Road Trip

10-Day California Road Trip Itinerary + Discount Code

A 10-day California road trip is an ideal way to discover the range and splendor of the Golden State. From iconic towns and beautiful seashores to towering mountains and vibrant country wide parks, California has something for each traveler. Here’s a detailed 10 day itinerary for an ideal California road trip that covers some of the must-see locations in California and the best hotels to live for the duration of your experience.

10-Day California Road Trip Itinerary Map

Best Time to Plan California Road Trip

The high-quality time to plan a California journey is in the course of the spring or fall seasons, between April and May or September and November. During these months, the climate is slight and best, and the crowds are less than in the summer months. However, keep in mind that California is an all year vacation spot, so you can plan your trip at any time of the year.

Things to Pack for 10 day California road trip

When packing for your California road trip, do not forget to pack the following items:

  • Comfortable clothes and shoes
  • Sunscreen and a hat
  • A reusable water bottle
  • A camera to capture the beautiful views
  • Snacks and water for the street
  • A map or GPS device
  • Chargers on your electronic devices
  • A first-aid kit
  • Itinerary

Complete 10-Day California Road Trip Itinerary

Day 1: Los Angeles

Los Angeles
Source: Pixabay

Start your California road ride in the vibrant metropolis of Los Angeles- The City of Angles. Spend the day exploring iconic landmarks in Hollywood like the Walk of Fame. Visit the long-lasting Griffith Observatory for panoramic perspectives of the city and the famous Hollywood signal. End the day at Santa Monica Pier, in which you can enjoy the beach, leisure park rides, and colorful nightlife. ‘

Best hotel to stay at Los Angeles:

Day 2: Santa Barbara

santa barbara

Drive north alongside the scenic Pacific Coast Highway to the fascinating coastal metropolis of Santa Barbara. Explore the lovely Spanish architecture and go to the historical Mission Santa Barbara, known as the Queen of the Missions; Take a leisurely stroll alongside Stearns Wharf, which offers picturesque ocean views and numerous shops and restaurants. 

Best hotel to stay at Santa Barbara:

  • Four Seasons Resort – The Biltmore Santa Barbara (known for its lovely beachfront area)
  • Hotel Californian

Day 3: Big Sur

Big Sur
Source: localadventurer

Enjoy the breathtaking natural beauty that Big Sur is known for. Travel along the Pacific Coast Highway, which is known for its breathtaking scenery, and stop to take in the sights at McWay Falls and Bixby Bridge. 

Best hotel to stay at Big Sur:

  • Post Ranch Inn
  • Glen Oaks Big Sur

Day 4: Monterey and Carmel

Monterey and Carmel
Source: viator

Forth day in your California road trip itinerary is planned for a trip to Monterey and Carmel, two picturesque cities in the area. Drive to the classic city of Carmel and have a stroll along the picturesque Carmel Beach before going to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the historic Cannery Row. 

Best hotel to stay at Monterey & Carmel:

  • Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa
  • Carmel Lodge

Day 5: San Francisco

San Francisco
Source: Pixabay

Take a trip up to San Francisco, a city that has stood the test of time. Take a trip to some of San Francisco’s most famous sights, such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, and Fisherman’s Wharf. 

Best hotel to stay at San Francisco:

  • Hotel Zephyr
  • Fairmont San Francisco

Day 6: Napa Valley

Napa Valley
Source: Silver Oak

Your next stop should be the world-famous wine region of Napa Valley, which is located inland. Enjoy some of the finest wines that the state of California has to offer by participating in a wine tasting tour. Through Charlie Palmer’s services, you can book a room at the upscale Auberge du Soleil or the charming Harvest Inn at a discounted rate.

Day 7: Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe
Source: readysetpto

Take a trip to the breathtaking Lake Tahoe, which can be found deep within the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Enjoy outdoor sports including trekking, kayaking, and paddleboarding. 

