San Luis Obispo County's Stretch of Highway 1

Wide Open, Untamed, and Ready to Explore

Imagine the road trip of your life, gliding past uncrowded beaches and wine grapes ripening in the sun. California dreaming? Think again.

Highway 1 is the most iconic roadway in California, but not all sections are created equal. The length that passes along the coast through San Luis Obispo County (known as SLO CAL) brims with the best of the Highway 1 experience. And as the gateway to Big Sur, this SLO CAL stretch is well within reach.

What sets us apart? One-hundred miles of Pacific coastline, half of which are protected. A national marine sanctuary and a national estuary. Thirteen state parks. An elephant seal rookery and Monarch butterfly preserves. A Scenic Byway designation from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Two historic lighthouses and five historic piers. The only drivable beach in California. Centuries-old forests. Hundreds of acres of coastal vineyards. Uncrowded white sand beaches. History and heritage at every turn with nine locales on the National Register. And Hearst Castle, a hilltop beauty that is a State and National Historic Landmark.

And that’s just the beginning.

Bury your toes in the sand and get to know the locals. Indulge in farm-fresh and ocean-fresh cuisine, and wines from family-owned vineyards. Glimpse abundant wildlife and historic wonders, all in the comfort of a laid-back culture and picture-perfect climate.

Want to plan the road trip of a lifetime? Follow your curiosity to our SLO CAL stretch of Highway 1, and let the wonder begin.

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Roadtrip of a Lifetime

Design your itinerary for spontaneous pull-overs, spectacular sunsets and lots of family fun.

What sets this stretch of Highway 1 apart?

  • 57 miles of historic highway, just begging to be explored
  • 100 miles of Pacific coastline, complete with miles of hiking and biking trails
  • 50 miles of protected coastline ― the most in all of California
  • A “scenic byway” designation by the U.S. Department of Transportation
  • A National Marine Sanctuary
  • A National Estuary, which is home to over 300 species of birds
  • 13 State Parks featuring untouched beaches; breathtaking scenery; rare close-ups of wildlife; centuries-old trees; a castle; and drivable dunes
  • An elephant seal rookery – one of the few left in California
  • A Monarch butterfly preserve, a destination of over 25,000 migrating butterflies annually
  • Five piers – all walkable and fish-able ― one is even drivable
  • Two historic lighthouses offering docent-led walks, kayak tours, and history
  • Hearst Castle, a National and California Historical Landmark
  • Miles of spacious white sand beaches
  • 10 Whale Trail locations ― the most of any county in California
  • A coastal wine region, home to boutique, award-winning wine producers
  • The only drivable beach in California, the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Area
  • Nine historic places on the National Register, ready to satisfy your curiosity

Destinations

Get to know our beach towns and vineyard-framed villages.

Upcoming Events

Your next adventure awaits

  • Aug
    7
    Art in the Park at Dinosaur Caves
    May 01 to December 04, 2022
    Pismo Beach
    Featuring over 50 artisan vendors, food booths, music and amazing views right on the cliffs in Pismo Beach.
    More Details
  • Aug
    11
    Oceano
    This two-act vaudeville review is jam packed with enough sketches and songs to split your sides.
    More Details
  • Aug
    12
    Distillery Trail Weekend
    August 12 to August 14, 2022
    Over the course of the three-day event, each of the 14 members along the Trail will be showcasing their craft spirits with top shelf happenings such as distillery tours, mixology demonstrations, live music, and pairings with local eats and treats.
    More Details
  • Aug
    13
    Billy Currington Concert
    August 13, 2022
    Avila Beach
    Country Roots presents Billy Currington at the Avila Beach Resort. This outdoor summer concert will be Saturday, August 13th at 6pm. Beach Club Balcony This premiere ticket features special access to the premiere Beach Club Balcony viewing deck, a private bar, and private restrooms. Children 18 and Under must have their own ticket and be accompanied by an adult with […]
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  • Aug
    14
    Avila Beach
    Good Vibes Summer Tour 2022: Rebelution + Special Guests hits Avila Beach, CA. Special Guests, Steel Pulse, Denm and DJ Mackle will open the show!
    More Details
  • Aug
    27
    Stone Soup Music Festival
    August 27 to August 28, 2022
    Grover Beach
    The name “Stone Soup” is taken from an old folk tale about a starving village where a stranger arrives and promises to cook enough soup from a stone to feed the entire population.
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  • Sep
    3
    Pops by the Sea
    September 03, 2022
    Avila Beach
    For 30 years, the San Luis Obispo Symphony’s family-friendly Pops-by-the-Sea concerts have entertained thousands of music lovers on the Central Coast.
    More Details
  • Sep
    10
    Central Coast Arthritis Bike Classic
    September 10 to September 17, 2022
    San Luis Obispo County
    The ride takes place each fall and aims to raise over $1 million dollars. Approximately 350 arthritis patients, families and supporters who are recruited by our staff will cycle over 525 miles raising funds and awareness for the Arthritis Foundation along Highway One. This event is marketed and publicized nationwide, with a focus in the […]
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  • Sep
    10
    Butterfly Ball Gala
    September 10, 2022
    San Luis Obispo
    Funds from this event will support the preservation of the Western Monarch butterfly, an iconic and beloved species on the brink of extinction that overwinters in our local State Parks.
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  • Sep
    17
    Nipomo
    Learn about Captain Dana's ties to Hawaii, travels, and some traditions he may have brought back to the rancho.
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  • Sep
    22
    Scary Poppins at the Great American Melodrama
    September 22 to November 12, 2022
    Oceano
    This Melodrama smash hit is our most requested show ever and is back for a record fourth time!
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  • Sep
    24
    Automotive Classic at Trilogy Monarch Dunes
    September 24 to September 25, 2022
    Nipomo
    Experience cars at the course...the Automotive Classic returns to Trilogy Monarch Dunes in Nipomo
    More Details

Plan Your Trip

Ready to design a vacation to remember? We can’t wait to see you here.

Where To Stay

Find Your Haven

This wonder-filled stretch of Highway 1 offers a wide variety of lodging options to ensure that your stay is an enjoyable one. Choose from oceanfront property, vineyard views, family-friendly suites and private retreats. Whether you’re looking for a historic inn, vacation rental or budget hotel, the Highway 1 Discovery Route promises to provide a comfortable hideaway.

Where To Eat

Bring An Appetite

Dining on this stretch reveals our embarrassment of riches, from farm to sea. Taste seafood straight from the waves, produce dewey from the morning’s harvest, and bread still warm from the oven. From tacos in Oceano to oysters in Cambria, barbecue in Nipomo to apple pie in Avila Beach, we’ve got great taste. What’s more? We’re more than happy to share. So pull up a chair, fill your glass, and settle in for what’s sure to be a delicious stay.

Activities

Be Amazed

Let our stretch of Highway 1 astound you. Start the day off-roading on the dunes and finish with a glass of wine and vineyard view. Build sandcastles one hour and witness the decadence of a real-life castle the next. Watch whales dance offshore, then dance like a local at a street festival. The rewards are great in our neck of the woods, and they’re all yours for the taking.

#Highway1Dreaming