What to do in San Luis Obispo ?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by CanadaRAM, Oct 14, 2005.

  1. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #1
    Well, it looks like I'm going to San Luis Obispo on the Nov 11 weekend for a family reunion (in-laws, I'll know maybe 2 of them). My wife's cousin donated a bargeload of money to Cal Tech and they're naming a building after his late brother, so there's a dedication ceremony and all on the 14th.

    I was thinking a romantic getaway for 2, driving down the coast, Big Sur and all -- but we're taking my mother-in-law too, so ixnay on the anky-pankyhay. Thought we'd get an overnight in San Jose then driving down but now it looks like getting a connection YVR through SFO to SBP. Oh well.

    Not sure I want to do 4.5 hours each way back up the road just to see 1 Infinte Loop on a weekend... been there anyway, you don't get to see anything interesting even on the tour.

    So like, what is there to do in San Luis Obispo when one wants to escape the gossiping hordes of second-cousins?

    Thanks,
    Trevor
     
  2. devilot Moderator emeritus

    devilot

    Joined:
    May 1, 2005
    #2
    I've only passed through there once... so um... beach? Visit the mission?

    :eek: I'm sure there will be more productive replies.
     
  3. katie ta achoo macrumors G3

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    #3
    When I drove through it, we stopped at a trader joes.

    Uhm..

    Go to there?

    There are a bunch of little book stores and stuff. Go to there?


    or ditch the reunion, and drive up to Cupertino. ;) hehe.
     
  4. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #4
    San Luis is a nice town for walking around the downtown. They've usually got one event or another going around the Mission on weekends. I believe the big evening farmer's market is Thursday so you'll probably miss that. You can also drive down to Pismo Beach or to Morro Bay if you're looking for a half day trip. If you're a wine lover, drive over to Paso Robles, which over the past few years has become the heart of the southern Salinas Valley wine country. All within about a half hour's drive from San Luis! If you're a bit more ambitious you can drive all the way to Cambria, which is also a very pleasant little town about an hour or so away. Quite touristy these days though. I know of several good restaurants in Cambria and can recommend one if you're interested.

    Plenty to do in San Luis Obispo. You won't be bored unless you want to be.
     
  5. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    Location:
    Colly-fornia
    #5
    Depends on what you want to do. We got some fantastic steakhouses here, great seafood, and pretty much any other food. If you want to be spoiled a little you can stay at the Sycamore Hot Springs Resort near the newly-renovated Avila Beach. They have natural hot spring hot tubs... very private if you want to spend some time with the SO away from the relatives.

    If you wish to spend time in the northern parts of the county, you can see Hearst's Castle -- particularly if you come down through Big Sur. Just be warned -- the 1 down the coast from Monterey to SLO is a windy road with sheer cliffs on one side, and when you're heading south you're on the outside. Not for the folks who are afraid of heights, but for the rest of us it's a fabulous drive. It will add an extra hour or two to the drive though.

    If you come down 101 there are plenty of nice spots to stop in Paso Robles, particularly if you like wine! Actually pretty much anywhere between there and Santa Barbara will have excellent wine.

    There's a Farmer's Market every Saturday in Arroyo Grande, near where I live.

    If you like noisy activities that smell like gasoline, you can either drive out onto the dunes in Oceano, or rent ATVs and do the same thing.

    If you prefer your recreation more in the form of a walk or a hike there are a million trails I can point you to around here from a short stroll to a much more strenuous hike.

    It's early, so I'm still trying to think of all the stuff around here, but if you have any questions, feel free to PM me. I can get more information, or put you in touch with the right people if there's something you would like to know more about.
     
  6. 3rdpath macrumors 68000

    3rdpath

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    2nd star on the right and straight till morning
    #6
    hey mactastic..props on the sycamore hot springs! my wife and I love that place. spent many a nite up on the hillside, soaking and such ;) with a bottle of veuve. the spa treatments there are top notch also. canadaram, if you can itchday the inlaw, it's well worth the wrath you may incur later...:D

    it's been awhile since i've been in SLO but it's a great town. good restaurants and plenty to do. if you head to pismo-the splash cafe has the best chowder around...it's a funky dive. there's also an italian place called guiseppe's(sp?) thats quite good though the place is insane on weekends.

    no matter what you do, you'll have a good time. the central coast is tops in my book. and this is the perfect time of year to visit-the crowds are gone and the weather is just nippy enough to make it perfect for those bundled-up romantic beach strolls.
     
  7. CanadaRAM thread starter macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #7
    Yikes.. I had my fill of that type of adventure driving in Crete, I thought I would die from heartattack long before the 1000 foot sheer drop to the ocean (no guardrail or curb, natch'). Although the road is probably wider and in bettter shape in California. Crete was the only place where the road was so narrow, I actually had the wheels riding in the shoulder of the road on both sides AT THE SAME TIME!
     
  8. pooky macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    #9
    If you're into trails, head north to Montana de Oro state park. Good hiking, great views, nice beaches, reasonably quiet. It's a good park. Or, if you have time and don't mind working for it, climb Bishop Peak in SLO. You can see the whole town (and then some) from the top.

    Finally, as an alum, I can't let this go... Cal Poly is in SLO, Cal Tech is in Pasadena!
     
  9. Flowbee macrumors 68030

    Flowbee

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Alameda, CA
    #10
    Another big up for the Sycamore Hot Springs. Also, be sure to stop by the Madonna Inn. Each room is decorated in a unique "theme" (the Caveman room is a personal favorite). Their steak house restaurant is also quite a sight to behold, and a fun place for dinner and drinks.
     
