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Tracy McCully

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Northern California - Trafalgar Escorted Vacation

Year: 2014

This was a fabulous trip.  I can't believe how much we saw in just a week!

The tour began in San Francisco.  Our hotel, the  Hyatt Embarcadero, was so nice and it was easy to walk out and catch a streetcar down to Pier 31.  This was a vibrant spot full of restaurants and shops and this is where we could see the famous sea lions of Pier 31.  Glad we were far enough away to avoid their "fragrance".  I really enjoyed San Francisco. I was surprised how clean it was.

It was a thrill to see the iconic Golden Gate Bridge.  One of the optional excurions offered is to walk the bridge.  On the other side is Sausalito, a small town that reminds me of Saint Andrews, NB....lots of shops and galleries.  We took a ferry back from Sausalito and this gave us amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge from the water. 

In Napa, we experienced the Napa Valley Wine Train.  The first part of the journey consisted of a wine tasting and then we switched cars and enjoyed a wonderful lunch in the dining car.

Then we were off to Lake Tahoe and on the way we stopped in old Sacramento and had some free time in Sonoma.  The optional tour I chose in Lake Tahoe was a dinner cruise.  It was a neat experience to get out on one of the deepest lakes in the world. 

On the road again to Yosemite National Park where our small hotel was located right amongst the huge redwood trees and just a short stroll to a lovely waterfall.  The scenery on the drive to and from was inspiring.

Our journey back to the coast took us through the agricultural region of the San Joaquin Valley where we had a short tour and learned all about the industry.  We saw some processing plants with familiar names, like Dole.

In Monterey we enjoyed our "Be My Guest" dinner at Happy Girl Kitchen and the next day was our full day excursion down the Pacific Coast Highway to Big Sur with stops at the Pebble Beach Golf Course, Carmel, and Pfeiffer State Park to see more of the amazing tall trees. 

Back in Monterey we went to famous Cannery Row and I stuck my feet in the Pacific Ocean....first time for me.  Some guests took the optional excursion to the Monterey Aquarium and they said it was really good.

Trafalgar, as always, was true to their word.  Good hotels, great transportation and most of all our amazing tour director, Alan.  He is so friendly and knowledgeable and took such good care of us.  I was amazed by his organizational skills.  It was a truly memorable trip for me.