TRVLR103: Big Sur, California

I’ve been dying to share some pictures from our recent trip to California. It ended up being a very impromptu trip we took to celebrate our engagement; San Francisco to Los Angeles! Now, all of California was amazing, but my very favorite part of our trip was our two-day coastal drive through Big Sur. It was just breathtaking.

Situated on the central coast of California, Big Sur boasts some of the most incredible views you will ever see. Navigating winding roads up mountains, through forests, and along beaches, it was truly the most beautiful drive, one I suggest everyone drive once.

The drive was great from San Francisco to Santa Cruz and through Monterey, but what was beyond civilization was to die for, and I do not say that lightly. I had no idea what Big Sur was really like until it just hits you.

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The views were magnificent. There was something to look at at every turn, one scene more breathtaking than the next. I was in awe of what was around me. The water was clearer, the sky was bluer, and the grass was greener than any place I’ve ever seen.

As we drove along, climbing along the mountains, we stopped every few minutes, the landscape continuously changing around us. I could just keep on saying how beautiful it was, but it really was that stunning.

Our drive from San Francisco to Cambria, our half-way point, took us about 8 hours, stopping a lot along the way (you will stop a lot, trust me). We had beautiful blue skies most of the day, but about 3/4 of the way through the weather began changing. The higher elevations brought about tons of fog. But, don’t think this ruined our drive at all, it did the exact opposite; watching the fog roll in was an incredible sight to see.

It looked different from every angle. When the sun was in view, it reflected on the sky and the ocean to cast such gorgeous hues of color. When it wasn’t, the mountains looked eerie but calm. This mix of fog and light brought us right into the sunset.

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As we came back down to lower elevations, the fog began to burn off and we witnessed a sunset that was unlike any other.

Within 15 minutes of the sun going down, we had made it to Cambria. Our timing couldn’t have been any better. (We ended up back tracking those 15 minutes in the morning to go see the Elephant Seals in San Simeon that we had missed after the sun went down.) Cambria has a strip of small, beachfront hotels; we stayed at The Fogcatcher Inn, and it was so perfect! It was steps away from black sand beaches and serenity — perfect for an early morning walk, listening to the waves and enjoying a cup of coffee before heading to Los Angeles.

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Big Sur was truly impressive. It was incredible to experience so many different landscapes and views, all within one drive. It was one of those drives where our mouths were dropped the whole time. Being together on a drive so magnificent was something I will never forget.

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If you have any questions about Big Sur or the coast drive, let me know in the comments! Or, if you’ve done it, I’d love to know what your favorite parts were, or if there was a place you wish you could have stopped. There is so much to see along the way to keep you talking about it for months (trust me, I still am) and wanting to go back for more!


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