12-day/11-night escorted coach tourTauck Gold Coast 2016 map

This wonderful 12 day/11 night escorted coach tour with Tauck Tours includes the very best of the Golden State.  The “Golden State” refers to the riches discovered in 1848, but the state’s gems extend beyond the bounds of Gold Rush Country and this popular Tauck tour includes San Diego, Hollywood/Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, the Big Sur Coast, Monterey, Yosemite National Park and San Francisco.  Sit back, relax and experience the California Gold Coast on this leisurely escorted tour with America’s number one tour operator!

 Tauck logo 2013Tauck front cover 2016



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  • Day 1. Arrive San Diego
    Day 2. San Diego
    Day 3. Los Angeles, Hollywood
    Day 4. Los Angeles, “The Getty”, Santa Barbara
    Day 5. Santa Barbara, “The American Riviera”
    Day 6. Wine Country and Highway 101, Morro Bay
    Day 7. Hearst Castle, the Big Sur coastline, Monterey.
    Day 8. The Monterey Peninsula & romantic Carmel-by-the-Sea.
    Day 9. California’s Central Valley, Yosemite National Park.
    Day 10. Yosemite National Park
    Day 11. Historic Jamestown, San Francisco.
    Day 12. Depart San Francisco.

    Tauck Value Includes:

    √ Arrival and departure airport transfers in California.
    √ Dedicated services of the same professional Tauck Tour Director and driver for the entire tour.
    √ Insider guided tour of the San Diego Zoo.
    √ A tram tour of Yosemite Valley.
    √ Travel the coastline along the amazing Pacific Coast Highway – one of the world’s outstanding drives.
    √ Overnight stay in the heart of San Francisco at historic Union Square.
    √ Central Coast vineyard tour and wine tasting.
    √ Walking tour with a naturalist in Morro Bay.
    √ Private champagne dinner cruise aboard a yacht in San Diego.
    √ 2-night stays in San Diego, Santa Barbara, Monterey & Yosemite National Park.
    √ Insider Yosemite stories during filmed narratives from filmmaker Ken Burns.
    √ All sightseeing, excursions and entrance fees as per the itinerary.
    √ All customary gratuities for hotel and restaurant staff and local guides are included.

    √ Premium accommodation in San Diego, Los Angeles (Pasadena), Santa Barbara, Morro Bay, Monterey, Yosemite National Park and San Francisco.

    √ 11 breakfasts (B), 6 Lunches (L), and 9 Dinners (D)

  • San Diego skyline copy
    San Diego

    Day 1.  Arrive in San Diego, a city of blue skies & a majestic coastline.    Tauck’s ultimate California tour begins at The US Grant hotel at 5:30 PM. A transfer is included from San Diego International Airport to the US Grant hotel, a sumptuously restored city icon since 1910. Join us in celebrating your arrival in this Southern California mecca of palm trees, Mediterranean weather, miles of beaches and casualness with a reception and a la carte dinner at the hotel.  Lodging:  The US Grant. Meals D.

    Day 2. A day in San Diego… eclectic city life & unforgettable view.  Your day begins with an insider guided tour of the renowned San Diego Zoo. Then enjoy an entertaining and educational city tour, taking in the eclectic Gaslamp Quarter, where a mix of Victorian-era buildings and modern skyscrapers offer cultural, dining and downtown-living options, and the gorgeous harbor area. At Point Loma, where the first European expedition landed on the coast of California in 1542, you’ll find a peninsula known today for luxurious neighborhoods on the Bay side and pounding surf and tide pools on the Pacific Ocean side. Continuing on to the Juan Cabrillo National Monument, you’ll discover a national park offering unforgettable views of both the city’s natural surroundings and skyline. At Seaport Village, the visual pleasures are joined by live music, street artists and dining options, where you’ll have time to explore on your own. Evening kicks off with a champagne reception and dinner aboard a private yacht; enjoy a private cruise of San Diego harbor for Tauck guests only.  Lodging: The US Grant. Meals B, D

