeon are Piedras Blancas State Beach and Point Lobos. Both have wild life. Piedras Blancas is in San Simeon and I like it because huge elephant seals have taken over the park, including some of the parking lots.

If you are lucky and are near San Luis Obispo on a Thursday night you need to spend the night there and go to their farmers market. It is really a huge weekly street fair.

4. Re: 8 or 9 day California coast driving trip - suggestions?

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