Expert Travel Advice to Pacific Coast Highway
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Top Answers To Pacific Coast Highway Travel Questions
olga asked:Answer this1 AnswerAlistair answered:Assuming you're heading out from Las Vegas, I'd probably you drive over to Los Angeles and then make your way north along California Highway One. Not sure how long you have, but Santa Barbara is a really lovely place at which to stop. Maybe also spend a night or two up in the Big Sur area, before scheduling a stop in either Monterey or Carmel (Big Sur Nepenthe restaurant is a prime spot for a lunch stop with a view!). Carmel is very quaint and has some nice inns and guesthouses. You could also go a bit more upscale at somewhere like the Inn at Pebble Beach or Bernardus Lodge (http://away.com/resorts/bernardus-lodge-bl-hotelid53531.html) in this area. After Monterey, it's a fairly straight shot up to San Francisco, where you could obviously spend some more time sightseeing before flying out. Best advice, though, is not to overdo the driving and enjoy the scenery along this wonderful stretch of coastline (it can also get a little slow during peak travel seasonss).
kara asked:Answer this1 AnswerAlistair answered:Kara, my wife and drove California Highway One several years ago and took our time, I think spending about five nights meandering toward Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. Definitely a route that you shouldn't rush, both for the excellent scenery, not to mention that it can get a little slow with all the sightseers. We stopped first at Santa Cruz, followed by Carmel, though I'd recommend you head straight for Carmel first. We stayed at the Pine Inn, which is a nice hotel in an easy central location. Lots of other options in Carmel as well as in nearby Monterey (a few more cheaper options here). Next stop from Carmel should probably be somewhere along the Big Sur coastline. We stayed at Ragged Point Inn, which was a great location though an average stay, I'd say. For something a little more rustic, Treebones Resort offers yurts as well as five campsites (there's also excellent camping in various state parks along the route including Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and the Ventana wilderness). For something a bit more spendy, Post Ranch Inn rolls out the romantic red carpet (though this is a little closer to Carmel). Things start to flatten out around Hearst Castle and Morro Bay; from here, I'd be inclined to push on to Santa Barbara, which is a lovely coastal town. Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions!
First off, congratulations! Highway 1 is also known as the Pacific Coast Highway and offers some of the best scenery in California. For a driving guide, check out: http://bit.ly/97E87z
If you are more into wine country and utter relaxation, I'd say to head north and hit Sonoma and Napa. Make appointments in advance for the volcanic mudbaths (Indian Springs spa in Calistoga is my favorite) and massages, and of course visit the wineries, plus there are biking and hiking trails, small towns, great restaurants, and even a safari: www.safariwest.com. Yeah, a safari in the middle of wine country with giraffes, monkeys, tigers, and other wild animals. Bizarre, but fun!