The quaint seaside village of Cambria (population 6400) is at the southern end of the Big Sur Highway exactly half way (240 miles) between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Even with high gas prices, it is a reasonable distance from population centers for a family vacation. Cambria offers visitors sophisticated restaurants, art galleries, specialty shops, antique stores and dozens of nearby wineries. The people are well known for their friendliness, helpfulness and hospitality.
World famous Hearst Castle is six miles north, and considered one of California's greatest historical and artistic attractions. It was built by William Randolph Hearst, a mid- 20th century publisher of newspapers and magazines--and an early Hollywood film producer. When Hearst and his family deeded the Castle and its hundreds of thousands of spectacular coastal acres to the state, Californians and travelers to the Central Coast benefitted greatly. Visitors say the Castle ranks with some of the finest restored heritage sites in the world. Tours are available nearly every day (reservations are suggested).
But Cambria and environs is well known for much more than even Hearst Castle. Cambria was once a mining, lumbering and shipping boom town. Famous authors, artists and musicians reside here. (Many are L.A./S.F "expatriates.") An "anti-Hearst Castle" known as Nitwitt Ridge is a state historical monument. The vast 430 acre Fiscalini (formerly East-West) Ranch, which has cliffside and uphill beach walks that are simply spectacular at all times of the year. (Visit Friends of Fiscalini Ranch Preserve website for more info). We are perhaps three miles from famous Moonstone Beach with its boardwalks and eateries. Walks around Her Castle's neighborhood (known as Lodge Hill) reveal many architectural styles (including a geodesic dome and strawbale house). A flock of wild turkeys resides nearby and you will likely see deer, raccoons, exotic birds and horses.
Like small town residents nearly everywhere, Cambrians can be contentious about local "quality of life" issues--like streetlights (we don't have many), the trees (we rarely remove them), the water (there never seems to be enough), and the beaches (don't pollute them). But one thing we are united about is OUR VISITORS--the welcome mat is always extended.
We are proud members of the Cambria Chamber of Commerce.