    Hollywood sign CTTC

    Day 3. A legendary California mission… and on to Los Angeles’ hot spots.  Heading north towards Los Angeles, your first stop is at the restored Mission San Juan Capistrano, a “jewel of the missions,” founded in 1776 by Padre Junipero Serra.  Built as a vast quadrangle of adobe bricks, the mission was self-sufficient – housing provisions, gardens, workrooms and living and dining spaces for priests, local Indian converts and soldiers. Although the Mission’s Great Stone Church tragically collapsed in the earthquake of 1812, the Serra Chapel – containing a gold-leafed retablo carved by Spanish artisans behind the altar – remains, along with the legendary swallows who return to the mission grounds each March from their winter home in Argentina. Time for lunch follows at another legendary L.A. location, the Los Angeles Farmers Market, where fresh produce stands, shops and restaurants have made this a perfect destination for great dining and people watching since 1934. From here, a city tour offers an overview of this diverse metropolis including Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills and in the historic TCL Chinese Theatre, where celebrity autographs, handprints and footprints – even Jimmy Durante’s nose – are immortalized in concrete. Lodging: The Langham Huntington, Pasadena, Los Angeles Meals B, D

    Day 4. Los Angeles and beyond… from inspirational “The Getty” to graceful Santa Barbara.  A visit to The Getty Museum, set hilltop in the Santa Monica Mountains, brings together the disparate elements of the Los Angeles landscape: ocean, mountains and the urban street grid. Together they were the inspiration for this modernist complex of curvilinear design and natural gardens, designed by architect Richard Meier. Inside, on a self-guided tour, you’ll find easy inspiration in its collections of European paintings, drawings, sculpture and photography – along with the views. From the museum, your California odyssey heads north to Santa Barbara, where Sunday afternoons mean a beachside tradition of eclectic arts and crafts shows, produced strictly by local artists. Enjoy a stroll under the palms and along picturesque Stearns Wharf, where pelicans put on a show of their own, before checking into your resort. Dinner is at leisure in your choice of resort restaurants. Lodging: Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara Meals B, D

    Santa Barbara 2
    Santa Barbara

    Day 5. Savoring Santa Barbara, the “American Riviera”.  On a city tour, you’ll get a feel for the quiet Santa Barbara beach community that’s long been a celebrity hideaway, with a stop to tour the city’s still-functioning 1929 Courthouse. The Spanish-Moorish structure is surrounded by lush gardens. Inside you’ll find a Mural Room depicting scenes of the community’s past, masterfully painted by a largely self-taught artist whose illustrations appeared in the novels of Joseph Conrad and Jack London. Next, a visit to the graceful Mission Santa Barbara introduces this city icon – a still-active Franciscan parish after 225 years. After a downtown lunch, you’ll have time to take advantage of your lovely oceanfront resort or perhaps explore Santa Barbara’s downtown district.
    Lodging: Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara.  Meals B, L

    Santa Barbara vineyard
    Santa Barbara vineyard

    Day 6. Wine country and scenic highway 101.  Get ready for scenic delights as you pass through rolling hills on this morning’s road trip along coastal Highway 101. Entering the Central California wine region, you’ll find microclimates where morning fog and ocean breezes encourage varieties such as pinot noir and chardonnay, and others where low-lying mountains are ideal for full-bodied reds – as you’ll learn on a vineyard tour and tasting. Lunch follows at a restaurant overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Pismo Beach, known for long white beaches and ocean views. Near the fishing village of Morro Bay, join our naturalist guide for a walking tour of this rich habitat for birds and wildlife.  Lodging: The Inn at Morro Bay. Meals B, L, D

    Hearst Castle Neptune pool Tauck
    Hearst Castle Neptune pool

    Day 7.Drama, from Hearst Castle to the Big Sur Coastline.  Morning begins with a guided walking tour at Hearst Castle, a national and California Historical Landmark in San Simeon. This elaborate estate, created for newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst, takes you back to an era of opulent entertaining – and the fictional paradise of Xanadu, featured in Orson Welles’ film Citizen Kane. Afterward, nature’s opulence impresses as you drive along the famed Big Sur Coast. Breathtaking sights continue as you travel Highway 1, following the drama of the Pacific Coast Highway from hundreds of feet above powerfully crashing surf and magnificently remote, rocky beaches. Continue on to the small coastal city of Monterey, where you’ll dine at leisure at your hotel on pristine Monterey Bay.  Lodging: InterContinental The Clement Monterey. Meals B, L, D

