Well, our trip to Big Sur was truly the best trip we’ve ever taken. It is just ridiculously beautiful there, and we tried to soak up every second of our time there because we knew that it would fly by quickly (and it sure did!). For all of you who are interested in taking a trip to Big Sur one day, I wanted to share some photos of our stay there, talk a bit about our experience at Post Ranch Inn (spolier: it’s perfect), as well as update you on what I ended up packing for real, plus the outfits I wore while I was there!
I shared what I planned to pack in this post, and I pretty much stuck to it other than swapping out one yellow sweater for a different (warmer) yellow sweater, and ditching the giant coat that wouldn’t fit in my carry-on. Links to all of my outfit details are included throughout the post, plus all linked at the bottom!
NOTE: This trip was not sponsored (though I wish it was, haha)!
The forecast for the weekend was rain, rain, rain, so that’s what we planned for. We knew that our room at Post Ranch Inn was going to be lovely and have a great view, so honestly the thought of being stuck in our room with wine, books and a wood-burning fireplace for the weekend wasn’t the worst thing. We flew from San Diego to Monterey, and took an Uber to Big Sur (you need to arrange a car service to get back to the airport, though). We arrived at Post Ranch Inn by 10am and were welcomed so warmly! Everyone who works there is so kind.
Their restaurant, Sierra Mar, was still serving breakfast until 10:30—it’s complimentary to guests—so we left our bags in the lobby and went over there for some food—and it was honestly the best breakfast buffet I’ve ever experienced in my life. Combine that with a 180 degree view of the Pacific Ocean, and we were totally in heaven.
After breakfast, we wandered the grounds a bit while the sun was out, and then as the rain rolled in we borrowed a Lexus from Post Ranch Inn (because that’s just what they do there…amazing), and drove up and down HWY 1 taking in the views. Unfortunately Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park was closed due to the rain (it’s a spot I want to go to next time for sure), so we turned around and drove up to Bixby Bridge, and the weather cleared up right as we got there. It was perfect! We knew exactly where to go for photos thanks to this Gal Meets Glam post, and we were really happy we brought our iPhone tripod and remote clicker with us so we could snap photos together.
Before heading back to Post Ranch Inn, we stopped at Big Sur Bakery for a quick lunch. It was good, but I wish we’d gone there before tasting the food at Post Ranch Inn! Nonetheless, it was good to see a little bit of the Big Sur local life, and the bakery is so quaint.
When we got back to Post Ranch Inn, they offered us champagne in the lobby (we obviously accepted), and then went over to one of their infinity pools while waiting for our room to be ready. Honesty the weather could not have been more perfect! It also didn’t hurt that the pools are heated to about 100 degrees.
After settling into our rooms, we got dressed and ready for an early dinner at Sierra Mar. They offer a four-course, prix fixe menu each night, and it changes daily. The drinks, the service, the pace of the meal, the food itself, and the views made it truly such a special experience. We were there for hours, watching the sun go down, talking and eating and reminiscing about our past 8 years of marriage. It was such a treat.
Waking up with that ocean view was so dreamy. We sipped coffee and lounged for a long time, not wanting the restful morning to end! We knew that more rain was coming, which was perfect since we had done our sightseeing the day before. Our schedule was simple: breakfast, in-room massages, reading and lunch in the room, exploring the other infinity pool, and then dinner. Tough life, I know, haha.
Getting massages in our room during a rain storm was delightful—we felt so pampered and relaxed! And then sitting by the wood burning fire with good books, tea, and delicious lunches made for a really cozy afternoon.
For our second dinner of the weekend, we went across HWY 1 to The Sur House at Ventana. They have a beautiful, huge patio area that I imagine is so lovely in the summertime. Since it was rainy and cold, we were inside, and it had a really cozy vibe to it with a wood burning fireplace and gorgeous black and white photos of iconic Big Sur spots hung throughout the restaurant. It was definitely a much bigger restaurant than Sierra Mar, and they had a great menu, with the option to do a tasting menu or order a la carte.
After dinner, the sky was actually clear and the stars were insane (!!!), so we took advantage of the hot tub we had on our deck and enjoyed some stargazing. I forgot how vibrant the stars can be when you’re out in nature, away from all of the bright lights.
For our last morning, we savored every minute of that gourmet breakfast buffet, saw whales breaching in the water, and even spotted Kimberly Williams-Paisley and hubby Brad Paisley a few tables away! It was truly the most majestic, relaxing trip we’ve ever taken and we cannot wait to go back again one day soon!
Feel free to leave any Big Sur questions you have below!