Bishop's Peak is a hill within blocks from the Cal Poly campus, so it's popular for the more nature oriented students who go rock climbing and hiking there. I wasn't prepared for how strenuous the climb would be. As a younger person, I was exhaused and quite sore the next day. This would be a great day activity for the moderate to active hiker. It took us about an hour and a half to get to the top, but it was worth the view (see picture). At first the trail goes through a cow pasture (with cows roaming free! A surprise for this city girl), then through a foresty area, to scrub and brush. Finally at the top there are numerous rock outcroppings which you can climb for a great view. Part rock climbing, part hiking, part nature watch, this is an excellent activity for visitors or college students as a study break. Just a warning--bring sunscreen and sunglasses if it's sunny!
For an extra treat, try climbing Bishop's at night (bring a flashlight). I climbed up in the summer and it was very warm and pleasant. BEAUTIFUL view from the top where you can look down at all the lights of the city. At the very top there is a flat rock you can lie on and when I went the weather was perfect for stargazing. Definitely worth it.
The Morro Rock is located in Morro Bay just northwest of San Luis Obispo. It has an elevation of 576 feet. This is probably the main attraction in this town of Morro Bay. This place be can easily reached via California Highway 1. Take an exit into downtown Morro Bay and drive toward the coast and you'll see the rock.
instead of hitting the usual beaches here are some that most tourists don't know about. in shell beach.
get off the freeway at "mattie road" and then turn right.
at the pelican point hotel, park and walk down the path on your right. follow the steps down to the beach. be careful!
Music Man is a guitar manufacturing factory located in San Luis Obispo, California. We went there in 1998, phoned from S. Francisco asking for the opportunity to visit the factory and the answer was simply: YES! You cannot imagine the happiness of my boyfriend (now husband), who has been playing guitars for 16 years and loves both Music Man guitars and Ernie Balls accessories (founded by an Italian called Ernesto Palla!). The visit lasted 1 hour, we were followed by the marketing manager (a very nice American guy) and we were both enthusiastic! In 1998 it was not possible to buy a guitar there BUT California is FULL of guitar shops...you will find a huge range of Music Man. And I can assure it: they are 90% handcraftly made. That's why they are so expensive and their sound is so special....
Address: 151 Suburban Rd.
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA
OK, so it's a long way off the beaten path from SLO to Cholame, CA. A total of 50 miles: some 16 miles via 101 to Altascadero then 34 miles on Route 41 to the intersection with Route 46. This intersection is known as James Dean Memorial Intersection and the the location where James Dean was killed in a car accident.
James Dean was just 24 when he died, after starring in only three movies: Rebel Without a Cause, Steinbeck's East of Eden, and Giant. He then started a brief racing career. While traveling from LA to Salinas for a race, he was killed at this unusual y-shaped intersection by a driver who cut in front of him while attempting to turn left, resulting in a head-on collision.
If you like apples, you have to go to SEE CANYON!!! Here are many orchards and little stops to buy many different types of apples and grab some SUPER fresh cider!!! It's a fun treat for the whole family!!!
Directions to Gopher Glen
2899 See Canyon Road, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Take Highway 101 to San Luis Bay Drive.
Coming from the north, the exit off Highway 101 is approximately 5 miles from San Luis Obispo. Take the San Luis Bay Drive (See Canyon) exit west.
Traveling from the south (about 2 miles from Pismo Beach) begin looking for the San Luis Bay Drive exit and go west.
Go about 1 mile and turn right on See Canyon Road (across from Belleview School). Gopher Glen is approximately 2 1/2 miles up this tree covered canyon road. Follow the signs. On the way to Gopher Glen you will observe small apple orchards and over 100 year old apple trees. You will also enjoy many oak, sycamore and maple trees. The drive through See Canyon is truly a remarkable experience.
Edna Valley is outside of the city of San Luis Obispo's main shopping area. Start at the Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, appropriately where the first vineyard was planted in the county, and take Broad Street (Hwy 227) south from downtown SLO past the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport, known as McChesney Field and turns into Edna Road. Only a little over 4 miles and you have arrived at one of the premier wineries in the Edna Valley appellation, "Tolosa", located at 4910 Edna Road San Luis Obispo.
Tolosa has a state-of-the-art tasting room that is modern with a glass bar that has lit cut outs on the walls behind with bottles, glasses and vases sitting in the cut outs. You can see many of the stainless steel wine tanks through a glass partition from the tasting room with a plaque telling you of the self-guided tour of the wine making process. Cork floors and stainless steel ceilings put a finishing touch to the tasting room. There is a table in the tasting room with stemware having pieces of fruits, seeds, and leaves, so that your senses may catch the aromas and flavors of what the featured wine on display may contain.
The tastings are at the wine bar, but there is a wonderful patio just outside the tasting room with tables and chairs with a modern water fountain, overhead canopies and a view of the crushing machines. If you spend time at the tables with a bottle of Tolosa wine and some snacks, you are also in for a treat of the private aircraft coming in for a landing at the nearby airport. Now and then a small commercial jet will go over to add to the excitement.
The wines of Tolosa are rated high with many in the 90 range. In their own words, Tolosa says that "our goal is to produce a perfectly balanced wine and to stay true to the characteristic of the grape varietal." The perfection in their wines comes from the winery using only the top 10% of the fruit for estate bottling. Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are the main estate wines at Tolosa. I found the Chardonnay to my liking and approved it with a purchase of a bottle or two. Tasting Room Hours: Daily, 11 am - 5 pm.
the bob jones bike trail offers beautiful scenery and the chance to see some wildlife as well.
get off the freeway at the "port san luis" exit. keep going straight until you reach a dead end. turn right and follow the windy road until you reach avila beach. watch for the crosswalk as you will be parking before you reach it. turn left and park on the dirt or on the street. cross the crosswalk and you will see a sign that reads "bob jones bike trail".
