Since everyone loves a good list…here is my list for the Top 10 Things to Do when you are visiting our area (or if you live here and need some refreshers on what makes this area so great). But this week you only get the first 5. Stay tuned for 6-10 in a later blog.
#1. Wine tasting at Talley Vineyards! Of course, this is the number one thing-to -do. For the best experience plan ahead and schedule a private tasting in our Rincon Adobe. You’ll have the opportunity to taste some older vintages, learn a little history and have some nice snacks. Then wrap up your tasting with a picnic on the grounds and a little game of Ping Pong or Corn Hole.
#2. Take a hike…up a hill or along the coast or up a creek. My passion is hiking and there are so many exceptional hikes or walks within an hour or so of Arroyo Grande ranging from an easy stroll to a heart pounding climb. I use an App called All Trails which is a great resource for finding every type of walk or hike imaginable. You can take an easy stroll on the Bluffs Trail in Montana de Oro, or get your heart rate up hiking the Lizzie Street trail to the tower in San Luis Obispo. There are about 50 different options locally for all ranges of fitness and I’ve done most and always find something worth seeing, whether it’s the view from the top of Ontario Ridge or the cool trees in the Elfin Forest (which is good walk if you have strollers or wheel chairs with awesome views of Morro Rock).
#3. Head out to Montana de Oro outside of Los Osos. This state park has no entry fee and a range of activities. My 10 year old nephew loves to go out there and jump off of the sand dunes before heading to the tide pools. This is also a great location to whale watch, hang at the beach, walk along the bluffs, go on a mountain bike ride, hike a peak, surf or have a picnic. Truly a great place to spend a day and they have a campground there, as well.
#4. Check out the Point San Luis Lighthouse in Avila Beach. My favorite way to go to the lighthouse is by paddleboard or kayak. It’s relatively easy to paddle out of Port San Luis through the bay and around the point to the west and park your kayak or paddleboard on the beach. Then it’s a very short walk to the lighthouse where you can swing on a swing hanging from a giant eucalyptus tree before cruising around the grounds. There are guided tours on Wednesdays and Saturdays. If you aren’t into paddling you can sign up for a guided hike or a trolley trip to the lighthouse. You can find all of the tour, hike and trolley information at www.sanluislighthouse.org.
#5. Enjoy the local Craft Brewery explosion. We are blessed in this area with so many great brewmasters. Each has their own unique offerings. In SLO you can enjoy the cool corrugated building and patio of Bang the Drum, or the fire pit and patio of Tap It, or the great live music at SLO Brew. If you head north a little, one of my favorites is Barrel House Brew with its outdoor grassy area and bands playing on an old flat bed truck. In Arroyo Grande you can head to Figueroa Mountain Brew which has taprooms up and down the central coast.