United States: Northern California in Depth
Your United States travel itinerary:
Day 1: San Francisco
Why not enjoy a West Coast dinner in the city’s thriving restaurant scene?
Days 2 - 3: San Francisco
Set sail across the glittering expanse of San Francisco Bay to the legendary island of Alcatraz, soak up the fabulous city views and admire the sheer size of the Golden Gate Bridge. Later, you could try walking or biking along the bridge for a different perspective on the city. Hit the shops in Union Square, dine on dim sum in China Town, or check out the museums and gardens of leafy Golden Gate Park. And don’t miss the Frisco must-do - riding the cable cars up and down the city’s 43 hills.
Continue on to Bodega Bay, whose claim to fame is that it was the setting for Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds. Aside from touring the filming spots, the main activity here is admiring the rugged scenery of the Bodega Bay Headlands and keeping an eye out for whales offshore. Take a walk in one of the many parks or browse the impressive local art galleries including the Bodega Bay Heritage Gallery. Swing by in August for the sumptuous Seafood, Art and Wine Festival.
Get back to nature in Mendocino County, where the lush forests of cypress and pine trees of Van Damme State Beach and Park and the scenic Fern Canyon offer numerous walking trails and cycling paths. The park’s rugged coastline is best explored by kayak, or you could take the Skunk Train, a 40-mile route passing through redwood forests, meadows and mountains, with plenty of birds to spot along the way.
Day 6: Napa Valley
Taste your way around the sun-drenched Napa Valley and its collection of fine wines. It’s not just wine though – there are also artisan cheeses, craft ciders and freshly cured meats to feast upon. Filled with gourmet restaurants and relaxing spas, Napa is definitely a place to unwind, soak up the sun-drenched scenery and appreciate the peace and tranquillity. Explore the surrounding forests and rivers or, if the vineyards inspire you, why not try one of the many art workshops, or visit a gallery or two?
Days 7 - 8: Yosemite
Hike the glorious mountains of Yosemite National Park, where waterfalls plunge from sheer granite cliffs, crystal clear streams flow through dense forests and giant sequoia trees tower over green meadows. Be sure to keep a look out for the park’s 300 mammal species, including black bears and mule deer. As you might expect from an outdoor wonderland, there are plenty of adventurous activities to try such as hiking, climbing and even skiing in winter.
Sleep among the forests of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, where a dramatic landscape of mountains, canyons and caverns awaits. Perhaps set off on a scenic drive or try your hand at horse riding, fly fishing or spelunking (caving). If you’re here in winter you may well see snow, giving you the perfect opportunity to explore by sledge or snowshoe. It’s even possible to ski. Whenever you visit, keep a look out for Tunnel Log, a manmade passage cut through a 6.4m diameter sequoia tree that fell across the road.
Day 10: Monterey
Look for whales, dolphins and seals along Monterey’s rugged coastline. The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary protects the area’s sea lions, kelp and blue whales and otters, but Monterey is perhaps most famous for its excellent aquarium filled with over 600 marine species. Then there’s the Monterey State Historic Park filled with historic buildings including California’s first theatre and the Custom House where California was first declared part of the United States in 1846. More up to date are the funky boutiques, contemporary galleries and independent shops of Cannery Row waterfront.
Days 11 - 12:
Drive back to San Francisco and return to the UK.
