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The holiday ideas on our website are just examples of the amazing trips we offer

Vicki Cook

Platinum Travel Specialist, North America

01242 386 474

01242 386 474

Best time to go


Time difference

GMT -8 hour

Flight duration

11 hours 10 minutes

Fly to

San Francisco, Los Angeles or San Diego

Enjoy ocean breezes, marine marvels and a characterful coastline

California’s Central Coast is hundreds of kilometres of sandy beaches and rugged headlands, punctuated by charming seaside towns. For the ultimate coastal drive, take the 45-kilometre stretch of Highway 1 between Monterey, Carmel and Big Sur.

In Monterey, life revolves around the ocean, from its world-famous aquarium to its historic harbour. Embark on an eco-raft safari around Monterey Bay to spot shark, dolphin, whale and otter, among other marine life. When you’re not out at sea, wander the waterfront attractions at Cannery Row, and sample Monterey AVA wine in the cosy tasting rooms. For a magical moment with the family, we can arrange a sleep-over at Monterey Bay Aquarium. You’ll dodge the crowds and have the place all to yourself.

Continuing on Highway 1, be sure to visit Carmel-by-the-Sea. Situated between Pebble Beach and Point Lobos State Park, Carmel was made famous by the art colony established here in the early 20th century.  The likes of John Steinbeck, Henry Miller and Robinson Jeffers helped cement the place as a retreat for literary greats. Today, this wealthy seaside enclave is best known for its art galleries, high-class eateries and chic boutiques, as well as its splendid sea views. Take the scenic Seventeen Mile Drive which winds through exclusive neighbourhoods and along the seafront, with many worthy stops along the way.

25 miles from Carmel is Big Sur, a ruggedly handsome stretch of coast. Wildflower-speckled hills lead to dense forests and promontories which plunge into the Pacific. Iconic bridges such as Bixby Creek carry you from one precipice to another, granting you sweeping ocean views along the way.

Speak to one of our travel experts today to help plan your luxury California coast holiday.

Still looking for inspiration?

We have a huge range of destinations, experiences and hotel options available.

Learn more about our luxury tailor-made holidays and unparalleled escorted tours to California

Interested in this destination?

Call us on 01242 386 474