It’s been more than a year since San Luis Obispo County residents could make a detour-free trip north along Highway 1 to Big Sur.
Central Coast residents can again enjoy a road trip up one of the longest and most scenic stretches on undeveloped coastline in the country.
Plus, the long wait could make visiting popular sites such as the Bixby Bridge, McWay Falls and Pfeiffer Beach even more spectacular.
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Here are seven things to do on your next trip up the coast:
Named after a well-respected resident and rancher in the region during the early 20th century, Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park stretches from the Big Sur coastline into nearby 3,000-foot ridges.
Located 37 miles south of Carmel, the park is home to 300-foot redwoods that are more than 2,500 years old, as well as the 80-foot McWay Falls that drop from granite cliffs into the ocean from the Overlook Trail.
Camping reservations are required and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at ReserveCalifornia.com. Camping costs $30 per night.
For more information, call 1-800-444-7275.
You’d be hard-pressed to find better views anywhere in California.
Built by Bill and Lolly Fassett and first opened in 1949, Nepenthe is perched 800 feet above the coast on the edge of the continent.
Nepenthe is known today for its incandescent views, family hospitality, legendary guests and the famous Ambrosiaburger.
Lunch is served daily from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; dinner is served from 5 to 10 p.m.
Reservations for parties of five or more can be made by calling 831-667-2345.
Pfeiffer Beach is located at the heart of Big Sur and is perhaps best known for its offshore rock formations — none more popular than Keyhole Rock.
The beach is exceptionally popular and is only accessible via a narrow two-mile road. A parking lot near the beach accommodates 60 vehicles, meaning it is often full on summer and holiday weekends.
Additionally, Pfeiffer Beach is a day-use area with no overnight camping. It is accessible for a $10 entrance fee from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m., seven days per week.
The Post Ranch Inn, named after one of Big Sur’s first pioneer families, defines a luxurious escape.
Nestled 1,200 feet above the Pacific Ocean, the Post Ranch Inn’s 39 rooms blend rustic elegance, comfort and privacy with panoramic ocean and mountain views.
You can take in breathtaking views in a stainless steel tub on the balcony, and keep warm by a wood-burning fireplace.
To make reservations, call 831-667-2200.
Big Sur’s version of the Golden Gate — known simply as Bixby Bridge — is 714 feet long, 24 feet wide, and soars 260 feet above the bottom of a steep canyon carved by Bixby Creek.
One of the tallest single-span concrete bridges in the world is also one of the most photographed sites in the region.
In 1996, this stretch of road became one of the first designated by the federal government as an All American Road.
Treebones Resort blends the natural experience of outdoor camping with more glamorous amenities.
With pool and hot tub access, massages, yoga, hiking and seasonal whale watching, this secluded getaway destination offers something for everybody.
For more information, visit www.treebonesresort.com.
Run by a nonprofit organization named after late American author Henry Miller, this scenic spot is a social center for the Big Sur community.
The Henry Miller Memorial Library hosts events throughout the year — particularly May through October — including concerts, art shows, lectures and book signings.
One popular event is the annual Big Sur International Short Film Screening Series, an outdoor film festival. Watch movies under the towering redwoods on Thursday nights from June through August.