Saturday, October 5, 2013

Where the Pines Meet the Sea - Cambria, Central Coast, California,

Years ago, you could drive through Cambria without knowing a community existed behind the thick pine forest. Now, you can see some of the seaside village as you make your way North on Highway 1, although the pine forest remains. Cambria is halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, within San Luis Obispo County.

It has a population of around 6,000; but because it's a popular vacation spot, it has topnotch restaurants, shops, and hotels. It boasts of being "Where the Pines Meet the Sea."

In the past Cambria's residents were dairy farmers and fishermen and the original houses were made of stone and wood, small and rustic. But these houses have given way to bigger houses built as second homes or residences for retirees. Because building is limited, Cambria is not crowded and retains its quaint village atmosphere.

Cambria is an "in" place. Its population swells during the weekends and holidays because of vacationers. There are vineyards nearby and some great wineries and wine tasting rooms. And not far away is Hearst Castle in San Simeon, another tourist spot. Morro Bay, Atascadero, Paso Robles, and San Luis Obispo are all nearby. And of course the ocean is right there, with sea otters and whales migrating at certain times of the year. Not too far away are Elephant seal refuge areas, which tourists also visit -- surprising the number of Europeans who travel there to see these huge animals.

Right now and for the rest of October, Cambria is celebrating a Scarecrow Festival and there are scarecrows all over town!  They are all very charming; my favorite is the cluster of nuns and priest, which stand right in front of Santa Rosa Church.  My pictures include more scarecrows, beehives, a wine tasting room, and landscape pictures. There are vineyards, oak trees on mountain sides, sun-dappled creeks and mountain roads -- very beautiful.

Here are some pictures I took in and near Cambria. Enjoy! (If you click on the picture, you get a bigger image.)

All for now,

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tags: travel, holiday, tourism, California, Central Coast, San Luis Obispo, Cambria, USA

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