Just Northwest of Santa Barbara, CA is this little triangle of small towns, Solvang, Buellton, and Los Olivos, that are full of charm, character, and scenic opportunities. Solvang offers Danish charm where one can feel like they were transported to Copenhagen and gorge themselves on butter cookies and ebelskivers. The city was founded in 1911 by Danish settlers and includes a Hans Christian Anderson museum and park. Buellton is considered the Home of Pea Soup, where Pea Soup Andersen’s has been serving scratch made fresh pea soup since 1924. Los Olivos has multiple wineries, tasting rooms, restaurants and eclectic shops.
The Central Coast of California is well situated North of the Los Angeles / San Fernando Valley and South of San Francisco / Paso Robles area. The area is littered with agriculture and small farm stands selling local produce. The landscape is dotted with craggy oak trees that can reach up to 600 years old, and are native to the area.
We wandered around, ate & drank, visited wineries, and poked around the numerous shops. It’s the stuff vacations are made of, relaxing and indulging in the local culture. We drove some of the back roads around Foxen Canyon. We wanted to drive through Figueroa Mountain, but the historic snow and winds in the area closed the areas to traffic.
Further Northwest is Cambria, another charming town worth exploring along the coast. Just outside of San Luis Obispo, Cambria is a popular destination spot for locals and tourists alike.
Cambria is a convenient location close to Paso Robles, 30 miles North, Hearst Castle (San Simeon), and Elephant Seal Vista Point.
While in Cambria we enjoyed a gorgeous hike along Fisculini Ranch Bluff trail (at the end of Windsor Rd) with great trails along the oceanside. We indulged in our own picnic at one of the many ‘twig’ benches along the well kept paths.
Next time we are in the area, Cambria is well worth a stay. Another hike we would have loved to do was the Moonstone Beach Drive at Leffingwell Landing.
You can see my photos of Morro Bay, further North, here .. https://kritterspaw.com/2023/03/08/morro-bay-ca/
4 thoughts on “Santa Ynez Valley, CA”
Great pics, great story about the area. Love them all. At least you got clouds, yay!!
Thanks, Maureen. We got clouds, snow, and wind!