California getaways#2: Big Sur and The Post Ranch Inn

What can only be described as one of the more spectacular and scenic routes along coastal California is the old Cabrillo Highway or Highway 1.
This getaway/road trip starts south of big Sur and ends at the Post Ranch Inn.  There is so much to see along this route that it is best to focus on small trips of a day or two.

The flowers this spring along the coast of California have been nothing short of breathtaking.  We had quite a bit of rain and the entire coastline is a green and floral array of the best mother nature has to offer.  
Most of the flower fields roll down to the shoreline cliffs.  There are dozens of camp grounds, picnic areas and scenic view turn outs all along the highway.
The vast and dramatic shoreline along this coastal highway are hard to match anywhere.  I am always amazed at the fact that this belongs to everyone and will be left intact for all generations to come.
The rocky shore line provides a colorful contrast to the startling blue green of the ocean.

Most of this coastal shore is a nature preserve of large kelp forests and home to the endangered California sea otter.  If you sit and watch along the shore the otters are almost always visible and provide a glimpse as to the importance of these preserves.  The Endangered Species Act  passed by Congress in 1973 is designed "to protect and recover imperiled species and the ecosystems on which they depend."

Traveling on Highway 1 can often times be a bit frustrating.  It is just two lanes and very narrow.  Don't expect to get to your destination with out some slowing and maybe even a stop due to falling rocks and slides.  On this trip we waited 45 minutes for a road repair.

Welcome to The Post Ranch Inn  
This is by far one of my all time favorite getaways.  The Inn opened back in the early 80's and has remained much the same.  It is consistently voted one of the most beautiful 5 star resorts in the world and remains a  testament to keeping things as nature intended.

There are three pools on the property, two which are just for "basking" and are heated to 102 degrees.  The are located at each end of the property and are quiet and secluded.
This one, called the Meditation Pool is constructed of stainless steel and is perched on the hillside overlooking the Pacific ocean.  As you can tell, we had the place to ourselves.

Scattered throughout Post Ranch are special places to stop and just enjoy!
Here is a view of our Ocean House, set into the hillside with a wonderful deck.


A view of the Sierra Mar restaurant at dusk.
The roof top of the Ocean House is covered with grasses and wild flowers.
One of the many sculptures located throughout Post Ranch by artist James Hawthorn.

Sierra Mar and the reception area as you arrive.  No vehicles are allowed beyond this point and shuttles are electric.

They have just completed a wonderful organic garden and you will enjoy the result at lunch or dinner.

The mercantile is full of interesting local art and jewelry.

The pond on the property has been restored and is a habitat for the endangered California Red-legged frog and the Smith's Blue Butterfly.

A young redwood forest is also in the ranch property and is a really nice one hour hike.

Another wonderful spot to stay is the Ventanta Inn, directly across the highway from Post Ranch.  The red farm house was the original home of the Post Family. The Inn was almost lost last year to fire but survived due to the hard work of the local volunteer fire department.

The Sierra Mar restaurant serves a complimentry breakfast every morning that is over the top delicious!   Enjoy coffee on the deck and later have a dip in the Jade pool just to the right of the restaurant.

So that is the Post Ranch Inn.  I hope you enjoyed this weekend getaway as much as we did.  Check it will not dissappoint.   best to all~*~kelley
  1. One more place on the list of places to visit when I go to California in October. Can't wait! Thanks, Kelley!


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