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From San Fran to San Diego....

New York City, New...
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From San Fran to San Diego....

Hi there,

We are planning to drive from SF to San Diego.

We are staying 1 night in San Simeon area and 1 night in the Oxnard area.

How is the drive? Mountains? High altitudes? Curvy roads? Barriers on sides of roads? Just a general idea of the drive...

And is Bixby bridge on highway 1 or out of the way?

Thanks

Dublin, California
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1. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

If you are driving Big Sur then part of the drive can be curvy. It's along the coast so not mountainous. Bixby Bridge is on Hwy 1 in the Big Sur area.

Santa Clara...
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2. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

Trying very very hard to take you seriously... but have you read this article yet? I am feeling slightly de jevu...

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g28926-c197885/Califo…

Elk Grove...
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3. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

Take a look at a Google Map. No, seriously. Because it can explain so much more. 2 routes to drive down - Highway 1 or 101. Highway 1 at times very curvy. 101 fairly straight. There are places where they overlap. Altitude no higher than 500 feet or so above sea level. At any point you can use Google Streetview to look at the road scene/conditions.

Grover Beach...
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4. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

"....How is the drive? Mountains? High altitudes? Curvy roads? Barriers on sides of roads? Just a general idea of the drive..."....

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The drive is slow and winding along the 90 mile stretch of Big Sur coastline. The Santa Lucia mountains hug the inside lane, while the outside lane (southbound) is often at the edge of cliffs sitting hundreds of feet above the ocean. There are barriers in some places, but not all. And there are several REALLY tight hairpin turns, especially toward the south end of the drive.

SF to San Simeon is approx. a 6 hour drive WITHOUT stops!! In other words... a full day's drive with stops en route.

Here's a photo blog of the Big Sur drive (Do note that some photos were taken above Highway 1 on the Nacimiento-Fergusson Road):

www.pashnit.com/roads/cal/Hwy1BigSur.htm

New York City, New...
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5. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

Dear Chinita....not exactly sure what your comments mean...take me seriously? I have not been down this road before so I asked for some advice...California is full of hills and roads thru mountains. We were in the santa Barbara area last year and ended up on route 154. What a road...up the hill, down the hill, up the hill...never again. Anyway, thanks for your time.

Elk Grove...
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6. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

The thing is: From San Francisco to San Diego is 500 miles.

Your questions are very difficult to answer. It's 500 miles.

How is the drive? Some good, some bad.

Mountains? Yes and no. If you take the I-5, you will drive up about 4000 feet through the Grapevine.

High altitudes? Yes and no. See above.

Curvy roads? Yes and no. From Big Sur to San Simeon, very much so. Otherwise, no.

Barriers on sides of roads? Yes and no. In a few places, yes. Generally no.

Just a general idea of the drive... There is no "general" idea. You are crossing many different terrains, small towns, and then big cities (Los Angeles Basin). See the ocean, can't see the ocean. See the ocean, can't see the ocean. Things are very different at different stretch of this 500 mile journey.

That's why studying a map is so much easier.

Santa Clara...
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7. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

Perhaps I have you confused with another poster from the Tri-State area we have been having circular discussions. My apologies. Do read that article and the excellent advice already given.

Is anyone afraid of heights or get car sick?

Edited: 29 July 2014, 03:37
San Francisco, Ca
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8. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

Bixby Bridge is on Hwy. 1 -- there is a small turnout point just before it where you can photos.

The Big Sur portion of Hwy. 1 is very curvy and while not "mountainous", you are driving very close to a steep drop-off down to the Pacific Ocean. There are guardrails in some places, but because we are asked this a lot, the last time I drove it I made a point to look, and was surprised at how frequently there was no guardrail. There are few official view points to pull off, but very many places where people suddenly brake and pull off onto a wide dirt area to take pictures and admire the view. You generally average much slower speeds than the official speed limit either because you are admiring the view as you drive, or are behind someone else who is doing so.

If you search YouTube, I believe there are lots of videos giving an idea of the drive through this portion.

9. Re: From San Fran to San Diego....

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