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"Pacific Coast Highway" PCH--Pacific Coast Highway--Highway 1 Tip by goingsolo

by goingsolo

Highway 1, otherwise known as the Pacific Coast Highway, or PCH, is a winding road which hugs the California coastline and continues northward into Canada. This is the true scenic route and not recommended for traveling long distances unless you are blessed with enough time to proceed at this pace. The speed limit is never above 45 mph and is often less. But traveling the PCH is not about speeding and instead is about enjoying the drive.

There are stunning views with nearly every twist and turn of this road. The southern portion provides awesome views of the Pacific Ocean and the California coastline. The scenery, of course, changes along with the terrain and the northern portion of PCH in California is supposed to be absolutely spectacular. Numerous small towns are found along the way and the road continues through Redwoods National Park and then northward into Oregon.

My first trip along PCH began at the Washington/Oregon border. Someday, I plan to drive the entire highway, but, to date, the only sections I've done in California are brief stretches around Los Angeles, Santa Monica and Malibu. Personally, I found these areas overdeveloped, with rows of shops and restaurants often obscuring the views that make driving the PCH so worthwhile. Fortunately though, I encountered few of the speed obesessed California drivers who seem to be ever present on the freeways and in the National Parks.


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  • Updated Jun 20, 2005
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