    Big Sur coast

    Day 8. The Monterey Peninsula & romantic Carmel-by-the-Sea.  Today’s tour of the Monterey Peninsula encompasses the beauty of Pacific Grove, famed 17-Mile Drive and Pebble Beach, before arriving in Carmel by the Sea, called one of the “most romantic cities of the world” by Travel + Leisure. Enjoy time to explore and find an appealing spot for lunch, before heading off to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The award-winning exhibits at the aquarium will is an amazing learning experience – you’ll discover the unexpected delights of marine life, from cuttlefish to whales and other ocean critters. Lodging: InterContinental The Clement Monterey. Meals B

    Yosemite Half Dome
    Yosemite National Park

    Day 9. Through California’s Central Valley to Yosemite.  Agriculture takes center stage today as you drive through the farms, orchards and vineyards of California’s expansive Central Valley. Abundant sunshine, superb soil, and year-round growing conditions make this an incredibly important crop-basket for American households, including broccoli, chard, asparagus, pistachios, pomegranate trees and many, many more. From the valley, your route continues on to the oak-lined roadways and Victorian-era towns of porches, storefronts and saloons of Gold Country. In 1848, news of this precious metal spread like wildfire, leading to explosive population growth. First came the men, seeking their fortune in mining; the merchants, bankers and women followed, catering to their needs. At the Mariposa Museum & History Center, you’ll stop to learn about those who shaped this area and witness a reenactment of 19th-century stamp milling – an invaluable tool for early gold miners who needed to extract the precious material from bits of rock. Late afternoon, you’ll arrive at your Sierra resort at the South Gate to Yosemite National Park, where dinner at leisure awaits.   Lodging: Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite. Meals B, L, D

    Day 10. Yosemite National Park.  Sometimes called a “freak of nature,” Yosemite Valley is only seven miles long and less than a mile wide. Yet contained within its sheer, high walls is an array of astonishing nature: world-famous cliffs like El Capitan and Half Dome; plunging waterfalls like Bridalveil Falls; wildly peaceful meadows, and the meandering Merced River. Get acquainted with these remarkable sights today on a tram tour, accompanied by a national park guide. Following lunch at historic Wawona Village, inside the park, you’ll have free time to spend as you please in the Yosemite Valley; options (some at additional cost) include hikes, bicycle rentals, and visits to the Yosemite Valley Museum and the adjacent reconstructed Indian Village of Ahwahnee. A transfer will be provided to those who prefer to return to Tenaya Lodge and enjoy the resort’s amenities.  Lodging: Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite. Meals B, L, D

    San Francisco cable car
    San Francisco

    Day 11. Visit to historic Jamestown and on to San Francisco.  On your way to the incomparable city by the bay, visit Jamestown for lunch at the historic National Hotel built during the height of the Gold Rush period. Our memorable California tour arrives in San Francisco late this afternoon, with time to rest, relax, or explore the landmark area surrounding Union Square. Your hotel is in a vibrant retail and cultural area in the heart of the city – and at your doorstep you’ll discover a favorite city square where you might just see musicians, artists, or speakers doing what they do best. We invite you to join us this evening for a farewell reception and dinner at your hotel.
    Lodging: The Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square. Meals B, L, D

    Day 12. Journey home. Your California tour with Tauck ends in San Francisco. Fly home anytime. A transfer from The Westin St. Francis San Francisco on Union Square to the San Francisco International Airport is included; you should allow a minimum of two hours for flight check-in. Meals B

     Just America will be pleased to assist with transatlantic flights, additional pre and post tour accommodation and onward travel to other destinations within North America. Call Just America for tour availability on 01489 892329 or email enquiries@justamerica.co.uk

  • 12 Day/11 night escorted tour
    Tour prices in £’s per person based
    on two adults sharing a double room
    27 Apr-11 May Sold out
    18, 25 May: 01 Jun 3355
    08 Jun & 14 Sep 3765
    22 Jun: 06 Jul: 17, 31 Aug:  07, 28 Sep: 05, 19 Oct 3355
    Prices include:
    11-nights hotel accommodation, 26 meals, escorted coach tour transportation, transfers, excursions as per the itinerary.


    Prices for single and triple room occupation available on request.  Triples are accommodated at most hotels in either two beds or a king plus a rollaway: due to fire codes rooms are restricted to two beds.

    Just America will be pleased to assist with transatlantic flights, additional pre and post tour accommodation and onward travel to other destinations within North America. Call Just America for tour availability on 01489 892329 or email enquiries@justamerica.co.uk

  • View the Tauck Booking Conditions