After heading down the California coast for a little getaway, I quickly fell in love with the magical place that is Big Sur! I'm always so in awe that God made us such beautiful spots like this to explore!
Big Sur is a central California area made up of two amazing state parks - Pfeiffer Big Sur SP and Julia Pfeiffer State SP. It holds some of the dreamiest forests full of giant redwoods, a beautiful and unique coastline, and endless adventure!
I had the best time camping and exploring Big Sur and am so excited to share this guide with you!
We camped in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park and loved every second of it! The park is incredibly well maintained which I loved - there were beautiful bridges crossing the river and awesome trails everywhere! As for camping, just be sure to book your campsite on parks.ca.gov to secure a spot beforehand! It was so fun to sleep among the giant trees in one of the most peaceful campsites I've stayed at! Plus, the bathrooms have both showers and sinks, which is always a nice thing to have after sleeping in a tent!
If you're not big on camping, check out the Big Sur Lodge located just right outside the entrance of the park! It offers rustic rooms, a coffee shop, and dining - they also have a cute little gift shop with souvenirs and any last minute snacks or camping supplies you might need!
If you really want to go all out and take the luxury route, Ventana Big Sur looked like an absolute dream! But just a heads up, I checked their prices and rooms go for around $1,000/night!
As far as good eats go - when camping, we always cook over the campfire and love getting to be creative with our meals! I recently shared on my Instagram how we cooked a delicious steak and potato dinner, feel free to check that post out below!
I totally get that cooking on a campfire and camping isn't for everyone so if that's the case, I'd recommend grabbing breakfast at Big Sur Lodge, a fancy dinner at Post Ranch Inn, and some cold brews at Big Sur Taphouse!
Time to explore! Big Sur is honestly one of the most beautiful places I've been! I love it's coastal cliffs, rolling green hills, redwood forests, gorgeous ocean views, crystal clear rivers - the list could go on and on!
Here's the places that are must-do's:
McWay Falls is probably the most popular destination in Big Sur (in the Julia Pfeiffer SP) and for a good reason! How many times have you seen a gorgeous waterfall flowing into the ocean and beach below?! Trust me when I say this spot is stunning! It's a quick and easy hike to get to the viewpoint which makes it the perfect photo opportunity! I must add, please stay on the trails (for multiple reasons) - Big Sur is full of ticks and poison oak and going off trail could lead to some unwanted problems! And most importantly, I've noticed a lot of people going off the trail and climbing up above it to 'get the shot'... this is really not good for the environment because there's a reason there are trails, especially in a state regulated park! Whether that be for reforestation reasons or simply damaging the plants and tainting the what should be untouched land for the local wildlife! Please, please, please stay on the trail, friends!
Pfeiffer Beach is a great place to beach it! There's a really beautiful sea arch that I've heard is amazing to watch the sunset through!
Bixby Bridge doesn't have anything to do, it is a bridge after all ha! But, it is a really rad photo opportunity and kind of a famous 'California landmark'!
If you are wanting to hike, again check out Pfeiffer Big Sur SP - so many awesome trails and when you're done, take a dip in the river! Gonna say this twice only because nobody wants ticks or poison oak so please don't go wandering off trail, don't walk through thick forest, and wear long clothing!
If you just want to take in the scenery, Big Sur is located on the famous Pacific Coast Highway aka HWY 1, so just take a cruise around and enjoy the views!
If you're ever in California you must put Big Sur on your list of stops! It's truly so magical with it's perfect balance of ocean and forest! Now go plan that trip!