The best way to see California is on Highway 101. This road trip guide will take you on a journey up and down the most iconic parts of the state, all while soaking up the sun and enjoying the amazing scenery. From the golden beaches of Santa Barbara to the towering redwoods of Crescent City, this route has it all. So pack your bags and get ready for an adventure!
- Hearst Castle
- Arroyo Burro Beach
- The Golden Gate Bridge
- Madonna Inn
- Monarch Butterfly Grove
- The Eberle Winery
- San Miguel Mission
- The Cerro Alto Trail
- Giant Birds at Ostrichland USA
- The Palace Of Fine Arts
- Additional Highway 101 Information
- Map Of Pacific Coast Highway (PCH 101) Stops
- Where To Stay
- Related Questions
- How long does it take to travel Highway 101 from the end of California to Seattle?
- Where can we stop on 101 from Los Angeles to San Francisco?
- How long is Highway 1 in California?
No trip to California is complete without a tour of the opulent Hearst Castle. This palatial estate was built by newspaper mogul William Randolph Hearst and is now a State Historic Park. Visitors can take tours of the main house, grounds, and gardens, which are truly breathtaking. Be sure to allow plenty of time to explore this fascinating place.
Arroyo Burro Beach
Take a dip at the arroyo burro beach! After all that sightseeing, you’ll probably want to take a dip in the Pacific Ocean. Arroyo Burro Beach, also known as Hendry’s Beach, is a great spot for swimming, sunbathing, and picnicking. This beautiful beach is just a short drive from Santa Barbara and makes for a perfect afternoon getaway.
The Golden Gate Bridge
One of the most iconic landmarks in California is the Golden Gate Bridge. This engineering marvel spans nearly two miles and connects San Francisco to Marin County. Be sure to take a drive over the bridge, but be prepared for heavy traffic during peak hours. Once you’re in Marin, you can explore Muir Woods, a redwood forest that’s just a short drive from the bridge.
After crossing the Golden Gate Bridge, continue north on Highway 101 until you reach Point Reyes National Seashore. This stunning stretch of coastline is home to beaches, tide pools, hiking trails, and more. Be sure to stop at the Visitor Center to learn about the area before heading out to explore.
If you’re looking for a place to stay overnight, the quaint town of Bodega Bay is just a short drive from Point Reyes. This charming town is situated on a picturesque bay and is known for its fresh seafood. There are several great restaurants in town, as well as several scenic hiking trails. Be sure to check out the Bodega Bay Lodge, which overlooks the bay and offers stunning views.
No trip to California would be complete without Experience The Ornate Madonna Inn. This one-of-a-kind hotel is located in San Luis Obispo and is known for its over-the-top themed rooms. From the Caveman Room to the Swiss Chalet, there’s a room for everyone at the Madonna Inn. Be sure to stop in the bakery for a delicious slice of pie, or grab a drink at the Copper Cafe. After a long day of exploring, you’ll be sure to enjoy your stay at this unique hotel.
If you are interested in this unique hotel we recommend checking out the hotel’s official website Madonnainn for more information
Monarch Butterfly Grove
Monarch Butterfly Grove is one of the most popular attractions in Pismo Beach. Every year, thousands of monarch butterflies migrate to this grove and spend the winter months here. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll through the grove and enjoy seeing these beautiful creatures up close. Be sure to dress warmly, as it can get quite cold in the grove during winter.
This magical place is located in Pismo Beach and is home to thousands of monarch butterflies. The best time to see the butterflies is from November through February, but the grove is open year-round. Be sure to bring your camera, as you’re sure to want to capture the beauty of this place
After spending some time in Pismo Beach, continue south on Highway 101 until you reach Santa Barbara. This lovely city is known for its Mediterranean climate, Spanish architecture, and beautiful beaches. Be sure to stroll along State Street, which is lined with shops, restaurants, and historic buildings. If you’re looking for a place to stay, the Hotel Californian offers stunning views of the Santa Barbara waterfront.
The Eberle Winery
Eberle Winery is one of the most popular wineries in Paso Robles. This family-owned winery offers a variety of red and white wines, as well as a tasting room where visitors can sample the wines. Be sure to try the Cabernet Sauvignon, which is one of the most popular wines at Eberle. After your tasting, be sure to explore the grounds, which include a beautiful garden and a pond.
