Description - Stretching from sunny Southern California to the shady forested coastline of the north, this coastal highway winds along some of the most spectacular ocean views in the U.S. The highway contains countless examples of the many intrinsic qualities that make a highway a National Scenic Byway. Qualities like perfect views of ocean waves breaking on rocky shorelines and cliffs, dozens of historical landmarks like Spanish Missions and Spanish settlements, and limitless opportunities to participate in every kind of outdoor recreation imaginable. A traveler would have to travel numerous other byways spread across the nation to witness all the qualities contained on just this one byway. This should be no surprise considering the highway runs through some of America's most influential cities and most scenic landscape, including San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Copyright: - California Scenic Highway Program
The Pacific Coast Highway follows the mountainous coast with views of rocky headlands tumbling into the Pacific Ocean
- Traveling Route 1 from San Juan Capistrano south of Los Angeles, to Leggett south of Eureka provides the tourist an unforgettable journey along America's western seaboard. The Pacific Coast Highway travels through majestic mountains and coastal towns, past spectacular beaches and striking meadowlands, and alongside emerald green ranches and miles of vineyards. This impressive drive is a link to enumerable recreation sites while penetrating some of the world's leading centers of culture, finance and industry.
Recreation - There are many cities, sights and attractions along Pacific Coast Highway.
California's Pacific Coast Highway is one of the most unique highways in America, and also one of the longest. A traveler could deposit their car just north of the Mexican border and drive on maintained highway, much of it right on the coast, north to the Canadian Border. However, the actual Pacific Coast Highway is generally believed to begin as Route 1 at San Juan Capistrano and ends where Route 1 merges with U.S. Highway 101 at Leggett. The highway is not yet an official California Dedicated Scenic Highway, but is eligible.
Climate - During spring and fall the sun shines most of the time. Summer fogs can be thick and cool, while fall brings "Indian summer" and temperatures in the high 80s. Most of the precipitation comes in the winter in the form of rain, turning the golden hillsides green.
Four counties include dramatic sections of highway that dip and soar along the mountainous coast, with views of rocky headlands tumbling into the Pacific Ocean: San Barbara (Route 101 near Las Cruces to near Lompoc), Monterey (San Luis Obispo County line north to State Route 68), San Luis Obispo (San Luis Obispo city limit to the Monterey County line), and San Mateo (Santa Cruz County line to Half Moon Bay). This scenic route is actually three separate segments of highway. Monterey and San Luis Obispo portions are contiguous.
The actual Pacific Coast Highway is generally believed to begin as Route 1 at San Juan Capistrano south of Los Angeles (off Interstate 5), and end where Route 1 merges with U.S. Highway 101 at Leggett, south of Eureka.