A family-friendly West Coast America holiday revealing the very best of California. Begin in San Francisco before exploring Yosemite National Park, relaxing by the beach in Carmel, and finishing in LA. En route there will be time to visit Gold Rush Towns and bohemian seaside communities, juxtaposed by California's two very different major cities.


  • Explore Yosemite on foot, on horseback, or on a climb
  • Relax by the beach in pretty, bohemian Carmel-by-the-Sea
  • Spot seals and whales in Monterey Bay
  • See LA's sights - including Universal Studios and the Walk of Fame
per person

Price from

Destination Expert Mel Matthews


North America Specialist


  1. Arrive
  2. Day 1 Arrive in San Francisco

    You will be met on arrival and driven to your hotel in the historic Fort Baker district on the picturesque Martin Headlands, with views overlooking the bay. Spend the rest of the day relaxing after your journey or exploring at your own pace.

    Overnight: Cavallo Point Lodge

  3. Day 2 Explore San Francisco

    Your guide will meet you at your hotel after breakfast for an introduction to some of the city's highlights, including eclectic neighbourhoods, Chinatown and Fisherman's Wharf. There will be plenty of time to stop at a local deli or café for lunch along the way.

    Overnight: Cavallo Point Lodge

  4. Day 3 At Leisure in San Francisco

    Following your tour yesterday, you might want to head back to places of interest or visit some of the sites you didn't visit, which include innumerable excellent museums, Golden Gate Park, and many great shopping districts. Alternatively, take a tram ride over Nob Hill to Fisherman's Wharf and Ghirardelli Square.

    Overnight: Cavallo Point Lodge

  5. Day 4 Drive to Yosemite

    A 5 hour drive out of the city and through pastures and forests will bring you to Yosemite National Park. Along the way there will be chance to stretch your legs at historic Gold Rush towns where you can pick up lunch. Your base in Yosemite will be The Majestc, which is the only 5-star hotelwithin the national park's boundaries.

    Overnight: The Majestic Hotel

  6. Day 5 Explore Yosemite - Riding, Hiking and Climbing

    Your introduction will be a full-day tour amongst the giant sequoias, the largest trees - and indeed organisms - on the planet. Your naturalist guide will take you to see the tumbling waterfalls and intriguing rock formations of the park, and you will have the opportunity to explore on foot, horseback or rope; or even all three if you're feeling particularly energetic.

    Overnight: The Majestic Hotel

  7. Day 6 Hiking in the Yosemite High Country

    Now that you have explored the beauty of Yosemite Valley, your guide will take you further afield to walk in the High Country, characterised by meadows of wildflowers at certain times of year. Your lodge will provide a picnic lunch for you to enjoy along the trail, so you can spend a full day taking in the views.

    Overnight: The Majestic Hotel

  8. Day 7 Drive to Carmel-by-the-Sea

    Take the 3 hour drive from Yosemite to the coast in your own time, stopping to explore as you wish. Your home for the next few nights is Carmel, a charming and artistic waterfront community and your hotel is well positioned for both the centre of town and the beach. On arrival we recommend trying one of the lovely local restaurants or browsing the shops and galleries. Please note: If you are travelling without children, you might prefer to stay at Post Ranch Inn which welcomes anyone over the age of 18 and is a fabulous design hotel in a spectacular deserted spot on the Big Sur coast north of Carmel.

    Overnight: Tradewinds Carmel

  9. Day 8 Marine Life

    After breakfast, drive the short distance to Cannery Row on Monterey Bay for a shared boat trip to explore this National Marine Sanctuary, during which you can expect to see sea birds, seals, sea lions and whales. Cannery Row has plenty of places to stop for lunch before exploring Monterey Bay's fantastic aquarium on a private behind-the-scenes tour.

    Overnight: Tradewinds Carmel

  10. Day 9 At leisure

    Do whatever you will today, whether relaxing on Carmel's white sand beach, walking the trails in picturesque Point Lobos State Park, kayaking, golfing or wine tasting. If you are staying in Carmel, we could arrange a tour of nearby Big Sur, with its forested trails, eclectic shops, fine restaurants and condors soaring overhead.

    Overnight: Tradewinds Carmel

  11. Day 10 Drive to Los Angeles

    Highway 1 is known for its beautiful scenery, which you will experience today on the way to Los Angeles. Beautiful beaches and good sea-view restaurants line the route, and there is the option to stop for a tour of Hearst Castle State Park, a grand and opulent family home dating back to the early 20th Century. Your hotel for the next three nights is located on the beachfront in Santa Monica.

    Overnight: Shutters on the Beach

  12. Day 11 Private Tour of LA

    Your guide will meet you for a tour of LA's sights, including Universal Studios, the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Getty Museum, and more. You will also have the opportunity to see some of the lesser-known highlights of the city, including interesting neighbourhoods.

    Overnight: Shutters on the Beach

  13. Day 12 At Leisure

    It is easy to explore from your hotel, which opens onto Venice Beach and the Santa Monica pier, where artists and musicians bring the area to life and cafés line the waterfront. You may want to take the day to visit Disneyland. Today is also the ideal time to do some shopping before you fly home.

  14. Day 13 Depart

    Fly home from Los Angeles.

  15. Depart


Low £ 5,200 $ 7,270 € 6,219
Mid £ 6,760 $ 9,451 € 8,085
High £ 8,450 $ 11,813 € 10,107


  • Based on a family of four sharing two rooms throughout.
  • July and August are very crowded, so May, June and September are ideal times to visit.


  • All accommodation as detailed in the itinerary.
  • Daily breakfast.
  • Private transfers throughout.
  • All sightseeing, entrance fees and guide services as detailed in the itinerary.
  • Internal flights where detailed in the itinerary.


  • International flights.
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary.
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry, drinks, gratuities (discretionary).
  • Entrance fees and excursions not specifically mentioned as included.
  • Travel insurance or visa fees.

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