Added: Markell Purcell - Date: 01.09.2021 04:54 - Views: 13113 - Clicks: 6225
Some links on this may be affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. For more details, refer to our disclosure. San Luis Obispo is one of the most fun Central California destinations you can visit. Known for its lively downtown, historic Spanish mission, museums and art galleries, great eateries, and wine and craft beer tasting rooms, San Luis Obispo has something for every type of traveler. Whether you plan to visit solo, or you are seeking a fabulous couples getaway, or looking to have a great family vacation, SLO will wow you.
Not only is San Luis Obispo a wonderful destination in its own right, it is also located very close to many charming California Central Coast towns and villages, making it easy to do short excursions to the beach or to wine country. San Luis Obispo is one of the most popular weekend getaway destinations in California , for its weather, its laid-back charm, and the many activities the area offers.
Considering a visit to SLO? Read on to discover all the best things to do in San Luis Obispo, plus our suggestions for where to stay and where to eat. You can tour it on your own, but if a docent-led tour is being offered when you visit, : you will learn a lot as you tour!
There is also a gift shop you can browse. The gardens of the mission are beautiful and make for a great stroll on a nice weather day. Citrus, succulents, roses, and other plants create a colorful display when in bloom, and the grape arbor is testament to the importance of viticulture in the area.
The mission is a serene oasis and a great place to take a breather from sightseeing or other active pursuits. Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa is open everyday and is free to enter, although donations are suggested. It is eminently walkable and almost always lively, with lots of shoppers and diners walking around. You will find lots of boutique stores and well-known chains, art galleries, antique shops, and stores with artisanal foods such as olive oils, cheeses, and wine, along with restaurants, cafes, and tasting rooms.
Higuera Street in particular is a must-stroll. The tradition of sticking bubble gum onto the walls of this alley started way back, possibly in the s! The alley has been featured in books and music and TV shows, and while it disgusts some visitors, it fascinates others. Restaurants line the creek, and dining by the water is an experience you must definitely include in your SLO itinerary: one of our favorite creekside restaurants is Novo.
But you can also stroll the walkway by the creek. The pink exterior of the Madonna Inn is only the beginning. Inside you will find ornate public spaces with lots of candy pink and dazzling chandeliers, and over one hundred individually-styled guest rooms. Not all the guest rooms are pink, but most of them sport bright colors and eclectic furnishings.
You will find etched brass and copper, carved wood, and etched glass windows. Even if you do not stay at the inn, plan to visit for a drink or a meal so you can check out the inside! Less than a minute drive from downtown San Luis Obispo is beautiful Edna Valley, where you will find one of the top viticultural areas on the Central California Coast. The area is so scenic that just driving around is a joy, but of course you will want to stop and sip! There are over two dozen tasting rooms in the valley, many of them outdoors, with views of the Tuscany-like rolling hills covered with vineyards.
Edna Valley is a fabulous location for a picnic lunch. Whether you are looking for a dose of art or you want to delve into local history, you will find a museum here that suits. At 1, feet high, Bishop Peak is the tallest of the Morros or Nine Sisters , a group of volcanic plugs that stretch along the Central California Coast. Morro Rock, in Morro Bay, is one of the well-known Morros. The two popular trails to the top both have exceptional panoramas of the Central Coast as the reward, so pick based on your skill level. One route starts from the trailhead on Patricia Drive and takes you gradually up, through a series of switchbacks, to the peak.
This hike is about 4 miles round trip, and is classed as moderate. The other hike starts at the trailhead on Highland Drive and is a shorter, steeper climb to the top, with boulders to navigate. The Sunset Drive-In Theater is one of just a few remaining drive-in theaters in California that still screens movies. So if you want to evoke the nostalgia of times past, grab some popcorn and a drink, and catch a movie here when you visit San Luis Obispo!
There are two shows nightly, and the theater is open every night. Bring cash for your tickets. And it did not disappoint! If you can swing it, we suggest crafting an SLO itinerary that includes a Thursday evening so you can visit this lively market. With several dozen vendors lining Higuera Street, which is closed to traffic, the market offers fresh fruit and produce, fresh flowers and plants, and lots of delicious prepared foods, from fire-roasted meats to pizza and artisan ice cream.
As you stroll up and down, sampling the food and browsing the arts and crafts from local artists on display, you will be entertained by live music acts and street performers. San Luis Obispo is a mecca for foodies, wine lovers, and craft beer and spirits enthusiasts. Downtown SLO is chock full of quality eateries and tasting rooms, and sampling the best bites and sips on a food tour is a great introduction to the local food and drink scene.
