Seaside views, seafood, and live music – Morro Bay is a gem on California’s Pacific Coast Highway
A road trip through California’s Pacific Coast is often touted as one of the best in the world – charming sea-side towns and glistening waters dilly dally with vintage motels and overwhelming sights at every corner. There are a lot of cities along the way but none like Morro Bay. The waterfront city is home to the iconic Morro Rock and miles upon miles of unspoilt nature trails. It’s perfect for spending a couple of days during your road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway. Spend your days strolling at the beach and binging on salt water taffy and whiling away evenings listening to live music and sampling fresh seafood. If you’re lucky, you might get a chance to experience a heavy fog descending upon the city in the evening. This lends Morro Bay a dreamy fairy tale feel.
Where to stay in Morro Bay
Pleasant Inn is a classic American motel that has recently been refurbished to a high standard. It’s within walking distance of the beach, all restaurants, and even the iconic Morro Rock. We opted for their luxury suite which is basically a gorgeous 1 bedroom apartment with a full-equipped kitchen and living area. The stark white furnishings, ivory drapes, and carefully crafted kitchen accessories make it as perfect as it gets. It’s hard to shake off the feeling of being on a pristine film set or homeware catalogue. Highly recommended!
Where to Eat in Morro Bay
There are lots of options to eat in the area including a couple of vegetarian and vegan options. If you’re driving a car along the Pacific Coast Highway, you will spot tons of supermarkets in the vicinity as well. There is no dearth of dining options in Morro Bay. But we would definitely recommend Windows on the Water, a fine dining restaurant with gorgeous ocean views. The menu focusses on curating local produce and seafood. Savi sampled the fresh Halibut while I tried the delicious seared scallops . If you’re not big on seafood, try the salami pizza, which comes to the table directly from their wood-fired oven. Yummy!!
Things to do in Morro Bay
- Morro Rock – It’s impossible to visit Morro Bay without dropping by to see the iconic Morro Rock. The rock is the focal point of tourism in the area and not without reason. It makes for a stunning photo at sunset (see below)
- Morro Beach – Morro Rock is surrounded by miles upon miles of unspoilt beaches and nature trails. Pack a picnic and explore the area barefoot for a truly relaxed day out.
- Taste Salt Water Taffy – No visit to a seaside city is complete with binging on some pastel-coloured salt water taffy – they make for such moorish nibbles! There are dozens of varieties available in Morro Bay but we love the caramel flavoured one the best.
- Whale Watching – Where else can you see humpback whales while walking along the waterfront. Morro Bay? Book a whale watching tour if you want to get close to these magnificent creatures. Make sure you dress up in layers as the weather can turn quickly! We saw lots of whales and dozens of sea lions and sea otters within inches of our boat – priceless!!
- Sip on a glass of wine – San Luis Obispo is frequently ranked as one of California’s best wine regions. As a result, Morro Bay provides easy access to some really nuanced wines. You could drive to a vineyard for a wine tour or just pick up a bottle of locally-produced Pinot Noir or Chardonnay from a quaint wine shop in the area.
- Spend some time exploring uncrowded beaches, the beautiful Hearst Castle, and quaint villages on the Highway 1 Discovery Route – it’s often regarded as the best and most varied stretch along the Pacific Coastal Highway.
Have you been to Morro Bay? Do you enjoy vintage motels and seaside getaways as much as we do?