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Best lunch spot!

Belfast, Northern...
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Best lunch spot!

We are planning a trip in August which will include

Las Vegas (3 Nights) --- Drive to LA, Santa Monica for 4 nights --- drive along the coast (1 night Monterey) --- drive to San Fran for the last 3 nights

On our drive from LA to Monterey, we had planned to take the most direct route to San Simeon, stop for lunch and a walk around before taking the more scenic route via Big Sur to Monterey. I was just wondering where might be good to stop for a bite of lunch and see San Simeon briefly?

We will be travelling on a Saturday if this makes any difference!

Thanks in advance!

Corona del Mar...
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for San Diego, Orange County, California
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1. Re: Best lunch spot!

There is nothing in San Simeon, it is a spot in the road. Stop in Cambria, Shell Beach or Pismo Beach.

Linn's in Cambria is great, but all three areas have very nices places.

Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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2. Re: Best lunch spot!

Sebastian's General Store across the highway from the entrance to Hearst Castle is a good lunch stop. The sandwiches are huge and can be shared. You can get your food to go and drive around the corner to San Simeon pier and enjoy your lunch overlooking the ocean, the pier and San Simeon Point.

Again, you're looking at an incredibly long day. You won't have time for stops in Santa Barbara, Pismo Beach, Morro Bay or Cambria. If you do stop and linger too long before hitting the Big Sur coast, you run the risk of driving Big Sur in the dark, which is pointless!! Not only will you be missing out on the views, that section of highway is elevated, twisty and can be scary after it gets dark.

Belfast, Northern...
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3. Re: Best lunch spot!

Thanks for your responses. Kibbles09, I have just seen your comments in my other Monterey post (sorry, I am new to the forums so I am maybe duplicating my posts in too many places for similar queries!) - I think we are going to add an extra day now, but I look forward to seeing the suggestions in my Monterey post on this as to whether Santa Barbara is an ok place to do this as I just wasnt sure the reviews on Cambria looked good (even though its the most practical place to stop along the route I appreciate!). Thanks for the lunch suggestions, all sound great and I will def check these out. Thanks also for the advice on it getting dark, I hadnt even thought of that (silly I know!) - in August, what time does it tend to get dark (if that isnt too much of a generic question!)

Grover Beach...
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for Pismo Beach, Cambria, Big Sur
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4. Re: Best lunch spot!

Cambria is a lovely wooded seaside town that is basically an artist community. It's a quiet, romantic atmosphere, so if you're looking for a town with more excitement, might not be for you.

www.cambriachamber.com

Santa Barbara is only 2 hours out of LA, so while that is certainly doable for an August visit, it's still quite a drive up to Monterey. We generally recommend Pismo Beach, Morro Bay or Cambria for a first night stop between LA and SF. That allows plenty of time for the long, slow drive through Big Sur and a few hours for exploring Monterey/Carmel in the same day. You likely wouldn't have much time for Monterey/Carmel starting from Santa Barbara.

In August it starts to get dark in the 8 pm hour. Sounds like a lot of time, I know, but when you factor in time for stops along the route, that time can quickly slip away.

Edited: 20 January 2015, 19:46
Belfast, Northern...
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5. Re: Best lunch spot!

That's great thanks, i will spend some time tonight exploring what those three places have to offer - much appreciated!

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6. Re: Best lunch spot!

In nearby Cambria we love Moonstone Beach Bar & Grill for lunch. They have a spacious outdoor patio there with pretty views of the ocean. Real energetic vibe there also. :).

Edited: 20 January 2015, 22:19
Goldfield, Nevada
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7. Re: Best lunch spot!

Sadly, the reviews of Sebastian's have deciled sharply since the new owners took over.

The Hearst Ranch, at San Simeon where Hearst Castle is, raises cattle. They sell the beefcright there at the visitor center, and I believe they serve it at the cafeteria there, though I've never tried it. If you are a fan of beef, though, that might be something to try.

Grover Beach...
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8. Re: Best lunch spot!

If the OP takes our advice and adds that extra night, then I would recommend Nepenthe for lunch on the drive up through Big Sur to Monterey.

I'm really bummed to hear that Sebastian's has declined since being taken over by a new owner. If it ain't broke, why fix it?

Belfast, Northern...
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9. Re: Best lunch spot!

Yes, definitely taking your advice and adding the extra night. Currently considering 1 Pimso Beach and 1 Monterey although I know its a toss up for many between Cambria and Pimso Beach. Will definitely check out all the lunch recommendations thanks

Grover Beach...
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10. Re: Best lunch spot!

Pismo is also fine. IF you choose Pismo, you could enjoy a nice soak in one of nearby Sycamore Mineral Springs hot tubs that night. The tubs are private and situated on a wooded hillside. It's a nice relaxing way to end a long day of driving.

Let us know what you decide and we can help with dining, lodging, etc.