I love that photography has become so accessible to people. Not all of my photographer peers share my sentiment and just because everyone has a camera phone and apps like Instagram and Hipstamatic doesn't necessarily make one a photographer. However, I think its great that so many people have gotten the photo bug and that having a good camera and a photo application inspires people to snap away!
I think that you can take an amazing photo with any type of camera or medium and that an infinite number of people could take a photograph from the same vantage point at the same point in time and get an infinite number of results. Not one photo would be the same (like snowflakes).
I also believe that there are certain places that you can travel and be incapable of taking a bad photograph. The Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) near Carmel and Big Sur is one of those places. The landscape is magnificent.
There is no need to be in a hurry while driving the PCH (if you were in a hurry you would have taken I-5). Plan on stopping a lot at the many turn-outs carved into the shoulder for amazing photo opportunities and vistas. Please watch out for cyclists (I am one and love biking this route, so I feel obligated to promote bike safety on Hwy 1!)
My favorite spot is near Big Sur just south of the Big Creek Bridge. Stop there and take your own perfect postcard!