A survey was sent to 318 physicians in Monterey County, California, to assess their attitudes and practices regarding hypertension and cigarette smoking. After three mailings, 62% returned completed questionnaires. Eight percent of the respondents were smokers, 5% were women, and 34% were in primary care specialties. Older physicians and primary care specialists were less aggressive in their treatment of high blood pressure, but none of the assessed attitudes was significantly associated with treatment practice. Only half of the sample advised all patients to quit smoking. Physicians who doubted the effectiveness of their anti-smoking advice or who did not know what to say to smoking patients were less likely to provide advice. Most physicians felt that their smoking patients lacked sufficient motivation to quit. Programs to encourage physicians to increase smoking cessation activities should address these attitudes.