If you have been to the coast of California then you have traveled in the route SR 1.its called the longest state route in California as well. There are so many parts in the SR 1 route that, sometimes even if you have traveled in this route you might not know because of different names used for the shorelines.
SR 1 is a famous highway in California which covers about 656 miles (1,056 km). SR 1 route has different names based on the locality it runs through which includes pacific coast Highway (PCH), Cabrillo Highway, shoreline highway, or Coast Highway. SR 1 is famous for its best views when compared to other coastal highways in the world.
Let’s look at the four sections of the SR 1 highway shall we,
- Pacific Coast Highway(PCH)
- Cabrillo Highway
- Shoreline highway
- Coast highway
Pacific Coast Highway (PCH)
With a beautiful coastal line running parallel to the highway, you can experience the beautiful views of the pacific coast highway (PCH). This stretches from Santa Monica to its junction in highway 101 at Leggett. It’s one of the beautiful roads In any of the united states as its winds along the extreme edge of the North American continent. This section of the road skirts the Los padres national forest between San Simeon and Monterey bay.
There are so many places where you can stop and look at the stunning sea and rest in the evening. You might have to be careful with the curves of the road; the view gets better and better with the curves. The roads might be deserted sometimes and make you feel like you are going to another planet.
It’s the other name for SR 1 highway. The spectacular views of this highway will blow your mind. This is located in Big Sur, California. It starts from the Bixby Creek Bridge and downs to the south.
There is so much to see on the pacific highway and I would recommend you to take at least three days to travel through this highway and have all that it offers.
Since this road runs along the coastline if you are prone to motion sickness take your prescribed pills with you as well.
The first pit stop that you can do is at Santa Cruz, two hours south of San Francisco, in the surfing town. If you have less time to spend, visit the Santa Cruz surfing museum. If you are into surfing or any water sport in general this is something that you shouldn’t miss. The museum is free but it’s largely run by donations. You can watch the surfers hit the steamers lane just outside the museum or walk to the lighthouse field state beach.
Santa Cruz is not just about the rich beach and water sports culture, it’s also about its mountains and lush redwood forests. You can check out henry Cowell redwoods state park, this is north of the surfing museum.
if you are into hiking, this is a great spot to be. The goal is to get high enough to catch the spectacular view. The view in the top observation point is amazing. If you are not a hiker and want to view the mountains of Santa Cruz, you can take the train. check out the Mexican food scene in Watsonville, it’s delicious.
Pit stop 2 is at Monterey. You have Monterey bay national marine sanctuary, which is the largest protected ocean park in the united states. You can view 340 species of marine life there. There is nothing like taking a kayak through elkhorn slough, moss landing. You will find so many tuna and sardines canning facilities as well as a lot of historic artifacts.
Pit stop 3 Carmel, by the sea. You will find the 17-mile drive to the pebble beach. You will go through the pebble beach golf course which costs about 10$ at the gate. definitely stop at Spanish bay inn and head down to the beach to look at the breathtaking views. as you continue your drive you shouldn’t forget to take the famous selfie with the lone cypress. It’s about 250 years old. You can finish your 17-mile drive at the links at pebble beach. It’s the home of the US Open.
Pit stop 4 would be the Bixby creek bridge where you can find the amazing engineering marvel. It’s mostly packed and you can move along to your next pit stop.
Pit stop 5 away waterfall. There is no parking lot, it’s just a freeway pullout. The scene is something out of Huawei, a waterfall above the beach. There are only two of these in California. It’s prohibited to get down to the beach.
Pacific coastal highway is also called a shoreline highway, there are so many pits stops you can make here, and let’s go through them one by one.
Pit stop 6 san Simeon. The population is just 462.there is a giant castle build by publishing magnate William Randolph. Book the castle tour in advance as there are only limited slots. It’s a guided castle tour. visit the elephant seal vista point, there is a long viewing platform, so you are up close and right along with the animals.
Pit stop 7 Pismo beach. If you are interested in ATV-ing check it out. Otherwise, drive through. Continue to Solvang where you can spend an hour checking out this quaint town. You can have lunch and brunch there. Don’t call the place slow, the locals will give you a weird look.
Continue to Santa Barbara where you can do so much if you are willing to stay for a day or two.
No matter if you are going from north to south or south to north on the pacific coast highway, it’s an amazing road trip to take as a five or three-day short vacation to free your minds from the torturous machine life that we are living today. Enjoy nature and take the wonderful sights as memories. You will not be disappointed when you visit this highway.
There is so much you can do on this road trip. Loosen yourself and enjoy the trip.