7 days to see it all!!!

Old Jun 29th, 2005, 05:52 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 5
7 days to see it all!!!

Hi there can someone give me some good ideas??
I'm planning a vacation in August to California. The plan is arrive in San Diego, spend one night and next day
drive down to Laguna Beach, stay there 3 days and then drive up to Monterey next morning. I have a hotel booked in Monterey for 3 nights, but I also want to drive up to San Francisco, which I was told is approximately a 2hr drive! So.....do you think I can squeeze all that in 7 days and then drive back to San Diego??? Crazy??? HELP!!!
ecamp is offline  
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 07:57 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 965
While I haven't been to Southern Cal, I do think you are planning too much. Honestly I would either concentrate on Northern Cal or Southern Cal and in one week no you wouldn't see it all. You could spend a week in San Francisco and not see it all. We stayed in San Fran for 2 nights, Sonoma 2 nights and the Monterey area for 2 nights. To really see some of these areas, I would maybe do San Fran for 3-4 nights and drive to Monterey for 3 nights or vice versa. If you fly into San Fran or Oakland do not rent a car until you leave. It is expensive to park there and it is a hassle. San Francisco is a wonderful city to walk in.The drive from Monterey to San Fran is easily 2 hours probably 2.5. I think driving up Hwy. 1 on the coast took less time than Hwy. 101 through San Jose. The amount of time will depend on the time of day you are traveling through. I think the San Fran-Monterey combo is wonderful. Others can probably advise more on San Diego.
ilovetulips is offline  
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 08:11 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,379
Absolutely impossible. You're also giving San Diego short shrift-- it's a great town with a lot to see. Splitting your time between SD and Laguna is fine, and you can base day trips up to LA from there as well as excursions to other nearby areas of Orange County (and, if you want to see how we do untouristy working-class towns, you can visit my hometown of Long Beach).

Or, spend all the time up north. Your call. Either way, you'll quickly fill a week. And, I dare say, you'll immediately start planning a return trip.
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 08:18 AM
  #4  
MaureenB
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Are you already locked into flying in and out of San Diego? I think that's what kills the idea of reasonably driving north, because you have to return to San Diego.

If you can leave from S.F., that's different. Then I'd suggest you spend the time you've allotted to see San Diego, then just one or two nights max. at Laguna Beach, one or two at Monterey max., the rest of the time in San Francisco. There is so much to see on the coast as you drive up, it would be nice to allow the time to see Santa Barbara, Big Sur and Carmel, etc.
 
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 12:21 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,873
So where is the time for SF and the drive back south to SD???

You say 7 days but you have already set aside 1 day/night for SD, 3 days in Laguna, and 3 in Monterey. That already totals 7 days w/o the FULL day's drive from Monterey back to San Diego.

Your plan is impossible.

Have you already booked your flights in/out of SD? Then I'd just concentrate on San Diego and Laguna.

If you can get open jaw into SD and out of SF - you could just BARELY do it: 2 days in SD, 2 in Laguna Beach, 2 in Monterey and 1 in SF. But the drive from Laguna to Monterey will be a killer . . . . .
janis is offline  
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 01:02 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,324
Agreeing with others, the plan is impossible. California is a BIG state. And you've already committed your first 6 days...

If I understand your question correctly, that leaves exactly 1 day to drive from Monterey up to San Francisco, see the city, then drive all the way back to San Diego!?!?
suze is offline  
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 01:04 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,324
A more logical plan would be to fly into San Diego and out of San Francisco or the other way around, driving in between. That is a stretch for a one week visit but do-able.
suze is offline  
Old Jun 29th, 2005, 01:12 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,120
You'll be driving in your car for 4 of the 7 days (and nights, driving). Can you split up your visit and plan a subsequent trips to see further portions of CA?
TripleSecDelay is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 05:17 AM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 5
Hey thanks for everyone's input on my
"crazy" 7 day trip, I know it's too much,but I guess I was wishful thinking.LOL...
I think it's best to take all of your advice and just concentrate on S.Ca, and probably plan a trip next year for N.Ca.So can I pick your brains some more then, on what other suggestions you may have as far as great places I should visit in S.CA??
ecamp is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 07:25 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 179
we're doing a similar trip... flying into LAX, staying at Newport Beach with a friend for a couple days, then driving to stay in Monterey, then 4 nights in SF. gonna try to see wine country and sanfran in 3 days. it will be tight, but we do get to fly out of sanfran.
sorry i cant offer you much help, other than giving an example of one way to TRY to see most of it.
tlf18 is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 07:45 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,379
What to see?! Well, you can start here:

San Diego: http://www.fodors.com/miniguides/[email protected]

Orange County: http://www.fodors.com/miniguides/[email protected]

Los Angeles County: http://www.fodors.com/miniguides/[email protected]

Palm Springs: http://www.fodors.com/miniguides/[email protected]

