We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

Los Angeles, CA
Level Contributor
22 posts
6 reviews
Save Topic
What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

We are visiting Pismo in a few weeks with two small children (under 5) and grandparents. What are some family friendly things to do while in Pismo? Good parks? Easy hikes? Good beaches? Family friendly restaurants that still serve good food?

Thanks!

Avila Beach...
Level Contributor
1,302 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

In Avila Beach: The Sea Life Center, Fat Cats and/or Woodstone Market Place - outside tables with a view and great food, Bob Jones bike trail, Avila Valley Barn (hay rides, animals to feed)... and, of course, the beach! You can rent multi-person bicycle type deals in Pismo and take the kids for a ride. There's also a Children's Museum in San Luis Obispo and the Exploration Station in Grover Beach. Parks and playgrounds everywhere - including right on the beach in Avila and Pismo.

Petaluma, California
Level Contributor
1,157 posts
134 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

Wow - Zebracruiser gave you incredible ideas. I would look into all of those right away. The Exploration Station in Grover (adjacent to Pismo) is probably perfect for you age children. But they are not open every day so be sure to check out their web page and coordinate with your vacation.

The Avila Barn is also wonderful for the little ones. Not sure if they our you would enjoy but adjacent to the Avila Barn in the wilderness next to the river is a hidden Labyrinth to walk. Very peaceful (except the Avila Barn hay rides going by) and a nice quieting experience for the family.

There is a wonderful boardwalk along the sand in PIsmo to walk going up and down the beach, as well as the Pier.

I might venture off the local coast path and go up north a few miles to Morro Bay where there is the only Natural History Museum in the state park system, sitting over the Estuary and Bay. Gorgeous place, some of the exhibits have broken down, but for your age children, the completely hands on museum is perfect for a long period of entertainment. Then drive on over to the Morro Rock where you are almost guaranteed to see the Otters resting on their backs in the bay.

You and the kids will never be bored here. It's created for family. Been coming here since I was a little girl decades ago.

Los Angeles, CA
Level Contributor
22 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

Great ideas! Thank you!

Level Contributor
38,818 posts
1,013 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

A fun place to eat in Pismo with your little ones is Splash Cafe, delicious clam chowder here. :)

oakland, CA
Level Contributor
24 posts
67 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

If you are going to go North, like to Morro Bay, look into the Montana de Oro park - I think it is a state park. The best tidepools we have EVER seen, bar none! Easy walk through woods to coast, rocky area that extends quite far out, and hosts amazing tidepools. a bit further inland - San Luis Obispo - has a great farmer's market I believe every Thursday night. You can stroll, there is all sorts of food, music, bounce houses, you name it. great for families! Have fun!

oakland, CA
Level Contributor
24 posts
67 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

Here's the link:

tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g32661-d14…

Petaluma, California
Level Contributor
1,157 posts
134 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

Happy Traveling Family - Montana de Oro is a State Park - some say the most beautiful in the state park system. So I agree if you can find an entire day do Morro Bay and Montana de Oro. It is a few miles of curvy beautiful road to the middle of Montana de Oro. When you see the Camp Ground and Schooner Ranch House on the left that it is the tide pool area on the right across from a very rocky beach. Just be careful. The tides come in high and can take little ones off balance. And they are quite slippery. Please only look at tide pools and the living creatures - do not poke and prode. They are all alive. Even things you may be walking on! Thanks!

Visalia, CA
Level Contributor
1,382 posts
39 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

I used to spend a lot of time in Pismo but don't go there anywhere near as much as I used to however here is my 2 cents worth. When my children were that age they were happy just playing on the beach/surf all day and my wife was content to relax while I kept an eye on the little ones. If Pismo is too cold/windy Avila Beach is only about 10 min from Pismo. It is generally warmer as it is more sheltered & less windy then Pismo. However it doesn't have any dunes like Pismo.

You can take a horseback ride over in Oceano at the Pacific Dunes Ranch (they can accommodate kids depending on size). If you like to fish you can fish off the pier for free and don't need to have a fishing license (I think). For something fun to do at night, if you think your children can handle sitting for a while, I would recommend the Great American Melodrama in Oceano. It's a lot of fun. There are a few golf courses near by including a little 9 hole course by the beach ramp in Grover City.

Pismo is a tourist town so most places there are family friendly. Pismo Fish & Chips is where we always go for fish & chips when in town (order the light batter). I'm not sure how Brad's is anymore but it's been there forever & used to have good breakfast. Try Doc Burnstein's in the village in Arroyo Grande for ice cream. Maybe Klondike Cafe for pizza. I've heard the Giuseppe's is good but have not been there. Had a good steak at AJ Spurs a while back. Have enjoyed some good chowder/food at Steamers. Alex's in Shell Beach used to have good ribs but I haven't eaten there in a while. Also got some good ribs from Mo's. The cinnamon rolls at Old West are really good.

Hope this helps a little.

9. Re: What to do in Pismo/surrounding area with kids?

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 16 March 2014, 04:16