All of these are must-see places when travelling to the West Coast of America, but this is far more than just a sightseeing tour. There's the Pacific Coast Highway, with mountains on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other. There's Mulholland Highway, Angeles Crest, and the Eldorado and Joshua Tree National Park roads - all as good as anything you’ll find in Europe. We've also got a few surprises up our sleeves – as you will have come to expect from us.
The 2013 trip takes us through three states: California, Arizona and Nevada. Every day brings something new. One day you have the Pacific Ocean, the next you’re in a desert. In fact, on day 6 we go from the over-the-top Las Vegas to the stunning (and hot) Death Valley, before ending up in a ski resort with temperature and altitude changes to match.
- Corvette Convertible
- Dodge Challenger RT
- Chevy Camaro SS Convertible
- Ford Mustang GT Premium
All excess mileage and insurance is prepaid by us, so the only vehicle expenses will be fuel and tolls.
This is a trip you simply cannot miss, but it is limited to 15 cars, so if you don’t book up early then you will regret it until 2014...
The tour runs from 28th September to 5th October 2013
Day 1 - San Francisco Airport to Monterey Bay - 109 miles
Arrive at San Francisco International Airport (SFO). You will be met at the car hire desk by your tour managers and allocated a car (to be shared between two people). Then it's a short drive over the mountains to Santa Cruz and then out to the beautiful Monterey Bay.
Day 2 - Monterey Bay to Santa Barbara - 255 miles
We begin the day with the first of our ‘up our sleeve’ treats: a visit to the famous Laguna Seca raceway to soak up the atmosphere. Driving south along the famous Pacific Coast Highway to Santa Barbara (southbound is by far the best direction for the PCH) there's plenty of time to pause and take in the sights, or we can just enjoy driving with each other in true Petrolhead Nirvana style. We’ll break off PCH to to check our sleeve again (we’ll keep this one a secret for now). Back on track, there are long sweeping bends and other more technical sections - and always a stunning ocean view. We end the day just outside Los Angeles at Santa Barbara, where we stay at a stunning beachfront hotel.
The Santa Barbara, Malibu, Beverley Hills, Hollywood, Angeles National Park leg of the trip: the locations speak for themselves. We'll be enjoying the California air and revelling in the surrounding beauty. We may not be film stars but we'll be causing a stir as we meet with some of our local friends from the Ferrari, Lamborghini and Porsche owners clubs in LA on our way, driving along Mulholland Drive, passing Rodeo Drive and the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where we’ll have lunch at the Hard Rock Café. We then move on to view the famous Hollywood sign and, the highlight of the day, a 7,000-foot ascent on the Angeles Crest Highway.
Day 4 - Barstow to Las Vegas - 276 miles
From Barstow we head to the Calico ghost town to sample some real cowboy history, and then on to the 1.6-million acre Mojave National Preserve, which is the third largest National Park in the USA and home of the largest Joshua tree forest in the world. After a fun drive on Route 66 and the undulating back roads through the park, we head to the architectural wonder that is the Hoover Dam and then another highlight of the tour: our arrival in Las Vegas!
Day 5 - Las Vegas
Welcome to Las Vegas! This is a rest day, and where better to spend it? Our hotel is right on the strip, with all the glitz and glamour you’d expect and hope for. What would you like to experience? A helicopter ride to the Grand Canyon or a ride on the rollercoaster at New York New York? Watch the famous dancing fountains at the Bellagio, or the dancing girls at Treasure Island? You can wander around the casinos, take in a show or just soak up the Las Vegas atmosphere - the choice is yours.
Leaving Las Vegas, we head to Death Valley National Park, which will be relatively uncrowded at this time of year. The park includes the best sleeve trick of all - Artist's Drive, a scenic loop drive through multi-hued volcanic and sedimentary hills. The 9-mile paved road is one-way with smooth tarmac, undulations and tight hairpins, and is like a mini Nurburgring. This is just one of the amazing areas of the park. We then have lunch and refuel at Furnace Creek on our way out to Mammoth Lakes, a beautiful ski resort, for our night’s stop.
Day 7 - Mammoth Lakes to Napa Valley - 300 miles
We trail along the Yosemite National Park, past Mono Lake, then head through the Eldorado National Forest in the Sierra Nevada mountain range with some amazing driving roads to enjoy. Finally, we emerge in the world-famous Napa Valley for a final night of revelry.
Day 8 - Napa to San Francisco Airport - 65 miles
Heading back towards the airport we cross the Golden Gate Bridge, a fitting ending to an amazing week and one that will change your mind about American roads and cars. Arriving at the airport we hand the cars back ready for our flight home.
Hire of one of our car choices with full insurance cover and extra mileage prepaid (drivers must be over 25)
Bed and breakfast accommodation every night (7 nights)
Two tour managers in lead and chase cars
Loan of our TomTom sat-nav units with pre-loaded files
Loan of our licensed walkie talkies
Drivers' packs with maps, route notes and useful information
What’s not included:
Return flights to San Francisco
Dinner, drinks, fuel, tolls and personal expenses
Optional helicopter flight to Grand Canyon
Gambling money for the Las Vegas Casinos!
What does it cost?
The price is £1,699 per person - based on two people sharing a car and a twin or double room.
£2,079 per solo driver sharing a twin or double room with a fellow tourer
£2,549 per solo driver in a single room
If you would like to book your place or find out more, please call the Petrolhead Nirvana team on 0845 838 7363