Some of the most magnificent scenery in Southern California unfolds along the coastline of Monterey County. From Carmel south to Big Sur, Gorda, and beyond, the Pacific Coast Highway snakes its way from one postcard-worthy scene to another. Nearly 300 turnouts allow motorists to stop and enjoy the spectacular views. More vehicles drive this stretch of road annually than visit Yosemite, the most crowded of our national parks. On the other hand, inland in San Benito County, the striking spires, crags, and trails of Pinnacles National Monument are rarely crowded. Monterey was California’s first capital, a distinction it held from 1770 until just after the Gold Rush of 1849. Its Old Town is well worth a walking tour. Also worth visiting are Fisherman’s Wharf and the world-class Monterey Bay Aquarium. Campgrounds included in this eTrail are: Fremont Peak State Park, Hollister Hills State Vehicle Recreation Area, Laguna Seca Recreation Area, Bottcher's Gap, Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, White Oaks, China Camp, Arroyo Seco, Escondido, Memorial Park, Limekiln State Park, Kirk Creek, Nacimiento, Ponderosa, Plaskett Creek, Pinnacles National Monument, San Lorenzo Recreation Area, and Lake San Antonio North and South Shore.
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