Driving along the California coast is a spectacular experience. California Highway 1, in particular, has many rewards, not only breathtaking vistas of the Pacific Ocean but little towns that are free from over-commercialization. Take Cambria, for example. Situated about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, it attracts travelers from both, a picturesque village of beaches and rugged cliffs, only a few miles south of San Simeon. The commercial district extends but a few blocks, yet is quaint in character, including a small farmers market that we happened upon. We discovered that Cambria can play host to special events, including club gatherings. During our stay at the Bluebird Inn, there was a rally of a Triumph car club whose proud owners were showing them off.
To feed the tourists who stay in the motels and B&Bs, there are a good number of restaurants, some aspiring to be fine enough to feature tablecloths and linens.
The many wineries in San Luis Obispo county provide a wealth of good bottles, available in wine shops, including Fermentations where, after a wine tasting, I joined their wine club.
The biggest surprise was the rookeries of elephant seals that make the beaches from here to San Simeon their home. Several stops along the highway afford excellent views of them. They can even be seen in the waters off the coast (also see picture above).