Hotels on this United States holiday:
- San Francisco - 4* Hotel Zephyr
- 4* Bodega Bay Lodge
- 3* Little River Inn
- Napa Valley - 4* River Terrace Inn
- Yosemite - 4.5* Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite
- 3* Wukasachi Lodge
- Monterey - 4* Intercontinental the Clement
Here are some of our other holidays to United States
Las Vegas - 4* MGM Grand Hotel & Casinoescape4 StarsRead more >>
Fronted by the iconic 45-foot bronze lion, this statuesque resort boasts modern rooms and suites with chic designs. Grand Queen rooms provide plenty of space, and boast spectacular views over the world-famous strip. Cool off in one of four pools, or float gently around the lazy river. Hire a pool cabana, and enjoy your very own private patio, flat screen television, and mini refrigerator to keep the drinks ice-cold. The Grand Spa features 30 treatment rooms, as well as saunas, whirlpools and lounges to help you recharge and revitalise. Ask the concierge to arrange a round of golf at one of the nearby courses, and practice your swing. Watch the magnificent acrobats in the Cirque Du Soleil show, or marvel at illusionist David Copperfield’s legendary tricks. When it comes to dining, you will be truly spoilt for choice. Choose from a plethora of international dishes on display at the Grand Buffet, or dine at the acclaimed Hakkasan restaurant, which promises authentic Cantonese cuisine at its best. After dark, dance the night away to world-famous DJs at Hakkasan Nightclub, or retreat to the Ling Ling Lounge, illuminated in soothing hues of blue, and raise a toast to paradise.3 Nights from£645 ppBook by 15 Mar 2017
Las Vegas - 5* Ariaescape5 StarsRead more >>
Enjoy the luxurious comfort of this curvaceous resort, which provides the ultimate sumptuous Escape. Sky suites promise spacious indulgence, with Hermes bath products and in-suite saunas towering high over the glittering landscape. Cool off in one of three pools, or retreat to the Sky Pool, which has a private guest entrance, complimentary refreshments and luxurious amenities. Step into the Aji stone-walled spa and listen to the soothing sounds of the tranquil water garden during your massage. With 16 restaurants, numerous bars, a 150,000 square-foot casino and a nightclub, there is plenty to keep you entertained. Don’t miss the Cirque du Soleil show, Zarkana, performed while you enjoy a succulent dinner of lobster gazpacho and shrimp tempura. Featuring a cast of 70 world-class acrobats, it is impossible not to be wowed by this spectacular display.3 Nights from£699 ppBook by 15 Mar 2017
Las Vegas - 5* The Venetian Resortescape5 StarsRead more >>
Be transported to the city of love at The Venetian, where gondola rides and a replica of St Mark’s Square will make you feel as if you are in Italy. Every suite here boasts a living room and marble bathroom. Wake up and enjoy breakfast at Bouchon, where award-winning chef Thomas Keller has designed a menu featuring one of the best Sunday brunches in town. Stretch out in a cabana on the pool deck, where attentive staff will bring you drinks and canapés, rejuvenate at the Canyon Ranch Spa Club, one of the largest day spas in the world, and take your pick from more than 20 restaurants serving every type of cuisine you can think of. A host of celebrity chefs have contributed to the exquisite menus which can be found at every eatery. From a Bellini bar to a Champagne lounge and a Latin mixology bar serving hand-crafted cocktails, you are spoilt for choice when it comes to post-dinner drinks. Try your luck at the casino, take in one of six shows and dance the night away at Tao Nightclub. Or why not simply dine in your elegant suite, looking out over the bright lights of the city.3 Nights from£755 ppBook by 15 Mar 2017
Las VegasReduced room rate
Las Vegas - 5* The Cosmopolitanescape5 StarsRead more >>
Set in the heart of the Las Vegas strip, the mesmerising Cosmopolitan resort promises decadent rooms and studios looking out over the world-famous Vegas skyline. Upgrade to a Terrace Suite for your very own oversized private terrace, a sleek modern kitchen, and a bubbler tub in the master bathroom. Whatever your mood, there is a pool scene for you – the Boulevard lagoon combines upbeat music with lounge chairs and daybeds. Take in live performances on the pool stage, or, when the midday sun becomes too much, retreat beneath a marquee and enjoy a movie. For ultimate privacy, peace and tranquillity, sink into a poolside cabana at the Bamboo Pool. Or, for a vibrant beach club scene, head to the Marquee Dayclub lagoon, which transforms into an extension of the Marquee nightclub after dark. Allow the concierge team to arrange a spa treatment at the Sahra Spa & Hammam. Indulge in the Moroccan Journey treatment and experience a luxurious cleanse, exfoliation, soothing tea-infused shea butter bamboo scrub, and signature Sahra massage. World-class chefs have designed exquisite dishes across the inspired restaurants. The award-winning Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill is not to be missed, while chic cocktail house BOND is the perfect place to dance the night away.3 Nights from£745 ppBook by 15 Mar 2017
Miami - 4* Casa Faenaescape4 StarsRead more >>
Set a block from the beach and just minutes from Miami’s historic Art Deco district, this romantic and exclusive hideaway originally opened its doors in 1928. Today, exclusive oceanfront suites oozing with Mediterranean colonial charm can be found here. Why not opt for a King Studio and enjoy a privileged location on the hotel’s top floor, with sweeping ocean views, expansive soaking tubs and direct access to the private rooftop terrace. Stretch out on the powder-white sands of the hotel’s private beach club, or escape the midday sun and peruse the hotel’s varied art collection. Creative types can while away the afternoon sketching. Inspired by American and Argentine cuisine, Café Claridge’s invites guests to dine outside on the veranda and soak up the serene atmosphere. With dishes including pan seared yellow tail snapper and grilled skirt steak, you will never go hungry. The bijou hotel bar is the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail and marvel at the luminous setting sun.5 Nights from£779 ppBook by 02 Mar 2017