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Planning west coast trip

Sydney
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Planning west coast trip

Just starting to plan a trip to the west coast for approx 4 weeks starting mid April, 2013. A couple of initial questions. Any suggestions for airlines flying from Sydney to LA that have the most spacious seats (thinking mainly leg room) and what should we expect regarding the weather? We are planning to drive LA to Seattle and my husband is concerned that as it will be early spring, we will not see too much colorful scenery with regard to the trees etc? This may seem a strange question, but my husband is an avid gardener and thought perhaps we should delay our trip until the autumn - me, personally, I don't think I can wait that long! I just want to go as soon as possible. Thanks in anticipation of any tips.

San Francisco...
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1. Re: Planning west coast trip

There's lots of scenery but you will not get fall colors in April. However, most people who drive from LA to Seattle don't do it for the fall colors. In other words, the Redwoods and Giant Sequoias that are a California specialty don't change colors at all. There's nice color change in the mountains in the fall so if you do want some color, I would say come in the autumn. But the downside is that the waterfalls in California will be mostly just a trickle and some will be just dry.

Edited: 25 August 2012, 22:49
Pasadena, California
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2. Re: Planning west coast trip

Color regarding trees? Most west coast trees are evergreen--- Oaks in the south, pines and firs in Northern Cal/Oregon/Washington. Few are flowering trees.

April is more likely to be rainy than Sept.-October, esp. farther north on your drive. The spring is an ideal time for flowers, both wild and cultivated, in California. Not sure how soon things bloom in Oregon-Washington; later than Southern California, certainly. And California hillsides will (hopefully) be lush and green in April, while dry and golden in the fall.

Pasadena, California
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3. Re: Planning west coast trip

Some gardens for your husband:

Huntington Gardens in San Marino (LA suburb)--1/2 day, huge, with galleries too. Many themed gardens.

Lotusland, Santa Barbara, CA (unique private garden, reservations required) The vision of an unusual personality--amazing use of cactus and other succulents, and other neat things too.

Rose Garden, Chinese Garden, Japanese Garden (Portland Oregon)

For a gardener, I think it is worthwhile to continue north @ 3 hours to British Columbia, go to Victoria and see the Butchart Gardens. Completely amazing.

Edited: 25 August 2012, 23:00
Sydney
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4. Re: Planning west coast trip

Thanks for the swift replies. I hadn't thought about the waterfalls so that is a great tip, ALTippet. Thanks, pasca for advise re the rain and all the ideas about the gardens. My husband will love them. You have given me a lot more to think about. Thanks again, I really appreciate it.

Pasadena, California
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5. Re: Planning west coast trip

Vancouver and Victoria are nice for a visit, just north of the US border. Victoria requires a ferry ride from VAncouver area-- scenic, fun. Butchart Gardens are a bit of a drive out of Victoria, not right in town. A real destination garden, really the biggest draw in Victoria area. Possibly closer to the ferry landing than to the city of Victoria. Victoria is lovely for a day's visit--very quaint, British, surrounding a harbor.

Santa Monica, CA
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6. Re: Planning west coast trip

Springtime in Southern California will be excellent. Both wildflowers and cultivated flowers, like roses, will be full of bloom. The desert is also a great place to explore in April for cactus flowers and desert wildflowers, too.

I suggest you post your question on your northernmost destinations, like Oregon and Washington on their TA forums for better answers regarding their climate and what will be in bloom. I think May might be better to view gardens and trees all along the coast, but the experts there will be able to advise you.

Washington State
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7. Re: Planning west coast trip

Hi springcherry ~ The redbud trees might be in bloom along the Merced River as you drive from Mariposa to Yosemite Valley on Hwy 140.

Brisbane, Australia
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8. Re: Planning west coast trip

My family and I have just returned from LA after a 5 week road trip tot he USA. We flew Virgin Australia out of Sydney before a direct flight home to Brisbane. Legroom was excellent on the way home, on the way over it seemed a bit cramped - go figure. Couldn't really fault Virgin - they have great seat-back in flight entertainment and the food was very good. Its a loooonng flight.

Don't know about the gardening much but if you are heading north from LA the coast road is a must. I don't know if you have driven the Great Ocean Rd in Victoria, but Big Sur on the California coast makes it look ordinary.

Melbourne, Australia
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9. Re: Planning west coast trip

Delta airlines weren't too bad from Sydney!

I was on the west coast in late Oct/ Nov and it was beautiful weather!!!

I booked my holiday in feb 12 last year and went October and now it seems like a lifetime ago!! Enjoy counting down cause before you know it it'll be just days away!

Sydney, Australia
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10. Re: Planning west coast trip

We are planning a trip to the west coast. Could you tell us which v

Cities to visit. We wil be there for four weeks