Lose yourself to find yourself in Big Sur, Ca.
California has many iconic locations along the coastline, HWY 1. From the Redwoods in Humbolt county all the way down to San Diego, there is something inspiring for the new and seasoned traveler alike. One of my all time favorite locations is Big Sur California. Big Sur is located south of Monterey Bay and Carmel about 30 minutes down the epic HWY 1. With sweeping coastlines tucked between the hills and redwood trees and the sheer drop offs is a magical paradise that feels like you have been transported to a national geographic documentary.
We camped in our 23 ft sprinter van at the Riverside Campground South of Andrew Molera state park. We woke up to views and sounds of a flowing river surrounded by old sacred redwoods and fall colored leaves. Sunlight dancing through the trees, and the almost full moon peaking through coastal clouds. I love the simplicity of having all you need with you and the freedom to explore. Surrounded by nature; less noise and city energy. A quietude my soul often longs for but doesn't get enough of.
I have always been a vagabond, a traveler searching for truth. Not that the truths I am seeking are located at some destination, rather the exploration of self, broadening of my perspective often guides me to the answer I seek in the moment. The caveat is the answer I find is transient, ever expanding knowledge that shifts as I shift, and moves as I move. I have learned to not get attached to what I find, inside and outside of myself. Maybe that is the allure of traveling, the constant unfolding, learning and novelty of the new and the now.
In Big Sur, there are only a few beaches you can actually walk down and on. Most of the ocean experiences are spent cliff side, looking down 100 ft + edges to untouched, pristine bliss. One of our favorite things to do is drive down HWY 1 and intuitively choose a pull off to stop at. And they are everywhere! We ended up spending a couple hours at a pull off with stunning views of turquoise waters, rock formations galore and and waves crashing right on the shore. Creating sea foam, abstract patterns I could get lost in.
Heading back to camp on the first day, we stopped at the famous McWay Falls. It is literally a waterfall dropping into a tropical looking turquoise colored cove. Staring at it takes you somewhere beyond and otherworldly. The best way to end the day is finding another pull out, grabbing your favorite drink and snack and watching the sea gulp up the sun.
Garrapata beach is a walkable beach just south of Carmel about 20 minutes. luscious white sand beach about a mile long end to end. It is dog friendly too! Surfers abound with head to foot thick wet suits, surfing 6 foot waves dancing along the rip curls dip, diving and dodging. Even on a busier day (weekends) You can nestle up to a private cove and just soak it all in. We spent close to 2 hours here relaxed and sunned. Deeply relaxing and nourishing.
Big Sur means the Big South. Many famous artists and writers from Jack Kerouac, Salvador Dali, John Steinbeck and more have traveled here for inspiration and deep soul searching. I liken the area to the Napali Coastline in Kauai Hawaii. It is a sight to be seen and cherished.
Places to stay in Big Sur are mostly campgrounds, boutique hotels and cabins. For more affordable options, stay in Monterey Bay a half hour north. Keep it simple! Pack a cooler with food, snacks and drinks, a few chairs and blankets. Give yourself a few days to get lost on one of the most iconic California coast lines.
Highlights of Big Sur: Andrew Molera state park, Point Lobos, Garrapata beach, Bixby bridge, Mcway falls, town of Lucia, Julia Pfeiffer state park and hidden beach. And MUCH more!
Have fun, be safe, and never stop exploring,
Rob, Brittany and Gypsy