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Slow Down and Explore Big Sur

Adventures await with Big Sur Lodge as your basecamp.

By: The Outbound Collective + Save to a List

Tucked between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Lucia Mountains, and only three-hours from San Francisco, Big Sur is the perfect escape from the norm. 

As you drive down Highway 1, the ocean crashing on one side and tree-covered mountains towering on the other, you'll feel the world melt away. Once surrounded by the redwoods of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, you'll have the urge to explore. Whether you're looking for stunning vistas, challenging hiking trails, or creative inspiration, you'll find it in Big Sur.

Big Sur Lodge makes the ideal basecamp for your trip. The Lodge has been operating in some form since the original owners Florence and John Pfeiffer started taking in guests at the Pfeiffer Ranch Resort in 1908. Today, you'll find the same warm hospitality and old school attention to guest experience that was fostered by the Pfeiffers from the beginning. Check into one of the 62 cottage style rooms that each have a private deck...a perfect spot for breathing in the serenity of Big Sur. 

Photo courtesy of Big Sur Lodge

Once your situated and are ready to head out for some exploring, here are some great options in the area.

Sunset on the Beach

Photo by Blake Maitoza

Purple sand, stunning rock formations, and brilliant sunsets over the Pacific, Pfeiffer Beach is a must-visit location. Even if you are not trying to capture the perfect photo, you'll be blown away by the rugged beauty of the California coast. Get there before sunset to explore the tide pools that form between the rocks.

Iconic Waterfalls

Photo by Stephen Bellrichard

It's pretty safe to say that no trip to Big Sur is complete without taking the short walk along the coastline to check out McWay Falls. You'll get a bird's eye view of the stunning waterfall as it pours out of lush coastal vegetation right onto the beach. There's never a wrong time to visit. Go on a misty day for a moody backdrop or try to catch a sunny day, when the Pacific waters in the tiny cove turn a brilliant blue. You'll get a castaway vibe for sure.

Hike to the Beach

Photo by Sassy Resuello

Located in Andrew Molera State Park, hike the trail that blazes a path through a meadow filled with wildflowers and across the Big Sur River to a 2.5 mile long stretch of beach. Pack a picnic and plan to stay awhile. Stunning rock formations and crashing waves make a perfect backdrop to a relaxing afternoon. Access is included with your stay at Big Sur Lodge.

A Butterfly Congregation

Photo by Ashley Chan

From Big Sur, make your way up to the Monterey Peninsula to see trees blanketed in Monarch butterflies at the Monarch Grove Butterfly Sanctuary. From October to February, Monarchs congregate at this small park during their annual migration. In good weather, the air will be filled with butterflies. During storms, you'll see them huddled together in masses among the branches.

Take a Swim

The pool at Big Sur Lodge is heated and is perfect for laps and lounging. For a natural swimming experience, there is a great swimming hole located on the river a 1/4-mile walk inside the park from Day Use area #2. 

Lookin for more adventures in Big Sur? We have you covered!

 Cover photo courtesy of Lucas Pols

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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