Whether you are planning to visit Golden State for the first time or have been longing for a weekend getaway, Big Sur is California’s ultimate road travel destination. Big Sur Yosemite, with Joshua Tree Some of my favorite road trip experiences in California.
If you are looking for adventure, always choose a scenic route.
No matter where you start Big Sur road trip, Embracing the Pacific Coast, the rugged landscape and the must-pass attractions along the Pacific Coast Highway.
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Overview: Big Sur California Coastal Road Tour
Highway 1 or State Highway 1 stretches along the coastline of California. Whether you are driving south from San Francisco or north from Los Angeles, please give yourself plenty of time for the best road trip experience. Big Sur stretches 90 miles (144 kilometers) from San Simeon, extending along the coast to Carmel by the sea.
- Los Angeles to Big Sur: 295 miles (474 kilometers)
- San Francisco to Big Sur: 146 miles (234 kilometers)
the weather: California has moderate temperatures throughout the year. The peak season is between April and October in summer and autumn. If you want to avoid the crowds, the best time to visit Big Sur is September and November.
How long you need to be in Big Sur depends on how you travelIf you only have 1-2 days of road trip time, you may feel rushed and may want to skip some lookouts. If you have more time, you may wish to travel slowly, set up camp, and visit some hiking tours in the area.
Where to Stay in Big Sur
Big Sur Window It is an adult-only luxury resort located in the middle of the forest. Whether you are enjoying 5-star care or glamping, Ventana Big Sur is located in a prime location near all the top attractions in Big Sur. The resort has two heated swimming pools and a Japanese hot tub.
Big Sur River Lodge It is a beautiful resort on the Big Sur River with a swimming pool, restaurant and grocery store.
Big Sur Guest House It is a country house located in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. It is close to all top attractions and is a tranquil haven in the redwood forest.Budget/camping
Ventana Campground – We brought our own tent and lived in the redwood forest of Ventana Campground. There are picnic tables, fire rings, and water taps near each site. The bathhouse is nearby and has coin-operated heated showers.
How to plan your Big Sur road trip
Before starting this iconic drive, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Cell reception may be restricted in some areas.
- Download Google Maps on your phone or use real maps, just in case you don’t get any services.
- The landslides in Big Sur may occur when it rains. Plan your trip according to the weather.
- Road trip food: Cooler filled with snacks and water. Some businesses close at certain times of the year. Be prepared so that you will not be hungry.
What to do in Big Sur-popular attractions and observation decks
- Add to McWay Falls To your Big Sur bucket list Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park. Just a short hike to the viewing platform and see this 80-foot high waterfall flow directly to the beach. This is one of my favorite spots in Big Sur and it is worth a visit.
- Explore the Big Sur River Canyon Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. Bring your swimsuit and swim in the clear river pool in the granite walled canyon.
- Bixby River Bridge It’s hard to miss. It is one of the most iconic and photographed spots in Big Sur. The bridge was completed in 1932 and stands 79 meters above the bottom of a steep gorge carved by Bixby Creek.
- Andrew Moraira State Park – Stretch your legs and enjoy the view. Follow the trail to the beach, but keep in mind that the conditions here can be dangerous and therefore not suitable for swimming.
- If you feel hungry, please stop Big Sur Bakery Coffee, breakfast and candied bacon bow tie.
- Do you want to dive? Point Lobos State Marine Sanctuary It is one of the most abundant marine habitats in California. Look for seals, sea lions, sea otters and migrating gray whales from December to May.
Essentials for road trips: This is an essential for a comfortable trip
You will be surprised to find that your car is full of all your road trip necessities at such a fast speed. Speaking of what clothes to bring, pack lightly. Here are some tips on what to pack for a weekend getaway or a week-long adventure.
Comfortable travel clothes – Think about how much time you will spend in the car. Choose loose-fitting clothes, tights or shorts so that you don’t start to feel uncomfortable after an hour on your road trip.
coat – In Big Sur, fog will be caught in and start to get cold. Whether you bring a hoodie or a jacket, it is always a wise idea to be prepared. The wool also provides a warm layer.
Adventure equipment -Speaking of hiking, I prefer to wear long yoga pants. It also helps protect my legs from any potential insect bites, sunburns or trail scratches.
Hiking boots -Trails range from easy to laborious, and some may become muddy and slippery. Invest in a pair of high-quality hiking shoes. If you want to change to a new pair of shoes, please wear them at home to avoid blisters during the first hike.
Swimsuit – I always put a swimsuit in my travel bag.
Water bottle – Put all the water you need into a reusable water bottle or CamelBak.
Adventure is calling, pack your bags, and drive to Highway 1 for the ultimate challenge Big Sur road trip.
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Guide to National Parks in the United States: