Big Sur

Big Sur is such a magical place and being able to drive up and down the CA-1 a few weekends ago has left me in complete awe of California beauty.  Having grown up here, I’ve always taken for granted the beautiful things you can see in this state.  I’d definitely say that Big Sur is the most gorgeous place in California.  Words can’t describe the emotions I felt seeing the vast ocean meeting the rugged coastline–and driving along this windy highway..the views just kept getting better and better.  The best way to put it is that I almost forgot to breathe at times.

Super clear day.
Just after crossing the Bixby Bridge, you can see it in the distance.
Always stopping.
Always stopping. I love the ocean.
Last Panoramic Shot.
Vast blue.

By far the best drive in the world. I can’t wait to return when the cliffs are all green.  After making our way into the woods, we stopped at Big Sur Bakery, a charming little bakery + restaurant tucked away off the 1.

Rustic charm.
Charming rustic bakery.
Bakery view outside.
Our view outside while we enjoy our afternoon snacks.
Pain au chocolat, Quiche & Earl Grey Chocolate Cake were our choices.
Pain au chocolat, Quiche & Earl Grey Chocolate Cake were our choices.
Sunny outdoor patio.
Sunny outdoor patio.
Adventure fuel.
Adventure fuel.

After breakfast, we headed for the Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park to see McWay Falls.  Super easy hike, beautiful cove.

Turquoise water.
Turquoise water.
Panoramic shot.
Paradise.

Continue reading “Big Sur”

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Point Lobos & Sierra Mar

About two weeks ago I was able to plan a quick getaway for some much needed R&R.  I’d always heard people talk about how beautiful the CA-1 & Big Sur was so we booked a last minute stay on Airbnb and packed our bags! I was surprised at how close of a drive it was..living in the Bay Area, it was only an hour and 30 minutes since we were staying in Carmel, just off the 1.  We had lunch at Carmel Belle – a place I’d definitely come back to again! I loved the casual open environment and extensive menu of freshly prepared items (simple food and a good cappuccino has been an irresistible pairing of mine lately).  Cozy place to grab a quick bite to eat before stopping at Point Lobos for some hiking!

Neat Tide Pool!
Neat Tide Pool!

Point Lobos is a great park to walk along the California coastline.  A lot of the park isn’t that accessible by driving, so I wish we got here a little bit earlier so we could see more on foot.  We got to sneak a short peek at China Cove before having to leave – wish I got a picture of this as the cove is one of the prettiest in the entire park.

For dinner, we jumped on the 1 and headed for Post Ranch Inn.  This hotel is SUPER swanky.  I wish I was raking in the hay to be able to stay here..one night will cost you a pretty penny, but I hope to come back soon as a guest in the near future.  Sierra Mar was the next best thing, the onsite restaurant that’s perched along the coastline, 1100 feet above the Pacific Ocean.  Yes, it was as beautiful as it sounds:

Dining in the sky, literally.
Dining in the sky, literally.
The setting sun.
The setting sun over Big Sur.
Almost gone..
Almost gone..
Lingering colors.
Lingering colors.

This was an amazing dining experience..the food was good but the view and ambiance was phenomenal.  We were worried because when we first arrived at 5:30, the entire cliff was encased in a cloud.  Our view was stark white and we weren’t sure if we’d be able to see the sunset, but soon enough, the clouds began to move over the ocean and it made for a breathtakingly (slightly eerie) beautiful view.

Watching the clouds pass through the setting sun was a sight to see, especially with the changing colors.  I’d say it was one of the prettiest things I had ever seen…and I see a lot of sunsets!  Definitely a treat to spend a few hours in such a unique place.  At the end of dinner, we grabbed drinks at the bar and moved out to their terrace patio to find someone setting up a telescope the hotel just bought for guest viewing.  We were able to see the moon and Venus that night – definitely the cherry on top for us!  Sierra Mar is a very special place and I plan to be back very soon.