This well-reviewed tour takes you to five local eateries in downtown SLO, for a sampling of the finest food and drink from popular restaurants as well as hidden gems. During the fun 3-hour tour, your guide will provide insights about SLO as you walk. A vegetarian option is available. Book this tour now! The 3-hour tour requires walking about 1.
Go paddleboarding or kayaking at Avila Beach, or sunbathe or have a picnic on the sandy beach. Morro Bay is a marine life viewing paradise and birding hotspot. You will see otters frolicking in the bay, seals and sea lions, and maybe dolphins and whales out in the ocean. Take a cruise around Morro Rock, stroll the Embarcadero, and enjoy fresh seafood at a waterfront restaurant.
Cayucos is a tiny town with fabulous beaches and a plethora of water activities to enjoy, from surfing to tidepooling. Stroll the historic pier and watch the surfers, or walk the waterfront boardwalk, with its boutiques and restaurants. Walking the easy and scenic bluff trail at Montana de Oro State Park is a must! The trail offers spectacular water views, close looks at the gorgeous rock formations along the shore, as well as a pristine beach.
Hikers up for a challenge can attempt the Valencia Peak Trail for panoramic views over the coast from the top. Valencia Peak is the tallest point in the park, at just under 1, feet. If you have more time, the Los Osos area offers other scenic trails and excellent birdwatching. The Elfin Forest Boardwalk Trail is a must-do! In downtown San Luis Obispo, you can enjoy the ice cream and fine chocolates at their parlor on Higuera Street. A charming family-owned farm in Avila Valley, Avila Valley Barn is a farmstand that offers fresh fruit and vegetables.
You will also find a barbecue stand here, plus a bakery, and a sweet shop with ice cream, candy, and fudge. The fruit pies are made with real fruit filling and taste yum! The picturesque farmstand is a great photo spot. If you are traveling with kids, they will love the hay rides and pony rides offered from may through November. Plus, they and you! If you enjoy craft beers, spirits, or ciders, you will enjoy tasting your way through the many tasting rooms in SLO. From lagers to sours and mead, you can have your pick of brews in the region. Throw in some live music and tasty food truck bites, and you have the recipe for an exciting evening out.
Area distilleries offer a variety of sips, from whiskey to gins and liqueurs, and hard cideries offer options from sweet to dry. SLO is a great stop on a California road trip itinerary! San Luis Obispo is also a great option for getaways. It is one of the easiest day trips from Santa Barbara you can do: just a minute drive each way.
Looking for a car rental for your San Luis Obispo getaway? Check out Discover Cars! They scour multiple providers to get the best price for you. This cute 2-bedroom, one-bath home is located right in the heart of the action in downtown SLO, perfect for exploring the town and trying all the great restaurants, coffee shops, and tasting rooms!
The home boasts a modern kitchen and air-conditioning but retains a lot of its early s charm. Book a stay here! This lovely wine country cottage is located a few short miles from downtown SLO, on the grounds on a winery. Beautifully restored, the cottage features new flooring, furnishings, and appliances. There are queen beds in each of the two bedrooms. From the living room and front porch, enjoy fabulous views of vineyards and rolling hills. Visiting as a family or a small group? This exceptionally lovely 3-bed, 3-bath vineyard home makes for the perfect group getaway or family stay.
With vineyard views from every rooms and upscale furnishings, the property is just a short drive from downtown SLO. It features a rooftop pool and a well-reviewed onsite restaurant, and has a garden and a terrace. Rooms are well-appointed, with contemporary decor. Rooms feature modern furnishings with touches of bright color. The hotel offers bikes for checkout during your stay, and a terrace and hot tub. A farm-to-table restaurant located in downtown San Luis Obispo, Big Sky Cafe has a huge menu of offerings featuring local producers, with many vegetarian options.
We love their cheese sandwich, crispy polenta fries, and black bean chili. Get a table on the patio by the creek, and make reservations ahead of time. Their globally inspired menu has many good choices: we love the spicy Thai red curry, and their salmon bisque is rich and creamy. Firestone Grill is another great BBQ place, but arrive early, because it gets crowded. High St. Deli is our go-to sandwich shop in San Luis Obispo.
The chunky, well-crafted sandwiches are worth the minute walk from downtown.Looking for some fun in slo
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Things to Do