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Northern California

8 Days 1 Country 12 Cities

San Francisco, Monterey and the beauty of Big Sur, Yosemite and Lake Tahoe feature in this Regional Explorer trip.

"Trafalgar thought of everything"

Norman

About this trip

A showcase of California's many sides: the culture of San Francisco, the wines of Sonoma and Napa, the coastal retreat of Monterey and the beauty of Big Sur, Yosemite and Lake Tahoe.

You'll enjoy Insider moments like... stepping inside Happy Girl Kitchen and meeting owners Jordan and Todd. You'll prepare dinner together, as they reveal how their organic preserves and produce help keep Monterey's canning traditions alive.


Trip type: Country Explorer i

Trip code: DANC

7 Nights

accommodation

11 Meals
  • 7 full breakfasts.

  • 1 lunch.

  • 3 dinners (including Be My Guest).

On-trip Transport

All transport shown. All transfers shown.

Northern California

Your Itinerary

1. Arrive San Francisco (2 nights)

Welcome to San Francisco, the City by the Bay. After checking in at your hotel, enjoy a real San Francisco treat and dive into exploring on your own at nearby Pier 39, the famed marketplace filled with shops, attractions and street performers. Be sure to visit the pier's resident sea lion population. At 6 p.m., gather at a local restaurant with your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception.

Meal(s)
Welcome Reception
Hotel
Hyatt Regency San Francisco

2. San Francisco Sightseeing and Free Time

As the mist rises over the bay, the great city of San Francisco stands before you. Embark on a morning exploration that takes you from Fisherman's Wharf to fashionable Union Square. Explore a Cultural Insight, the Cable Car Museum, a celebration of San Francisco's rail transit history, focused on exploring the positive impact streetcars and cable cars have made on the quality of urban life in this great city. There's a story around every corner of San Francisco, and you have some time this afternoon to follow your own path before gathering for a guided tour of the oldest Chinatown in the United States. Sample fortune cookies, a Cultural Insight, and then celebrate your discoveries at a sumptuous Chinese Regional Meal at a local restaurant.

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast
Regional Meal

3. San Francisco – Sonoma – Napa

Napa Valley's sun-dappled fields, lush vineyards and fragrant flowers provide an idyllic backdrop for your next adventure. After checking in at your hotel, board the Napa Valley Wine Train's lovingly restored Pullman cars for a taste of the golden age of rail travel. Journey through the sparkling sunlight of a Napa afternoon as you indulge in a gourmet Regional Meal lunch and wine tasting. This afternoon, enjoy free time in Sonoma Square.

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast
Regional Meal
Hotel
Embassy Suites Napa Valley

4. Napa – Sacramento – Lake Tahoe

Rise early this morning for an unforgettable optional hot air balloon ride over the lush Napa Valley. Then visit the California State Railroad Museum. Tour the 21 meticulously restored locomotives, train cars and numerous exhibits illustrating how railroads shaped people's lives, the economy, and the unique culture of California and the West. Then, travel from the fertile Sacramento River valley to the alpine splendour of Lake Tahoe, its clear blue waters surrounded by evergreen pines and rocky outcrops. If you like, enjoy an optional sunset dinner cruise on the lake as you savour the magnificent views and magical mountain light.

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast
Hotel
Lake Tahoe Resorts Hotel at Heavenly

5. Lake Tahoe – Yosemite National Park

Snow covered for much of the year, stunning Tioga Pass is the perfect entry point to the Golden State's most famous National Park, Yosemite. (Weather conditions may cause the Tioga Pass to be closed to traffic, typically from mid-October to the end of May. In this case, an alternate entry point to Yosemite will be used.) Descend from the Sierra Nevada Mountains into the Yosemite Valley, passing the misty splendour of Bridal Veil. Enjoy your accommodation inside the park, taking in all the natural wonders after the crowds have left and just a short stroll from Yosemite Falls.

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast
Hotel
Yosemite Lodge at the Falls

6. Yosemite – Salinas Valley – Monterey (2 nights)

Head west today into Salinas Valley and join an agricultural education tour to learn about fruit and vegetable production and advanced farming techniques of the region with a Local Specialist. Travel north to Monterey for a Be My Guest experience. Your hosts share their knowledge and love of food with you this evening as you dine on a meal of the freshest ingredients, an experience meant to empower you as a diner with an understanding of the farm-to-table experience.

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast
Be My Guest Dining
Hotel
The Portola Hotel and Spa at Monterey Bay

7. Monterey, Carmel and Big Sur Excursion

Experience the glories of the California coast cruising scenic 17-Mile Drive past the famed Lone Cypress Tree and Pebble Beach Golf Link before travelling to Big Sur. Then stop in the quaint village of Carmel-by-the-Sea. Browse the many shops, wander down to the water's edge or enjoy a cappuccino at a café. Then it's on to hidden coves with sandy beaches, towering redwoods touching the sky and dolphins and sea lions cavorting in the clear waters—Big Sur's natural majesty will take your breath away. Return to Monterey for a tour of Cannery Row, made famous by native Californian John Steinbeck. Enjoy some free time at lively, picturesque Fisherman's Wharf, home to restaurants, shops and vibrant street life, or join an optional tour to the world-renowned Monterey Bay Aquarium. Tonight, join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a festive Farewell Dinner including a wine pairing.

