3-Day California Coast Tour: San Francisco to Los Angeles
Take an epic journey down the stunning California coast on this 3-day one-way trip from San Francisco to Los Angeles. In addition to traveling through the spectacular Big Sur region, you'll visit Santa Cruz, Monterey, Carmel, Pebble Beach, Cambria, Solvang and Santa Barbara, and enjoy views of jagged coastlines, mountains, forests and rolling hills studded with vineyards. Explore fascinating marine exhibits at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, take a guided tour of magnificent Hearst Castle, journey along famous 17-Mile Drive, spot California's iconic sea lions, and take the train from Santa Barbara to downtown Los Angeles. This tour by comfortable van offers flexible daily itineraries, letting you explore at a relaxed pace with your knowledgeable guide and on your own. This tour is perfect for those looking to get from San Francisco to Los Angeles in a fun, relaxing and incredibly scenic way.
This small-group tour is limited to 8 people, ensuring a more personalized experience.
- Multi-Day Trip
- All entrance fees included
- Breakfast included
- Hotel pickup included
- Small group ensures personal service
On your 3-day trip from San Francisco to Los Angeles, enjoy free time in each city you visit. Flexible daily itineraries let you explore at your own pace, and admission to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and a guided tour of Hearst Castle are included. Your guide will offer interesting and informative commentary throughout your trip about local history, culture and architecture.
Choose between Comfort and Superior accommodation types.
- Reservations are REQUIRED for all bookings
- Book Your Package On-Line and Receive Your Confirmation
- Departure point: Traveler pickup is offered
We will pick up anywhere in SF - just let us know where to meet you!
- Duration: 3 days (Approx.)
- Departure Time: 9:00 AM
- Return Details: Santa Barbara Train Station (train arrives in downtown Los Angeles at approximately 5pm)
- Professional guide
- Hotel pickup in San Francisco
- One-way transport from San Francisco to Santa Barbara by 12-passenger van
- 2 nights of accommodation
- Meals as per itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
- Return transport to San Francisco
What To Bring
- Confirmation Voucher (printed or mobile)
- Any required or suggested items listed on your confirmation email.
- A Smile!
Hotel pick-up is offered for this tour. Note: if you are booking within 24 hours of the tour/activity departure time, we cannot guarantee hotel pick-up. Once your purchase is complete, we will send you complete contact information (phone number, email address, etc.) for our local operator to organize pick-up arrangements.
- Confirmation will be received within 48 hours of booking, subject to availability
- Not wheelchair accessible
- Weather can be colder along the coast. Please dress warmly or in layers
- No children under 12 years old permitted
- Pricing is per person based on occupancy
- Luggage is restricted to 50 lbs (22.7 kg)
- Tour is available in English, French and Spanish. Please advise at time of booking if you would like a specific language.
- This is a ONE-WAY trip and does not include return transport to San Francisco. You may return with the tour company for a USD $60 fee, payable directly to the tour operator. It is a direct 6-hour drive by van
- Please note: Hotel accommodation subject to change
- Near public transportation
- Most travelers can participate
- Travelers must be able to walk 4 blocks
- This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
Average 4.44 out of 5 stars based on 45 verified reviews from Cool Destinations and TripAdvisor.
Have no words for this beyond superrr experience!! Everything was just perfect ! From our tour guide Adam to alll the beautiful spots we stopped at !
Adam made sure everyone was most comfortable ... n had the best time of their lives ! I loved the 17 th mile drive ...Carmel .. the drive to Santa Barbara thru Big Sur was truly wonderful ... Adam made sure we didn’t miss a thing he stopped at all the spots to take pictures etc .. Both the hotels in Monetary and Cambria were really Niceee!!
Adam had already checked us into the hotel before we reached there tooo smooth I must say !
Our train from Santa Barbara to LA was also prebooked by Adam and in our mailbox well in advance !!
Kudos to Adam he made it a totally unforgettable experience for us !
It was a small group tour and we were only 5 of us !! It felt like we had hire our own private vehicle!!!
Thank you Adam n thank you Cool Destinations!
I would totally recommend this trip to one and allll
We had a wonderful 3 day trip thanks to our tour guide Kelly. Kelly give us many information about the areas we traveled through. The Monterey Aquarium is amazing. And the scenery along the coast is spectacular. Definitely will recommend to everyone.
We had very nice scenery along the coast of California The 17 mile drive provided many photo opportunities we enjoyed the aquarium and frequent photo opportunities. Pebble beach golf course was enjoyable Kelly the tour guide was very knowledgeable about the history along the coast We upgraded to the higher hotel and was worth every penny
The date of our trip was actually amended to 10 january 2018....my sister and I 2 old birds from Australia would highly recommend this trip ..Mark was brilliant .He looked after us and nothing was too much trouble......He made sure we didnt miss anything and the scenery was amazing......our luggage miraculously appeared in our hotel room and we enjoyed every minute of it......to experience walking down to the 18th green at Pebble Beach golf club and to see the sea lions basking on the beach in their protected sanctuary plus Hearst Castle and the magnificent Aquarium were all excellent..Great scenery ,good food and good accommodation made all the better with Marks expertise and great knowledge of the area.
