Hi, I was wondering if anyone had any advice. Me and my fiance want to travel round the west coast of america for three weeks for our honeymoon but have no idea what itinerary to plan! We will be going either August or Sept next year and know we want to go to San Francisco, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego see the Grand Canyon, see Alcatraz, not sure what else really! If anyone had any hints or even a suggested itinerary I would be really grateful!
There really is a lot to see and do!
Aer you flying into and out of San Francisco or Los Angeles. Or flying into one and out of the other?
Doesn't really matter that much, except a difference of about 6 hours driving.
I would rent a car if I was you, just pick it up at the airport.
Apart from the cities you mentioned, a possible itinerary could also include Yosemite National Park, Death Valley, Highway 1 (Big Sur) between LA and San Francisco, Kings Canyon and Sequoia National Parks.
Maybe something like this:
Day 1-3 San Francisco
4-5 Yosemite national park
6-7 Kings Canyon/Sequoia NP
8-9 Death Valley
10-11 Las Vegas
13 Grand Canyon
14-15 San Diego
16-17 Los Angeles
18-21 drive north along coast back to SF and stop in places like Santa Barbara, Cambria and Monterrey etc.
What you can also do, is skip Kings Canyon/Sequoia NP like mentioned above, and go over the extremely scenic Tioga Pass from Yosemite National Park and then go south following the eastern part of the Sierra Nevada mountains and then into Death Valley from there. That way you might be able to visit Bryce Canyon as well (southern Utah), I liked it more than the Grand Canyon to be honest.
Note that although Death Valley is hot (more so in August than in September), it's doable and everything is aircon anyway. Very dry heat
You can check my trip maps and photos here on TP of a few trips to that part of the USA, maybe it will help you decide about routes and places to visit, and travelling times.
[ Edit: Edited on 02-Aug-2011, at 07:48 by Utrecht ]
As Utrecht said, you will need a car here as distances are vast. I live in the Pacific NW (Oregon) above California. Everyone concentrates on California, but it's really nicer up here because we have less crowding, less traffic, more green nature (especially salmon-filled rivers) and lower prices (no sales tax or VAT at all). You will hate Los Angeles - one big maze of freeways and homes/shopping malls that all look the same. San Francisco is the best/most interesting in my opinion. The trouble now in the States is that we're basically poor - no jobs for residents, so you will see thousands of homeless people everywhere. You might consider Canada - far less unemployment and poverty. (And far less violent crime!)
[ Edit: Edited on 02-Aug-2011, at 09:19 by Daawgon ]