Highway 1 Discovery Route

Highway 1 Discovery Route, San Luis Obispo: Address, Phone Number, Highway 1 Discovery Route Reviews: 5/5

Highway 1 Discovery Route
5
Write a review
About
Roam this 101-mile stretch of Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo County (SLO CAL) where you'll find 10 uncrowded beaches, 12 state parks, Hearst Castle, three bountiful wine regions, farm-to-table cuisine, and unique wildlife habitats. Wherever you roam along the Highway 1 Discovery Route, you will find the best of Highway 1!
Suggested duration
More than 3 hours
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.

Top ways to experience nearby attractions

Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

5.0
162 reviews
Excellent
144
Very good
15
Average
1
Poor
1
Terrible
1

Jill J
Avalon, CA24 contributions
Couples
I have done countless beautiful road trips. This one was a true wow. You absolutely must take it if the following do not bother you. You cannot be on a time limit. There are simply too many walks to take, vistas to view, and other people doing the same to rush. It is unspoiled which is simply amazing, but with that there are VERY few places for a bathroom or food or gas purchase. If you need any of those you will be distracted- prepare. Do not come if you are afraid of heights, afraid of continuous hairpin turns, get annoyed driving behind people enjoying scenery or bring anyone who does. Once you are on this road you cannot get off. If you are fine with the above you will not want to. It would be a long drive with young children as it is gorgeous but the times to get out of the car are overlooks and can be a long way down. Now - if you are still interested you MUST take this trip. I could have stopped all day at any point just to absorb the experience. There are many state parks and trails along the way. My husband loved the actual driving. I would have driven off the road as I would have at one point or another been trying to take in the views. We went through periods of intense fog to complete clarity. Every stop was amazing but as others have mentioned the stop at the elephant seal rookery was a highlight. They are RIGHT there. When we were there we could see about 5 in the water but then if you go right or left they are laying all over the beach, sunning or fighting. I have a new vision of what I look and feel like after a good meal. In summary, if this remotely appeals to you, make the time. Words are inadequate to describe.
Written June 30, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Brian R
Northridge, CA902 contributions
The wife and I drove up Highway 1 from SLO to Monterey in the rain. The ride was beautiful! We stopped at the Elephant Seal Reserve and the Elephant Seals were literally 100 feet from the parking lot. A great stop even in the rain!
Written January 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Becca7511
San Luis Obispo, CA9 contributions
Friends
One of the WORLDS most beautiful drives—the OCEAN is to your Left on the way up—most of the time & on your right on the way back. There are great stops to make some hikes & restaurants. Big Sur has unequaled high up views of the Pacific, great restaurants (with views) & fun shops— not far up from that is Carmel & Monterey—also great towns.
Written January 7, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Connie F
Ocean Park, WA123 contributions
This is a gorgeous area of the California coast line. Filled with wildlife and beautiful views you will not regret cruising through the local towns. There is low population and easy parking with tons of beach access.
Written February 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

henrylew9
Palo Alto, CA69 contributions
Couples
The scenic coast route is blocked for this year south of Big Sur thru next June plus bridge damage closure south of Carmel,repairs work thru September 2017. After Carmel and monterey, drive back to hwy 101 ,then at Paso Robles detour to the coast for charming Cambria or Hearst Castle and San Simeon. Many worthwhile vistas and town southward : Morro Bay, Shell Beach and Pismo Beach, Grover Beach. Inland are San Luis Obispo and the wine valleys off 101.
Written June 23, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

AsimDalal
Mumbai, India302 contributions
Family
Also called the Pacific coast highway The drive starting from Carmel and interesting places like Big Sur where you can visit the Big Sur Bakery , Bixby Bridge, Partington Cove, Ragged Point, Point Lobos State Natural Reserve , Cayucos , and then we went to Paso Robles after San Simeon. One can also visit the famous Hearst Castle.
A nice car and a good camera is what you need on this route to enjoy the lovely and mind blowing vistas and can experience the sunset.

Written September 23, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

BeeDubYVR
Vancouver, Canada133 contributions
When driving between Santa Barbara/San Luis Obispo to San Fran skip US 101 (inland) and take the stunningly beautiful Highway 1 along the coast. At times hugging the ocean and others hugging cliffs thousands of feet in the air this drive is not for the inexperienced or the faint of heart. Your reward is some of the best vistas on the planet.

Be sure to plan ahead as there are very limited gas and food options between SLO and Monterrey as we discovered when it was time for lunch. If you're impatient or in a hurry skip this route and head inland.

Otherwise, Highway 1 is your gateway to Hearst Castle, the amazing sight of elephant seals sunning on the beach, iconic bridges, McWay Falls, and some amazing beaches. Allow for more time than Google Maps indicates due to road construction and heavy traffic. Since our last drive 13 years ago this route has clearly been included in many tour books and guides. With so many people looking at the views (from inside our oustide their cars) pay special attention to inattentive drivers and pedestrians anywhere near pullouts.
Written August 10, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

DrAudreyReed
La Quinta, CA79 contributions
Couples
Enjoy the leisurely ride up or down the old surf towns of California. Let the guy behind you pass, who uses this road as his hasty retreat home from work and take a breath into the past.
We spent alot o time on this road in different areas and will say that from Santa Barbara, to Pismo beach it is a luxury of time and sweet salty smells.
Most of the shops are Mom and Pops, so please support the local communities.
Written July 1, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

allsheewrote
Athens, GA183 contributions
Family
Ask a local and they will tell you they avoid the 1 at all costs. It is a winding, nauseating ride/drive. If you want to go scenic, this isn't it. You have to pay such close attention to the 'death curves' that there's no time to enjoy. Plus, no stops for incredibly long stretches of time...none for gas nor food so.....I suppose fans of the 1 will not be happy with this review, however in my opinion, if you have ever driven the Blue Ridge Pkwy at its curviest points just think of that and tenfold it. Do yourself a favor and plan your trip using as little of the 1 or not using it at all, as possible. Fair warning.
Written August 4, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ronald Q
Queens, NY159 contributions
Family
I'm not the type of person that likes to be stuck in a car for hours. I like to get from point A to Point B without any stops. This drive though completely blew me away. The views are probably one of the best coastal views I have ever seen. We actually had to make multiple stops because the scenery was just spectacular. I highly recommend driving by during sunset or sunrise. However, if you do not have much time don't think about it, just go. Just make sure you take your time and enjoy it because you will not want to leave.
Written July 9, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Showing results 1-10 of 119
Anything missing or inaccurate?
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Frequently Asked Questions about Highway 1 Discovery Route

We recommend booking Highway 1 Discovery Route tours ahead of time to secure your spot. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. See all 2 Highway 1 Discovery Route tours on Tripadvisor