My husband and I had a fantastic tour down the coast of California. Adam, our guide, was very friendly and knowledgeable.
The scenery was beautiful and we got to see unexpected sights like a redwood forest and elephant seals nursing their babies. I would highly recommend this tour.
What a great surprise when our tour operator pulled up at our hotel and we were greeted with what was a three day personal tour just the two of us and the guide for this wonderful tour. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable of the areas we traveled.
We were very happy with the quality of the tour we went on and we were given an excellent insight to all of the main points on the coast road. We found the stopover points to be well timed and the places that we visited of high quality. We found Mark our guide to be exceptionally helpful and knowledgeable. He was extremely courteous and very well informed. We highly recommend this tour to any prospective person who wants to see the coast road without driving themselves. Peter and Lynley Elder- New Zealand
This was the high light of our trip. We were looking forward so much to it and we were not disappointed
We did this trip in March 2017 as we wanted a relaxed trip with a small group and not drive ourselves
We'll we hit the jackpot We had a private tour with Kelly and she was amazing nothing was a trouble and plenty of spare time to enjoy
Unfortunately we couldn't go by Big Sur due to landslides but that didn't matter as we saw so much
If you can afford the superior accommodation I can thoroughly recommend it, especially Spin Drift in Monterey a boutique hotel which is a little treasure not to be missed
What more can I say if you have the time this is definitely a trip not to be missed
This 3-day Tour was a 30th wedding anniversary gift for my husband and myself, and it was the best gift ever. As it turned out we were the only ones who booked the tour for Jan. 29-31, and it was like we had booked an exclusive tour for ourselves. This meant a more relaxed schedule for us and more flexibility for stops and more opportunities for photos.
Kelly was a punctual guide from the moment she picked us at 9am at our hotel in San Francisco. She was very conscientious in giving us the details of the overall tour itself, and the itinerary for each day. Kelly was likewise a very good driver and very knowledgeable about the sights along the Pacific coastline along which our tour ran. We stopped to be awed by the hardy surfers in Santa Cruz braving the winter cold waters of the Pacific Ocean, though Kelly warned us about the dangers that sudden surf surges could cause. We stopped at a quaint roadside store to get some coffee - quite good by the way - and were surprised to learn that there were small pockets of civilization in the US which didn't have indoor plumbing!
After that we spent the good part of an hour strolling around Santa Cruz and browsing the bookshelves of a real bookstore - more books rather than novelty items. Next stop was Monterey where we marveled at the magnificent creatures of the deep, including quite a creepy octopus. I was fascinated by the corals and the fishes and even the jelly fishes. Watching these creatures gliding gracefully in the aquariums in all their magnificent colors was mesmerizing. And the food in the cafeteria was tasty too. Nice! We loved the vibe of Monterey. It was very dynamic and young and quite hip.
Day 2 had us driving towards Carmel via the 17-mile route to Pebble Beach. The houses were quite awesome in that part of the world. We got a glimpse of the Big Sur, and enough time to look around, take some pictures, and admire the dramatic meeting of sea, sky, rocks, and mountain. Because of the storms in the previous week, we had to turn back because of road closures on 101. Carmel itself was pretty, almost like the postcard version of a real town. In this case it was truly a really lovely part of the world. I enjoyed looking at the shops which offered items beyond the usual tourist souvenirs. I bought some lovely stationery from a specialty store and a Christmas trinket from a Christmas store. We also looked at the different posters of houses for sale posted at the window of the realty agents. Husband and I were quite amused at the prices at which these houses were offered. They were not for the faint of heart and for the slim of pocketbook.
The afternoon part of this day was spent in the Hearst Castle, doing a tour of the cottages and the kitchen. Again we had the luck of the draw whe it came to the guide. He was a master storyteller who combined history and romance to the usual description of house details and idiosyncracy. We would gladly visit this castle again just to hear more about the life of the Hearst family. Finally we spent the night in Cambria, very charming with stores that had names like Love Me 2 Times Thrift Shop and a restaurant which went by the name The Sow's Ear. That's where we had a delicious dinner and felt quite young again amid a clientele who mostly looked comfortably retired.
Next morning, we had coffee and Danish at Solvang. Solvang is another lovely town, with a hint of European. We ended this part of the tour in Santa Barbara where we bid a fond goodbye to Kelly. Santa Barbara was enjoying almost tropical weather, allowing us to shed the winter layers of our wardrobe for the day. The train station itself looked like a movie set, but it was a real train station and the Amtrak train which rolled in almost on the dot at 2 pm was a real train. A train ride was a very relaxing and ultra-comfortable way to get to Los Angeles to the end of our tour.
We definitely can recommend this tour to other people. My husband and I enjoyed every minute of the tour, most specially because we had it on an exclusive basis. We will always remember our 30th wedding anniversary with gladness, made memorable by these three days of meandering along the Pacific coastline from San Francisco to Los Angeles.
Still have questions?
We’re here to help. Call (800) 814-2665 to speak with a Destination Specialist.
Product code: COOL-5853COAST3DAY
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