California’s Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip

California’s Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip

If you’re looking for one of the top scenic road trips in the U.S. this is one of them. Cruising down California’s Pacific Coast Highway 1 offers stunning views of the coastlines stretching waters as far as the eye can see. You’ll have a front row seat to the sunset and plenty to do along the way.

Coming from San Diego, we hopped on Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo. Driving through the Paso Robles wine region was BEAUTIFUL!


Day 1

We arrived in Cambria with plenty of time to walk the beach and watch the sunset. Our hotel was on Moonstone Beach and this was the perfect 1st stop on our route. The beach was stunning and very clean. There is a nice wooden boardwalk and lots of great trees. We saw dolphins in the distance while we watched the surf. As you walk along the beach you’ll see large pieces of driftwood and when you play around in the sand, don’t be surprised when you find turquoise.

Moonstone Beach
Moonstone Beach

Big Sur

Day 2

The next morning, we headed to Big Sur to enjoy the views, do some hiking and swimming. After a day experiencing nature at it’s finest, we headed to Monterey for the night. Although there are plenty of places to stay in Big Sur!

Bixby Bridge
Big Creek Bridge
McWay Falls
McWay Falls

Monterey Bay

Day 3

In Monterey, we drove around and admired the beauty of the area, visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium and walked around Cannery Row.

Have you ever wondered why there’s so much fog on the north western pacific coast? There is a ton of forestry up there. Coastal forests need fog. Fog is a natural part of summer in this region. Plants water themselves with fog drip – water droplets that collect on leaves and needles and drop to the ground. Since it seldom rains in the summer, fog drip helps water coastal plants.

Monterey CA
Monterey Peninsula
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Monterey Bay Aquarium

San Francisco

Day 4-5

We got to San Francisco on my Birthday 🙂 This is not our first summer trip that occurred over my birthday (lucky me!) We spent two nights in San Fran and our days were loaded.

Things to do:

Muir Woods is incredible. It’s a redwood tree forest with lots of different trails, all ranging in difficulty. The funniest thing happened while we were here, we ran into my husband’s cousin from Florida!

Golden gate bridge
Golden Gate Bridge
Golden gate bridge
Cable car system San Francisco


Day 6-8

Sonoma, the icing on the cake! We spent 3 nights in Sonoma before we headed back home to San Diego. This wine country region is stunning. Yes our 6 year old went on wine tours with us, most of the wineries are family friendly! 🙂

Traveling with kids? Visit Sonoma traintown railroad!

I never wanted to leave Sonoma and I look forward to returning to tour all of northern California’s wine country region!

Buena Vista Winery
Buena Vista Winery
Pinot Girgio grapes
Pinot Grigio Grapes

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