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5 1/2 day SF/Monterey/Muir/Sonoma/Tahoe itinerary?

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SE
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5 1/2 day SF/Monterey/Muir/Sonoma/Tahoe itinerary?

Wife and are traveling to the area the last week of June arriving on a Saturday morning. Our thought is to fly into SFO and using the city as our base do the following itinerary (no rental car in SF, staying at Fisherman's Wharf):

Sat--afternoon 1/2 day city tour and bay cruise (bus/boat)

Sun--Monterey/Carmel tour by bus

Mon--Muir Woods/Sausalito/Alcatraz tour (bus/boat)

Tue--city walking tour in morning, one way rental car in afternoon to Sonoma/Wine country tour staying in Sonoma

Wed--morning wine country, then afternoon drive of rental car to S. Lake Tahoe

Thur--Lake Tahoe drive around in rental car then drive to Reno

Fri--leave from Reno early am, drop rental car

1. Does this sound like a reasonable itinerary for the time period we are there? Suggestions, if any?

2. Are the bus tours good? Any company preferred?

Thanks in advance.

California
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1. Re: 5 1/2 day SF/Monterey/Muir/Sonoma/Tahoe itinerary?

If this end of June trip includes the 4th of July weekend then Tahoe will be very crowded over that weekend. By leaving on Thurs you may be able to avoid some of the crowd. Don't drive toward Tahoe City or Incline on that Thursday if you want to avoid possible traffic issues.

Mokelumne Hill, CA
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2. Re: 5 1/2 day SF/Monterey/Muir/Sonoma/Tahoe itinerary?

Lord.

We did something like this with our son and his fiancee. SF to Monterey to Yosemite to the Mother Lode (where we live) back to Sacramento (where they flew into and out of) in eight days.

It was not much fun for me, but that may have been because I was doing all the driving.

SF to Monterey/Carmel by bus is close to two hours one way.

Your trip from the wine country to Tahoe is likely to take about four hours minimum, and possibly more like five. If you're talking South Tahoe, the drive from there to Reno is close to an hour as well.

This is strictly my personal feeling -- I'm a native Californian who spends at least one weekend a month in SF doing something fun, and my wife has lived here for just over four years (she's from the midwest). I would spend more time in and around the City, and I'd skip the Monterey leg entirely -- it's too much travel for too little enjoyment.

It sounds like your flight is set -- flying into SF and out of Reno -- so the Sonoma leg is fine, but I'd plan on doing the Muir Woods/Sausolito leg along the way to Sonoma. In other words, spend Monday doing the Alcatraz trip and then spend the rest of the day in SF. Then get up Tuesday, go to Muir Woods, and then continue on to Sonoma. If your flights aren't set, then again, I'd spend more time in Sonoma or SF, and then head back to SF to catch your flight home.

You could substitute the Monterey/Carmel leg for the Sonoma leg -- they're in opposite directions. There are some pretty good wineries in the Monterey area, and some interesting things to see and do.

SE
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3. Re: 5 1/2 day SF/Monterey/Muir/Sonoma/Tahoe itinerary?

Thanks for the great info!