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Northern California Big Sur Beachfront

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Northern California Big Sur Photos

Experience the awe-inspiring spectacular beauty of Big Sur, offering the visitors tranquility and natural splendor, which are perfect for hiking, fishing, camping, picnicking and beachcombing. There aren't a lot of city attractions and things to do in Big Sur. There are no theme parks, no Burger Kings and mostly, it is just nature. But when you see the surroundings, you will decide that this is a real treat and something you may not have an opportunity to come back to and enjoy again later. If you love the California coast and just like to look, you will find gazing in Big Sur one of the top activities and you will be welcomed to stay and soak it up. It is the place where you can calm down, chill out and watch the birds, bugs and occasional airplanes to remind you civilization is just over the mountain.

Northern California Big Sur Pics

The Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary off the Big Sur coast looks stunning. Just fancy! California Condors are flying overhead throughout Big Sur. Humpback and Blue whales are feeding along Big Sur in their annual migration. These are just a few of the natural wonders that make Big Sur a great place to visit. Come on out and watch the natural magic unfold before your eyes. From Big Sur luxury hotels and spas to rustic creek side campgrounds Big Sur simply offers The Best in a wide variety of possibilities. Escape for a romantic getaway and enjoy one of the most spectacular coastlines in the world.

There are parks with beaches, hiking and a host of nature activities in Big Sur. While the beaches of Big Sur hardly resemble the vast stretches of sun-baked sand that dot Southern California's easily-accessible coastline, they offer the visitor a wide variety of recreational possibilities. Private property and steep terrain makes most of Big Sur coastline inaccessible to the public. Fortunately for the visitor, however, several State Park and U.S. Forest Service beaches are open to the public all year round which feature easy access and breath-taking scenery.

Big Sur Pictures

Located 23 miles South of Carmel, Andrew Molera State Park is the largest state park on the Big Sur Coast. A wide, scenic, mile-long path leads to a sandy beach that is sheltered from the wind by a large bluff to the North. The path itself is as much a delight as the beach, taking you through a meadow which is filled with wildflowers and sycamore trees, offering fine views of the coastal mountain range to the East. The path parallels the Big Sur River, which enters the sea adjacent to Molera beach.

The park features two miles of beach front, with coastal hiking and a 50-foot climb to a beautiful view of the Pacific. The park offers diverse coastal vegetation with trails running from ocean beaches into dense redwood groves. The park also features outstanding coastal headlands at Soberanes Point. Sea lions, harbor seals and sea otters can frequently be seen in the coastal waters and California gray whales pass close by during their yearly migration.

Big Sur Photo

Another state park, named after Julia Pfeiffer Burns, a well respected pioneer woman in the Big Sur country, stretches from the Big Sur coastline into nearby 3,000-foot ridges. It features redwood, tan oak, chaparral, and an 80-foot waterfall that drops from granite cliffs into the ocean from the Overlook Trail. From the higher elevations along the trails East of Highway 1 you can enjoy a panoramic view of the ocean and miles of rugged coastline.

Visit Partington Cove that holds a special piece of Big Sur history. Much of the tan bark and lumber was shipped out of this cove. There is a tunnel that goes through the ridgeline that opens into a beautiful cove which still has parts of the shipping tools bolted to the rocks. In addition, hiking inland from Partington Cove into Partington Canyon is a great hike! And the Tan Bark Trail is also a great and exhilarating climb.

Big Sur Photos

One of the most beautiful and scenic sandy beaches on the Big Sur coast, Sand Dollar Beach is also the longest one providing great surfing, exploring and fishing opportunities, located within walking distance of Plaskett Creek campground, directly across Hwy. 1. Sand Dollar offers visitors the widest expanse of sand along the Big Sur Coast, and possibly the mildest weather. Standing on the beach and looking Northeast, you will be able to see towering 5,155-foot Cone Peak. For an interesting side trip, visit Jade Cove, which is located two miles South of Sand Dollar Beach. In fact, South coast of Big Sur is famous for its jade reserves, and Jade Cove is a popular spot for beachcombers and rock hounds.

Northern California Big Sur Oceanfront

You may start your Big Sur experience with visiting Point Lobos State Reserve. This wonderful place has a lot of magnificent sites to discover and deserves at least half a day of your time. Even then return visits will bring new exciting nature and wildlife discoveries as the seasons change at this knobby outcropping.

This beautiful reserve now occupies more than 1,300 acres, the majority of which is underwater. The biological richness if this site is impressive, with over 250 different animal and bird species and over 358 plant species found there. Point Lobos contains headlands, coves and meadows with bountiful wildlife viewing of seals, sea lions, sea otters and migrating gray whales. Thousands of seabirds also make the reserve their home.

Big Sur

But you won’t need figures to realize the diversity of animal and plant life here. Just take a walk out by Whalers Cove, step up to Cannery Point and look around. You will spot sea lions frolic offshore and snooze on the rocks. Below you will see harbor seals gazing up and up in the sky plenty of birds calling. Surf scoters are diving, western grebes are swimming while Brandt’s cormorants are flying around. Famous for its underwater living treasures, this are lures scuba divers from all over the world every day of the year. If you are not a diver, you still will be able to see the profusion of fish, sea stars, anemones and crabs swimming in these clear waters.

Hiking trails follow the shoreline and lead to hidden coves. Vegetation here is represented by Monterey pines and Monterey cypress trees, as well as shrubs such as blue blossom, bush monkey flower, California sagebrush, lizard tail, and poison oak. The diversity of spring wildflowers is really impressive, especially on the bluffs around Granite Trail.

Big Sur Oceanfront

From five-star restaurants to local pubs, Big Sur offers a wonderful range of dining opportunities, with most restaurants featuring a unique view of the mountains or coastline. Experience exquisite wood fired cooking including wood fired hearth breads, baking, wood grilled fish, steaks, and beverages including the eclectic wine list, as well as fresh roasted coffee and teas.

Big Sur is filled with a colorful blend of unique shopping opportunities. All of the art galleries and gift shops offer handcrafted items made by Big Sur artisans. And that's not all! All the gift shops and galleries offer a unique adventure in shopping for the unusual handmade exotic items. You will be entertained by the great variety, choice, and quality of collectibles from around the world along with works of local artists.

The first gallery in Big Sur and actually one of the largest galleries of American Crafts in the United States, Coast Gallery features more than 150 Master Craftsmen. Located on Highway One 30 miles South of Carmel and 60 miles North of Hearst Castle, the gallery is nestled in a Redwood Canyon beside a mountain stream. A historic landmark with distinctive water-tank architecture, the Coast Gallery features such prominent local artists as Loet Vanderveen and James Hunolt, and international favorites, Henry Miller and Marc Chagall.