Break the Rut! Our Last Minute RV Trip to San Luis Obispo!

 

Do you sometimes feel as if the walls are closing in on you or your head is going to explode?  Maybe life has gotten a little humdrum and you need a break? Well, this is a good time to shake things up and do something different! For us an RV trip was calling our names!

Of course, you can also go for a walk in the park, jump in your car and take a long slow drive, or even get on a plane and go somewhere totally new! The bottom line is get out and about and clear your head!

A few months ago, Gregg and I bought our 24-foot Thor Chateau RV for moments just like this.

Last week, we felt like we needed to see and experience someplace new.  So, without making any plans, (seriously, none!) we jumped in our RV and headed north.  As a result, we experienced the best feeling in the world! – the feeling of total freedom – happy, excited and at peace, all at the same time. Wonderful stuff!!!

Day 1

Funionaire - RV Travel
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Funionaire – RV Travel

Heading east on the 118 toward Simi Valley we took in views of the beautiful mountains and sunshine. We continued to the 101 and headed north toward Ojai then turned off on the 33 toward Los Padres Forest National Park in Ojai, California. How gorgeous!! The greenery with yellow and white flowers lining the highway were just amazing! Thankful for the much needed CA rains of the past year that made that beauty possible, we zipped our RV into the Wheeler Gorge Campground and spent the night next to a rolling stream. Oh, what a peaceful night!

Day 2

The morning sounds of birds chirping and a stream bubbling by greeted us in our RV at daybreak.

With a warm cup of coffee in hand we went for an early walk with our sweet little Shih Tzu travel partner, “Cupcake.” Along the way we happened upon Chris, the campsite ranger, who provided a little history of the area. “To experience the true beauty of this mountain range,” he said, “take the 33 to the 166 to San Luis Obispo.” Well, guess what Chris?? Consider it done!

Consequently, we got into our RV “home on wheels” and headed up and through the mountains!! OMG!! He was so right!! Anyone who wants to see the beauty of California must drive this dramatic and scenic route!

Pit Stop for Lunch

We stopped off for lunch at “The Place”, established in 1829, and enjoyed the old, rustic cowboy atmosphere while devouring lunch. Our feast consisted of a huge Elk Burger with fries and was topped off with a scrumptious blackberry pie a la mode. Absolutely delicious!! Now that we had filled up with great food, we were ready to continue through Los Padres Forest National Park.

At one point along the way, the air changed in quality and temperature and we knew there was a body of water ahead. We were close to the ocean and highway 101 but, as the bend opened up…Wow!! Another OMG moment!! The mountains revealed a huge reservoir that looked like a river from the times of Pocahontas! How beautiful and peaceful!

Continuing through the gorgeous terrain and toward the 101, we chatted about how amazing the trip had been already…and, it was only the second day!!  Yea, this “get away” was really a good idea.

San Luis Obispo here we come!

Pulling off of the 166 onto the 101 north, we made our way to El Chorro Campground. On a previous trip to the San Luis Obispo area, we had enjoyed this campground. As a result, we decided to spend the next few days at this location.

Day 3

Funionaire - Shell Beach Residential Area
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Shell Beach Residential Area

The beauty of walks along the ocean and through quaint towns with our choice of foods and wines, was divine!

Shell Beach was gorgeous and reminiscent of Hermanus, South Africa. The town had a little of old mixed with new – architecture, cars and fashion.

Funionaire - Old Car in Shell Beach
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Old Car in Shell Beach

The coolest thing was the old cars! Had to capture a picture of this one!

Pismo Beach was packed with people and a little like Atlantic City, New Jersey. This town was a true beach town! Although it was a slightly overcast day, many people still went in the water to swim or surf. The beautiful shoreline drew them in!

Morro Bay, known for its sea otters, was a quaint town with great food and we ate at our favorite spot, Giovanni’s Fish Market & Galley.

Funionaire - Baileyana and Tangent Wineries
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Baileyana and Tangent Wineries

Funionaire - Cheers
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Cheers

Day 4 – Wine!

One of the most unforgettable moments was the day we spent time with two new friends at a gorgeous winery club, Baileyana Winery/Tangent Winery.

Built out of an an old schoolhouse on a San Luis Obispo rolling hillside, the beautiful tasting room had friendly staff and great wines! Subsequently, we enjoyed our time there tasting a variety of white wines!

We ended the day dining at Pepe Delgado’s Mexican Restaurant in downtown San Luis Obispo. You can experience great ambience, staff while enjoying authentic delicious Mexican food and divine desserts!!!

After El Chorro RV Campsite we spent a couple of days at Lopez Lake Campground, which was suggested to us by our two new friends.

Funionaire - Lake Lopez
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Lake Lopez

Lopez Lake Campground is located ten miles east of the incredibly quaint village of Arroyo Grande, California and has beautiful shorelines with year-round comfortable temperatures.

There are many activities to choose from – camping, picnicking, birdwatching and leisure sports such as fishing, boating, hiking, mountain biking, zip-lining and more.  There’s even a water park!

While we admired the beauty of the many flowering plants and gorgeous canyons, a variety of birds circled over our head.

What a dream place!

Funionaire - Deer Up Close
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Deer Up Close

Deer greeted us and came right up to our cameras. To add further excitement to our visit, we decided to get fishing licenses and try our hand at this well-populated lake. We did not catch anything however it did prove to be very relaxing!

Funionaire - Hiking at Lake Lopez
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Hiking at Lake Lopez

The following day, we decided to take a hike, walk trails and experience the vastness and beauty of the Lake Lopez surroundings!

On the scary side, we did see signs indicating a threat of bear and cougars, luckily, however, we did not spot any on our trip.  Whew!

What a joy that was! Lake Lopez proved to be peaceful and was a must needed vacation! Definitely a spot to revisit!!

Day 5

Funionaire - Avila Valley Barn
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Avila Valley Barn

The next day was bright and beautiful! We drove the RV to the Avila Beach area and stopped in at Avila Valley Barn for ice cream and fudge.

Most noteworthy, we got an extra treat – farm animals!! Visiting with the farmyard of goats, chickens, horses and donkeys was an unexpected delight!

Intrigued by the new sites, our little Cupcake got a little too close to a goat and almost got head butted. Hence, she smartly decided against doing that again!

Funionaire - Avila Beach
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Avila Beach

Back in our RV, we headed to the town of Avila Beach, which reminded us of Marina Village, Paradise Island, Bahamas.

We were delighted as we strolled through the quaint, picturesque town before we drove back to El Chorro Campsite to spend our last night before returning home.

What a great last-minute trip!! Sometimes you just need to get up and go even if you are not sure where you are heading. That’s adventure and freedom… that’s LIVING!!!

We are all here to discover, protect, explore and enjoy this beautiful creation.

So, get out, break your routine and do it!! Our quick, last-minute trip to San Luis Obispo proved how worthwhile and easy a last minute trip can be to just break out of the rut!