Driving Along the Pacific Coast Highway

17 Mile Drive, California.

After our stop in Monterey, California, we drove on towards the 17 Mile Drive at Pebble Beach. This stretch of the California coast is  recognized as one of the most  scenic route in the World. The famous landmark drives through the Pacific Grove,which is a gated community towards Pebble Beach. We paid $9.75 US to enter and drive along the 17 Mile Drive. There are several stops along the way for great views of the California coast. One of the famous landmark was the Lone Cypress Tree. Several view points show different rock formations, bird sanctuaries, different floral and fauna that have inspired some paintings, views of  Beach Mansions, Golf courses overlooking the Pacific Ocean and one stop has Ghost trees.

Towards the end of the 17 Mile Drive is the town of Carmel-By-The-Sea. A very quaint and posh town with its Ocean Avenue, filled with numerous cafes and shops including some luxury brands, Bottega Veneta and Louis Vuitton, among others. Carmel is also well known for the Carmel Mission which is the second largest Mission in California after the Mission in San Diego. After Carmel, we drove towards Morro Bay for our overnight stop. The next day, we left early to visit the Castle above the Clouds, San Simeon's Hearst Castle, which I will feature at a later blog post. After our visit at Hearst Castle, we stopped by Santa Barbara, which was another posh and beautiful city to visit before returning to Los Angeles along the scenic Pacific Coast Highway. Driving along the Pacific Coast Highway was truly an experience to remember. Every stop was breathtaking and worth exploring. On this trip, we discovered the true spirit and beauty of California.

Pebble Beach.

Rock formations.

A private beach.

On the horizon, a coastline full of Beach Mansions.

Some Beach Mansions.

Believe it or not, a lone squirrel made some noise here and even posed for a picture for me. The squirrel stood like that for a very long time. 

Lone Cypress Tree

The sturdy Lone Cypress Tree.

Carmel By The Sea.

Wow, the beautiful and outrageously expensive Bottega Veneta bags... Now I'm excited! 

Colourful flowers and fauna at Carmel By The Sea.

Carmel Mission-San Carlos Borromeo De Carmelo.

Established by the Franciscans, Roman Catholic Order, since 1771 to convert the locals to Catholicism. The Church is still an active Roman Catholic Parish serving both Monterey and Carmel By The Sea. There is also a Museum and the gardens that visitors can explore. 

Carmel Mission garden.

Morro Bay, a waterfront city in San Luis Obispo County.

My sunset picture of Morro Rock. Not exactly the Rock of Gibraltar. But this fishing town is famous for the this Rock which is a sanctuary for birds and sea lions.  A Portuguese Navigator, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, who explored the Pacific Coast for Spain, named this Rock, "El Moro" because he thought it resembled the turban head of the Moors. But in actual Spanish translation, "El Morro" is pebble in English.

Fishing Village of Morro Bay.  The town is filled with Inns and restaurants. 

Santa Barbara.

I loved this City for its architecture. You can view the Pacific Ocean in the horizon.
One of my favourite movies, It's Complicated was inspired by the City of Santa Barbara. Directed by Nancy Meyers, she always incorporated beautiful houses and interiors in her movies. Meryl Streep's house in the movie was similar to one of the houses in this picture. The whole city was built with houses and buildings in uniform white facades with terracotta tile roofs. 

Santa Barbara Mission is another of the Missions in California. The Church is an active Roman Catholic Parish Church serving Santa Barbara. 

Driving back towards Los Angeles.

Endless mountain ranges and Pacific Ocean coastline.

Book Recommendation.

Story written by Cheryl Strayed about her lone walking adventure, along the Pacific Crest Trail, travelling 1,100 miles from the Mojave Desert, through California, to Oregon and ending in Washington State. This is her own story after the break-up of her marriage and after the death of her mother. Searching for herself and her journey towards starting a new life. Have you read this book?  This book is on my book list for this Fall.

To read the Vogue Interview with author, Cheryl Strayed, Click here.
To read an excerpt from March 2012 issue of US Vogue Magazine, click Wild.

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  1. Hey dear!
    Thanks for your lovely comment, of course we can follow each other. I just followed you on GFC :)

  2. It's so funny that we took the SAME vacation this year. Your photos are so so beautiful.

    1. Hi Connie, yes isn't that something. Too bad we didn't cross paths then. It would be nice to meet you. Have a good weekend!

  3. Hubby and I are planning a trip down the Pac Hwy in the Fall. Should be gorgeous . . .

    1. You and your hubby will enjoy it. It was a breathtaking trip!

  4. wow! just awesome photos! thanks for sharing these breathtaking views with us!
    LA By Diana Live Magazine

  5. Can't get over how beautiful and blue the water is. Jealous!

  6. Love this Pam. So glad you got to see so much! I just adore Carmel and Santa Barbara too. I have heard of that book and am going to check it out.

  7. I adored this post! Hubs and I want to do that drive someday. I would love to see the other Mission, we went to the one in San Diego and the chapel & gardens are so beautiful.

    I've heard of that book, I really want to read it this fall as well.

  8. I hope you and your hubby will try this drive one day! It. Was worth the drive and so breathtaking! The book will be a good read. Lots of adventure.


I enjoy reading your wonderful comments. Thank you for visiting here.

Pamela lives in Toronto, Canada, currently working in Banking in the field of Credit and Finance. The Chic Delights blog has evolved into an on-line magazine about my experiences and inspirations on style, travel, people, lifestyle and current events. My features are not sponsored posts. The photographs and stories featured here are all from my own resources and experiences. [Pamela RG] (