Central California

After Santa Barbara we drove north and found more interesting places. We had lunch in the city of Solvang, a crazy Danish inspired village. We were expecting Santa Ynez to be bigger but Solvang made up for it. We ate an awesome meal and tried our first Aebleskivers, shown here:

Aebleskivers

Aebleskivers

The best dessert I’ve had in a while. After walking the shopping area a bit we kept heading north and saw Pismo Beach and San Luis Obispo, where we spent the night, at a normal hotel even though we were tempted to check out the Madonna Inn.

I’m putting up two separate links for pictures, here’s one of the drive and random stops,

and the other is the Hearst Castle, in San Simeon. (On these you couldn’t use flash so they aren’t perfect)

Make sure to read that captions I painstakingly add so you know what you’re looking at…

We took so many pictures there it’s easier to see them separately. The main building itself is some 70,000sq.ft. but we saw maybe 10 of that, the outbuildings, and the indoor and outdoor pools on the main tour. We were there 9-12 and some people would go back down to the Visitor Center and take the other tours offered in the same day. The views were amazing, as was the art and architecture. I for one can’t say I’ve ever even heard of this place but was super impressed.

I can’t lie when I admit Mom and Grandma wanted us to see the Ronald Regan library but we skipped it. We did, more importantly, find and drive by Neverland Ranch, because we are giant freaking dorks. We also saw The Hitching Post, where they filmed Sideways. Priorities, ladies…

Amazingly we finished our visit with one last stop in Santa Barbara and made it all the way home in just under 4 hours, which I think is awesome. There is so much to do on the California coast and it pretty much rules that it’s all doable in a day, weekend, or as much time as you want to take.

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