Between San Francisco and Los Angeles lies one of California’s greatest treasures: its wild and wonderful Central Coast. Its 300-mile coastline stretches from the Monterey Bay Area, about 75 miles south of San Francisco, down to Ventura County, just 60 miles north of Los Angeles.
The Central Coast borders two huge protected ocean areas: the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (the third largest in the world) and the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary in the south. It’s also home to two national parks, Pinnacles and Channel Islands.
This is where Californians head for serious rest and relaxation — a peaceful place where we can slow down and escape the crowds, and play in a vast natural playground with a mind-boggling array of things to see and do. Hike amid towering redwoods, bike along the bluffs, paddle alongside whales and otters, or surf at sunrise at one of the hundreds of beaches. We never tire of exploring the Central Coast: it awes, inspires, and rejuvenates, time and time again. –Cheryl Crabtree