Winter – December, January, February
Luckily, the weather in Big Sur never gets very cold. Of course, during these months, it may be very rainy and windy, but the temperatures never get below ’40s. This is not a very busy time of year, as the rains are around and camping isn’t something everyone wants to do when it’s wet outside, however, if you are looking to keep away from crowds or you’re trying to catch some elephant seals (January is the month they wash up on shore to give birth!) and whales, this is a great time of year to enjoy Big Sur.
Definitely bring your rain gear for traveling during these months. You are going to want a good waterproof windbreaker, and rain boots. If it isn’t raining, you can dress comfortably in warm pants, and a quality jacket. You may want to pack a beanie just in case those winds pick up.
Spring – March, April, May
Spring is a lovely time of year to visit Big Sur. Elephant seals are still hanging out in large crowds on the beaches, flowers are blooming and the grasses are green. The weather is starting to warm up and the rains are slowing down. It’s warm, but not totally hot out yet. The weather stays around 60-65 in the springtime, getting down to mid-’40s at night. The spring crowds mostly consist of day trippers looking to catch seal sight sightings, however, the campgrounds are still pretty empty.
You will still probably want to have your rain jacket when traveling to Big Sur in the springtime. Warm pants are still a good thing to have on, and a windbreaker is always a good thing to have just in case.
Summer – June, July, August
Summertime in Big Sur! The crowds have finally rolled in, the sun is shining, and the temperatures are nice and warm. A great thing about Big Sur is that it never gets extremely hot. During the summer it will usually stay around 70-80 with the evenings getting to around 50. Summer is the busy season in Big Sur, this is when most people come to visit, exploring the trails and doing lots of camping.
It’s finally warm enough to whip out that bikini and lounge on the beach. Bring a nice beach cover-up to stroll the beaches and do a little beach hiking. Shorts, sandals, and tank tops are in full swing. Pack a lovely summer dress or nice button-up for visiting the restaurants after a fun day in the sun.
Fall – September, October, November
In fall, things really start to slow down. According to numbers, September-November is the slowest season for Big Sur, so for some, this means it’s the best time to visit. The weather remains between 60-70, and the rains will start rolling in around October.
You could probably bring your rain jacket just in case, though you probably won’t need it. You can get away with wearing shorts and sandals, however, you will definitely want hiking shoes and sweatshirt or a light jacket for the evening time chills.