Hardcore Volkswagen Enthusiasts Do Road Trips Right

Classic Cars / 3 Comments

The Treffen event makes us want to buy a classic VW and head up the Cali coast.

Treffen is the German word meaning "to meet," and has come to mean nearly any Volkswagen enthusiast-based event. Each year, the Highway 1 Treffen Cruise takes place as a long road trip along California State Route 1, also known as the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH).

The Treffen trek started as small lunch meets in 1998, organized by Sean Maynard, a former Volkswagen marketing specialist, and evolved into an 8,000-mile road trip around the US. For the past 24 years, it's become an annual 10-day road trip bringing the community together for rolling events, including camping, beach bonfires, car shows, and surfing.


The PCH is one of the most beautiful scenic roads in the world and a Mecca for car enthusiasts. It runs from Orange County, California, and up the coast to become the US 101 for Oregon and Washington states. The Treffen trek starts in Port Angeles, WA, and follows most of the 1,700-mile route to end close to the Mexican border in Border Field State Park, California.

"At Treffen, you can drive for ten miles or ten days in a vintage or a modern VW. We always have an itinerary, but no one needs to follow it. The whole trip is about enjoying the open road-as much or little as you'd like," says Maynard.


While the trip centers around classic Volkswagens, there's no elitism or snobbery from the community involved. It's all about the road trip, the comradeship, the community networking, and the overall experience.

"The people take great pride in their classic VW models," Maynard explains, "They'll talk for hours about all the work they've done on their vehicles. And they'll be more than generous if anyone ever needs help."

This year's trek took place just a few weeks ago in the summer sun. As you can see from the photos, it included some fantastic vintage examples of Volkswagen Beetle, Karman Ghia, Microbus, and camper van models stopping for regional car shows based around the event.


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