California Highway 1

If you love driving and the ocean, then you should give Highway 1 in California a try. It offers some of the most scenic views along the coast.


Most visitors drive along the part of Highway 1 that stretches between San Francisco and Los Angeles. And for good reasons. Here you will find Monterey, Pacific Grove, and Carmel, beautiful coastal towns, each with their own charm and sights. Just south of Carmel is the 17-Mile Drive with the now world-famous Lone Cypress.

Further south greets you nature at its best; great beaches, wild coves, and animal sanctuaries. A favorite among tourists and locals alike is Point Lobos State Reserve.

Along the way there are many state parks, which offer great coastal trails, waterfalls, and spots to observe seals and other animals.

Probably the most visited place along this stretch of Highway 1 is Hearst Castle, the “residence” of newspaper magnate William R. Hurst. If you want to visit the castle, be prepared for long lines. It always pays off to get tickets in advance, so that you can go on the tour you are most interested in, at a time that is convenient for you.

Other highlights along the route include Elephant Seal Point, Morro Bay, and Pismo Beach.

If you’re interested in more and got some time, you should also see the part of Highway 1 that is north of San Francisco. It has its own charm; and while it may not be as well known as the southern part, it still got plenty to offer; including Point Reyes National Seashore.