Wolff Vineyards and Winery is a "Certified Sustainably Grown" vineyard. You will hear a lot about this in the future. CSG is all about ecology. Click on the words of Wolff Vineyard for a full ecology report. So what does this mean to us common folk. Well, it shows that some wineries are thinking about helping mother nature out with good sense practices that will help heal the earth. I classify Wolff Vineyards Winery as a family owned boutique winery that cares about more than how many bottles of wine they can sell.
Wolff Vineyards is great for that up close look at the vines. The parking area and around the tasting room have rows of grape vines that show you the progress of the vine from bare to fruit filled depending on the season. Inside the tasting room, I received a great big hello and welcome from Clint Grubb, Winery & Hospitality Operations, who guided me through the tasting. Looking around the room, and you can see the many plaques and ribbons that Wolff has earned making excellent wine. I have a fondness for dogs and when I saw the label on one of the samplings with a big black labrador on the label and the wine was named "Brixie's Red", I was a little sceptical. But I must admit the combination of Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon that makes up "Brixie's Red" reminded me of Tuscany and Chianti Classico. That was the one for me as I love a big red with my Italian meals I prepare at home.
Wolff has a quaint patio under the shade of a huge tree near the tasting room. You can bring along a picnic to have while enjoying a bottle of "Brixie's Red". They are located at 6238 Orcutt Road in Edna Valley and the tasting room is open from 11 am to 5 pm.
Starting out as language teachers at the University of Michigan, Clay Thompson and Fredericka Churchill came west to San Luis Obispo to learn the wine business in Edna Valley. Edna Valley became home to them in 1981 and the valley has welcomed their family winery "Claiborne & Churchill" ever since their first crush in 1983. In 1995, a new and permanent winery building was built as a "straw bale building," the first of its kind in California. Walls made of straw within the structure keep a constant cellar temperature for ideal wine storing without any additional heating or cooling.
My wife and I decided to take a look at this winery for the straw bale usage and the fact that here was a success story of a young couple taking on the challenge of wine production from the ground up and maintaining a family business for over 26 years that offers some of the best Dry Riesling and Dry Gewurztraminer we had tried. These two wines are their signature wines and why not. They based the wines on the fruity and dry wines of the French province of Alsace and traditional European wine making techniques prevail with barrel-fermentation and barrel-aging at Claiborne & Churchill.
While we were at the wine tasting bar, Clay appeared and welcomed us to the winery. He even helps set up displays in the tasting room area as we talked. A man for all reasons. As in most wineries, the outside garden was peaceful and had a table where you could picnic as if you were in your own backyard. With the Dry Riesling and Dry Gewurztraminer we purchased tucked in the wine box, we ventured on in Edna Valley, leaving behind a wonderful family boutique winery in Claiborne& Churchill. Located at 2649 Carpenter Canyon Road San Luis Obispo, CA . Wine tasting is open daily from 11 am to 5 pm.
Saucelito Canyon Vineyard and Winery is in the Arroyo Grande Valley, next door to Edna Valley. The reason I have put this winery with my Edna Valley Wineries is because Saucelito Canyon's tasting room is located in the middle of Edna Valley between Edna Road (Hwy227) and Orcutt Road at 3080 Biddle Ranch Road. The tasting room is open daily from 10 am to 5 pm and the only place to sample the wines of Saucelito Canyon Vineyard and Winery, as there is no tasting at their Vineyard. The prominent wine is Zinfandel with some of the original cuttings from the 1890's still in use, in fact the old style of "head prune" layout is kept by the present owner's, Bill and Nancy Greenough, on 3 original acres. This is truly a family affair and a boutique winery that concentrates on the perfection of one variety, Zinfandel. They do have other varietals available but I wanted to taste their Zinfandel.
With a new winemaker, Amy Freeman, guiding the Winery along, I am sure that this limited production boutique family winery will be making some wine headlines in the near future. In fact, at the winery is a picture of the winemaker that tells me you don't have to always get down and dirty in the vineyard to make good wine. Amy comes from a winery background with her parents owning a vineyard in the Santa Rita Hills, near Buellton, California. In the tasting room was the very congenial host Bobby de Vries who did the pouring and described the wines tasted. I must admit that the Zinfandel I sampled made me order up a bottle right on the spot. No waiting around to taste anything else. I came to taste the award winning Saucelito Canyon Zinfandel. I saw and I was conquered by the wine.
Between San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara, there is a little town built in Danish style : Solvang.
There are several wind mills though I thought they are more typical of Netherland.
In the main street, they sell mainly wooden toys.
Vistors' center : Mission drive
Along the route 1, there are several beaches where the elephant seals go to rest.
Generally, there is a parking.
Rather easy to find : from the road, you see a parking with more cars than the prior one. Often, the seals are there.
Every Thursday night is Farmer's Market in downtown San Luis Obispo. Year round, most of the restaurants come out and set up their booths so you can sample everything if you want. On one side is the food and fresh produce, on the other side are jewelry booths, people selling newspapers, giving out almond samples, etc. There's also music. Great place for both college kids and locals. Higuera Street closes down just for this, and the stores stay open later that evening too.
Go to Central Coast Wines during Farmers' Market (every Thursday evening all along Higuera Street) and taste featured local wines, only $4!! The people there are friendly, and the wines there are reasonably priced.
Located at the end of Higuera, towards south