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Big Sur, California

Big Sur, California is one of California's top spots for outdoor adventurers and explorers. It offers top activities and attractions that are must-visits for anyone looking for an outdoor adventure. From the iconic Bixby Bridge to the stunning McWay Falls, this area offers plenty of awe-inspiring sights. There are also plenty of trails to explore within the area, such as the Ventana Double Cone Trail, the Limekiln Trail, and the Andrew Molera Trail. For those looking for a more leisurely experience, there are also plenty of picturesque beaches to relax at, such as Sand Dollar Beach and Pfeiffer Beach. Big Sur is a great destination for anyone looking for an outdoor adventure, attractions, and stunning views.

Top Spots in and near Big Sur

  • Big Sur, California

    Camp at Ventana Campground, Big Sur

    4.6
    This campground is a gem when it comes to Big Sur camping, book here. Each site includes a parking spot, a campfire ring with grill, a picnic table, and plenty of space for 1-2 tents. There are multiple immaculate restroom facilities with showers, clean trash enclosures (emptied and sanitized dai...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Hike to Pfeiffer Falls

    4.0
    2 mi
    This trail is a staff favorite at Big Sur. This family-friendly waterfall trail provides only a moderate challenge for young children and older family members. There are two starting points for this hike depending on where you stashed the car. If you’re parked near the gift shop, the head up the ...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Camp at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park

    5.0
    The campground at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park offers a spectacular variety of natural settings to enjoy. Each of the 189 tent and RV sites is located within the redwood groves, oak woodlands, grassy meadows and they even have riverside camping.Each site has a picnic table, fire ring, access to dr...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Hike the East Molera Trail

    3.2 mi / 1390 ft gain
    Housed in Andrew Molera State Park, the East Molera Trail is easily accessible from Highway 1 with parking and restrooms available to hikers. A $10.00 entry fee is required but also provides entrance to Pfieffer Big Sur State Park just a few miles down the road.The trail head is located east of t...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Sykes Hot Springs via Pine Ridge Trail

    4.2
    18.96 mi / 7339 ft gain
    The trek to Sykes Hot Springs is about 10-miles one way along the Pine Ridge Trail. This is a great backpacking trip, but can be done as an out-and-back hike from the campgrounds at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park if you're really moving. The trail is moderately challenging, you'll cross the river t...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Pine Ridge, North Coast Ridge Loop

    2.0
    33.45 mi / 11388 ft gain
    If you are looking to do some backpacking in the Big Sur area, you've come to the right place. This post shares a suggested 4-day backpacking loop in the Ventana Wilderness that will offer a bit of everything - challenging hiking with a healthy does of elevation, beautiful primitive camping amon...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Hike the Andrew Molera State Park Loop

    4.5
    8.8 mi / 1100 ft gain
    The loops starts at the Andrew Molera State Park parking lot (4.5 miles north of the entrance to Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park along Highway 1). Begin by crossing the Big Sur River using the seasonal bridge. If the bridge has been removed, you will need to cross the water by foot. Usually the water...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Pfeiffer Beach

    4.0
    0.81 mi / 75 ft gain
    Pfeiffer Beach located in Big Sur may truly be one of the most awesome beaches in California...if you can find it. I lived within 40 miles of this beach for over 20 years and just discovered it recently. This beach is located on an unmarked road called Sycamore Canyon Road. On Highway 1, this roa...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Hike the Creamery Meadow Trail to Molera Beach

    2 mi
    Entrance to the parking lot is $10 per car, and once you get in be sure to use the restroom before you head for the trail, since you will likely spend a good amount of time out there.Look for the sign that says Creamery Meadow Trail. You'll know it's right when the very first thing you'll need to...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Big Sur River Gorge

    4.7
    0.36 mi / 56 ft gain
    If you are in the Big Sur area during the summer, exploring the Big Sur River Gorge is a must! The gorge is located in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, and your closest parking will be day use parking lot 3. The trailhead to the gorge can be found at the northeast end of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park C...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Camp at Andrew Molera State Park

    4.5
    1 mi
    Andrew Molera is about 27 miles south of Carmel and one of the first State Parks you'll hit heading down the coast. There will be signs for the Park as you approach and the main parking lot is only a couple hundred yards from Hwy 1. There are a number of hiking trails and activities to do around ...
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  • Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

    Pat Springs via Skinners Ridge

    3.5
    13.18 mi / 3645 ft gain
    Backpacking to Pat Springs is a way to see Big Sur and the San Lucia mountains from a perspective that few get to experience. The Ventana Wilderness is rugged and remote, yet Pat Springs is one of the most beautiful campgrounds around that will allow you to take in this amazing terrain.  To get ...
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  • Monterey, California

    Bixby Bridge

    4.7
    You can't miss this bridge if you are driving north on highway one. The best time for capturing sunsets behind the bridge is December. The positioning of the sun will better coincide with the location of the bridge.There are four main angles to capture the bridge: The first two are up close on ...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Partington Cove Trail

    5.0
    1.09 mi / 262 ft gain
    Partington Cove Trail is an out-and-back trail that takes you by a waterfall located near Big Sur, California.
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  • Big Sur, California

    Hike to Big Sur's Tin House

    4.0
    When it comes to the beauty of Big Sur, a half day on Tanbark Trail to the Tin House captures it all. From the redwood forest along Partinton Creek, to the abandoned Tin House, to Highway 1 and coastal views, you can't ask for much more.The hike starts on the east side of Highway 1 - the northern...
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  • Big Sur, California

    Explore The Hidden Rock Caves At Partington Cove

    5.0
    Partington Cove which is located in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, is one of Big Sur's hidden gems. It's a very short hike with enough views to show why Big Sur earned the nickname " Little Yosemite." The whole hike can easily be completed in less than an hour, although there are definitely eno...
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Camping and Lodging in Big Sur

Big Sur Lodge
Big Sur, California

Big Sur Lodge

From $199 / night

Asilomar Hotel and Conference Grounds
Pacific Grove, California

Asilomar Hotel and Conference Grounds

From $176 / night

Moss Landing KOA Express
Moss Landing, California

Moss Landing KOA Express

Salinas / Monterey KOA
Prunedale, California

Salinas / Monterey KOA

Guides, Insights and Stories from Big Sur

Seek Beauty on the Big Sur Coast

Seek Beauty on the Big Sur Coast

Sara Sheehy

Slow Down and Explore Big Sur

Slow Down and Explore Big Sur

The Outbound Collective

Over a Year after Massive Mudslide, Big Sur's Scenic Highway 1 Reopens

Over a Year after Massive Mudslide, Big Sur's Scenic Highway 1 Reopens

The Outbound Collective

Exploring Big Sur, a Photographer's Dream

Exploring Big Sur, a Photographer's Dream

Rufino Martinez

5 Photos of Big Sur's Ever-Changing Seasons

5 Photos of Big Sur's Ever-Changing Seasons

Jovelyn Gruspe

5 Pieces of Gear You Need for a Weekend Adventure in Monterey, California

5 Pieces of Gear You Need for a Weekend Adventure in Monterey, California

Mitch Pittman