San Miguel Mission
San Miguel Mission is one of the most popular historical sites in California. This mission was founded in 1797 and is known for its beautiful Spanish architecture. Visitors can take a tour of the mission, or explore the grounds on their own. Be sure to stop by the gift shop, where you can purchase souvenirs and learn more about the history of the mission. After your visit to San Miguel Mission, continue north on Highway 101 to Paso Robles.
The Cerro Alto Trail
Cerro Alto Trail is one of the most popular hiking trails in California. This trail offers stunning views of the coast, as well as a variety of plant and animal life. Be sure to bring your camera, as you’re sure to want to capture the beauty of this place. The trail is moderate in difficulty, so be sure to wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water.
After your hike, continue north on Highway 101 to Monterey. This city is known for its world-famous aquarium, as well as its stunning coastal views. Be sure to visit Cannery Row, where you can explore the shops and restaurants. If you’re looking for a place to stay, consider the InterContinental The Clement Monterey. This hotel offers stunning views of Monterey Bay and is just steps from the aquarium.
Giant Birds at Ostrichland USA
Ostrichland USA is one of the most unique attractions in California. This park is home to a variety of animals, including ostriches, emus, and rheas. Visitors can feed and pet the animals, as well as take a tour of the grounds. Be sure to bring your camera, as you’re sure to want to capture the uniqueness of this place. After your visit to Ostrichland, continue north on Highway 101 to San Francisco.
More information on Ostrichlandusa
The Palace Of Fine Arts
The final stop on our Highway 101 road trip is the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco. This beautiful structure was built for the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition and is now a popular tourist destination. The grounds feature several sculptures, fountains, and gardens, making it the perfect place to relax after a long day of driving. So there you have it, a road trip guide to Highway 101 in California. This amazing route has something for everyone, so get out there and explore! Thanks for reading!
Additional Highway 101 Information
Map Of Pacific Coast Highway (PCH 101) Stops
There are plenty of great places to eat along Highway 101. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite or a sit-down meal, you’ll find what you’re looking for.
Some of the best places to eat along Highway 101 include:
- Café Beaujolais in Mendocino: This French restaurant offers a variety of classic dishes, as well as an extensive wine list.
- The Hitching Post II in Buellton: This steakhouse is known for its delicious grilled meats and local wines.
- Nepenthe in Big Sur: This restaurant offers stunning views of the coast, as well as a menu that features fresh, local ingredients.
- Monterey’s Fish House in Monterey: This seafood restaurant offers a variety of fresh seafood dishes, as well as stunning views of the bay.
So there you have it, a few of the best places to eat along Highway 101. Bon appetit!
More ideas in our guide to California
Where To Stay
Whether you’re looking for a place to camp or a hotel room, you’ll find what you’re looking for along Highway 101.
Some of the best places to stay along Highway 101 include:
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park in Big Sur: This state park offers a variety of camping options, as well as access to hiking trails and the beach.
The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay in Half Moon Bay: This luxurious hotel offers stunning views of the coast, as well as a variety of amenities.
Ventana Big Sur in Big Sur: This hotel is located in a secluded area of Big Sur and offers stunning views of the coast.
The Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur: This inn is located in a beautiful area of Big Sur and offers a variety of amenities, including a spa.
So there you have it, a few of the best places to stay along Highway 101. No matter what your budget or needs, you’ll find a place to rest your head.
Highway 101 is one of the oldest highways in the United States. It was first built in 1926 and has been used by travelers ever since. The highway runs from north to south, starting at the Canadian border and ending at the Mexican border.
The highway was originally built to connect the cities along the coast, as well as to provide access to the many national parks and forests in the area. Over the years, the highway has been expanded and now includes a variety of scenic routes and attractions.
So there you have it, a brief history of Highway 101. This amazing road has been used by travelers for centuries and is sure to continue to be a popular destination for years to come. Thanks for reading!
How long does it take to travel Highway 101 from the end of California to Seattle?
Where can we stop on 101 from Los Angeles to San Francisco?
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, Monterey’s Fish House, Nepenthe, The Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay, and Ventana Big Sur.
How long is Highway 1 in California?
We hope you found this blog post helpful and that it inspired you to get out there and explore Highway 101!