Getting the best photographic memories from your Big Sur Road Trip: The scenic beauty and photo opportunities along this road trip are unparallel, here are some locations discernible with highway mile markers so you can plan to stop; do drive safely the Big Sur Highway 1 is very unforgiving. There are many places to pull off the highway, you will get the best pictures by getting out of your car; when you see a place with other cars stopped chances are good there is something to see.
Big Sur Road Trip Vista Points & Photo Opportunities:
- Montaña de Oro State Park - lovely ocean vistas, hike to the top 1,347ft Valencia Peak for the best and side trip to Sand Spit Day Use Area off Pecho Road at the north end of the park for sweeping vistas of the Morro Bay coast and mountains.
- Morro Bay - picture "the Rock" at sunset and fishing boats at the wharf, sailboats in the Bay, harbor lights at night
- Cayucos - picture the little-ones building sand castles, the teen catching his first wave...
- Cambria - pine trees, the sea, a quaint village of gift shops and art galleries...
- San Simeon - historic buildings, Sebastian's, adobe cowboy houses, Hearst warehouses, school, Hearst Castle, the pier, San Simeon Cove & Point; Mile Marker SLO 57.8
- Hearst Castle® vicinity - take your camera on a scenic site trip; Tour Hearst Castle; you can take pictures but you can't use flash inside; photo opps start on the bus trip up the hill, have your camera handy! Mile Marker SLO 57.8
- Piedras Blancas Vista Points - elephant seals and nice views of the lighthouse ; Mile Marker SLO 62.4
- Ragged Point Inn vicinity - good reason to call it the million dollar view, park in the lot, walk out on the point; Mile Marker SLO 79.2
- Salmon Creek Falls - picturesque falls, nice trails with more just north too; falls pull out parking at Mile Marker MON 2.2
- Gorda Springs vicinity - picturesque little town; many close by beautiful Big Sur coast Pacific Ocean vistas; Mile Marker MON 10.1
- Willow Creek Picnic Area - pullout parking lot vista point, road down to the beach; Mile Marker MON 11.6
- Jade Cove - beautiful ocean bluff, mountain vistas; Mile Marker MON 13.3
- Plaskett Creek Campground - lush forests lots of wildlife, limited ocean views through the trees; across from Sand Dollar Beach Mile Marker MON 13.7
- Sand Dollar Beach Picnic Area - across from Plaskett Creek Campground, beautiful vistas; Mile Marker MON 13.8
- Pacific Valley - just north of Sand Dollar, beautiful valley, mountain & ocean views, Ranger Station; Mile Marker MON 14.7
- Mill Creek - day use beautiful rocky beach, restrooms; Mile Marker MON 18.5
- Nacimiento-Fergusson Road - across from Kirk Creek Campground, climbs quick breathtaking Pacific views forever; Mile Marker MON 18.9
- Kirk Creek Campground - ocean view campground; Mile Marker MON 19.0
- Limekiln State Park - sea-side park, short scenic redwoods hikes, limekiln ruins, waterfall; Mile Marker MON 21.0
- Lucia - cliff-side resort, breathtaking Big Sur California coastal cliff views; Mile Marker MON 23.0
- Vista Point Scenic Parking - big pullout 4 miles north of Lucia, view of Big Creek Bridge; Mile Marker MON 27.4
- Big Creek Bridge - 5 miles north of Lucia; Mile Marker MON 28.1
- Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park - short scenic hike, McWay Falls; Mile Marker MON 35.9
- Burns North "Vista Point" (north end Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park) - scenic view HWY pull out marked "Vista Point"; Mile Marker MON 37.0
- Partington Canyon Trail (north boundary Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park) - short scenic hike; Mile Marker MON 37.8
- Nepenthe vicinity - restaurants with a view; Mile Marker MON 43.9
- Post Ranch and Ventana vicinity - scenic side trips to posh resorts with breathtaking views; Mile Marker MON 44.6
- Pfeiffer Beach (Sycamore Canyon Road turnoff to...) scenic side trip; Mile Marker MON 45.64
- Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park - redwood forests, Big Redwood Trees, Big Sur River; Mile Marker MON 46.9
- Andrew Molera State Park - PCH 1 pull out vista points; Mile Marker MON 51.2
- Point Sur Lightstation State Historic Park - , picturesque historic lightstation on a big rock, take a picture or the TOUR; Mile Marker MON 54.1
- Little Sur River Bridge - 2 miles north of Point Sur Lightstation; Mile Marker MON 56.1
- Hurricane Point - 3 vista pull outs about 4 miles north of Point Sur Lightstation; Mile Marker MON 58.3
- Bixby Creek Bridge - Big Sur icon photo; Mile Marker MON 59.8
- Palo Colorado Road to Bottchers Gap - 1 mile north of Rocky Point; Mile Marker MON 61.6
- Rocky Creek Bridge vicinity - 3 miles north of Rocky Point; Mile Marker MON 61.1
- Rocky Point Restaurant vicinity - great ocean views; Mile Marker MON 62.0
- Abalone Cove - .5 mi north of Garrapata State Park; Mile Marker MON 62.5
- Carmel Highlands - book a room, plenty of photo opps at the Hyatt!
- Point Lobos - very pretty all seasons but wildflowers in the spring
- Carmel - quaint village shops and a California Mission
- Monterey - old Spanish Monterey, the Aquarium, the Bay, Cannery Row and Fisherman's Wharf are all picturesque
- 17 mile drive - is one vista after another...