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Big Sur is a dramatic stretch of California’s central coast located just south of Carmel. It’s not a town but a region, bordered to the east by mountains and the west by the Pacific Ocean and is traversed by the breath-taking Pacific Highway 1, known for winding turns, steep seaside cliffs and views of the rugged coastline.

Elephant seal at Point Piedras, Big SurThe sparsely populated region has several small communities ideal for lunch, lovely beaches for quiet relaxation and numerous state parks perfect for hiking.

Although it’s easy to drive through Big Sur in a couple of hours it’s far better to drive slow, take in the scenery and enjoy the ride. There are several different accommodation options for an overnight stay or alternatively lots of lookout spots and rest areas to break up the journey.

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Audley Travel Specialist Shannon

Start planning your tailor-made trip to Big Sur by contacting one of our California specialists

Suggested itinerary featuring Big Sur

This sample itinerary will give you an idea of what is possible when you travel in Big Sur, and showcases routes we know work particularly well. Treat this as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of Big Sur

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near Big Sur

    Accommodation choices for Big Sur

    We've selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Big Sur. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.

    • Jade Pool, Post Ranch Inn
      Responsible Choice

      Post Ranch Inn

      Big Sur