Travel

The California Coast

A best girlfriend, a red mustang convertible and the PCH makes for an epic vacation!

When my friend Eliska said she wanted to celebrate her 40th birthday in California, she didn’t have to ask me twice. We decided to fly into Los Angeles, rent a car, drive down the Pacific Coast Highway and fly home from San Francisco. We left early December, so the weather was perfect (minus some fog on the PCH) We played tourist in Hollywood and visited all of the hot spots. We ate sushi at Katsuya and it was amazing. We chose the Roosevelt Hotel because it was close to everything. To my surprise, LA was quite dirty. Similar to NYC. We drove through some pretty areas heading up to the Hollywood sign, but we never experienced the richer, fancier areas. Even our celebrity hotspot restaurant we chose was in a strangely simple area. Nonetheless, we enjoyed it!

As we ventured along, to what was probably my favorite part of the trip (the driving part), we saw some beautiful parts of the coast. The Pacific Ocean has a remarkable personality. Malibu was beautiful. And Santa Barbara was pretty too! We even drove through hundreds of seals chillin’ on the beach. When we got to Big Sur, it was pretty foggy. We weren’t able to see much, but I remember some parts of the highway, we would drive in silence. Taking in the gorgeousness around us. It was truly epic.

Eliska had been to San Fran and Napa Valley, but I had not. She made sure we experienced everything we could in the few days we had left. We saw The Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard Street, The Painted Ladies, Alcatraz, Giants Stadium, Fisherman’s Wharf, (bread lovers: eat at Boudin’s) and then headed across the bridge to Napa!

” Napa…….nothing like I expected. Two words: beautiful farmland. It’s not fancy. It’s perfect. People are casual. Wineries are casual. Everything is simple and very laid back.”

Napa…….nothing like I expected. Two words: beautiful farmland. It’s not fancy. It’s perfect. People are casual. Wineries are casual. Everything is simple and very laid back. We toured, PlumpJack, Peju and Ménage a Trois. PlumpJack was off the beaten path and a recommendation from a friend. Loved how family oriented every winery was. The stories behind them are intriguing. I’m not a wine connoisseur, but the hosts made me feel right at home. I even ordered some to take home! We were major foodies and ate at some fabulous restaurants. Boon Fly Cafe, The Girl and The Fig and Mustards to name a few.

I’m a huge fan of road trips and this is why! We experienced so much in 5 days. A perfect blend of sights, sounds, scenery and food. Thankful for my adventurous friends!

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