Big Sur

Tours for Big Sur

Beginner Surfing 1-Day - Santa Cruz Book Now
Mountain Biking Clinic From USD 86.66 /Person
Mountain Biking Clinic Book Now
Show More
Powered by
Best Western Plus All Suites Inn From USD 109.65 /Night
?php echo $hotel['name']; ?> Book Now
?php echo $hotel['name']; ?> Book Now
Casablanca Inn On The Beach From USD 159 /Night
?php echo $hotel['name']; ?> Book Now
Show More

About Big Sur, Santa Cruz

Big Sur, described as the "greatest meeting of land and water in the world," is an undeveloped, lightly populated, unincorporated region on California's Central Coast where the Santa Lucia Mountains rise abruptly from the Pacific Ocean. The coast is frequently praised for its rugged coastline and mountain views. As the "longest and most scenic stretch of undeveloped coastline in the continental United States," it has been described it as a "national treasure that demands extraordinary procedures to protect it from development," and "one of the most beautiful coastlines anywhere in the world, an isolated stretch of road, mythic in reputation." Big Sur's Cone Peak at 5,155 feet (1,571 m) is only 3 miles (5 km) from the ocean. The stunning views make Big Sur a popular tourist destination. The region is protected by the Big Sur Local Coastal Program which preserves the region as "open space, a small residential community, and agricultural ranching." Approved in 1981, it is one of the most restrictive local use programs in the state, and is widely regarded as one of the most restrictive documents of its kind anywhere. The program protects viewsheds from the highway and many vantage points, and restricts the density of development to one unit per acre in tourist areas or one dwelling per 10 acres (4.0 ha) in the far south. About 60% of the coastal region is owned by a government or private agency that does not allow any development. The majority of the interior region is part of the Los Padres National Forest, the Ventana Wilderness, Silver Peak Wilderness, or Fort Hunter Liggett. The region remained one of the most isolated areas of California and the United States until, after 18 years of construction, the Carmel-San Simeon Highway was completed in 1937. The region does not have specific boundaries, but is generally considered to include the 76 miles (122 km) segment of California State Route 1 from Carmel River south to San Carpoforo Creek near San Simeon and the entire Santa Lucia range between the rivers. The interior region is uninhabited, while the coast remains relatively isolated and sparsely populated with about 1,000 year-round residents and relatively few visitor accommodations. The original Spanish-language name for the unexplored mountainous terrain south of Monterey, the capital of Alta California, was "el país grande del sur" meaning, "the big country of the south." It was Anglicized by English-speaking settlers as Big Sur.


Overview of Big Sur

Big Sur is a place in Santa Cruz in the country of United States. Big Sur is often skipped on the visit, owing to the plethora of other prime attractions of Santa Cruz.

Top attractions of Santa Cruz worth your visit include Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz Wharf, Mystery Spot and Natural Bridges State Beach. Visit these and also discover other interesting things to do in Santa Cruz before planning.

A fun-filled day in the city is possible with these exciting Santa Cruz tours that you can book for your visit.

More about Santa Cruz

Find the joy in planning a D.I.Y. trip by using this awesome Santa Cruz trip planner.

You won't miss your home when in Santa Cruz, hotels in Santa Cruz like Best Western Plus All Suites Inn, Hilton Santa Cruz/scotts Valley and Casablanca Inn On The Beach offer some of the best places to stay in the city.

Generate executable plans on your own or book the top rated Santa Cruz vacation packages for your visit. Read more on how to reach Santa Cruz.

Book Big Sur Tickets And Tours

Roaring Camp Steam Train Through Santa Cruz Redwoods
View Deal Roaring Camp Steam Train Through Santa Cruz Redwoo... 39 Reviews | Duration: 75 minutes From USD 25.25/person

Explore the Santa Cruz Mountains on a historic train ride through a redwood forest from Roaring Camp in Felton, California. Admire the ancient redwood groves from the comfort of a steam locomotive chugging up the hillside. Venture into the forest and learn about the region from your informative train conductor, then explore an old-fashioned village where you can shop and take photos. This journey is fun for the whole family and a great way to see the beauty of California, as well as learn about the state’s railroad and engineering history. All aboard!

Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Tour
View Deal Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Tour New on TripHobo Duration: Flexible From USD 88.07/person

Explore some of the best trails Santa Cruz has to offer on this 2-4 hour mountain bike tour.  Ride incredible single track trails through towering Redwoods and up scenic hills with impressive views of the Pacific Ocean.  Learn the best routes to ride a mountain bike with the help of an  IMBA certified professional mountain bike guide.

Share your experience - Rate Big Sur, Santa Cruz