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5 California Road Trip Itineraries - the Coolest Routes in 2019

Would you like to have a California road trip to experience its beautiful scenery? The article lists the 5 best California road trip itineraries in 2019 so that you can enjoy the coolest routes.

By Joy | @Joy

Updated on Aug 05, 2019

Having a road trip in California can be one of the best ways to experience the beautiful scenery in the state. With its excellent climate, amazing national parks, and world-renowned cities, California has everything that a road traveler could ever want. Are you eager to go out and see the world now? However, California is huge and it's actually a nation, so you might don't know where to take a road trip in California. Don’t worry. The article lists the 5 best California road trip itineraries so that you can enjoy the coolest routes.

 5 California Road Trip Itineraries 2019

1. Highway 1 from San Francisco to fort Bragg - A 175-Mile California Road Trip

Peak season: November to April

This stretch of the highway heads up the North Coast from San Francisco, offering the same windswept beauty as the Central Coast. When crossing the Golden Gate Bridge into Sausalito and Marin County, you'll see the coastal hills and redwoods of Muir Woods National Monument. Then the dramatic sea cliffs and the remote beaches of Point Reyes National Seashore will come into view. 

 A 175-Mile California Road Trip

The cruise rolls through the vineyards of Napa Valley and Sonoma County's Wine country. You can explore the seemingly untapped beauty of the North Coast from the cragged coastline at Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands to the rugged terrain at Mendocino Headlands State Park and the Victorian town of Mendocino. After that, you can drive north on Highway 1 to Fort Bragg and then see seals, migrating whales and Glass Beach by exploring MacKerricher State Park.

>> Quick Tips, if you're taking the road trip alone, check our safety tips for solo road trip.

2. Lake Tahoe to Lone Pine - More than 200 Miles of California Road Trip

Peak season: Year-round 

Highway 395, the High Sierra's main thoroughfare, is filled with endless scenic wonders, like volcanic rocks, waterfalls, eerie limestone tufa towers. Actually, any part of this trip could be its own multiday adventure. You can start at South Lake Tahoe where near the idyllic Emerald Bay State Park, and then head south toward the Mono Lake Tufa State Natural Reserve to enjoy the fantastic ghost towers.

 More than 200 Miles of California Road Trip

Next, continue to Mammoth Lakes, where you can find family-friendly skiing, snowboarding and hiking in winter, and mountain biking in summer. From there, keep driving south to Bishop and then Lone Pine,  where many old western movies are made, and to the eight-foot-high Mobius Arch in Alabama Hills.

3. Big Sur - the Most Stunning California Road Trip 

Peak season: April to October

Big Sur is perhaps the most rugged stretches on California road trip, with the Santa Lucia Mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Bixby Bridge is the highlights of Big Sur, which weaves it way through mountains and jagged cliffs plunging into the sea. With its secluded beaches, spectacular sunsets and numerous lookout points, this marine reserve would be a journey you'll never forget. Although Pfeiffer Beach is on a narrow and bumpy road, it is a good trip to enjoy the beautiful beach, sunset and arches. If you are looking for exquisite photography in a quiet environment, this is a superb idea.

 the Most Stunning California Road Trip

TIP : It's worth noting that temperatures in Big Sur vary geographically. Temperatures on the coast tend to be cooler than in the mountains, especially in summer. With this in mind, don’t forget to pack your jacket at any time of year.

4. Redding to Lassen Volcanic National Park - A 188-Mile California Road Trip

Peak season: Spring and Summer

The northeastern Shasta Cascade region reveals lots of California's best-kept secrets. Just start at Redding and head up I-5 to Shasta Lake, which is the largest reservoir in California, as well as a hotbed for fishing and water sports. From there, you will drive past Mount Shasta, which is 14,162 feet high. While in this area, don't miss the spires of Castle Crags State Park. Then you can head south on Highway 89, which is a part of the 500-mile Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway. Next, just head to MacArthur-Burney Falls Memorial State Park, where ferns are 129 feet high.

 A 188-Mile California Road Trip

5. Fresno Blossom and Fruit Trails - Only 62-mile California Road Trip

Peak season: February to September

In late winter, the ring road east of Fresno will become a rainbow of pastels, spanning the acres of blooming fruits and nut trees, such as almonds, peaches, plums and cherries. In early summer, the local fruit markets will be full of juicy fruits and you can happily enjoy the fruit carnival.

 Only 62-mile California Road Trip

Start in Fresno, east of highway 99, and follow the route, including State Route 180, through the charming towns of Sanger, Orange Cove, Reedley, Kingsburg, and Fowler. Simonian Farm in Fresno is a fruit stand built in 1901 and housed in a huge red barn, which is a place that visitors absolutely can’t miss. In Sanger’s Cedar View Winery, you can taste the red wines made with the rare Alicante Bouschet grapes.

>> Also check, 7 Safety Tips for Winter Road Trip - Prepare Your Car for Winter Travel

Bottom Line:

Don’t miss the 5 best California road trip itineraries to happily enjoy your journey. We recommend you install a car GPS tracker and bring a GPS tracker to monitor the real time location while you are traveling. You can try this small and compact GoFindMe.

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