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tooeybrown
02-08-2006, 09:57 AM
Driving from San Francisco

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I'm going to be meeting up with my family at Disneyland after a business trip in San Francisco (we're from the east coast).

Since I'm going to be driving (alone) - is HWY 101 worth it? And how long should it take?

3894
02-08-2006, 10:02 AM
Oops, tooeybrown! Sorry for the momentary "edit" on my part. I pushed the wrong button.

For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, I momentarily erased the OP.

Anyway, my answer to the question is "No". 101 is not worth it alone.

LLevy
02-08-2006, 10:04 AM
If time is not as important as interest- HWy 101 is a more interesting drive. if speed is what you want (and you don't get bogged down crossing over to 5) then take 5.
If you REALLY want interest and have ALOT of time, take Hwy 1 down the coast.

LL

Malcon10t
02-08-2006, 10:16 AM
Driving from San Francisco

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I'm going to be meeting up with my family at Disneyland after a business trip in San Francisco (we're from the east coast).

Since I'm going to be driving (alone) - is HWY 101 worth it? And how long should it take?If you are driving alone, and don't plan on stopping to see the sights, NO, HWy 1 and 101 are not worth it. If you want a leisurely drive, stopping to see the ocean, take in the sights, then yes. But, if it was me, alone, no, I would want to get to DISNEYLAND as fast as possible!!!

mad4mky
02-08-2006, 10:36 AM
Driving from San Francisco

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I'm going to be meeting up with my family at Disneyland after a business trip in San Francisco (we're from the east coast).

Since I'm going to be driving (alone) - is HWY 101 worth it? And how long should it take?

We drove down from Redwood City a couple of weeks ago. We usually cut over to the I-5 near Tracy. I hate that we have to go East before we can go south, but once on I-5, you sure save a lot of time...more than you would on 101 South.
But, if you have the time...and aren't in a hurry to get to the LA area...by all means take 101 So.
Me...I just can't wait to get to DLR, so I want to go the fastest route possible (usually we fly!;) ).

MsYumiBr
02-08-2006, 10:59 AM
101 is pretty but twisty and slow. Add 4 hours to your drive. Hwy 5 is the only way to go.

Andrew
02-08-2006, 11:16 AM
I'm going to be meeting up with my family at Disneyland after a business trip in San Francisco (we're from the east coast).

Since I'm going to be driving (alone) - is HWY 101 worth it? And how long should it take?
You have several options when driving from the Bay Area to Disneyland. Depending on when you start, where you start, and whether you prioritize speed or scenery, there are six or eight different routes you could take.

Speed vs. scenery: US101 will take three or four hours more than I-5. The lack of big-rigs on US101 is more than compensated for by more local traffic and backups in Santa Barbara.

On I-5, budget three to four hours from entering the Central Valley (either from I-280 or CA152) to the Grapevine. From there, 90 minutes to 2 1/2 hours, depending on traffic, to Anaheim. This is greatly reduced if you travel at low-traffic hours and :ahem: don't mind exceeding the speed limit by a bit here and there.

If you take I-5: From the Peninsula as far south as San Mateo or Belmont, or from the East Bay as far south as Fremont or Hayward, take I-280 to I-5. From below mid-Peninsula or Milpitas, take US101 to CA25 to CA156 to CA152 to I-5. Going around Gilroy through Hollister (CA25-CA156-CA152) rather than through (CA152) will save you some time at the expense of mileage.

Recommended stops on I-5: If you're coming from I-280, Santa Nella (CA33) is a good first stop. From CA152, the Petro truck stop at San Luis Rd (CA33) is also good. If you skip this, Panoche Rd (not Little Panoche Rd) is okay as well; the Chevron/McDonald's or the Mobil/Taco Bell have reasonably clean bathrooms, but stay away from the Texaco.
Do not stop at CA33/CA145, Harris Ranch, unless you enjoy cattle manure.
Second stop: Kettleman City, the traditional dividing line between Northern and Southern California.
Third stop: The Petro/Mobil truck stop at West Laval Rd is acceptable. The Chevron station at East Laval Rd is horrifying.

On US101, budget eight hours from San Jose to the San Fernando Valley, and 90 minutes to 2 1/2 hours to Anaheim depending on traffic. Again, greatly reduced if you get to the Valley at off-traffic hours (late night, basically). When you do get into the Valley, listen to KNX-AM (1070) and/or KFWB-AM (980) for traffic reports. You have three options: The 405 to The 105 to The 605 to The 91 to The 5; stay on The 101 to The 5, or stay on The 101 to The 134 to The 5. Which one you choose depends on how bad traffic is on The 405 through the beach cities to LAX and/or on The 101 through Hollywood and Downtown and/or whether there is a Dodger game starting or ending.

Recommended stops on US101: Not much between Gilroy and Paso Robles, but King City is a good first stop. The Chevron is okay, but avoid the 76 if you haven't received a malaria vaccination. Margie's Diner is surprisingly good if you want to stop for lunch or dinner.
There are several good restaurants in Paso Robles, as well as a nice downtown shopping area where you can spend some time.
Pismo Beach has a large outlet mall and lots of restaurants; I particularly recommend the Cracked Crab on Price St.
I generally don't stop after Pismo, but you would be fine anywhere in Santa Barbara or Thousand Oaks/Westlake Village/Agoura Hills.

I keep thinking I should write all this up more formally as a How-To guide. Maybe I'll do it someday. Meanwhile, I hope this helps!

Disneygirl65
02-08-2006, 01:27 PM
Cool Andrew! I see we stop at most the same place on the 5! :)

poohray
02-08-2006, 07:43 PM
oh... so.., you are from the east coast, welcome to California for the visit!!

