We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

San Francisco to LA via route 1

Which Los Angeles hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
London, United...
3 posts
1 review
Save Topic
San Francisco to LA via route 1

Hi we are hiring a car from San Francisco and driving to LA via the coastal route in Jul/Aug this year. (2 adults + 16 and 12 year old). We have 1 night to stopover enroute. It is our first time to California and any advice about what to see, where to stop, stay overnight and driving distances between the places would be very appreciated.

San Francisco...
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
Level Contributor
48,164 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: San Francisco to LA via route 1

Welcome to TA forums. This question is not about LA but about CA so the answer is on the TA California Forum. Have a look at the Top Questions there on the right side of the CA forum webpage and you should have all the info you need (not on the TA mobile app)

3 days are better but if you have 2 perhaps Pismo beach would be central. You do need to book your hotel in advance


Edited: 03 June 2013, 15:43
San Francisco
Level Contributor
36,629 posts
27 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: San Francisco to LA via route 1

Be aware if your stop over night is a Friday or Saturday many places along the central coast require a 2 night stay on weekends.

I too think taking 2 nights to make this drive is better. Stop Pismo and Monterey.

Check the CA forum -- the TQs and many previous threads with lots of info on this drive.

Level Contributor
11,773 posts
171 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: San Francisco to LA via route 1

For a one-night stopover I would suggest the area between Cambria and San Luis Obispo.

It is true that many places on the coast require two nights over the weekend in summer.

If you run into that issue, try Motel 6, the are very basic but don't have that requirement. Also good cancellation policies so you can keep looking.

Houston, TX
Level Contributor
4,244 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: San Francisco to LA via route 1

If there is any way you plan to stop for two nights along the way, I would suggest you consider it. You could leave SF in the morning and drive (either along the coast or the inland route) to Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park. Do the one hour walk around the Redwood Grove loop trail--fascinating to see the immense trees. Stop in Santa Cruz for lunch and a quick stop at the Boardwalk--ride the Giant Dipper for a bone-shaking wooden roller coaster ride. Drive to Monterey and see the Aquarium. Spend the night in Monterey.

Leave early the next morning and stop at Point Lobos State Natural Reserve. You can easily spend a couple of hours here, doing any or all of three main walks to enjoy the spectacular scenery. Continue down the big Sur Coast (absolutely stunning drive), stopping at the Bixby Bridge pullout for some photos. Have lunch at Nepenthe. Take the short hike to McWay Falls at Julia Pfieffer Burns State Park.Stop at the elephant seal rookery near Piedras Blancas--very, very interesting. Take a tour of Hearst Castle at San Simeon if that is of interest. On to Cambria and spend the night along Moonstone Beach or on to Pismo Beach for your overnight. Next day finish the drive.

While you can drive from Carmel (just south of Monterey) to Cambria in about 2.5-3 hours with no stops, it is much better if you can take a more leisurely pace and enjoy the coastal sights.

5. Re: San Francisco to LA via route 1

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 05 June 2014, 05:17