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Highway . SF - SB

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Highway . SF - SB

I'm writing this as I sit in a coffee shop in San fran, got here Monday., having a great time.

Ok I leave SF on Friday, we have a car & we must end up in San Diego any time on Saturday. my stop over point at present is going to be Santa Barbara.

My original plan was to leave 8am Friday. Cruise down highway 1, maybe stop for a coffee in Carmel, then have lunch at nepenthe at big sur. Also must see Julia pfeiffer burns state park (mcway falls)

If we leave SF at 8, taking into account the things i want to do on the

way, is it doable in a good days driving, I don't mind getting into Santa Barbara at say 6pm.

After San Diego I'm heading to Vegas, iv planned everything pretty well I think, but this highway 1 drive part, is driving me mad, where is the best place to stay over for a nigh? My thinking was do the 10 hour drive to Santa Barbara stopping at the points I mentioned, then waking up & chilling in SB before the shorter drive to San Diego, admittedly I will be driving past LA on the Saturday, so I expect traffic, I can deal with that.

Please help, I leave SF this Friday morning, regardless I plan to leave SF pretty early. The questions I ask, are -

Is the planned trip SF-SB realistic

Are there better places to stay other than Santa B

I no Carmel is pretty , but it's only 4 hours south of SF, want to do a bit of driving first, so don't really want to stay there.

Sorry it's so long.

Many thanks guys.

Jonathan x

San Francisco...
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1. Re: Highway . SF - SB

Well I think if you are just doing stops for lunch and coffee then the 8 to 9 hour drive is doable. If you want to hike for sometime in the Big Sur area, then you may reach a tad bit late. Highway 1 driving is slow due to the at time single lanes and winding roads. You can cut across to 101 at Paso Robles south of Big Sur and reduce the drive time.

But Santa Barbara is a good stop and depending on your budget there are great places to stay there

Washington State
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2. Re: Highway . SF - SB

You do know that this is a holiday weekend, right? Driving may take longer with many vacationers on the roads with you.

Do you have lodging reservations?

Fish Creek...
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3. Re: Highway . SF - SB

I did an aimless wander down Hwy 1 and ended up staying in Morrow Bay on the water on Embarcadero St. It was a nice place to spend the night.

I know different people have different tastes, but having made this trip a few times I would tell you that if you are not planning on seeing Hearst Castle you are making a huge mistake. Regardless of what it does to your schedule, it is absolutely, positively a must see. I would suggest getting a book about WR Hearst before you get there to understand the context of the times and the man.

Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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4. Re: Highway . SF - SB

I can tell you right now that there is no way you'll be rolling into Santa Barbara at 6:00 pm with a departure time from SF @ 8:00 am, taking in Carmel, stopping for lunch @ Nepenthe and stopping for McWay Falls.

There are at least 3 areas along the Big Sur coast where the road is down to one lane for both directions controlled by a signal. If you get caught at a red light, you could have up to a 10 minute wait for oncoming traffic to go by x 3.

Being a holiday weekend, Nepenthe will be packed. Expect a long wait for a table. If you stop in Carmel, you will have difficulty finding parking. That will eat into your time. Big Sur is an hour's drive from Carmel. You would need to reach Nepenthe and be done there by 1:30 to get to Santa Barbara by 6:00 pm (and that DOESN'T include the stop for McWay Falls).

Edited: 30 June 2011, 01:03
Los Angeles...
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5. Re: Highway . SF - SB

>> If we leave SF at 8, taking into account the things i want to do on the way, is it doable in a good days driving, I don't mind getting into Santa Barbara at say 6pm.

This is not realistic. From Big Sur to Cambria... that stretch of highway 1 is very windy. Many turns are for 25mph. At best you can drive at 40mph average. Takes more than 2 hours. That is without the traffic delay and any stop for taking pictures. (Most scenic part).

Any reason to rush to reach Santa Barbara by 6pm? Or else may consider Cambria, Morro Bay, SLO or Pismo Beach as a midway stop to spend a night.

6. Re: Highway . SF - SB

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