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    California Road Trip Packing List For Group of Friends On the Road

    Diyana Dakhiyar
    Diyana Dakhiyar
    12 Aug 2020
    california road trip

    Make the most of your journey along California's breathtaking coast with these packing essentials.

    What's a better way to see California and it’s wonderful surroundings if not driving up the coast on a road trip with your friends and family? Known for the most scenic drives in the world, snaking along the California coast past rocky shoreline, miles of farmland, and dozens of picture-perfect towns. One of the most well-known portions of the route, the Pacific Coast Highway, runs from San Diego to Santa Barbara.
    To prepare you for this all-American journey, we’ve compiled a list of essential packing items you won’t want to leave behind.?
    California road trip
    Photo Credit: Ian Dooley


    When the sun is up illuminating the beautiful coast, this no.1 top accessory is very important so you can enjoy the view! Driver or passenger, nobody likes to squint when they’re in the car.??

    Scarf and Hat

    Gray skies fool you not. A hat or a scarf won’t only shield your face from the sun, but it will keep your windblown hair in check. Whether you’re renting a convertible for some top-down enjoyment or simply taking in the sights from one of the many roadside overlooks, the wind is likely to do a number on your 'do.


    This might seem an obvious one. But even the most obvious things are the easiest to leave behind. Definitely not an ideal situation if you are flying from thousands of kilometers away. Although a camera phone is the most handy for a quick snap, a DSLR allows you to better capture wildlife at sea or up high in the mountains.?
    california road trip
    Photo Credit: Thomas Ciszewski

    Swim gear & sunscreen

    If you are visiting in the summertime (May to October) then don’t forget your swimsuit or swimming trunks. Protect your skin from those harmful UV rays with sunscreen as it can be really hot and sunny with temperatures up to 30C.?

    Binoculars & hiking shoes

    One of the most exciting aspects of this California drive is the amount of marine life you’re likely to see. Don’t forget for a pitstop and scan the coastline for a colony of sea lions soaking in the sun. Looking for a longer break from the car and to stretch your legs? Hike along the Pacific Coast Highway at all difficulty levels for that stunning view.?

    Snack & water?

    Staying hydrated is crucial, especially if it’s in the summertime. Keep a couple of large bottles in the car in case of emergencies. If you’re prone to being hangry (that’s angry when you’re hungry) it may be best for all parties to keep a stock of energy bars or granola bars in the car for emergencies.

    Self-Guided Audio Trip through California's 17-Mile Drive

    Take a scenic trip through 17-Mile Drive and explore some of the most picturesque destinations in California with a live GPS map and auto-playing audio narration with no need for internet connectivity.
    California Road Trip
    Photo Credit: Kal Visuals
    With your bag all packed, be ready for your road trip and don’t forget to put some of the key places in your itinerary and check out the curated list of California activities.?