Travel

TRAVEL / California Hwy 1: Roadtripping LA to San Francisco

LA to San Fran Roadtrip 20

We travel not to escape life, but so life doesn’t escape us…

Los Angeles to San Fran by way of Big Sur… If you’ve read any California guide book they will list coastal Highway 1 as a must do… and it really is. I mentioned in my Coachella post that I had a girlfriend from Melbourne in town for a couple of weeks so after our desert trek we decided to make the drive to San Fran and check what all the fuss was about. Map We only had two days to get to San Fran due to other commitments so we spent the first day getting most of the drive out of the way. Set playlist, plenty of snacks the changing California landscape and a stop in Santa Barbara for lunch dominated most of the day. Leaving about 11am we arrived in Big Sur just before sunset. LA to San Fran Roadtrip 2

Santa Barbara!

Santa Barbara!

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Big Sur… I wish I’d had more time to spend within this coastal forest. After catching the sunset quickly at Pfeiffer Beach, we headed slowly along the windy cliffside to find our motel. Seeing that mobile/cell networks cut out as you hit Big Sur, we really should have printed off a map or at least taken note of applicable landmarks/roads before trying to navigate the pitch black night. Getting squinty eyed as we slowed for every sign, we finally found our cute motel at Fernwood Resort.
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 After showering and getting settled, we head back out into the dark to find dinner (it was 9:30pm by this time and many restaurants/eateries in the area close around then). Settling on the warm wooded treehouse-like Nepenthe Restaurant, with a glass of red and veggie burgers was the perfect way to end to a long day of road tripping.

Breakfast the next day came with the most spectacular view – atop the clifftop patio at Nepenthe where we sat under the morning sun with our coffees. After browsing their gorgeously local bohemian Phoenix Shop, we headed off to explore a bit more of Big Sur, stopping past the aqua and blue inlet of Pfeiffer Beach and the 1930’s well known landmark, Bixby Bridge.

 

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The little General Store at our motel

The little General Store at our motel

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Pfeiffer Beach

Pfeiffer Beach

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Bixby Bridge

Bixby Bridge

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San Fran bound, we made a quick stop to the tightly knit coastal town Santa Cruz for some acai juices before arriving in the Bay area.

I’ve been to San Francisco a couple of times before, during high school (more years ago than I’d like to admit) so it was fun walking around and have ancient family holiday memories pour back. The one touristy thing I wanted to do but never did, was the tour of Alcatraz. Unfortunately you have to book tours at least a couple weeks in advance so I had to be content with the harbour ferry cruise which took us past the infamous island aswell as under those Golden Gates.

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Always a good thing!

Always a good thing!

Ships Ahoy

Ships Ahoy

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That Golden Gate

That Golden Gate

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Escape… from Alcatraz

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Entrance to the Prison

Entrance to the Prison

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That Star Spangled Banner

That Star Spangled Banner

This perfect 4 day little getaway up the coast was enough to make me realise that there will definitely be a round two and here is what’s on the list:

Big Sur

Glamping – So I’m not a huge camper, in fact the first time I’ve been camping since high school was a couple of weeks ago at Coachella. I’m not adverse to the idea, in fact sleeping under the stars is magical, however if I can combine sleeping under the stars with some creature comforts such as a bed and minimal bug bites, I’ll literally be one happy camper 😉
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This is where Glamping enters – glam camping – a bed in typically modern yurts or tent cabins, amongst some beautiful surrounds, under the stars – the best way to experience the outdoors whilst still getting a good night sleep.
glamping
Big Sur has a number of Glamping locations including: Treebones Resort and the Fernwood Resort.

Horseback Riding – there are plenty of trails and hikes you can do around Big Sur, however for a bit of a different view I’d love to do one of the Horseback tours such as the ones offered by Molera Horseback or Seahorse Equestrian.

Hiking – it’s hard to pick any one trail but if I had to, it would be the fairy-like Avatar world of the Ewoldsen Trail.

San Francisco

Night Tour of Alcatraz Island – one of the most infamous prisons with not only walls but walls of ocean to keep likes of Americans most notorious criminals such as Al Capone and Stroud “The Birdman” at bay.

Golden Gate to Muir Woods – taking the time to travel over the bridge to lunch along the Sausalito waterfront and view San Fran from across the bay. Then heading to the magic of Muir Woods for an afternoon of Redwood exploring and

There are so many San Fran travel guides out there but I found these two have some great ideas and information: San Francisco Travel and Trip Advisor’s Top 30.

Alcatraz

Night Tour of Alcatraz

 

It was a whirlwind roadtrip, but so much fun. Just two friends, with a wandering plan and constantly changing landscape – #THE BEST

by-jordana-ripp

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