View Full Version : Your Favorite Place to Stay in Big Sur, Point Lobos, Monterey

Dan V
27-Sep-2004, 20:34
Being new to LF, I'm trying to get all my equipment bought, delivered and otherwise together for a planned trip to the Big Sur, Point Lobos, Monterey areas in October.

I won't be camping out overnight or staying at the Four Seasons, but if you've stayed at, say, a nice little cabin anywhere in the area or have another off-the-beaten-path recommendation to share I'd be grateful for your suggestions.

Bob Passage
27-Sep-2004, 22:23
Hi Dan, I just returned from a week in Big Sur. I stayed at the Big sur Lodge which is not inexpensive, however, it is not as expensive as others in the area. It is located within Pfeiffer State Park so it is a very tranquil area in the redwoods. The location is perfect since to the south is the Big Sur coast and to the north it is within about 30 minutes of Point Lobos and the Carmel/Monterey area. My wife and I have stayed there for years and recommend rooms 38 through 50. All the rooms are a bungallow style with from two to four rooms per one story building. Most of these rooms have been remodeled and updated recentely with skylights. There are no phones or T.V.'s in the rooms; what a relief. There is also a small store and good restuarant which also serve the nearby campgrounds. This time of year (after the summer crowds), things will be layed back. Info: Big Sur Lodge, 1-800-424-4787, www.bigsurlodge.com. Also, every major motel chain is represented in Monterey, but Carmel is very pricey. Good shooting!

Danny Burk
27-Sep-2004, 23:01
Dan, I also stayed at Big Sur last May. Very nice, and I'd stay there again. Gas prices next door are outrageous (at least they were last May); drive into Carmel and save 50-60 cents per gallon.

Regards, Danny www.dannyburk.com

John Kasaian
27-Sep-2004, 23:54

The Sand Dollar Inn in Monterey is reasonable and an easy walk to Fisherman's Wharf. In Pacific Grove, The Centralia B&B is a romantic old victorian, again within walking distance to the water. In Carmel the Pine Tree is nice if you want to stay in The Village(why do I always think of actor Patrick McGoohan when I think of calling someplace "The Village?")and out on HWY 1 The Carmel Valley Inn is actually pretty reasonable by Carmel standards. Further South is the classic Highlands Inn which, the last time I checked, was way out of my league. OTOH for $60 a night in the middle of Big Sur there is the New Camaldoli Hermitage but you have be silent if you want to bunk with the friars. If you're travelling by yourself and feeling a bit monastic its an option. Theres usually a 6 mo. wait but sometimes theres a cancellation. Call 1(831)6672456 and talk to a friar personally---thats the only way they'll accept a reservation. Even farther South on HWY 1 is Ragged Point which I've never stayed at but has to be one of the most beautiful places in Big Sur that I've seen. Even further South is San Simeon with every national chain you can imagine but little else besides the Hearst Castle. I don't think the hostel has reopened at the light house(what do they call it? Pigeon Point? Piedra Blanca?? I get them mixed up!) but if it is it would be worth checking out. In Cambria theres lots of nice motels on Moonstone Beach. I think the Fireside Inn is the last one we stayed at. Very nice and reasonable off season. The in room fireplaces are a nice feature. In Cayucos the Shoreline Inn is my choice. You can go to sleep listening to the waves at night if you're in the "old" buiding, the rooms are bargains and the Owner of the place makes the greatest fruit salad in the morning as part of the continental breakfast. Definately a family place. You can call them at 805 995 3681. For some unknown reason I've had terrible luck trying to book a room there online. I hope this helps.

Joseph Dickerson
28-Sep-2004, 08:09

John's info is good except the Pigeon Point lighthouse (the one with the hostel) is north of Santa Cruz. Piedras Blancas light house is at San Simeon but the light house has no accomodations.

John Kasaian
28-Sep-2004, 08:14
Sorry 'bout that Dan! Thanks for straightening me out about those lighthouses Joseph!

28-Sep-2004, 11:20
The times that I've been to Carmel, I was lucky to find a room anywhere. Suggest that you pick a place and make advance reservations.

Merg Ross
28-Sep-2004, 15:34
The cottages at Carmel River Inn are reasonable, close to Carmel and a few minutes from Point Lobos. Some have fireplaces and kitchens. (www.Carmelriverinn.com)

Dan V
29-Sep-2004, 11:16
The Big Sur Lodge sounds very inviting, Bob, given it's location and the lack of phones and TVs; but no vacancies when I checked via the web. Appreciate the many leads John; had never heard of New Camaldoli Hermitage. Prefer something south of Monterey closer to Point Lobos though, so will check into Carmel River Inn also, thanks Merg. San Simeon's probably a bit too far though but will have to get out the map to double check.

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions/recommendations.

If I find a nice place worth mentioning, I'll post a note on my return.

Donald Brewster
29-Sep-2004, 11:40
A place that I like, even more because of its name, is the Tickle Pink Inn. It is located just above the Highlands Inn. Great views. Excellent location for your trip. Don't know your budget -- it's about $200 a night (not bad for Carmel) -- about half the Highlands Inn. A small place with about 35 rooms and suites. A nice family operated place. http://www.ticklepinkinn.com

Dan Baumbach
29-Sep-2004, 12:39
When I go down there I'm just looking for a clean and inexpensive place to stay so I stay at the Best Western in Seaside. Seaside is the next town north of Monterey. You can stay there for about $70 a night.

- Dan.

Frank Petronio
29-Sep-2004, 18:22
Down by Big Sur is the classic, funky Deetjens hotel and restaurant. Not too expensive and full of that Henry Miller - Edward Westom bohemian ambiance.


Of course, the Post Ranch is nice if you can afford it. I found Carmel and Monterey too busy to really enjoy photography in the footsteps of Weston - the sheer number of people have made it impossible to recreate the atmosphere of the 1930s.

I like the coast north of Santa Cruz too - not that crowded and easier to access.