This is the only part of the Esalen Institute historic Big Sur Hot Springs that most Pacific Coast Highway 1 travelers see.
Beautiful Pacific Coast Seascape taken from Eselan Institue Big Sur Hot Springs
Information: This is a very photogenic place, Esalen Institute Big Sur Hot Springs Property has beautiful views and a lovely picture in every direction. You don’t necessarily have to be a participant in one of their classes or programs; they do sometimes provide accommodations for others but you must make advance reservations. (831) 667-3000. In addition to their always ongoing new age workshops and nightly hot tub activities Esalen (www.esalen.org) is also the sponsor and host of the annual 4th of July Weekend happening, the performance music & dance gala called the Esalen International Arts Festival (EIAF) held in collaboration with the Big Sur Spirit Garden (www.bigsurspiritgarden.com) . Near Points of Interest: Keep your camera handy you are on one of the most scenic road trips in the world. You may want to start parking the car and getting out to walk around; Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and McWay Falls is just 3 miles north and there are several nice trails in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park including the short one that leads to the McWay Falls overlook there are trails that go into the beautiful redwood forest and 1.9 miles north is the very popular coastal hiking area Partington Canyon. After Nepenthe the highway leaves the coast and heads up the Big Sur River Valley where you get to enjoy the redwood forests and Santa Lucia Mountains a bit more; along the way are the Coast Gallery and the Henry Miller Memorial Library.
Beach Access and Day Use Parks & Picnic Areas: There is a trail to Partington Cove which is historic and beautiful but there isn't much of a beach at that location, there is really no good beach access anywhere near here, the high steep cliffs don’t allow it; the closest beach access north to a nice beach (Pfeiffer State Beach) is 15.5 miles the turnoff is at Sycamore Canyon; the beach access to the south is 12 miles at Limekiln Creek State Park. There is wonderful picnic area in the redwoods at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park just 3 miles ahead; the closest one to the south would be Lucia Lodge Lucia is 15 miles to the south.
Near places to Eat: My favorite Big Sur Ocean View restaurant Nepenthe is 12 miles north on the scenic PCH and the closest restaurant to the south is the Restaurant at the Lucia Lodge which is 15 miles.
Near Hotel Lodgings & Resorts: Deetjen's Big Sur Inn and Restaurant is 11 miles ahead to the north and the Lucia Lodge is 15 miles south.
Near Campgrounds: There is a tiny environmental tent campground with the much sought after highly coveted handful of ocean view tent campsites at Julia Pfeiffer Burns California State Park 3 miles ahead but it is always filled from reservations. The closest other campground is to the south 18 miles at Limekiln Creek State Park.; the closest one to the north would be Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park which is 13 miles north.
Esalen History: Esalen Institute has a long history dating back to at least 2600 BC but since Michael Murphy and Dick Price purchased the 120 acre property in 1962 it has become infamous as a center for cutting edge spiritual, philosophical and psychological theory teaching, research and experimentation. (more about Esalen Institute and it’s history at Wikipedia)
Gasoline, Public Restrooms, Supplies: To the south 9 miles on PCH are gasoline, supplies and public restrooms at Lucia; the next gas station north is at the Big Sur Center 17 miles up the Pacific Coast Highway 1.
Other Facilities, Services or Activities:
On the coast in this area the traveler services and tourist facilities are sparse and spread out and this won't change for the next 12 miles.
funky Esalen entry kiosk