Big Sur, a 90-mile stretch of coastline in Central California, is a bucket list destination for travelers around the world. Just in time to inspire your summer road trip, San Francisco-based photographer and nature enthusiast Della Huff traveled south to share a new perspective on some of the region’s most famous landmarks.
Big Sur has been called “Earth’s greatest meeting of land, sea, and sky”, and it’s easy to wax rhapsodic about the many reasons why: crashing aquamarine waves, precipitous cliffs, stately redwoods, soaring condors, infinitely starry nights. Simply put, I think Big Sur is the most beautiful place in the world, and its beauty is so immense that it can sometimes be a challenge to capture with a camera! However, I was recently was able to explore Big Sur from a new visual perspective – literally – by taking aerial photos. An aerial perspective allows wider-reaching views of its extraordinary coastline and mountains, as well as some unique angles on some of its icons, like the Bixby Bridge. I think you’ll agree that Big Sur is gorgeous from all angles, but that it is especially beautiful from above! -Della
With gorgeous views around every bend and charming local eateries like Big Sur Bakery and The Wharf Marketplace in Monterey, plus inviting accomodations including Carmel Valley Ranch, the Ventana Inn and Monterey Tides Hotel, the region offers a perfect change of pace, inviting visitors to slow down, soak it all in and enjoy the drive.
Small-but-mighty Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park spans only four square miles but is home to gorgeous scenery including famous McWay Falls, where fresh water from McWay Creek escapes the Los Padres National Forest in a narrow ribbon and tumbles into the Pacific Ocean 80 feet below.
Garrapata State Park
Get the lay of the land with a hike in Big Sur’s northernmost park, just outside Carmel. Starting from the trailhead at Soberantes Point (look for the barn!) a six-mile loop up the Rocky Ridge Trail and down Soberantes Canyon showcases steep climbs, ocean views, cacti and redwood canyon, allowing you to check out several of Big Sur’s signature sights in a single afternoon. Or venture out the point itself to wander the coastal trails and feel the ocean breeze.
Built in 1952 and standing 260 feet above Bixby Creek and the beach below, you’ve probably seen a million photos of the Bixby Bridge, but sometimes a new perspective is all you need.
About the photographer: Based in San Francisco, Della Huff specializes in atmospheric landscape, cityscape, and travel photography worldwide with a focus on the West Coast. Having grown up in Marin County, just north of the Golden Gate Bridge, Della has a passion for the awesome beauty of nature and the intersection of natural and urban landscapes. Follow her photogenic adventures on Instagram: @dellybean.