• Credit Jackie Appleton

Pacific Coast

Travel the west coast between Seattle and Los Angeles on this itinerary.

Summary

Pacific Coast

A diverse coastline of rugged headlands, giant trees and expansive beaches…

Day 1: Seattle
Day 3: Olympic Peninsular
Day 5: Astoria
Day 6: Oregon Coastline
Day 8: Northern California Coast
Day 9: San Francisco
Day 11: The California Coast from San Francisco to Los Angeles
Day 14: Los Angeles

Description

Description

A diverse coastline of rugged headlands, giant trees and expansive beaches, this itinerary takes you from north to south through west coast USA.  There are many opportunities to add to or amend this itinerary, for example, returning north using Amtrak’s Coast Starlight train. 

Day 1: Seattle
Fly from London to Seattle. At least 2 nights here to rest after your flights and explore this great city.
Seattle 2 nights

Day 3: Olympic Peninsular
Pick up your hire car then start your journey with a ferry across to the Olympic Peninsular. Drive along the Straits of Juan de Fuca where glimpses of diving eagles, gray whales, sea otters are common. Walk, kayak or explore the wild shoreline and forests. Explore rain forest valleys, glacier-capped peaks and a stunning variety of plants and animals.
Olympic National Park 2 nights

Day 5: Astoria
Head south crossing the Columbia River into Oregon.
Astoria 1 night
If time allows then it well worth spending a couple of days in the wonderful city of Portland and the surrounding area. Explore the Columbia River (last leg of the Lewis and Clark Expedition) and the Mount Hood area – waterfalls, magnificent overlooks, wild flowers, wild rivers…

Day 6: Oregon Coastline
Stretching over 350 miles, the Oregon section of Pacific Coast Scenic should not be rushed. Allow yourself at least 2 days to enjoy the amazing scenery. Endless beaches, with wind-sculpted dunes, waterfalls cascading over rugged cliffs, charming small towns, dramatic overlooks, historic bridges, lighthouses and estuaries teeming with wildlife. Overnight stop half way down Florence before heading into Northern California

Day 8: Northern California Coast
Continue your drive south taking time to visit Humboldt Redwood State Park – drive along the Avenue of the Giants looking for wildlife – deer, bear, foxes and osprey can be seen here. Overnight in Marin County, home to the giant redwoods in Muir Woods and the picturesque waterfront village of Sausalito. More time? – why not take a detour to the Napa Valley.

Day 9: San Francisco
Over the Golden Gate Bridge into San Francisco – at least 2 nights here; take a city tour, ride the cable cars, cruise around the harbour, visit Alcatraz, museums, art galleries, Chinatown…
San Francisco 2 nights

Day 11: The California Coast from San Francisco to Los Angeles
The drive from San Francisco to LA along the old coastal road, the Cabrillo Highway, is gorgeous and not be rushed. Here we suggest 3 overnight stops en route (take longer if you can) First stop Monterey, a fascinating town with a lively Fisherman’s Wharf – home to the acclaimed Monterey Bay Aquarium and Cannery Row (made famous by John Steinbeck). The famous 17-mile drive from Monterey to Carmel winds through pine forests and along the rocky shoreline where many bird species and sea lions may be viewed. South of Carmel, Highway 101 passes though the spectacular Big Sur area before dropping down to San Simeon. On the approach to San Simeon, stop off at the Piedras Blancas Elephant Seal Colony. In San Simeon, take time to visit Hearst Castle, a magnificent house built on a mountainside by the newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst. A night in this area is recommended. Then continue on along the San Luis Obispo North Coast Byway before perhaps an overnight stop at the delightful and vibrant town of Santa Barbara

Day 14: Los Angeles
Continue to LA for a day or two in this exciting city before heading home. If time allows a few days relaxation on a Southern Californian beach may be welcome at the end of your trip.

Pacific Coast - Big Sur - Kym Bannister

Credit Kym Bannister


Pacific Coast - GGB cr SFCVB by Carl Wilmington

Credit Carl Wilmington


Pacific Coast - California

Credit Helen Wibley

  

 

Pacific Coast - Oregon coast 2 web

Credit Oregon Tourism


Pacific Coast - Pike Place Market (2)

Credit Helen Wibley


Pacific Coast - Humboldt Redwoods CTTC - Andreas Hub

Credit CTTC

  

Little Gems

Little Gems

The Olympic Peninsular was the setting for the Twilight series of books.  For enthusiasts of these books, many local names will appear familiar.

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