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From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

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Turku, Finland
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From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

Hi,

My husband and I are going to visit San Francisco in April. Our plan is to rent a car from the airport and drive route 101 to San Luis Obisbo and spend a night there. Then we'll drive Highway 1 to San Francisco in two days. The next nigh maybe in Monterey. The rest of the week we'll stay in San Francisco.

How does this plan sound. Is there anything special to see on route 101 we don't see on our way on Highway 1. Any suggestions for restaurants and places to stop during the drive.

San Francisco...
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1. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

Well San Juan Bautista is one option and there are museums in San Jose if you are interested. You don't mention your likes and dislikes so it is anyone guess. You could infact stay in paso robles and sample and visit wineries and then cut across to Cambria and then drive up Hwy 1.

Pinnacles National park is also enroute.

There is Gilroy which has plenty of Garlic about 30 or so minutes south of San Jose.

Another option is to just drive to Monterey and spend a couple of nights there. One of those days, just drive south along hwy 1 to Big Sur village and spend time there and drive back. Depending on your likes and dislikes you can stop as long as you like, hike, visit state beaches enroute. That could be another option than driving all the way to SLO

Edited: 18 March 2013, 15:33
Menlo Park...
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2. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

I can suggest several out door things for you, things that are unique to the area. You could take a kayak into the estuary at Elkhorn Slough to see seals and maybe otters and sea lions and migratory birds. You could walk around several redwood forests. You could hike around our newest national park at the Pinnacles. There are several of the old California missions. These are all close to hwy 101. The drive from SGO to SLO is not that long

San Francisco
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3. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

San Juan Bautista is a cute little town with a nice old mission.

However, the BEST mission (IMO) is San Antonio de Padua. It's on an army base which keeps the area immediately surrounding the mission completely undeveloped so you see the mission as it looked when the Franciscan padres were running them and gives you a feel for how secluded they really were.

Most missions these days are in the middle of large towns or cities.

It's 25 miles from Highway 101 to the San Antonio de Padua Mission but well worth the detour.

http://missionsanantonio.net/

If you're not familiar with the missions, there are 21 of them in the state of California that were established while this area was ruled by Spain. The Spanish posted garrisons at four Presidios (SF, Monterey, Santa Barbara and San Diego) and then turned the responsibility for holding the land for Spain over to the Franciscans who established the missions, designed to be a day's march apart. Depending on your politics they either "converted" or "enslaved" the local Indians and created vast agricultural plots as part of the mission land holdings.

When Mexico won its independence from Spain, California went with it. The Mexicans booted out the Franciscans, took the lands and let the missions degrade. Being made of adobe that happened rather quickly. Shortly after, in the treaty that ended the Mexican-American War, California became a US territory. The missions (albeit not the huge landholdings) were given back to the Catholic church by Presidents Lincoln and Grant. All but two are active Catholic parishes today. The other two are California State Parks. In the 1950's a lot of effort was made to restore the missions and that work continues today. Studying California and mission history is part of the 4th grade curriculum for California kids.

Pacific Grove...
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4. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

A convenient stop on your way up Hwy 1 between Big Sur and Carmel is Point Lobos State Reserve, which is gorgeous. It's quite close to Carmel, about 7 miles south of downtown Carmel. There are several trails, most of them easy, overlooking the ocean. My personal favorite is Cypress Grove, a 1-mile loop.

http://pt-lobos.parks.state.ca.us/Trails.html

Turku, Finland
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5. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

Thank you all!

I've been doing a little research. Paso Robles seems to be a perfect choice. Any suggestions of the hotel or b&b. I checked a couple but they were all fully booked April 20th. Wine tasting is a very good choice, we'll do that. And also the garlic is tempting as well as redwood walks and Point Lobos State Reserve.

I have to read more about the missions, if we can include one of those too.

San Francisco...
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6. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

You should look at the Paso Robles Forum for more info. That would be the best thing to do for hotels in that area. As far as Point Lobos, that part is on Hwy 1 and just South of Carmel so you can see that on your way back from SLO

If you have any questions about SF, you are in the right forum.

Turku, Finland
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7. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

Oh yes, of course. I'll do that. Thanks :)

8. Re: From SFO Airport to San Luis Obisbo and back

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