Sunday, June 19, 2016
Finding The Stretch of Purple Sand at Pfeiffer Beach, Big Sur, CA
Dusk @ Pfeiffer Beach, Big Sur, CA
Big Sur is one of our favorite nature escapes in California. We had been to this place for a relaxing vacation for about three times now, however, our last vacation was our first time at Pfeiffer Beach.
Purple Sand at Pfeiffer Beach
Though located at the heart of Big Sur, yet Pfeiffer Beach is not that easy to find. It is probably the favorite beach of the locals, but oftentimes missed by tourists, just like us before. Thankfully, before coming to Big Sur this 3rd time, I did some local search of Big Sur's interesting places to explore and hike. I found Pfeiffer Beach at the top of the list, described as " every photographers dream".
Cypress Grove @ Pfeiffer Beach
The beauty of Pfeiffer Beach is that it is not simply a beach! There are hiking trails to take amid the cypress groves. Then, there are rocks to climb, sea stacks to admire, and of course, there is that very powerful sound of the splashing waves.
Sea Stacks @ Pfeiffer Beach
We had so much fun here playing with the waves and marveling at the purple sand.
Purple Sand @ Pfeiffer Beach
Though Pfeiffer Beach is listed in most travel magazines as one of the world's strangest beaches for its purple sand from the manganese garnet fragments of rocks on cliffs, however, finding this beach is not easy at all. First, the road to Pfeiffer Beach does not have a sign, the very narrow one way road can be easily missed because of the giant trees of Big Sur. Thankfully, internet these days has Revolutionize local listings that helped me find the road that would lead me to this dream-like beach. Aside from finding Pfeiffer Beach, I was also able to find a more affordable lodging to stay at the heart of Big Sur, all thanks to local search optimization that really helped me a lot in planning for this trip.
Happiness @ Pfeiffer Beach
Unlike the cypress groves, sea stacks, and rocks which are obvious and easily seen once at Pfeiffer Beach, the purple sand however does not greet the tourists by the entrance. Thankfully, internet search has helped me also locate this half mile stretch of purple sand! From the entrance, we walked a little bit North where there were fewer people. Most people stay only near the entrance of the beach. There, it felt we had the beach all to ourselves, and it sure spelled FUN!
Sea Stack Close to the Entrance
Sunset at Pfeiffer Beach
Maybe, without the internet, I would have not reached this quiet and naturally beautiful beach despite it is just in Big Sur, a place we love to visit and explore.
One Last Look @ the Sea Stacks As We Left Pfeiffer Beach @ night
Location of Pfeiffer Beach at Big Sur, CA: The road to Pfeiffer Beach is Sycamore Canyon Road from PCH 1. If you are driving South, it is maybe a mile past Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. If you are driving South, you will turn right or head west on Sycamore Canyon Road, if you are driving North, you will turn left. Once you are on Sycamore Canyon Road, it is 2 miles of one way windy road, that drops down to the ocean. Landmark to turn right is when you are near mailboxes if coming from North, and when you are past the small bridge when you are coming from South.
The purple sand: The purple sand does not dominate the landscape of Pfeiffer Beach. There is a small stretch of purple sand to the left of the entrance ( left side of the last picture above), and there is a longer stretch of deeper shade of purple when you walk to the North. What is striking however are the rock formations and sea stacks at Pfeiffer Beach.