This single-span bridge is a magnificent feat of engineering that provides incredible views of one of the finest stretches of U.S. coastline.
Bixby Bridge (aka Bixby Creek Bridge) is an iconic bridge along the famous Highway One. The bridge is one of the most photographed landmarks on the California section of the Pacific Coast highways. Bixby Bridge spans Bixby Creek, which cuts through a rocky canyon before emptying into the Pacific Ocean. Visit to admire the bridge’s imposing structure and the natural beauty surrounding it.
See the bridge rising to a height of 260 feet (79 meters) above the canyon. This is one of the world’s tallest single-span concrete arch bridges. It’s about 700 feet (213 meters) long. Over 45,000 bags of cement were used to reinforce the wooden frame. Impressively, the bags were lifted using a system of cable-suspended slings and platforms. The bridge opened in 1932 and has since provided a quicker coastal route to an inland mountain pass.
Park at one of the turnouts located at either end of the bridge and enjoy the spectacular views. Note how the bridge’s arch is embedded into the cliffs. Gaze down along the cliffs to see waves crashing onto the beach and rocks. Look behind you to see the forest-clad Santa Lucia Mountains.
At the turnout at the south end of the bridge climb to the top of the small mound for another excellent viewpoint, particularly beautiful at sunset. Alternatively, walk up the Old Coast Road, opposite the northern turnout, for an exceptional view of the entire bridge, creek and ocean. A short walk north of the bridge is Castle Rock Viewpoint, which presents vistas of its namesake island.
The bridge is 11 miles (18 kilometers) north of Big Sur Village and 18 miles (29 kilometers) south of the city of Monterrey. The most convenient way to get here is via car. The area has ample parking spaces. Public buses also travel from both Big Sur and Monterrey. Ride a bike to the bridge for invigorating exercise.
Combine your time at Bixby Bridge with a drive or bike ride along the Old Coast Road. This zigzagging back road travels inland passed rolling green fields, rugged cliffs and thick redwood forests.