All within 3 hours of each other. There are thousands of things to do. What are your interests? How much do you want to spend on lodging? You know-- typical questions. Take a look through the sections here on Fodor's and come back with questions on the things that really catch your eye.
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 08:02 AM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 5
Thanks tlf18 for the advice, at least I'm not feeling too crazy about doing CA in 7 days! lol...I guess my only other option is to fly out of SF, and maybe then that will make a little easier. We are currently flying of San Diego, because that was the most the cheaper way to go, since I'm traveling with my mom, dad and boyfriend.We are also spending a day in Laguna Beach with a family member and then moving along to Monterey and hopefully to SF. When are you flying out July or August? Good luck on your trip also and enjoy!
ecamp is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 08:15 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,379
No, I'm going to call both plans crazy. You want to "see it all". You won't see hardly anything anywhere, other than the inside of your rental. The scenic drive between the LA area and the Bay Area is at least an eight-hour drive (with slow portions). You can do a "fast" version through the Central Valley, but it's relatively ugly and prone to severe traffic snarlups. You can indeed spend a week in each place you want to visit and not see everything. I strongly recommend planning to concentrate on ONE part of the state-- north or south-- and having a more relaxed time.
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 08:18 AM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 5
Thanks rjw_lgb_ca for the great advice on the website for SD and surrounding areas that will help out alot!
Our plans (I'm flying with mom, dad and boyfriend) are as follows so far, flying into SD staying that nite in the hotel near airport and early next morning
driving to Laguna Beach for 3 days, then driving up to Monterey for 3 days and, hopefully explore Monterey and Carmel area and like I said before
trying to do SF in a day, but probably won't work out, unless I try and fly out of SF instead, I'll have look into that. Anyways, we are trying to travel on
a budget and split costs, and still try and see a little bit of everything if we can! Any suggestions you may have are more than welcome! Thanks!
ecamp is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 08:55 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,490
I'm a native Californian who has lived up and down the state, in the middle, and now on the central coast.

I would give a lot of credence to these other posters. I STILL get amazed at just how long a state California is.

Most of southern CA is one large metropolis with a freeway system that is very sensitive to the time of the day and season. The SF Bay area is much the same.

I am guessing you are looking at a map of I-5 from SF to SD for your return. Please note the following:

1. Most I-5 travelers are making the same mad rush between northern and southern CA or vice-versa (something the CHP is well aware of).

2. In Aug, you can expect temps above 100 degrees along this route through the long San Joauquin valley.

3. I was born and raised in the SJV, know it well, appreciate its resources, but try my best to not have to drive I-5 or hiway 99.

4. The alternative? Hiway 101 which mixed with hiway 1 can be scenic but has long been lamented as being vastly under-developed for its current traffic demand.

5. Even most Californians are acutely aware that there is a "northern" California AND a "southern" California. Even "central" California is vastly different when comparing the SJV to the central coast.

You can see and do a lot in 7 days here, and will have an experience of a life-time if planned well. That is our hope. Wishing you success!


bear900 is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 09:18 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,379
WaitwaitwaitwaitwaitaMINUTE here.

You want to schlepp SD to Monterey over six days and then zoom back to San Diego in ONE day to catch the return flight?

This is madness. Monterey is this side of San Francisco. SAN is the southernmost airport in the state. We're talking some 470 MILES. Eight hours in a car, without any stops and without factoring in traffic around Los Angeles and around San Diego, returning the rental, TSA lines, etc.

Can't be done. Either open-jaw the trip or abandon the schlepp up to Monterey.
rjw_lgb_ca is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 09:54 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,324
I said it earlier & I'll say it again ;-) I don't know what your home state is... but California is BIG!

Laguna Beach is UP not DOWN from San Diego BTW. San Diego round-trip Monterey is a good stretch of driving on a 7 day trip. I absolutely would not try to add San Francisco.

If you have already purchased low-cost plane tickets in/out of San Diego changing departure airport now will cost more, I'm pretty sure.

For interesting things to see, I love all the old historic catholic missions. Read up a little on the history of the state, and you'll appreciate what a unique place it is.
suze is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 09:54 AM
  #18  
MaureenB
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
No wonder California has over-crowded freeways and pollution! It's a big state, yet people persist in underestimating drive-times from place to place. You can't and shouldn't try to cover the entire coast in one week. Please heed the advice of California locals on this thread. Limit yourselves to either northern or southern CA.
 
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 12:09 PM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 5
Thank you all so much for all the great advice and for helping out this venture of mine!
Points taken and very much appreciated! Next time I need travel advice I know where to
look! Thanks again!!!
ecamp is offline  
Old Jul 1st, 2005, 12:15 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 25
I live in north LA county, and it can take 5-6 hours to get down San Diego in bad traffic........
I would reccomend you do N California, in my opinion there are more things to see and do...... but maybe thats just becuase I am so used to everything around here, I am jaded and bored with SO Cal.
What are you interested in doing???
Beena77 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO