Californian Roadtrip, Las Vegas & NYC
Hi Guys & Gals,
So I’m not long back from a trip of a lifetime! I haven’t done a travel post in forever, but I’m hoping to post more often on some of my favourite trips.
Over easter myself & 3 of my friends went on a 12 day adventure across the states. We went from SAN FRANCISCO -YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK – LOS ANGELES – LAS VEGAS – NEW YORK.
Im going to break down each stop on our trip, and let you how we traveled, where we stayed & what we got upto.
So we flew…
London- San Francisco
Las Vegas- New York
In total our flights cost roughly €600. I booked them about 6 months previous & used Skyscanner.
Skycanner is honestly one my most used apps on my phone. I searched different departure airports looking for the cheapest options, between cork & Dublin and also direct flights to San Fran, the cheapest option was to fly out of Dublin & back into cork……so if you are doing a few stops on your trip look up the multi city option when searching flights, you’ll be amazed at the different prices available.
We stayed in a variety of hotels on our travels, most of them 4 star hotels. I booked them all on booking.com this is an amazing site for accommodation as often you can have free cancellation or pay on arrival.
I have a link for 10% off your stay below. Once you book, you’ll get a 10% refund!
We had 12 nights accommodation on our trip and it worked out at roughly €450 per person which I found was very reasonable. We had the option of staying in cheaper hotels in certain areas, but location is key on this type of trip & because there was 4 of us it made it more affordable.
Where we stayed…
San Francisco – Grand Hyatt San Francisco Union Square
This hotel was so reasonable & the location was amazing. It didn’t look fantastic online, but when we arrived we were delighted & the staff were so friendly. I would definitely stay there again
Yosemite National Park- Yosemite View Lodge
Yosemite was definitely the hardest place to find accommodation. I did a lot of research of where to stay in Yosemite & my best advice is stay as close to Yosemite valley as possible. This hotel was roughly 15 minute drive from the Valley, which had multiple hotels restaurants & ever so important Starbucks! Again this hotel didn’t look great online & was much nicer when we arrived. Most of the hotels there are very rustic & basic….so don’t expect too much glamour if you plan on visiting.
Santa Monica LA – Huntley Santa Monica Beach
The Huntley hotel was out of this world, I was surprised that it was only a 4 star as the hotel itself, rooms & customer service were amazing. It was just off Santa Monica beach & about 15 minute walk from Santa Monica pier. This hotel was the most expensive one we stayed in, but Santa
Monica itself is very expensive for accommodation etc.
Las Vegas- MGM Grand Las Vegas
The MGM Grand is also a lovely hotel. Ive stayed here a few times before & its great location to see some DJ’s in the nightclubS & poolparties. It is on the edge of the strip, but in Vegas the hotels are so big it doesn’t entirely matter where your hotel is situated as the taxis are so cheap there & theres also a monorail train that runs behind on the hotels that you can hop on if you fancy visiting other hotels & theres always UBER.
New York- Hotel Hugo Soho
This was my first time staying in Soho, I usually stay closer to Times Square when Im in NYC. This is a small boutique hotel, I was a little disappointed with the rooms in comparison to how they looked online. Most hotel rooms are small but this room was miniature. It was situated on the outskirts of Soho, so next time I would deffo try get something a little more central if possible.
We hired a Jeep from Argus Car Hire in San Fransisco. I shopped around online & found they were the cheapest available. For the 6 days car hire it cost us around €250. If travelling with a group be sure to check how many suitcases it can take, as before I ran into this issue with having too much luggage (as I tend not to travel too light!)
We drove from San Fran- Yosemite National Park…….this took us just over 4 hours due to rush hour traffic ( which starts around 3pm)
We then drove from Yosemite National Park – Santa Monica & this took around 6 hours, we left really early in the morning as to avoid any traffic this time!
Lastly we set on our final drive from Santa Monica to Las Vegas……this was the hardest Journey. It was meant to take just over 4 hours & eventually took us nearly 7 hours due to traffic…..again rush hour starts around 3pm. We then said our goodbyes to our Jeep & hit Vegas for the weekend!
This was my first time visiting San Fransisco & I have to say I fell in love with the city. It was a really chilled out place, with so much to do. These are the main places that we visited.
- Golden Gate Bridge
- Twin Peaks
- The Painted Ladies
- Haight Ashbury
- Pier 39
- Fishersman Warf
We spent two nights in Yosemite & it was plenty for us. We had to see some gorgeous waterfalls & went on some lovely hikes……but if your not into the outdoors then this isn’t for you.
This was my second time visiting Santa Monica, and it is honestly one of my favourite places. It such a chilled out atmosphere there & the sun is always shining. We didn’t do a huge pile in Santa Monica, it was a relaxing few days.
We visited Santa Monica Pier, such a fab spot…..the sunset is something else! We cycled down to Venice beach which took about 15 minutes. WE drove upto the Hollwood sign & visited Beverlly Hills & rodeo drive.
We didn’t do many touristy things in Vegas as we had been there before. We got to see a few DJ’s live & went to some pool parties! The weather was just reaching 30 degrees which was so nice, as in the past I had been there in the summer & it was roasting.
The weather wasn’t great in NYC when we visited, so it limited what we go do. Im going to do a separate blog post on New York soon with all my recommendations. But this is what we got upto on this trip…..
- Times Square
- Central Park
- 5th Avenue
- Dumbo Park
- 230th rooftop bar
Anyway that was it for our trip! We got see some amazing places & had the best time. If you’ve any questions about anywhere on our trip please do send me a message & ill get back to you. Hope you guys enjoyed & hopefully ill get around to doing some more travel posts soon. Also if you are booking any accommodation through booking.com & would like to save 10% off your stay, don’t forget to use my link. SAVE 10% ON BOOKING.COM