For Couples Seeking Quiet Coastal Romance, This California Destination Is As Solid As A Rock
Valentine’s Day is approaching and let’s face it, you don’t want to be like every other guy out there and take your girl to some expensive dinner at a place you know nothing about and probably won’t enjoy because you’re just going through the motions.
You want to do something different, something that stands you out from the crowd. At the same time, you don’t want something so extravagant that next month when you get your credit card statement you find yourself exclaiming “what was I thinking!?”
That’s why a little road trip up the California coast from Los Angeles to the quiet beach town of Morro Bay is a great option.
It’s not going to be overrun with people, it’s a nice and leisurely four-hour drive up Highway 101 and is a budget destination. As far as weekend getaways on a budget, this place is rock solid.
Located at the southern point of the scenic Pacific Coast Highway drive, Morro Bay is famous for its rock in the harbor, 576 feet tall and called – a bit ambitiously, frankly – by some the “Gibraltar of the Pacific.”
Below are suggestions of where to stay, eat and what to do when not being romantic inside your accommodations.
Where To Say, Restaurants & Thing To Do In & Around Morro Bay
• Accommodations. Morro Bay has boutique waterfront properties locally-owned motels. This time of the year, it has winter lodging specials.
• Eating – Breakfast. On the patio at Blue Skye Bistro overlooking the bay; Dorn’s Original Breakers Cafe above the Embarcadero has been a Morro Bay favorite since 1942 and La Parisienne Bakery serves French pastries, quiche and omelets in a casual atmosphere.
• Eating – Lunch. The family-operated Giovanni’s Fish Market has been here for more than 25 years and is known for its clam chowder; Bayside Cafe offers relaxing views of the Back Bay marina with a menu of salads, albacore skewers and sandwiches, plus local wines and beers; and Central Coast Outdoors offers lunch with a bottle of wine as part of kayaking tours of the bay and the sand spit.
Eating – Dinner. Windows on the Water is a local favorite for romance and has great views of the sunsets (this would be an early dinner with sunsets taking place at about 5:30 in the winter); Galley Seafood Grill & Bar features waterfront seafood dining with hand-selected seasonal ingredients from its own farm (reservations recommended); Thai Bounty features authentic Thai BBQ and seafood along with a large selection of sake.
Sightseeing. As mentioned above there’s kayaking; whale watching (Sub Sea Tours); bike riding; hiking (Black Hill Nature Hike is a moderate 3-mile trail that takes you to the summit of Black Hill from the Morro Bay campground located in Morro Bay State Park) and the interactive Museum of Natural History, a year-round fervent ecological party with birds.
Morro Rock is a beautiful Northern California Beach with a rough ocean environment and sandy dunes.
About 40 minutes up the coast is Hearst Castle; take a late-morning tour and then have lunch across PCH at Sebastian’s General Store followed by wine tasting at the Hearst Winey tasting room (in the same building) and at Harmony Cellars, also along Pacific Coast Highway.
Valentine’s Day in 2018 falls on a Wednesday so you’ll have to do this the weekend before or after, but if you’ve got the time, roll up the afternoon of Feb. 14 and spend that night at the theme-roomed Madonna Inn along Highway 101 outside of San Luis Obispo.