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Old 06-02-2013, 06:50 AM   #1
atomicgirl
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LA to Monterey; question about route, timing

Eventually we will have to leave DLR

It will be on a Thursday. We want to go from LA to Monterey, and I have been looking at places we can stop along the way to break the monotony & stretch our legs.

Here's what I'd like to do, and would appreciate feedback as to whether it is is possible, and if the timing is even close to accurate (I am worried about traffic).

Leg 1: DLR to Santa Barbara
We would like to be in Santa Barbara by 9am.
Google Maps suggests I5/CA-134/US-101 as a route, and says it will take 2 hours.
I suspect that leaving at 7am is way too late because of rush hour.
So, how early should we really be on the road, and is that the route we should take, or is there a better one? And how long should we really expect to be on the road?
We figure we will take a little time to walk around the Santa Barbara mission, maybe the courthouse, and be back on the road by 10am.

Leg 2: Santa Barbara to San Simeon (Hearst Castle)
looks like it would take about 2.5 hrs on the road...I was thinking of allowing an extra hour cushion to allow for delays and trying to schedule a tour around 1:30pm. Is that cutting it too close? Is 2-3 hours enough time to see everything (too much?)

Leg 3: San Simeon to Monterey
another 2.5 hrs. We plan on driving along CA-1. good idea? figure the views will be spectacular. All we have to do is make it to our hotel. Is there a rush hour in this area?

Thanks for your help!!
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Last edited by atomicgirl; 06-02-2013 at 07:10 AM.
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:16 AM   #2
atomicgirl
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*bump*

anyone?
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Old 06-04-2013, 01:44 PM   #3
Huff
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I-5 NB can have heavy rush hour traffic between DLR and downtown LA from 6:30am until 9:30am. 101 WB can also have heavy traffic in scattered parts until west of Oxnard. For this reason we often take I-5 NB to CA-126 EB to 101. I-5 NB north of the 101 usually doesn't have bad traffic in the mornings and CA-126 doesn't get heavy traffic. This route is 18 miles further than I-5/101 route but avoids much of the congestion. I-5 NB to downtown LA is tough to avoid rush hour. Not sure if 57 to 60 or 210 would have any better traffic.

We just made this drive last week on way to San Francisco. We drove I-10/210/I-5/126 from Palm Springs with a stop in Santa Barbara. We left Palm Springs at 7:30am so rush hour was over by the time we hit the trouble spots.
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Old 06-04-2013, 06:10 PM   #4
GrandBob
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atomicgirl View Post
Eventually we will have to leave DLR

It will be on a Thursday. We want to go from LA to Monterey, and I have been looking at places we can stop along the way to break the monotony & stretch our legs.

Here's what I'd like to do, and would appreciate feedback as to whether it is is possible, and if the timing is even close to accurate (I am worried about traffic).

Leg 1: DLR to Santa Barbara
Can't help here, sorry.

Leg 2: Santa Barbara to San Simeon (Hearst Castle)
looks like it would take about 2.5 hrs on the road...I was thinking of allowing an extra hour cushion to allow for delays and trying to schedule a tour around 1:30pm. Is that cutting it too close? Is 2-3 hours enough time to see everything (too much?)
Not sure what you mean by this. You can only see things in Hearst Castle during your tour. Afterwards, the shuttle bus takes you back to the visitor center, where there's a gift shop and some displays, but nothing much to occupy your time. You can spend time in San Simeon, though. There are some sea lions and nice beaches. But other than that, your time is determined by the amount of time that the tour takes.

Leg 3: San Simeon to Monterey
another 2.5 hrs. We plan on driving along CA-1. good idea? figure the views will be spectacular. All we have to do is make it to our hotel. Is there a rush hour in this area?

CA 1 along the Big Sur coast is spectacular! One of the best drives in the country. Yes, it's a good idea But you may want to leave yourself more time than that. That 2.5 hours is for straight-through driving, with no stops. That would be a crime against nature. Seriously, leave yourself about 4 hours. Longer, if you want to stop to eat. Nepenthe's has views to die for, but it's pretty pricey. Similar comments apply to the Post Ranch Inn

Yes, Monterey has a rush hour. But it's nothing at all like Los Angeles. Between 5 and 6pm, it will take you an extra 5 or 10 minutes to get from Carmel to Monterey. That's about it.


Thanks for your help!!
You're welcome,
Bob
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