Questing California Tours
During the last 15 years, our company has developed and successfully marketed dozens various tours and sightseeing excursions in California and all over the West Coast of the USA. Many our tours and excursions are universally popular for virtually all categories of travelers. Some of our exotic tours and trips have appeal to those travelers who seek adventures and are ready to go further, reaching some arduous and exotic places with unexpected cultural and natural wonders.
Some tourists are looking for an original photo shooting perspective; others are craving to just basically hang out with the local socialites. So many people, so many preferences.
We are sure our experience will help you to nail down the most suitable travel plans, avoid expensive mistakes, and loss of your invaluable vacation time. Browse through our tour and sightseeing excursion descriptions below, note what is appealing to you, and don't hesitate to give us a call or shoot an e-mail - we will be happy to provide you with more detail information or even design a custom tour itinerary for you. We wish you the most pleasant and unforgettable journey! Bon Voyage!
List of Tours and Sightseeing Excursions
- San Francisco sightseeing tour – 4 hours;
- San Francisco sightseeing tour – 6 hours;
- San Francisco sightseeing tour – 8 hours;
- Muir Woods (Redwood Forest);
- Muir Woods (Redwood Forest) + Sausalito;
- Muir Woods (Redwood Forest) + Napa Valley;
- Napa Valley + Geothermal hot springs;
- Napa Valley + Petrified Forest and Geyser;
- Sonoma Valley + Jack London Home & Grave;
- Monterey + Carmel;
- Monterey + Carmel plus Stanford University;
- Stanford University + NASA museum;
- Technical Museum of Silicon Valley and Mystery House (San Jose);
- Yosemite Valley;
- Yosemite Valley + Giant Sequoias;
- Lake Tahoe;
- Lake Tahoe and Reno (NV);
- Hearst Castle;
- San Francisco – Los Angeles (1 and 2 days) with Santa Barbara and Solvang;
- Los Angeles (all tours) + Disneyland and Universal Studious;
- San Diego + all animal parks;
- Las Vegas;
- Canyon Tours from Las Vegas:
Zion Canyon, Bryce Canyon; Grand Canyon, Antelope Canyon, Monument Valley; Park of Arches, Grand Staircase-Escalante, Sedona. Those tours are for 2, 3 and 5 days
Northern California Tours - Detail Description
San Francisco - 4 hours
This sightseeing excursion begins at the Civic Plaza in downtown, where the main city, state and federal offices are located: City Hall, City Library, San Francisco Opera and Ballet theatres, and famous Davies Symphony Hall. Then we visit Saint Mary's Cathedral - the masterpiece of the modern architectural style, and move on to the ocean shore to the Cliff House scenic overlook of the City Beach and remains of the Sutro Baths - a world wonder of the end of 19-th century. The next stop is the Golden Gate park - a huge landscape park built in 1880 on the sand dunes, featuring Dutch windmills, grazing buffalos, original Japanese Tea Garden, futuristic de Young Museum of Eastern Art and the oldest glass-and-wood Victorian greenhouse - a replica of the famous London attraction of the end of 19-th century.
Then we drive to the Lincoln Park passing the largest Orthodox Church, to the scenic overlook of the Golden Gate Bridge and then further to the Legion of Honor art museum. Then we move on through expensive neighborhoods to the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge. Weather permitting, we will walk a portion of the bridge. This point overlooks the best views of the Bay, downtown San Francisco and the famous Alcatraz prison. Next we will visit the Palace of Fine Arts - the most mysterious building in San Francisco. We will drive over the steepest hills of the city, including the "crookedest" street in America - Lombard street best known for its one-way section on Russian Hill. The last stop of our excursion is at the Telegraph Hill - the scenic overlook of Downtown and Bay Bridge - another architectural and engineering masterpiece of San Francisco.
San Francisco - 8 hours
In addition to the above 4-hour tour, we will drive across the Bay Bridge to Treasure Island. Then we will drive along the main San Francisco street, Market Street, through the "Gay Mecca" of the West - Castro street, and ascend to the Twin Peaks hill - the best scenic outlook of San Francisco. Then we head to the birthplace of the hippie movement - Height & Ashbury streets, Nob Hill - an exclusive enclave of the rich and famous on the west coast, move to the famous Fisherman Warf with multitudes souvenir shops, boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, street musicians, mimes, as well as hundreds of wild sea lions. Our tour ends at the oldest in the USA Chocolate Factory - Ghirardelli Square and its mini-museum where the most delicious and amazing ice cream is made - the famous "Earthquake".
