While there is plenty to do in San Francisco, sometimes it is nice to get out of the city and discover the other beautiful places in Northern California. With its location, there are many overnight trips from San Francisco that make for a quick, yet relaxing, escape. So, pack your bags and plan for an overnight getaway to these nearby locations.
Monterey & Carmel
Home to the famous Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey is just under two hours from the Golden Gate Hotel and is one of the best overnight trips from San Francisco. This small coastal town is also home to several wineries, plenty of scenic views, whale watching, and the famous historic Cannery Row. Visit the Monterey peninsula’s south side and explore the artful Carmel-by-the-Sea. Stroll white sandy beaches, wind-carved bluffs, and Point Lobos State Park, plus visit a piece of history at the Carmel Mission. Both Monterey and Carmel offer a variety of restaurants, shops, and galleries.
No trip to California’s northern region is complete without a visit to wine country. Between Napa and Sonoma Valley, you have what seems to be an endless supply of wineries and tasting rooms. Both Napa and Sonoma Valley are home to just over 400 wineries. Napa Valley is a bit more touristy and more expensive. Sonoma Valley cares less about tourism and more about wine and tends to be less expensive, overall. Napa is two hours from San Francisco, and Sonoma is slightly under two hours from San Francisco.
Yosemite National Park
For those who seek the outdoors and are looking to soak up a bit of mother nature during their vacation, then a visit to Yosemite National Park is a must. Right at three hours, the trip to Yosemite National Park is one of our favorite overnight trips from San Francisco. Discover ancient sequoia trees, the massive Bridalveil Falls, and the impressive granite cliffs of El Capitan and Half Dome. Plus, be sure to stop in at the Yosemite Museum and Ansel Adams Gallery, where a collection of Ansel Adam’s photographs are displayed.
For some of the greatest unspoiled beaches in Northern California, visit Point Reyes National Seashore. Discover natural beauty less than an hour outside of San Francisco. With 11 miles of rough coastline free of buildings and no development, all you will find is just beach and ocean. Be sure to visit the Point Reyes Lighthouse, Drakes Beach that features sheer, white cliffs that tower over the Pacific, and the Cypress Tree Tunnel – one of our San Francisco bucket list items.
Enjoy the surf, old carnival rides, and one-of-a-kind vintage shopping in the quiet beach town of Santa Cruz. With wide, flat sandy beaches and a beautiful surf, Santa Cruz makes for a great beach destination away from the city. Due to its decent surf, the shoreline of Santa Cruz is often a great place to spot local surfers catching a wave. Be sure to also spend some time along the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. The mile-long boardwalk offers shops, restaurants, carnival games, and an amusement park. Santa Cruz is about a 90-minute drive from San Francisco.
Stay at the Golden Gate Hotel
Make the Golden Gate Hotel your home base for exploring the city and these overnight trips from San Francisco. Choose from 23 cozy and comfortable guest rooms that are uniquely decorated with antiques, original art, and welcoming hospitality. Guests enjoy a complimentary breakfast every morning, afternoon tea, convenient parking, and more amenities to make your stay the best it can be. Start planning your getaway and book your stay with us today!