Experience in USA

USA: San Francisco

Publication date: 3 Apr 2019
  • Experiences USD 123
  • Accommodation USD 452
  • Transport USD 167
  • Total experience USD 1380

GALLERY Photos and videos of the trip


Know the destination

Road Trip por San Francisco, Carmel, Napa y demás...

We will share Alonso’s travel experience by car on the west coast of California in the United States.

We will start a roadtrip to the south of San Francisco discovering the natural beauty of California. We will take a panoramic tour through Carmel, Monterrey and the Big Sur. Then we will go to San Francisco to know the most popular of the city and surroundings. We will finish two days in the famous Napa Valley.

First we will drive along the 17-mile route to the south. There we will stop at several points, where we will visit the Solitary Cypress, one of the most famous trees in the world. Also the Fanshell Overlook beach, the Spanish bay, the Pebble beach with impressive golf courses around it ending up seeing the Phantom Tree at the Pescadero Point. Then we head south on route number 1 to see the beautiful landscapes of the west coast and the Rocky Creek and Bixby Creek bridges. After arriving at the last bridge, we will return and visit the National Reserve of Lobos State. We can end up seeing an incredible sunset at the Monasterio beach next to the reserve. We will visit two of the most beautiful towns on the west coast, such as Carmel Beach and Monterrey.

Then we continue the road trip to San Francisco where we will know its main attractions. We will go to the famous Golden Gate Bridge, the Alcatraz prison, the Chinatown, the different docks, the strange Lombard Street, the Union Square, the Mission District, among other things. Of course, do not forget to find the fortune cookie factory in Chinatown.

We will know the surroundings of San Francisco as the picturesque town of Sausalito and the famous Muir Woods, known for its impressive giant trees. We will end up walking through the fields of Napa Valley where we will stay and we will make a wine route through 3 large vineyards.

DAY TO DAY Itinerary day by day

The prices that appear per day are referential and correspond to the sum of activities that were made that day

    DAY 1 USD 5

    We arrived and rented a car for 6 days. We will go south for more than 2 hours to Monterrey. Once installed, we will take the 17 mile route where there are spectacular views through golf courses on Pebbel beach. Then we drive along Route 1 South and the Notleys coast to see the Big Creek Bridge. We returned to Monterrey and passed through the Lobos State Reserve, ending up watching the sunset at the Monasterio beach.

    DAY 2 USD

    This day we take the car and visit Carmel by the Sea where it has an incredible beach. We can also walk through the city center and visit this picturesque town that has good art galleries, antique shops, beautiful houses, among other things. Then we can go to Monterrey and visit Fisherman’s Wharf where there are good restaurants and beautiful views.

    DAY 3 USD

    We left early from Monterrey and headed to San Francisco. After settled in the hotel and are gonna go for a walk in the streets. We can visit the neighborhood of Nob Hill where you have to be prepared to go up and down in the streets, we arre gonna visit Union Square, The Dragon Gate and Chinatown. We can end up by visiting a very strange streets like Lombard Street. Then, we can finish by going to the Fisherman Wharf in Pier 33 where there are good restaurants and souvenir shops.

    DAY 4 USD 46

    We get up and with the car we go directly to visit the Golden Gate Bridge. From there we can go to the house of the sitcom,”Full House”. Then we can go the Alamo Square and finishing in Mission District, famous for the graffiti that can be found on 24th Street, especially in the Balmy Alley. If you have time, you can also visit Mission Dolores Park and the Castro neighborhood. In the afternoon prepare a tour for 3 hours through Alcatraz prison, also known as “The Rock”.

    DAY 5 USD 14

    We leave the hotel and with the car we will go to know Sausalito which is characterized by its fishing port and its typical floating houses that are in the Waldo Point Harbor. In Sausalito we had an early lunch in the Viña del Mar park. Then, at 2pm we can go to the Muir Woods forest where can see this giant trees. Finally we drive to Napa Valley and settle in our hotel. Before 9pm we can visit the Oxbow Public Market to have dinner and then the downtown.

