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Re: Girls Weekend Away in December
About halfway between LA and the Bay Area, not exactly a spa destination but pretty amazing, is Big Sur. I took a girls' road trip a couple years ago and our 2 nights in Big Sur were the favorite part of the trip. We stayed at Deetjen's Big Sur Inn in a rustic suite with a fireplace and tiny kitchen, nestled in the redwoods. Very reasonable. They have a very good restaurant there, where we had breakfast and also dinner one night, but there are also great places to eat nearby - we enjoyed a lunch at Nepenthe. For a splurge there is the Post Ranch Inn - lunch is affordable there - it's on a bluff overlooking the ocean. If you can swing it, staying at the Post Ranch is unforgettable. Esalen is in Big Sur, which we didn't visit but would be a one-of-a-kind trip with friends. Just being in Big Sur is a treat, and of course there are many hiking trails and gorgeous spots. San Simeon is nearby if you wanted to take a day trip to visit Hearst Castle, and in December you should be able to see lots of elephant seals lolling on the beach. Have fun! Ginger
Re: 10th Anniversary romantic getaway
Well, two places that I would consider for romantic getaways if I had the money to splurge (they are both VERY expensive, but GORGEOUS):
Post Ranch Inn (www.postranchinn.com) Ventana resort (www.ventanainn.com)These are both located in Big Sur, and I think would be lovely regardless of the time of year or the weather, since they have beautiful accommodations that have fireplaces and breathtaking views (so even if it's raining, you can snuggle in a gorgeous room by a fire). Both have separate cottages/buildings if you want something detatched and more private, and these are really special, romantic splurges. I've been longing to go myself, but need to save my pennies, first! I won't say any more, go to the web site and look at the photos, I think they'll speak for themselves.
Best of luck!
Big Sur Bound (someday)
I am looking for a reasonably priced, clean and charming hotel in Big Sur. We will have no kids. I checked previous postings, but they are all about larger cabins for families. Thank you.
I'd swear there was an article in San Francisco Magazine not that long ago about places to stay in Big Sur. Maybe go to the libary and browse some back issues?
During the day, a couple miles south of Big Sur Village down a nondescript road (and a SHARP left turn!) is Pfeiffer Beach, truly one of the most incredible beaches in all of California. It's managed by the feds and has a $5 per day use fee, well worth it. Further south on the coast highway, about 300 yards short of the Pfeiffer State Park entrance and on the right hand side, is a short pullout overlooking a bluff where you can get out and peer down at one of the most incredible beach watefalls on the West Coast. It looks like Blue Lagoon - water cascading down from the cliffs into the surf, and a beautiful, pristine piece of beach.
Last but not least by any stretch, consider heading down the coast highway another 60 miles south of Big Sur Village to Piedras Blancas near San Simeon. Ironically, Valentines Day is the height of elephant seal mating season and there is a docent area where you can pull off and park, walk about 20 steps, and you'll be within 100 feet of more than a 1,000 (yup, no exaggeration!) elephant seals... It is the most incredible thing I have ever seen in California and it should not be missed, especially at this very special time. You can read more about it at: http://www.elephantseal.org For those who have trekked to Aqo Nuevo to see the elephant seals, this will dwarf that experience forever, I promise.
Happy trails! Big Sur is magic. mrm
We are planning to camp at Big Sur in June. Can anyone recommend a good campground for tent camping with an 9 and 3 year old? Are reservations allowed, and how hard are they to get? Thanks! jeanne
Or you can stay at a first-come, first-served spot like Andrew Molera State Park. I stayed there last July, mid-week with my 2.5 and 7 year old and we had the pick of camp sites. It's a long walk in with some steps, so you'll need to be prepared (e.g. bring back packs). The camping area is flat -- good place for the kids to run around. It was more work than car side camping but prettier; you could go for lots of nice walks right from your camp site and you don't have to worry about cars and your kids.
Warning: Andrew Molera is right on the coast and in summer (esp. July and August) the wind can absolutely howl. You will be much more sheltered inland at Julia Pfieffer (sp?) and the other inland sites. But Andrew Molera is still my favorite. camping lover
Does anyone have a recommendation on Big Sur weekend lodging for two families with small kids? We're four adults and four children (6 months, 18 months, 2 years and 4 years). I've already checked the places recommended on the website (Ripplewood Resort and Deetjans)and have struck out for the dates we are looking for. Ideally, we'd like to find a two bedroom house or cottage that is available for weekend rental. Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. Rliebler
Note from Myriam: Website with online reservation form here: http://www.bigsurlodge.com/
RE: getaway with an infant
When my daughter was about 9 months old, we stayed at the Ripplewood cabins in Big Sur for a few nights. I think it was about $90/night. We got a one bedroom cabin with a kitchen and living room with fireplace and a nice deck. We set up our daughter's portacrib in the living room. It was nice having a kitchen for the easy meals at home, and we found wonderful restaurants nearby. Although the restaurants at first seemed expensive, we found that the portions were huge and that sharing an appetizer, entree and dessert was more then enough to eat for the two of us. Also, the restaurants were also family friendly and very accomodating Shoshana
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