San Francisco – Sequoia Forest – Napa Valley "Wine Country" (8-10 hours)
Optional: Geothermal Springs (total duration – 12 hours)
One of the most unusual and unforgettable tours in North California is a full scale (8-10 hours and more) trip to the North of San Francisco. The tour starts as we cross the tall and elegant Golden Gate Bridge along its 1.5 miles span, leaving behind the San Franciscan peninsula for the continental California and its beautiful Marin County. After the tunnel, our route descends to the Bay with its hundreds of yachts, tour boats and hydroplanes. Then there is a sharp turn to the ridge of the hills. Passing through eucalyptus groves, the serpentine road ascends to the mountain pass and then abruptly goes down - in just 8 minutes we will descend almost 400 yards. There, in the bottom of the cleft, hide the largest living creatures on planet Earth - Giant Sequoia trees. Having parked our car there, we will walk about 1.5 miles through one of the 17 miraculously preserved Sequoia Groves with dozens of those ancient trees that are more than 3,000 years old, more than 120 meters high, and more than 6 meters in diameter. You will learn some of the mystical secrets of their propagation, life and death.
After the Sequoia trees of Muir Woods (John Muir National Monument) we head to Napa Valley. This unique valley is practically the only place in the USA where vintage wines are made. There is no comparison with European or Latin American wines. You must taste them in order to appreciate that our local Cabernet Sauvignon may be surpassed by nothing else, if only our local Zinfandel, one of the oldest grape varieties on planet. There are more than 140 wineries at our disposal. We have Muscat, Riesling, and even Madera, as well as Champagne, and, not quite as old, but rather authentic French Chateau. There are many modern monasteries here, and endless vineyards as far as one can see, and even a little Indian reservation. There is a wonderful harmony here, bringing a crisp and joyous feeling to the air. This mood is best enhanced with an improvised picnic in the Apple Orchard in the "capital" of Napa Valley, the town of Saint Helen, with local wine, cheese, and ham.
Then, we head to the geothermal hot springs with natural mineral water. A splendid mountain road will transpose you from your ordinary material world into a magical little ravine where about 40 years ago, local hippies established a small commune; there, meditation in hot and cold natural stone baths gradually transformed into meditation in comfortable mini pools now equipped with locker rooms, solariums and saunas. Only the water has not changed. Its natural mineralization is enough to almost immediately bring about a blanket of thousands of bubbles; your worries disappear, and in several hours, your body is embraced by your rejuvenated spirit.
Warning: about 70% of the visitors bathe naked. This is not a nudist place, but it's a custom here, so if you don't feel comfortable in such an environment, you need to decide on your bathing suit beforehand. Entry is $25 per person.
San Francisco - Los Angeles (2-day tour)
We leave San Francisco in the morning taking Route 101 South. We will pass San Jose - the capital of Silicon Valley - the global cradle of innovation with its hundreds of High Tech companies such as Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Oracle, Yahoo, Google, Xerox, Visa International... Our path will go through the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Compared to San Francisco, it is much warmer here, in the Central Valley, famous for its most fertile soil in California. We will pass the city of Gilroy known as the "Garlic Capital of the World," where 80% of the National garlic crop is grown. The Annual Garlic Festival is a world-renowned horticultural attraction which draws more than 100,000 visitors who experience unique crafts, various entertainment and fabulous food, with a featured dish being... garlic ice cream.
One more hour drive and we reach the city of Monterey, the first capital of state of California with its old Spanish colonial archtecture, famous Eucalyptus grove where you can see beautiful Swallowtail butterflies (Papilio Machaon).
Optionally, in Monterey you can visit the largest oceanic aquarium in California, it takes about 2-3 hours to explore the whole exhibition, but you will see the most unusual creatures - giant octopuses, unique jelly fish, sea otters, tidal dwellers, sea horses and many, many more...
