One of the most stunning roads in California is the iconic Highway One, running right along the west coast with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. My journey from Indiana to California had this location as one of the main destinations, and for good reason! You can follow the highway from San Francisco south towards Los Angeles and discover some amazing views along the way.
*If your attention span is like MINE, you can instead watch this short 60 second video on my Tiktok that summarizes the great views.
One of the best destinations to have for the drive is McWay Falls, one of only two waterfalls in California that flows year round directly into the ocean. This stunning waterfall, which I discovered from a Tiktok video (of course) was a key destination to our trip. However, I was blown away by so many other amazing spots along the way.
Other than random spots to pull over and take images, there is the stunning Bixby Creek Bridge, which simply begs to be photographed.
Last, possibly my surprise favorite of the trip, was pulling over at a closed restaurant parking lot for Rocky Point. I do wish I could have dined there, as they have a patio directly next to the ocean with an absolutely stunning view. But, I was satisfied with exploring the coast in their vicinity, which took me to the best tide pools of my journey and was a lot of fun climbing down the rocky cliffs to the sea level.
There is, of course, plenty more to explore on Highway One, but those three spots were the major highlights and all about 2 hours south of San Francisco.
The journey takes you past San Jose, where I 100% recommend taking a detour to Mitsuwa Marketplace. Specifically, I recommend Clover Bakery and Shabuway for fantastic desserts and a great lunch or dinner.
On a side note, this is just one of many stops I took during my Great Western American Road Trip. You can learn more about that full trip here for tips on other iconic parks like Death Valley, Redwoods, and Yellowstone:
Without further ado, here are some of my favorite images from my afternoon journey through this surreal coastline. Comment below if you’ve had the pleasure of going here or what spot would be first on your bucket list!
Founder and visual artist, specializing in all aspects of a businesses presence from imagery and video to graphics and web. A graduate of IPFW with a Bachelor in Fine Arts, Concentration Photography as well as an Associates Degree in Business. His personal photography works are focused on landscape, travel, and aerial photography.