    DAY 6 USD 58

    We get up and prepare to visit some vineyards. I recommend visiting between 3 to 4 vineyards and stopping in the town Yountville where you can have lunch. The vineyards that I recommend are Sattui Winery, Castello di Amorosa and Napa Mumm. If you have time, I recommend stopping at one more vineyard in Sonoma, the Domaines Carneros. On the way returning to San Francisco, do not forget to stop in the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge that has an incredible direct view of the city.

ACCOMMODATION Lodging per night

The lodging that is shown in the list of each night is recommended by the traveler, you can find more similar options. The cost is per person in a double bed room.

Night City Recommended accommodation Type of lodging Cost of the person
Night 1 Monterey Arbor Inn Hotel USD 59
Night 2 Monterey Arbor Inn Hotel USD 59
Night 3 San Francisco Hotel Majestic Hotel USD 93
Night 4 San Francisco Hotel Majestic Hotel USD 93
Night 5 Napa 3 Palms Napa Valley Hotel Hotel USD 74
Night 6 Napa 3 Palms Napa Valley Hotel Hotel USD 74

TRANSPORT Transportation per day

The prices that appear by transport are referential and correspond to what the traveler paid at that moment

Nº Day Origin Destination Link web Type of transport Cost
Day 1 Arpt San Francisco (SFO) Monterey http://www.jdoqocy.com/click-8503509-12595001 Car Rental X 6 Days USD 120
Day 3 Monterey San Francisco Car Rental USD
Day 5 San Francisco Napa Car Rental USD
Day 7 Napa Arpt San Francisco (SFO) Car Rental USD


RECOMMENDATIONS Tips for your trip

As we rent car for several days, I recommend to buy a chip for the cellphone at the airport. It will help us as gps for the different places we are going to visit.

For lunch, in Carmel I recommend to go to the Treehouse Cafe, a very good place to eat with a nice terrace and in Monterey, in addition to eating something at the pier, you can have a good burger with a beer at Britannia Arms.

In San Francisco they have to try pizzas in Golden Boy, they are goodies and to eat something fresh directly from the pier, Scoma’s Restaurant. In Napa, you should go to the Oxbow Public Market and Bottega Napa Valley that is in the Yountville town.

When we do the 17 Miles Drive and go by route 1, I recommend stopping several times to admire the landscape and take pictures.

If you have time, in Monterrey you can visit one of the largest aquariums in the world and a world leader in ocean conservation.

For those who like trekking, in the National Reserve of Lobos State, there are several well-marked routes that can be done and it takes an hour to two hours to do it.

The best time to see the vineyards are from April to October. You can go any time, but it is better to see the fields covered in green. I always recommend the times from April to June and from September to October because the weather is not so hot and it is not very high season.

Depending on what time your flight departs from San Francisco, maybe you can save yourself a hotel night. There is also the possibility of first doing Napa Valley and then the city of San Francisco if you want.

Important information:

San Francisco is a very expensive and very busy city, so it is important to check out the hotels, tours and attractions in advance to find best prices and space in tours, especially Alcatraz, which is very popular. At Munir Woods, take out parking in advance as well.

It’s hard to find parking in San Francisco. With patience you will find but you must see the zones and the time that you can. Do not forget to curb your wheels when you park, otherwise you will be fined. That helps when you lose the handbrake the car does not go down the slope of San Francisco.

Be aware that the hotels you reserve have parking; And if it’s free, it is better. Those that I recommend there are some that are free and others not. In San Francisco it is difficult to find one that does not cost.

The rental value of the car is divided between two people for the 6 days that are rented. Additional expense of US $ 94 between parking and gasoline is calculated. If there are two people, it is US $ 47 per person.

In Napa Valley I was told that the tolerance for drinking and driving was three glasses of tasting. Like this you will not have problems. It clearly depends on the size of each one and the size of the glasses. My recommendation is that if you drink, do not drive. It is in the risk of each one of what it takes and handles. No police is going to stop you if you do not commit an infraction.

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