traveling to california alone

The Ultimate Guide to Traveling to California Alone

If you’re planning on traveling to California alone and could do with a helping hand, this go-to guide will ease you along every step of the way.

Planning a trip alone can be a little daunting, but if you plan efficiently then your nerves will soon give way to excitement.

Traveling to California Alone

1) Where to Go

When you’re traveling to California alone, it’s essential to do your research! You’ll need to consider the places that are safest to travel to and which parts of The Sunshine State are most appealing to you.

After doing some research ourselves, we found that San Diego was one of the most highly recommended places to visit when you’re traveling to California alone.

San Diego

San Diego is one of California’s safest cities, with a warm and welcoming sense of community to help you feel more relaxed and at home as a solo traveller.

traveling to california alone

Home to miles of sandy, sun-kissed beaches and an array of attractions to discover, San Diego is one of the most beautiful places in California to spend some time exploring its parks, zoo, museums and scenery at your leisure.

San Francisco

San Francisco is another fantastic location to visit when you’re traveling to California alone, thanks to its spectacular coastline, dazzling attractions and vibrant, urban atmosphere.

traveling to california alone

Take in breathtaking views as you walk the Golden Gate Bridge, wander Chinatown’s historic alleyways, soak up art and culture in San Fran’s galleries and photograph the city’s colourful and creative street art.

Los Angeles

A Californian adventure wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the City of Angels, Los Angeles. One of the most famous cities in the United States, Los Angeles is best-loved for its Hollywood hills, A list celebrities and sandy beaches.

traveling to california alone

The city is home to an immersive contrast of rolling valleys and vast wilderness, intertwined with eclectic architecture, urban nightlife and a unique, exciting energy.

While visiting LA alone, you’ll need to be prepared to hire a car or spend some money on Ubers to really take in all that this huge city has to offer. It might be more intimidating than some of its Californian neighbours, but it’s definitely a place you need to visit on your travels.


Yosemite is one of America’s most iconic natural parks, welcoming visitors to admire its majestic scenery.

From dramatic waterfalls and spectacular cliffs, to Yosemite’s famous giant sequoias and abundance of wildlife, this breathtaking national park is the perfect setting to embrace your sense of adventure.

traveling to california alone

If you’re exploring Yosemite alone, we recommend camping for accommodation. Depending on what you want out of your solo trip, camping means you can make your stay as sociable as you like. You’d have an opportunity to spend time relaxing and enjoy your solitude, but you’re also likely to have fellow campers nearby, which should make you feel safer.


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2) Where to Stay


California is home to a range of hostels to choose from, which are ideal if you’re traveling to California alone. Whether you’re after a hostel that provides a private room or a more sociable dormitory, you’ll find an extensive selection out there to book online.

Hostels are also great for getting to know people if you’d prefer to have a group to experience California’s nightlife with. Most hostels have a lounge area or communal dining space where you can easily integrate with other groups of travellers or solo travellers like yourself!


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Another recommendation for accommodation when traveling to California alone is Airbnb. This can be a safe, sociable and exciting experience when traveling to somewhere new. If you pick a host with multiple glowing reviews, you can usually expect your stay to run smoothly.

Airbnb offers the chance to experience a city like a local by staying in a house or apartment. You can choose to have the entire place to yourself, share some of the space with other travellers, or choose a house that your host lives in too.

Again, this all comes down to the type of experience you’re looking for as a solo traveller. You may prefer to have the place to yourself and enjoy your own company – you’ll still need to meet your host when you arrive, so they are still likely to be able to provide some local recommendations for sightseeing or food and drink.

Similarly, if you stay in the Airbnb with your host, many are happy to spend time with guests and share recommendations. They may even offer to show you around!


3) Transport while Traveling to California Alone

Road Trips

If you’re traveling to California alone, the easiest way to do so is probably by car hire.

Popular routes for traveling California alone by car or van include:

  • Las Vegas to Yosemite
  • San Francisco to Yosemite
  • Los Angeles to San Francisco
  • Los Angeles to Las Vegas
  • San Diego to Palm Springs
  • Redwood Highway – Oregon Border to Leggett
  • Pacific Coast Highway, end to end
  • Lake Tahoe to Yosemite National Park
  • Napa Valley’s Silverado Trail
  • Joshua Tree to Death Valley

It’s well worth doing your research into California’s best routes for road trips. Some are made up of long, open roads and dramatic scenery, while others have more stops along the way to enjoy busy cities and attractions.


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Amtrak also offers a range of options for traveling California by train and connecting buses. Cities covered by Amtrak include San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Sacramento.

If you intend on seeing California’s most breathtaking scenery, Amtrak can also take you to national parks, deserts, wineries and beaches.

Amtrak trains have a fantastic observation window so you can take in breathtaking scenery right from the comfort of your seat.

Plus, the tours stop off at key locations along the way so you can spend time exploring the outdoors in the fresh air.

Traveling to California Alone

We hope you’ve found our guide to traveling to California alone helpful for your trip!

Don’t miss our guide to Amazing Singles Vacations for over 30s here.

Provided by Victory 4×4


Jess is an experienced writer who loves to write about fashion, female empowerment and everything in between!

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