This post is the second part of our road trip along the world famous 'Pacific Coast Highway' (PCH) on the occasion of our 3rd anniversary. You can find the previous post here.
drive from Morro Bay to Monterey is probably what made PCH so popular as
it not only offers excellent views of the ocean but also the rocky
cliffs make the scenery dramatic. Unfortunately for us, it was covered
in fog for most of the time (which is the case often during summer), so
we had to stop and step out to get a good view of the ocean. The drive
nevertheless was very enjoyable, especially in a convertible :) We found
secluded spots along the coast to explore the beach, the rocks and much
more! We went to state parks such as Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park,
Point Lobos Natural Reserve and did a bit of hiking as well. We saw
several sea lions at the 'Sea Lion Point' in Point Lobos Natural Reserve
which made such peculiar sounds that we mistook them for a loud noisy
group of people from a distance. We also did the 'Cypress Grove Trail'
which took us through a forest along the coast where we saw a huge flock
of black birds perched on giant white rocks. It was a beautiful sight.
We then got back on the road and retired to a hotel room near Santa Cruz
(booked through last minute deals on Priceline).
|Along the 'Pacific Coast Highway'|
|Srikant Exploring :)|
|Beautiful spot in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park|
On Day 3, we decided to go back a little and do the '17-mile drive', a
scenic road through Pebble Beach and Pacific Grove on the Monterey
Peninsula in California (which was closed the previous day due to some
car show event). And how glad we were we did it! This is the kind of flexibility a road trip offers which makes it very appealing. The
weather was just perfect - warm and sunny with cool breeze from the
Pacific Ocean. The drive was fantastic giving access to some of the
cleanest and the most beautiful beaches on the Californian Coast. I am
sure there are other places where you can find such beautiful spots
without paying a fee, but I loved the fact that you can get access to
clean secluded spots that you only see in movies or in far away islands,
right in the middle of California, without having to search for them,
just by paying $10.
|Cypress Grove Trail @ Point Lobos Natural Reserve|
spending a couple of hours on the '17-Mile Drive', we went to
Carmel-by-the-sea downtown for lunch. Such a quaint and charming place! I
fell in love with it instantly. It is touristy, no-doubt, but with a
charm you will find hard to resist. We went to a cafe for lunch and the
chef sang for us while we ate. Who could not fall in love with this
place? After lunch, we headed out to San Francisco hoping to catch an
amazing sunset at the Golden Gate Bridge. Instead, we were greeted with
so much fog that we could not even see the bridge while we were standing
on it. No kidding! We retired to a friend's place hoping to visit San
Francisco on a better day when we can actually see the city through our
eyes instead of through the fog.
On Day 4, we left for Redwood National & State Parks, home to the tallest trees on Earth, to
admire the giant redwoods. The tall green trees are such a
feast to the eyes that you feel like wandering in the forests forever.
We totally did not mind getting lost for a while during the 'Stout
Grove' hike when we went off the hiking trail to explore a nearby creek
and could not find our way back easily. For the night, we camped at
'Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park' and I don't think I would ever find
a camping place better than this. Right in the middle of the forest,
amidst tall green trees, there is this beautiful camping spot with all
the amenities, yet without losing the feel of the forest. The campground
has such amazingly clean and beautiful shower rooms that they deserve a
special mention. I never thought camping in a forest would be this much
easy and this much fun. Totally loved it and highly recommend camping
here at least once.
To be continued here
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