5 Day Road Trip from San Francisco

Oct 20th, 2008, 09:09 AM
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5 Day Road Trip from San Francisco

"Need 5-day December road trip idea from SF. Is the Grand Canyon insane? Yosemite? We don't own a 4WD. "

One of Fodor's Twitter friends, TravelSavvyMom, recently tweeted this question (see: http://twitter.com/TravelSavvyMom).

Where would you advise her to go?
Katie_H is offline  
Oct 20th, 2008, 09:42 AM
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Yosemite is a much better idea than the Grand Canyon. Although they need to be prepared for snow and ice on the way (take chains just in case).

It takes about two days each way to drive to the Grand Canyon from the Bay Area. Less insane if they fly to Las Vegas or Phoenix, but they asked for a road trip.

mlgb is offline  
Oct 20th, 2008, 10:07 AM
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W/ only 5 days, Yosemite is the only one of the two that makes any sense. Winter time to the south rim of the GC would take two very full days drive. Then 2 full days back to SF.

But if she means THIS December, accommodations in YNP can be a problem. W/ the rock slide, many of the Curry Village cabins are out of commission and Yosemite Lodge and the Ahwahnee are very popular in Dec. They should try to book ASAP - like yesterday.

Otherwise they may need to think about going to some other part of California.
janisj is online now  
Oct 20th, 2008, 01:09 PM
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Thanks mlgb and janisj for your responses.
Katie_H is offline  
Oct 20th, 2008, 02:45 PM
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I've taken fun 5 day road trips from San Francisco, and Yosemite is well combined with visits to Columbia, Angels Camp, Murphy's, Jamestown, and Calaveras Big Trees State Park.

We spent one night at a llama ranch, one night at a cabin in "Fish Camp," one night in a cabin in Yosemite, and one night at an old hotel in Jamestown.

I think it would be fun to add in some wine tasting, music, and exploring caves in this Gold Country area.

Other ideas would be a drive up through Point Reyes and Inverness, then continue through Jenner on to Mendocino, returning through the Anderson Valley and the intriguing Boonville, and back through the Sonoma Wine Country, stopping at Safari West, Healdsburg or Calistoga.

Yet another fun road trip south would take you through Santa Cruz, Monterey, Carmel, into Big Sur, and back through Steinbeck country in Salinas.

It's not too far to go to Hearst Castle, and explore Cambria, as well.
Kailani is offline  
Oct 20th, 2008, 03:10 PM
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I would ordinarily recommend Big Sur but I don't think this is the best year for that, after the fires. Especially if there is any rain forecast.

Going as far as Carmel and Point Lobos is okay, but that's probably more like a regular weekend trip for Bay Area locals.
mlgb is offline  
Oct 24th, 2008, 03:53 PM
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December can be pretty nice. The storms from the Pacific Northwest come through, but they usually are less intense and well spaced out. It gets worse in January and February.
mlgb is offline  
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