I spent two days driving up and down the California coast with one of the most wanderlust gals I know, meet Jazminn aka @jazminnhayes on Instagram where she shares all of her dreamy adventures from Toronto to New York and everywhere else her heart draws her to. I met Jazminn back when I was living in Seattle, through the music scene, but our friendship really began to blossom in 2013 when we crossed paths at a couple dates of Warped Tour. Two years later I was living in LA and got to see her off as she began an eight-month trek around Australia. When Jazminn told me she was coming back to LA and had always dreamed of going to Big Sur, I immediately jumped on the opportunity as it has always been a dream of mine too.
You can check out her point of view SOON on her gorgeous website HERE
I do not have photos to share of our Airbnb because we arrived when the sun had already set, and left before sunrise. BUT the point of me adding this here is to inform future travelers that Big Sur doesn't necessarily need to be an expensive trip. We found our accommodations just four days before our arrival and only paid $84.81 total to stay in Monterey for one night, which was an hour drive (give or take) to the town of Big Sur.
If you haven't tried out Airbnb yet, here is $40 off your first trip on me :)
After living in LA for a little over a year I traded my car in for a company vehicle, so we definitely copped a car for this trip. We rented a 2017 Toyota Prius from Turo for two days and paid $140.40 total, which was $39.00/day, $7.80 trip fee, $31.20 for premium protection aka insurance, and $23.40 young driver fee. It was so fun to drive, super comfortable, and great on gas. We paid roughly $73.00 for gas round trip, and now I want a Prius.
If you haven't tried out Turo yet, here is $25 off your first trip on me :)
Wow there are so many views, not only in Big Sur, but on this whole drive. Every vista point was breathtaking, I was pretty much swooning the entire time. The first place we stopped at sunrise was the Bixby Bridge, the inspiration behind the Death Cab For Cutie song Bixby Canyon Bridge. It can be a little confusing because the first big bridge we crossed had a sign that read Rocky Creek Bridge, so we kept driving and the next bridge is Bixby but it does not have a sign, so we were a little unsure until we asked a man who had gotten there before us. He happily confirmed that it was and that he was so excited to be back there after 20 years.
After that we drove a little further down the PCH to see the famous McWay Falls, I can't say enough how amazing this view is in person, I could have stayed there all day. A little tip on parking, if you want to park in the national park it costs $10 and they only accept cash. We did not have cash on us so we pulled out and parked on the side of the road, which worked out just fine. There is a trail on the west side of the highway that leads you down to McWay Falls, sadly not all the way down to the water though.
We stopped for breakfast at the highly talked about Big Sur Bakery, and were beyond satisfied with our pastries and hot beverages. We were told they start dinner on Wednesdays, as you can see we were definitely there in the off season so we have yet to taste the breakfast/lunch/dinner that I read about in other travel blogs.
First of all, whether you live in California or not, DO A COASTAL ROAD TRIP. I've done the drive from Seattle to LA a handful of times and every experience is different depending on who you're driving with. This is a must for anyone who is looking to free the soul and be one with the open road.
One of the best things we did on this trip was wake up before sunrise. We got to Bixby at 7:00AM with just one person already there taking in the views. By the time we finished up at McWay Falls and drove back past Bixby it was 10:00AM, there were cars lined up on both sides of the road, and this was on a Monday morning. I would have never done this if it wasn't for Jazminn suggesting we catch a sunrise. Be open-minded when traveling, free yourself of expectations.
A tip for eating on the road, something Jazminn and I both agreed on, we would have definitely done more research in terms of places to eat along the way. Fortunately, we knew we would hit Big Sur Bakery on our way to McWay Falls so that was fun, especially since nothing was open on our way to Bixby. But after that, we were kind of clueless and ended up waiting until we got all the way back to Pismo Beach to divulge in some vegetarian mexican food.
We did really well budget and time-wise, showing that this can be done spontaneously. We were there a total of two days + one night and spent roughly $200 each which included our car, Airbnb, food, and gas. Of course, I would love to go back and try out a day spa or something Post Ranch Inn lux but as a first timer, I'm very satisfied.
On a final note, there is very little phone service there, so your Instagram updates will have to wait. Take it all in, soak it all up, and enjoy.
Huge shout out to Fit Girl Club aka @fitgirlclubla on Instagram, for letting me do my very first IG story takeover while I was out exploring! I had so much fun sharing my experiences and I hope I was able to inspire some followers to go on an adventure of their own.
I found Fit Girl Club through my best friend when I moved to LA just over two years ago now. I have to tell you guys, the experiences I have had since joining the club, have been unforgettable. Leah, the brilliant mind behind all of this, is gifted in bringing inspirational women together. One of my favorite memories is doing yoga in Malibu with everyone. We were poolside, with oceanfront views, followed by a beautiful catered breakfast that included acai bowls in actual coconuts! I added a couple of photos from that incredible morning just so you have an idea of all the fun FGC babes have!
Check out their website to get in on all the action!!