Best hotel to stay at Lake Tahoe:

  • Squaw Creek
  • Basecamp South Lake Tahoe

Day 8: Yosemite National Park

Yosemite National Park
Source: Pixabay

Discover the stunning natural wonders that Yosemite National Park has to offer. Hike to best trails in California such as Yosemite Falls and Half Dome, and take in the breathtaking scenery of the Yosemite Valley along the way. 

Best hotel to stay at Yosemite National Park:

  • Yosemite Valley Lodge
  • Tenaya Lodge

Day 9: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks
Source: sharetheexperience

Take a visit to the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, which are located in close proximity to one another. Travel to the Sierra Nevada Mountains to marvel at the towering, gigantic sequoia trees and the stunning landscape of the region’s desert. 

Both the Wuksachi Lodge and the John Muir Lodge in the United States offer comfortable accommodations.

Day 10: Joshua Tree National Park and Palm Springs

Source: Getty Images/iStockPhoto

The 10th and last day in your California road trip itinerary is booked for a trip down to the charming Joshua Tree National Park in the southern portion of the state, where you may stroll among the various Joshua trees and rock formations. After that, make your way to the thriving city in the wilderness known as Palm Springs, which is known for its costly spas and mid-century modern architecture. 

Best hotel to stay at Joshua Tree National Park and Palm Springs:

  • Parker Palm Springs
  • Ace Hotel and Swim Club

Bonus Tips for California road trip itinerary

Here are a few extra tips to make your California avenue ride even more enjoyable:

Plan your course ahead of time: While it is tempting to just hit the street and spot where it takes you, making plans for your course in advance of time will assist you make the maximum of your ride. Research the first-class using routes, sights, and accommodations along the way, and ensure a component in enough time for stops and detours.

Be mindful of the climate: While California is thought for its sunny and slight weather, it’s nonetheless critical to be prepared for any unexpected modifications. Check the weather forecast earlier than your ride and percent as a result, and be mindful of any climate warnings or advisories at some stage in your ride.

Stay safe on the road: California’s highways and roads may be busy and congested, mainly in urban areas. Make positive to comply with traffic policies and signs and symptoms, and stay alert for any surprising risks or barriers on the street.

Embrace the neighborhood cuisine: California is home to some of the exceptional cuisine within the international community, from clean seafood and farm-to-table produce to true Mexican and Asian delicacies. Make sure to strive for a number of the local specialties alongside the way, and do not be afraid to project off the overwhelmed direction for a few hidden culinary gems.

Take breaks and stretch your legs: Sitting in a vehicle for long intervals of time may be tiring and uncomfortable, so make sure to take frequent breaks and stretch your legs. California has lots of rest stops, picnic areas, and scenic overlooks alongside its highways, so take advantage of these opportunities to get a little sparkling air and stretch your legs.

Install Roadtrippers App: It is an awesome travel companion app for road trip lovers. This app informs about the enchanting camping spots, captivating sights, and the great outdoors onroute your road trip. While usig this indulge in local flavors at bars and restaurants, unwind in handpicked hotels and unique stays. Create memories with curated activities and find convenience in fuel stations, rest stops, and shopping havens.

Install this app via the link below and don’t forget to use the discount code for $5 discount.

Download Link: Click Here

Discount Code for my audience: BTR5QTP

Respect the environment: California is domestic to a diverse variety of ecosystems, from the coast to the mountains to the deserts. Make certain to admire the surroundings with the aid of staying on special trails, getting rid of trash properly, and following any published regulations or policies.


This 10 day road trip itinerary covers some of the most iconic and numerous destinations in California. Of course, you can usually adjust the itinerary in your liking, and spend extra time in your favored locations or upload new ones in your experience. Just remember to % your necessities, stay hydrated, and experience the stunning surroundings alongside the manner. Happy road tripping!

Logan Smith

I'm a wanderer rooted in California, USA. My love for traversing the globe fuels my mission: crafting travel guides and tips that empower fellow explorers. Drawing from my personal escapades, I aim to equip readers with practical advice for seamless journeys. Let's embark on transformative adventures together.

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