San Luis ObispoSan Luis Obispo
With its nuanced food and wine scene, rich history and mellow vibe, San Luis Obispo (or as locals call it, SLO) is a Central Coast must see. This university town has ranked in past surveys as one of the happiest cities in America.
Explore Mission Plaza and Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa. Enjoy live music in the plaza on summer Friday nights. Year round the first Friday of the month offers Art After Dark, with city centre SLO galleries opening their doors for wine tastings, snacks and chats with local artists. A few streets away every Thursday evening you can find the city’s farmers' market, a showcase for SLO’s culinary landscape, including local tri-tip steak, tamales and craft beer.
Make sure you pay a visit to the 110-room Madonna Inn when you are in town. You can finish the day with a slice of the famed pink champagne cake and then retire to one of its quirky themed rooms, such as the Caveman, the Love Birds or the Fox & Hound.
SLO delivers the goods on the wine-tasting front. Bottles bearing the world-renowned Paso Robles appellation can be found only about 30 miles away. But don’t miss the nearby Edna Valley region, in particular the Chardonnays of Edna Valley Vineyard and the Pinot Noirs of Tolosa. Then, check out the under the radar wineries of the Arroyo Grande Valley, including the sparkling wines at Laetitia Vineyard & Winery.