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Old 05-12-2021, 02:59 AM
 
Location: Seattle
42 posts, read 10,455 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew in Jersey View Post
Greetings All,

Hoping for sound advice on better vacation option for a family of 5, children 15, 14, and 11. Love the idea of both. We will do some mild/midlevel hiking. have been to all places myself, but children have not. Unfortunately, news media on the east coast paints SF in rough light and it's been a while since I've been back. We do have some (distant) family in SF area, but not necessarily a huge factor.

Option 1: fly into Vegas, time there and then road trip to Grand Canyon and surrounding countryside.

Option 2: fly into San Francisco, time there and then road trip to Yosemite and PCH, including small towns, Big Sur.

Love the epic quality of both options ... Many thanks in advance.

(note: I mistakenly had posted this thread in the General US subforum because I hadn't realized this subforum existed.)
If you have children, I would prefer the Pacific Coast Highway and Yosemite. There are lots of stops along the way to get out, walk around, and sightseeing. The problem with going from Vegas to the Grand Canyon is that the drive is along the Interstate and it is bloody hot. There are very few stops that you can make, and if you get out of the car in the desert you will all bake.

There is also only one main highway between Vegas and the Grand Canyon. There was an accident on I-40 when I took my teenaged daughter and I had to detour on US-66. This took an extra 2 hours and it was a very long 12-hour round trip drive that I had to take in one day. Unless your kids really like tumbleweeds, and they can hold their bladder, there few stops and very little to see along the way. That said, the Grand Canyon is amazing, but it is a long boring drive for most of the way.

On the flip side, if someone in the car is nervous about heights and or on winding roads, I would avoid the PCH and prefer to go to either Yosemite and or the Grand Canyon. There are 1000 feet cliffs on the road, and it the PCH is very winding, so this should be a consideration too.

I am not trying to add this for confusion, but another amazing option is to fly into LA, stay at a theme park for one night (Disney?), hit Vegas for a night with a nice family-friendly pool (Mandalay Bay Pool?), and the next day spend a day or two in Zion National Park. Head north to Bryce Canyon National Park (2.5 hours) for a day (there are horseback rides in both Zion and Bryce for the kids).

Visit Arches National Park and stay in Moab for a day (there are Colorado River trips for kids in a gorgeous canyon, see https://www.moabadventurecenter.com/moab-with-kids).

Drive to Jackson Hole for an overnight stop (lots of kids activities see https://www.jacksonholewy.com/things...mily-friendly/), and drive along US 89 through Grand Teton National Park to Yellowstone National Park for several days. If you like to see wild animals, be sure to visit both Hayden and Lamar Valleys (see https://www.yellowstonenationalparkl...ily-itinerary/).

When you're done, drive and fly back from Salt Lake City. This area is just amazing if you like geology and want to maximize the number of National Parks. Yellowstone National Park is just amazing, especially if you like to see volcanic activity or wildlife. This is probably what I would do, but I also live next to the coastline and have seen a lot of mountains and beaches.

Just my take,

Last edited by gregory77; 05-12-2021 at 03:54 AM..
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Old 05-12-2021, 08:44 AM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
21,556 posts, read 22,705,678 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregory77 View Post
The problem with going from Vegas to the Grand Canyon is that the drive is along the Interstate and it is bloody hot. There are very few stops that you can make, and if you get out of the car in the desert you will all bake.
I recommend Hoover Dam though. That is cool.
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Old 05-12-2021, 08:57 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
27,825 posts, read 46,252,557 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCityDreamer View Post
I recommend Hoover Dam though. That is cool.
No tours at the moment iirc.

Being down in the turbine rooms of Hoover Dam is the only place I could handle near LV in mid summer. Or in the resort pools after dark. The pools all closed by 7pm last month when we were there.
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Old Yesterday, 05:08 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
27,825 posts, read 46,252,557 times
Reputation: 32469
If OP chooses PCH / SF north, there is the option of north Sierras / Lassen NP, Shasta, Lava Caves, Tahoe.... If coast is too cold.

Crater lake and Oregon Caves is not so far once you get north of Shasta.

Can also do a loop. Coast one way (preferably southbound for better view and safety)
Mtns northbound.
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Old Today, 05:49 PM
 
2,169 posts, read 633,957 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew in Jersey View Post
nights: apprxoimately 10-12. We have some flexibility

Mid July
Then don’t expect accommodation in any National Park.
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