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Hwy 1 : the Utilmate Roadtrip Experience

It is no secret that many famous movies have been using the Californian landscape as their movie set. California is a well known paradise that gives away breath taking views of the Pacific ocean. It is also known to be home to one of the most scenic drive in the entire world ; the famous Hwy 1. I’ve recently had the chance to drive down this road and here are some places worth stopping to for you to make the best of your road trip:

It’s in the bay area that the road start, a little bit south of Santa Cruz. You might  want to book a room a little outside of the city center since the prices can get really expensive especially during high season. Your first stop will be the town of Monterey. If you have time, I recommend to spend at least a day in this great town that offers many activities. The main attraction is the Monterey bay aquarium. Having visited a lot of aquariums in my life, I can easily say that this one makes the top 3. You can also enjoy the bay by going out on a kayak or on a boat tour to see some whales, seals and otters. If you don’t have much time, the harbour is the perfect place to grab a coffee before getting back on the road.


Monterey bay harbour

From Monterey, you’ll pass by the small town of Carmel-by-the-sea that is home to the Point Lobos State Natural Reserve. This natural reserve is a good place to enjoy the gorgeous views of the Pacific in a peaceful atmosphere. It is right after this town that the iconic Highway 1 really start to show its real colours. There is many “picture perfect” spot along the famous drive, but you certainly will not want to miss the inescapable picture of the famous Bixby bridge.


Bixby bridge 

Pass this point, you will enter the region of Big sur that is the beginning of many state parks. At first, you’ll enter the Andrew Molera State Park, then the Pfeiffer Big Sur State park where you will be able to enjoy the beach or a snack in a rustic little restaurant. Finally, you’ll enter the Julia Pfieffer Burns State Park which is definitely a stop you don’t want to miss. The Mcway falls, icon of the famous coastal drive, are only a few minutes walk from the highway. At the falls you’ll have incredible views of the blue turquoise water of the Pacific.


Mcway falls


Big Sur

After going through all of the state parks, you will enter the city of San Simeon. In San Simeon, Hearst castle is a great place to visit and Arroyo Del Padre Juan, which is a protected beach home to a big colony of elephant seal, is pretty amazing too.


Arroyo Del Padre Juan 

It is hard to say when the road trip really stop since the road that goes down California  goes through so many wonderful places that are worth the stop. After this journey, you’ll definitely fall in love with the west coast like I did.


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