  10. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    Colly-fornia
    #11
    Actually my favorite part is the men's room where you pee into the waterfall. That alone is worth the stop if you gotta go while passing through town...
    Yes it is. You won't be hanging any tires off the edge and there are guardrails along the entire way. You are along 1000 foot sheer cliffs for much of it, but you'll generally be at least 5 feet away from them. If you have the time, go for it and take a camera. It's one of the more scenic parts of Hwy 1.

    I was wondering about the CalTech thing too... Did you mean Cal Poly, or are you driving on down to SoCal later?

    Pooky, when were you at Cow Poly?
     
  11. CanadaRAM thread starter macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #12
    Thanks for the hints, all.

    Cal Poly - I stand corrected. It's big, and they have buildings, that's about as much as I know. Relatives-in-law went there, became famous (some) and rich (others) and the family name is about to be enshrined on a building. I guess I'll learn more...

    The other challenge is flying with a 94 year old -- wheelchairs, fatigue: trying to keep the travel time down, minimize trasfers in airports (do you know how many flights have to go through LAX and then double back to SBP, 10 hours of flying and waiting?)

    Also have to keep an eye on the MTBLW (Mean Time Between Ladies Washrooms) factor...
     
  12. CanadaRAM thread starter macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
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    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #13
    passing? Spelling error?
     
  13. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    Apr 24, 2003
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    Colly-fornia
    #14
    Giuseppes is fantastic, and close to The Cracked Crab -- also excellent in Pismo. It does get crazy on the weekends, and they don't take reservations, so be prepared to spend some time in the bar (we waited an hour the last time we went) but the food is primo. Some of the best osso buco I've ever had.

    Steamers is right near there in Pismo too. And Jocco's in Nipomo is a local favorite for steaks. There's also F. McClintocks, although I think I prefer A.J. Spurs locally for steaks. Twin Peaks all the way. In Morro Bay there is Dorn's for seafood and Harada if you like good Japanese. If you want good mexican fusion there is The Taco Temple... another local favorite. Up in Templeton is a place I love called McPhee's where they do an oak-grill thing with all kinds of good stuff. You can get a bucket of creme brulee for desert there too.

    Right in SLO, the Mission Grill is a good place, right by Mission SLO which you should stop and poke your head into if you're in the neighborhood. Actually there are several good restaurants in the downtown area of SLO. There's a great place in Los Osos called The Garden Cafe for breakfast. Cash only though.

    Also in SLO (and Pismo) is my favorite Cajun restaurant around here, Bon Temps. It's a hole-in-the-wall kind of place, but the dinners are excellent. Lunches are not quite as good, but not bad either. Hot sauces for sale cheap too.

    And that doesn't even take into account Cambria, or heading down south to the home of the Santa Maria-style BBQ (although Jocco's is a part of that tradition). I've got plenty more reccomendations if you want!
     
  14. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
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    Palookaville
    #15
    Shucks, you beat me to it. :D

    Yes, I have passed into the waterfall at the Madonna Inn. You might even call it a rite of passage.
     
  15. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #16
    Santa Maria Barbecue to be more precise. ;)

    Jocco's is not for the faint of heart, literally. I ate dinner there years ago and I'm still trying to work off the excess cholesterol.
     
  16. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
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    #17
    FWIW, the restaurant at the airport (The Spirit of San Luis) is quite good for lunch. It's one of my favorite "hundred dollar hamburger" stops. (No, the hamburgers don't actually cost $100, except if you happen to fly in for one in your own airplane.)
     
  17. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #18
    The police gently encourage you not to piss through town...
     
  18. PharmD macrumors 6502

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    Aug 2, 2005
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    Oregon Coast
    #19
    I had a buddy from high school who lived there and there was a restaurant there about 3 blocks up from Pismo beach that had some killer chili/clam chowder in bread bowls. I'd go there. :D
     
  19. Jon'sLightBulbs macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago
    #20
    Go to pismo beach and go dune buggying with grandma. Or put her on a quad. That oughta be some healthy exercise for her!
     
  20. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #21
    Now Napolean... you know what happens when you put grandma on a quad!

    :p
     
  21. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #22
    She becomes a quadriplegic?
     
  22. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    Oct 21, 2004
    #23
    Or quad pro quo harassment. :)
     
  23. jefhatfield Retired

    jefhatfield

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2000
    #24
    without cal poly, san luis obispo would not even make it on the map and it's amazing how the school visionaries eventually built up to all those buildings, students, and staff basically in the middle of nowhere

    when the school hit a few hundred people, back when they were a vocational school, who knew to make it into a state college, and then into a university and keep on getting bigger and bigger

    if the school adds another 10,000 more students, they will have to expand san luis obispo, which is inland, all the way to the ocean (pismo beach)
     
  24. jefhatfield Retired

    jefhatfield

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2000
    #25
    without cal poly, san luis obispo would not even make it on the map and it's amazing how the school visionaries eventually built up to all those buildings, students, and staff basically in the middle of nowhere

    when the school hit a few hundred people, back when they were a vocational school, who knew to make it into a state college, and then into a university and keep on getting bigger and bigger

    if cal poly state university adds another 10,000-15,000 more students and becomes more the size of the huge san diego state university down south, they will have to expand san luis obispo, which is inland, all the way to the ocean (pismo beach) and i guess that will happen in the future

    the old san luis obispo oldtimers used to tell me how great the city used to be before all us college kids came in and wrecked it...and that was back in the early 80s...today, san luis obispo's downtown is kind of wrecked with all the big companies or flashy entrepreneurs who ditched the small town look of the old san luis obispo...oh well
     

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