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast
Farewell Dinner

8. Monterey – Roaring Camp – Depart San Francisco

When Isaac Graham settled in the hills outside of Santa Cruz in the 1830s, Mexican authorities named his rowdy settlement “Roaring Camp.” Today, journey back in time to the era of lumberjacks and sawmills in a re-created 1880s logging camp, complete with a general store and railroad depot. Luckily, Graham and his lumberjacks didn't cut down the massive redwoods just minutes away in Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park. Walk among the awe-inspiring trees—some of the largest living things on earth—and admire these treasures of California. End your journey where you began, in the golden city of San Francisco. Take a transfer to San Francisco International Airport or return to the Hyatt Regency San Francisco, if you wish to extend your stay. 

Meal(s)
Full Breakfast

The Trafalgar Difference

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What's Included

Sightseeing Highlights

    • City tour of San Francisco

    • Visit the California State Railroad Museum, "The Salad Bowl of the World" in Salinas Valley, Lake Tahoe, breathtaking Yosemite National Park, Monterey, Roaring Camp and Henry Cowell Redwood State Park

    • See quaint Carmel, Big Sur and Napa Valley from the Napa Valley Wine Train

    • Scenic drive along spectacular 17-Mile Drive and ride on the Napa Valley Wine Train


What's Included

Dining

    • 7 full breakfasts.

    • 1 lunch.

    • 3 dinners
      (including Be My Guest).


What's Included

Travel Highlights

    • Luxury air-conditioned coach with WiFi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)

    • Hand-picked 4 and 5 star accommodation

    • Hand-picked Insider Experiences

    • Optional Experiences and free time

    • All porterage and restaurant gratuities

    • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras

    • An expert Travel Director and separate Driver

    • All hotel tips, charges and local taxes

    • Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday

    • VIP entry to many sights

    • Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing

    • 7 nights First Class accommodation


    Airport Transfers

  • Specific transfer information can be found on the airport transfers page


Why Trafalgar?

The Trafalgar Experience

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Enjoy

Enjoy the wonder of travel, crisscrossing the globe through the seasons. On effortless adventures in breathtaking new horizons, forge lifelong friendships and memories. Our lovingly crafted itineraries are a fascinating mosaic of cultures, flavours, festivals and local stories. We’re with you all the way, guiding you and ensuring you experience the real thing: the sheer love of travel, entirely hassle-free.


sunset heart

Love... Travel

"Is simply the best way to position what our guests love to experience and what we love to deliver" - Gavin Tollman CEO


Meet

Meet warm-hearted locals and like-minded travellers. Along your journey of discovery, stop to share stories and flavours with local farmers, chefs and winemakers. Pause to admire the handicrafts and rich traditions of amazing artisans. Explore the essence of Europe through captivating accounts shared by expert historians and savvy local guides.


Taste

Travelling with your tastebuds, treating them to new flavours, spices and textures along the way. From the very first breakfast to the last nightcap, travelling through Europe indulges your palate, with every meal an opportunity to discover regional fare. Savour each new flavour, try the local tipple and take home fresh culinary inspiration. Let us share our love for food and hospitality with you.


Unwind

Once you've packed your suitcase, we take care of the rest, removing all your concerns so that you can be secure in the knowledge that an award-winning global company with an impeccable reputation has taken care of every little detail. We arrange everything you'll need along your journey - meals, accommodation and travel logistics, because we are with you all the way. Travel the world with peace of mind, knowing you’re in the hands of Trafalgar.


Guest Reviews and Ratings

  • Guest Service Rating from 34 Reviews

  • Trip:

    Service:

    Service rating : Our tour director Patrice was very knowledgeable about the area--she kept us informed as we traveled, & was well organized. Our bus driver Angel was great, very skillful. The stops along the way were timed just right & interesting, & the hotels were very nice. There were a number

  • Trip:

    Service:

    Service rating : Excellent trip. Well set up. Travel Director and Bus Driver were exceptional.Product : Very pleased. A lot of planning and thought went into this vacation. The smallest of details were attended to.

  • Trip:

    Service:

    Service rating : Driver was excellent. Tour Guide was very good, but some times he provided us with too much history, not enough information about what we were actually looking at.Product : would have liked more time in Tahoe and Yosemite

  • Trip:

    Service:

    Service rating : This is my 3rd Trafalgar Tour and my wife and I enjoyed it very much. The accommodation was first class along with the provided meals. Joeseph our tour guide was very knowledgable and always willing to assist with any questions. Joseph's little snacks on the bus was the touch he

  • Trip:

    Service:

    Service rating : Great! I thought the tour with a guide in the "salad bowl" was an interesting addition.Product : Had a great time, but would have liked two more days on tour to have free time in Tahoe and Yosemite. We could have seen more of the areas and it would have given us a little

Northern California

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8 Days, 1 Country, 9 Cities

Northern California

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Starts

San Francisco, USA

Ends

San Francisco, USA

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  • Twin-share option
  • Land only price
  • Flights available

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i Please read our Trip Notes before booking

iNotes
  • Trip prices are per person, land only, based on double occupancy and reflect applicable discount. Discounts are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice.
  • Trip prices are correct at the time of the products going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however are subject to change - please confirm all details at time of booking.
  • For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Website Terms of Use page.
  • Twin-share option not available for trips to South America, Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey. It's also not available on Small Group trips.  Guided Vacations included in this restriction are Newfoundland and Labrador (DNLA) as well as Panama, the Canal & Beyond (LPAN).  
  • For trips that are part of our Guaranteed Room Share, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 

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