Then we will drive to Carmel - a tiny fabled town on the ocean shore. Carmel is known for its innumerable art galleries, unique boutiques and outdoor restaurants comfortably situated in the shadows of enormous pine trees bordering with miles of dazzling white sand beaches. Many retired Hollywood celebrities live in Carmel; its honorary mayor is a prominent American film actor, director, producer, composer and politician - Clint Eastwood. Further to the South, we will stop for a local wine tasting at on of the dozens of family-owned vineries known for their dense Cabernets and amazinly fruity Rieslings.
For the night we will stay in the city of San Luis Obispo. If we are lucky we stay at one of the most grotesque and romantic hotels - Madonna Inn. All 173 rooms of this hotel are decorated in different and often bizarre styles, from the style of Ludovic IV to a caveman...
The next day, we will travel trough hills and vineyards to Solvang (Sunny Meadow) - the so called "Denmark Village", which was built by the immigrants from Denmark in the beginning of the 20-th century. The city has preserved its original Scandinavian style featuring windmills, stone castles toped with the tegular roofs, cobbled streets and beer bars where still the main course has been hearing with boiled potatoes.
Next stop is the city of Santa Barbara with its old fashioned Spanish Mission, Colonial Court building, and local University. Contrary to popular belief, the well known in Russia TV series "Santa Barbara" has been NEVER produced here.
A couple more hours and you will notice that the highway gets considerably wider (up to 16 lanes) - a sure sign that we approach Los Angeles. One of its suburbs, Ventura, strikes with its enormous car dealership spanning several miles along the highway and stocked with thousands brand new cars of all makes and models. We are at our final destination - Los Angeles - with its ever moving 15 millions people and 12 millions cars.
Las Vegas and Canyons Tours - Detail Description
Short, but Condensed Tour (2 days)
Day 1: Las Vegas (start at 7 AM) - Zion Canyon - Bryce Canyon; lodging in Kanab or Fredonia;
Day 2: Morning arrival to Grand Canyon (North Rim); return to Las Vegas by 4 PM.
Most Balanced, however Intensive Tour (3 days)
Day 1: Las Vegas (start at 7 AM) - Zion Canyon - Bryce Canyon; lodging in Kanab;
Day 2: Driving to Lake Powell (overview) then stop at Glen Canyon Dam, walking tour to "Horseshoe" natural wonder in Glen Canyon; (Antelope Canyon at Navaho Tribe reservation - optional); driving to Sedona - free time there; lodging in Flagstaff;
Day 3: Early morning drive to Grand Canyon South Rim (tour with stopping at 3 view points); then drive to Las Vegas - arriving late at night.
Long and Comprehensive Tour (5 days)
Day 1: Las Vegas (start at 7 AM) - Zion Canyon - Bryce Canyon (walking tour down and up - personal choice); lodging in Bryce Canyon Village;
Day 2: Early morning start - driving through Dixie National Forest and Capitol Reef National Park to Arches National Park, evening tour there with walking through "Park Avenue" creek wash in a rock aisle; lodging in Moab;
Day 3: Morning tour of the ARCHES, sunrise visible through the huge natural rock windows; then driving to Dead Horse Point Park; then lodging in Kayenta;
Day 4: Morning tour through Monument Valley, then driving to "Horseshoe" natural wonder in Glen Canyon (walking tour), viewpoint of Lake Powell and stop at Glen Canyon Dam; (Antelope Canyon at Navaho Tribe reservation – optional); lodging in Page;
Day 5: Early morning drive to Grand Canyon South Rim (tour with stopping at 3 view points); then drive to Las Vegas - arriving late at night.
Tours are weather-permitting, some parts of the routes could be blocked for traffic due to rain and/or snow. Generally those tours are conducted from April to October only.
“Our exchange students and Faculty members from Russian universities are always very excited with tours and day trips provided by Questing California Co. We book those services with them for the last few years and hope they can handle more as our collaboration with CIS countries steadily grows.”
of Business and Management
“We want to thank Questing California Co. for 12 years of committed cooperation with our company. All our San Francisco Bay Area groups (both tours and business) from Slavic speaking countries were served at the highest level, we never had complaints and often repeated requests for the same tour guides and Russian-speaking event managers. Looking forward to working with you years ahead.”
Peninsula Tour and Travel