Every time I’m in San Francisco I try to go to my favorite coffee shop in the city… Caffe Trieste. The cozy cafe in North Beach is known to have been a favorite for many of the legendary beat writers like Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg, and I can see why – they serve amazing coffee. And there’s always a chance you could spot Lawrence Ferlinghetti, the co-founder of City Lights book store, who is a regular. I recommend the africano, it is delicious!
Before leaving San Francisco I wanted to check out one more neighborhood, that I rarely ventured out to when living in SF – Outer Sunset. The Sunset District is located in the western portion of the city, with Golden Gate Park to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Outer Sunset is the closest to the beach, and probably has the most beachy feel of any section in the city, with its pastel colored houses and shops, and the pacific ocean in the distance (though it’s often hidden by fog). Outer Sunset is also home to one of my favorite vintage shops, The General Store. They have an amazing selection of vintage military boots, denim, army jackets, and beautiful printed fabrics. In addition to vintage they also have a great finds for the home, made by local artists. I found the most amazing pair of boots that were a perfect fit :).
It’s always hard to leave San Francisco, but I had to get to Santa Barbara and I had quite a drive ahead of me… I have driven the Pacific Coast Highway before, but not by myself. It felt like a completely different experience, each view was new again, every curve brought a new discovery. It can actually be scary at times, this road… as it winds around the cliffs, with nothing between you and the ocean but sheer cliffs and rocks. The beauty is overwhelming – I had to stop so many times to take in the view and appreciate as much of this as I possibly could. It made my journey that much longer, but well worth it. In this case, on this day, the journey really was the destination. I stopped in some gorgeous places… Half Moon Bay, where I walked out to Pillar Point, the site of infamous surf spot Mavericks… Carmel, a quaint beach town lined with cottages…Cayucas, a sleepy surf town with a view of Morro Rock… and of course, Big Sur, where the ocean meets the land in the most stunning array of beauty and it – and the wind – takes your breath away.
Check back tomorrow to see where I go next — and be sure to enter our Off the Beaten Path Sweeps!