Big Sur – this is the place, images of which can be found on many postcards or posters about California (except, of course, Hollywood, the Golden gate bridge and Disneyland). But when I got here, somehow I had the feeling that I’m somewhere in Ireland or Scotland. Very strange, where is Ireland? But moreover: a high cliff, overlooking ocean, mountains covered with patchy green grass, and in some places thick forests, rocks, cows, a rare home, a winding road on a cliff – such landscapes are always somehow associated me with far Northern Europe.
Its name Big Sur has received from the Spanish “el sur grande”, which means in translation “the big south” (the big South).
Big Sur is not a city, a district that stretches for 90 miles (in different sources it is a different figure, because the precise boundaries of this district not) along the coast of Central California from the town of Carmel in the North to San Simeon in the South (suspended), where the mountain range of Santa Lucia rises sharply above the Pacific ocean. And rising this mountain range is really high above the ocean, forming the highest coastal peak Cone Peak of the continental USA with a height of almost a mile (1571 m) above sea level and only 3 miles (5 km) from the ocean. And, of course, an attraction for tourists in big Sur – to climb this mountain.
Big sur is a sparsely populated district with a total permanent population of about 1,000 people whose homes are far away from each other. Due to the mountainous location and relative remoteness from major cities, the environmental restrictions on the construction of real estate prices here are fairly high — about $2 million and above for a house with land. Almost all the houses are on the coast, which tourists do not anywhere approach the ocean (Private Property). But what here at home! And not the houses themselves, and the views from the Windows of these houses. A Paradise for owners of large Bank accounts, dreaming of a peaceful life. And in this area, joined by three major natural components, by which people seek to build houses for themselves: the ocean, mountains, forest.
There is no usual urban areas, only the rare places with gas stations, small cafes, shops and hotels. So you should watch your fuel gauge in the car, to then not have to go ten miles to the nearest gas station or call a tow truck, which is also unlikely to arrive quickly.
It is also worth noting, is that there are not so many hotels, so their prices are not too will please the wallet. Economy version – stop camping, although I personally would prefer a tent on the ocean, than an expensive hotel room. And it’s not the price, but in the emotion that gives the camping in this wonderful place. Suggest to book the camping Kirk Creek Campground (coordinates 35.990045, -121.495024), which is right off the coast (such at big Sur, not so much), so to fully enjoy the stay here worth to choose the place in the first line.
As such, official sites on the big Sur not, by and large, this place is one big attraction. But there are some particularly beautiful places.
The Waterfall Is McWay Falls
McWay Falls – a 25-meter waterfall located in the Park Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park (address: 53154 California 1 Big Sur, CA 93920, coordinates 36.158858, -121.670596).
When just going along the trail to this waterfall, I think, well, now there’s a puddle, her water dripping, nothing. But as soon as the offer falls before the eyes, only can do is exhale: “Ah!” So it’s a fascinating place, it seems that it should look like Paradise, if it exists, of course.
It is noteworthy that the water in the river, McWay Creek, which, in fact, is the source of the waterfall, there is constantly so admire McWay Falls all year round.
The waterfall is McWay Falls took first place in my ranking of the places to see big Sur.
The Bridge Bixby Creek Bridge (Bixby Bridge)
The bridge was built in 1932, its construction budget spent $199 861. The bridge is built in the form and span of the arch with a height of 98 m. It is one of the tallest single-span concrete bridges in the world and one of the most photographed bridges along the Pacific coast.
This is a small Park with trails along the ocean below them all around will take about 2 hours. The coordinates of the entrance to the Park 36.515928, -121.938485. To Park for free along the route or a few banknotes to drive into the Park itself (around $ 10-15).
Species that then opens up, forcing you to keep the camera ready. To completely finish off the tourists in the positive sense of the word, the scene in addition to mind-blowing landscapes out sea otters, seals, elephants, and other “locals” of the Pacific ocean.
Elephant Seal Vista Point in San Simeon
Coordinates Parking 35.663181, -121.257460
In this place you can spend a few hours just watching the sea elephants, of which there are thousands: some cry, others fight, still others somewhere crawl, swim in the ocean or just a smile on the face take a walk, well, all of these mils! And if you come here in late December – early January, it is possible to get stuck for the whole day, as the spectacle will be steeper than any of the show – the birth of babies and their first days of life.
The cons of this place – cold wind and a very unpleasant smell, but these disadvantages do not belong to the category of those that should make you think, and whether to come here at all. It most definitely is!
Cows on the meadow
For some reason, very vivid emotions I have caused… cows. Maybe the mood of the moment was so romantic, maybe the smell of the grass in which we lay, watching these cows played a role. Maybe it’s just some of the happiest cows I have ever seen in my life: graze themselves are all clean, well maintained in a conservation area (about the cost of their pastures a separate conversation), eat organic grass, admire the views, breathe the pleasant air, watching himself lazily on the tourists passing by. Ah, if only the cows knew it and could appreciate.
Of course, a visit to this huge castle with a beautiful garden and gorgeous interiors to combine with a trip to big sur. Unfortunately, due to lack of time, this place was not included in our program, but still ahead.
Big sur is very large, so that at least something here to consider and appreciate its beauty, you need 3-4 days. But because of the great length of big sur it does not feel overcrowded as tourists, although their is quite a lot. The ideal option would be to pass it all on Pacific Coast Highway is slow with stops at different campsites, taking pictures, walking, enjoying life, and rejoicing that people were able still to preserve relatively intact is such a wonderful place.