Big Sur or Carmel side of Bixby Bridge, which is more Scenic?

On the Carmel side of Bixby Bridge along Coastal Highway 1, scenic view overlooks the Pacific Ocean and the grand Mountains of Big Sur. It is the Postcard Landmark for Tourists and Roadtrippers.

It’s hard to predict how this place will reveal itself. Some days it’s foggy and gloomy, creating drama and irresistible sadness. On a Sunny day with clear skies, the Heaven and the Ocean becomes a mirror of each other’s best. Radiant Positivity and Motivation shines everywhere. I see the most beautiful shades of blues that takes my breathe away every time. It’s the perfect Art and inspiration of Nature no camera can ever contain. Experience is personal and intimate.
This was 2020. No pandemic fear nor mandates stopped people from pursuing their adventures. Nature was their healing and escape. Still is.

Carmel side is often busy, hard to park, but more fun because of the visitors constant excited vibes and energy.

Weather is everything. Bixby Bridge is a totally different persona on a Foggy, Cloudy Day. Almost like an extension of one’s feeling. What we see, affects our mood. I don’t recommend this version when depressed.
If one drives further into the Fog, it’s zero visibility on the Ocean side.

Awe and amazement describes the feeling of watching in person the iconic scenery that graced the covers of many Travel Magazines and Social Media Feeds.

It’s unbelievable how Nature can be this beautiful. But there it is, and our Planet is full of them. This view is from one of the hiking trails of Garrapata State Park.

The popular side of Bixby Bridge is beautiful and rugged. It exudes adventure, romance and nostalgia. Doesn’t matter how many times one has been there. It captures one’s heart every visit, every moment. Kind of like visiting San Francisco and the Golden Gate. You end up leaving a piece of your heart because the experience and its memories made you fall in love with the place.

This view is further away from Bixby Bridge on the Carmel side. The soil ridges and rock formations are impressive. No specific address for this view, it’s a hit and miss discovery. So making several stops is recommended until one gets their perfect postcard pictures.
Beautiful doesn’t mean safe. Beautiful could be dangerous because it blinds the eyes even if the eyes have 20/20 vision. Beautiful also clouds one’s judgment and causes delirium. And I’m sure, we got blinded and went delirious because of beauty several times before. Adventure is a wise teacher, if we are ready and willing to learn.

The Big Sur side of Bixby Bridge, often less shared that overlooks the Carmel Valley and the Ocean is just as beautiful. It is different and uniquely charming on its own.

This view is way past Bixby Bridge on the Big Sur side. Carmel Valley will not be outdone in magnificence. Big Sur and Carmel are like Siblings, sharing the same genes that made them good looking standouts but they grew up independently strong and confident with stunning magnetic personalities of their own.

The other side surprises with a scenic view that is gorgeous, uninhibited, powerful.

Adventures that made me brave. Adventures that made me feel invincible. Adventures that made me fly and soar above troubles fearless. So I go back every time I needed an Adventure to remind me that I can be anything my heart wants, a Survivor. It’s easy to be lost in this World. Having a focus and purpose are important. Every Dreamer needs a safety net when they fall. Every Giver needs a Good Friend to be there when they get heart broken. Nature is our Friend that never betrays.

There’s this small patch of raised land immediately after the Bridge on the Big Sur side that is almost unknown and hidden to tourists.

Park at your own risk.

Parking is very narrow, possibly 2 cars the most. Dangerous blind spots on both ends of the sharp curve of the highway. Impatient Drivers do speed up reckless in these areas.

Climb at your own risk. 4/2022

If I want Solitude with a majestic view, this is one of my favorite spots to visit. It doesn’t have a name nor specific map instructions. It’s just one of those places one stumble by accident.

Same place, different year. I took my Son first year of the Pandemic so he can see what I see, experience what I experience. We were both being careful of the dangers. No excuse from falling for the sake of pictures.

I’m off the grid, until another curious Adventurer discovers it. That is my queue to leave. Threes a crowd, literally.

He did what I was scared to do.

The land on top is too small and I don’t know how much weight it can sustain. Strong winds can easily toss people making selfies and the soft ground beneath can gave way swallowing the person whole. So, mindfulness and cautiousness of the possible dangers are important visiting this side of Bixby.

This close is the most alive. This close is the most intense. That day, 20 mph winds made me quickly touch the ground for balance. I felt the wind pushing me towards the end and my legs were trembling, so I stopped. Fear is a good thing if it meant to save one’s life. This climb I was alone. Son and Wife stayed in the car.

There are also many tree root loops that easily will trap one’s feet possibly causing a lethal dive into the ravine . Visual Safety Inspection is wise before taking pictures. Walk slowly, no running. No pushing. Always safety first.

Nature continues to give all its Heart. May we take care of it like it take care of us…with Love.
The root also turned into a fence and held together the soil. Nature continues to protect Humans who are so in a hurry to destroy it.

So, which side is more scenic? Honestly, I like them both. Gives me different visual stimulus and perspective. I crave variety and newness some days, and familiarity and comfort in other days. Whatever my mood and desires wishes, Carmel and Big Sur never fails to surprise me with its beauty, kindness and generosity. They spoil me with so much inspiration and adventures. For that, I’m always thankful and humbled.

Life is good. It truly is. Till our next adventure.

About Island Traveler

Just a Man too curious where his dreams will take him.
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11 Responses to Big Sur or Carmel side of Bixby Bridge, which is more Scenic?

  1. Ab says:

    How wonderful to have such beautiful and soothing nature close to you. I can see why travel magazine falls in love with it. It’s the perfect blend of rock, hills, sand, beach, water and flowers! It’s definitely on my wishlist to drive and visit to one day.

    I can only make my observations through your photos but I tend to prefer the Big Sur side. But I hope to be able to decide in person for myself one day!

    Enjoy your weekend!


  2. Both sides look gorgeous. The landscape along the coastline is breathtaking. This looks like a wonderful spot to drive along and spend the day.


  3. This is on our bucket list! I compare it to another of our favorites, Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah National Park. Every time we visit, we see and learn something new!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yvonne Haddrell says:

    Well I toolike you can not chose one over the other. I am blessed to read and to look at your amazing pictures and the lovely way you talk us thru your memories and being able to sit at home and be apart of this wonderful life
    I thank you again. I so look forward to seeing your next story and it is almost like getting a letter in the mail as I always enjoyed reading and re reading letters and I am content to say thank you and can I have some more please. Thanks again for your shared time and words and exciting pictures. I was always told a stranger is just a freind you not yet met!
    Thanks again. Thoughtfully Yvonne in UK

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Yvonne. I found sound much good supportive Friends thru the Blog community. Kindness, inspiration, adventures through the eyes and hearts of other people around the World is like no other.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. ourcrossings says:

    Wow, you guys live in such a beautiful part of the world! The coastal beauty of Big Sur is truly a nature lover and photographer’s dream. With cliffs plunging hundreds of feet down to rocky coves churning with foamy surf, it’s no wonder that many people consider Big Sur the most dramatic stretch of coastline anywhere in the world. Thanks for sharing such amazing photos and have a good day 🙂 Aiva xx

    Liked by 2 people

  6. elvira797mx says:

    Wow! Wondeful, amazing post! Beautiful photos! Thank’s for share.
    Have a great weekend!

    Liked by 2 people

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