Let me tell you first that you might enjoy the most european looking city in the country the unique San Francisco and please do look across the bay towards my home in the north Berkeley hills.


Hmm 101 or 5 tough choice, no it isnt. 5 is the faster route by an hour and half to the greater LA area however some time is lost traveling east on (for you in SF as it would be for me accross the bay east 580 towards tracy to I5 consumes a lot of time during the day as traffic is tight here (although not as tight as the traffic in LA.

I suggest to you that you take the extra time and take 101 as the I5 is not intersting at all unless you like flat dry grass and power lines.

101 has a magnificent view of the Pacific Ocean just after Paso Robles
pluss the Madonna Inn is a great place to stop for dinner. (John wayne was good friend of Mr. Madonna and his wife and went often to the Madonna's ranch for the horseback riding and view of the Ocean over the hill)

The steaks are great, the soup of the day wow, oohh but the fresh danish and pastry is to quote Homer Simpson "ahhhgggahah (drool)"

Speaking of Danish pastry there is a sweet little dutch town about two miles east of 101 at Buellton (ignore the Andersons pea soup)

The Town is Solvang and they have windmills and dutch buildings in the down town district located in the heart of wine country in the Santa Ynez Valley.
Amazing place and has some of the best waffles and pancakes in the state. Huel Howser reccomends Olsen's bakery's Kringles mmmm Solvang is an episode on California's Gold so about a half a million people like that place.
They are a great tourist stop and I truly like the shops (surprise I am 40 yr old male thats not into shopping but at Solvang I have to look at half the shops. Not enough time to look at all and not enough time to eat at all the ymmy places to eat but have done one quarter of them and they are great eateries) they close early by seven o'clock its pretty much shut down except for that steak house down the road that was in the movie sideways.
The GF and I really enjoy that town with cobblestone sidewalks and windmills and Dutch architecture (I5 has nothing but cow manure) 101 is a very good way to see the about one quarter of the great central coast and that view of the deep blue Pacific Ocean. after Madonna Inn at um Pismo Beach is like Wow, truly breath taking and a must see for an East Coaster.

I5 does not offer this and highway 1 has big sur but unless you have two days to enjoy big sur and 1 101 is good comprimise between time and enjoyment of California. Really dont rush like those in LA the rest of the state is a jewel to be enjoyed I mean it!

nobody suggested 99 and that is only twenty more minutes east yet at sonora you can take quick three hour detour and see the waterfalls and half dome and el CApitan in the eden of Yosemite valley but I think I better stop talking about it and save it for only those whom arer in the jknow about whats cool about this place as there are too many people traipsing through these daises. hmm yeah why not go ahead and take I5 come to think of it and that way you are left with a bad impression of California and stay away. Just kidding take 101 leave SF early am about 3 arrive at Madonna inn in time to catch the last of the fresh pastries (and look at the great stained glasss windows that tell of California's history) and go have a waffle and sandwich In Solvang and continue east of solvang on 154 and have a great drive through wine vineyards and California oaks on a shortcut to 101 that skips a little traffic towards Santa Barbara.

To keep this route mine it will self destruct in a few days.

ucube
02-08-2006, 07:53 PM
Definitely take the 5 if you're not stopping, driving alone, etc. It is a huge time saver, and while not at all pretty, it'll go fast if you drive fast (which everyone does). It's a long drive either way, so you may as well make it more reasonable.

However, you might want to actually take an extra day (even by yourself) and drive down the 1 (first day), and then the 101 to LA and D'Land (second day). It would be a great trip. Lots of amazing coastline. Many beautiful towns and stops along the way. You could also just take the 101, and have still have lots of interesting places to stop (though I would not recommend Solvang, as someone else did).

But if you hafta do it in a day, definitely go on the 5.

experiment626
02-08-2006, 07:56 PM
We come from north of SF and always take 5 (well 101 to 580 to 5).

We did take 101 straight down (with an added stop in Ventura) and it added about 2 - 3 hours to the trip.

I'll take speed over beauty everytime.

AcuraTL
02-08-2006, 08:14 PM
I vote for Hwy 5. I live in Foster City and don't mind driving East to get to Hwy 5 first. I usually arrive at Disneyland at around 5 hours with one stop for gas and food for my 2 toddlers.

Catcherman22
02-09-2006, 01:43 AM
On I-5, budget three to four hours from entering the Central Valley (either from I-280 or CA152) to the Grapevine. From there, 90 minutes to 2 1/2 hours, depending on traffic, to Anaheim. This is greatly reduced if you travel at low-traffic hours and :ahem: don't mind exceeding the speed limit by a bit here and there.

You mean the speed limit from the central valley to grapevine isn't like 85? I am shocked.. lol

They have finished the road work I believe by Magic mountain.. so that will shave some time as well.

ralfrick
02-09-2006, 09:12 AM
Like has been said. Leisure drive take 101 or even 1, but 5 for speed. Since you're not from around these parts, you will see several aspects of California topography by taking the leisure route. If you really get carried away, you could even stop at the original themed hotel, the Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo.

Cheers.

Monte Cristo
02-09-2006, 02:24 PM
Driving from San Francisco

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I'm going to be meeting up with my family at Disneyland after a business trip in San Francisco (we're from the east coast).

Since I'm going to be driving (alone) - is HWY 101 worth it? And how long should it take?

Take 5, dude. You'll be there in 5 and 1/2 hours (provided you avoid traffic, which is easy depending on what time you leave).

lovegrumpy
02-09-2006, 02:41 PM
We took 5 down are first time and got stuck in la traffic at noon i would go around la and get off 5 and go another way. We now go all sorts of ways we leave about 5:30 am and get to disney at noon. This time we are taking 101 we like it alot better to us it takes just as long as 5.