Day Trip: Cambria, California

One of my favorite things in the world is exploring small, sleepy beach towns. I can’t help but be drawn to the undeniable charm and beauty that these cities possess. Most recently, I mapped out a day trip to Cambria, a seaside village nestled in a pocket of pine trees in Central California. Over the years, I have always wanted to stop and explore Cambria while passing through. It’s off the gorgeous Highway One in San Luis Obispo County and sits at the halfway point between San Francisco and Los Angeles. It’s a town of leisure — antique shops, cafes, and bed and breakfasts line the streets.

Day Trip: Cambria, California

Day Trip: Cambria, California

When we first arrived, my boyfriend and I stopped at JJ’s Pizza, a locally run pizza pub, and ate our lunches on the deck under the pines. We then aimlessly roamed the streets and ducked into antique shops to rummage through vintage record collections and turquoise jewelry. After picking out some old stemware and wall decor, we set out for Moonstone Beach, which received it’s name for the stones that wash ashore there.

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

We walked the mile and a half long wooden boardwalk atop the beach, stopping along the way to climb down to the sand. The February sun kept us warm as we strolled along the sea, picking up stones and throwing them back into the teal ocean. The cliffs were cloaked in golden flowers and green plants so rich, it looked as though thousands of paint cans had spilled down the hills. We made our way back to the car as the orange sun fell behind the blue horizon line. We buckled up and took off, vowing to come back here when we had more time. It was a grand afternoon.

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

Day Trip: Cambria Ca

+ What are some of your favorite beach towns to explore?

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7 years ago

Wonderful snaps! Looks beautiful there.

7 years ago

Looks gorgeous! Reminds me of little beach towns in Maine, small enough that you can wander and walk with plenty of antique and Mom-n-Pop shops to stroll through. Or the Outer Banks in NC where recycled art galleries are next to five star restaurants are next to thrift shores all on the beach. Love exploring places like this!

xx

7 years ago

Gorgeous photography, I love all of the color and how lively the town looks. Will definitely stop at JJ’s if I ever find myself there :)

Warm Regards,
Alexandra
http://www.littlewildheart.com

7 years ago

Those pictures are gorgeous. I’m from the east coast and its very chilly here, but that didn’t stop my friends and I from taking a little road trip to the beach a couple weeks ago. It was so cold but so peaceful and beautiful.

7 years ago

These pictures are so retro looking, I am obsessed! I get so jealous of all these amazing locations you visit when reading your blog!

infinity of fashion// Lucy Jane

7 years ago

Such a cute and pretty town. Flowers by the beach, so perfect! I’d love to visit. Thank you for sharing. <3

Meganb
7 years ago

This place looks and sounds amazing!! I’ve never been to California, but I think I’ve fallen in love lol.

http://ilovefrostedcupcakes.tumblr.com

7 years ago

This is so beautiful! My favourite beach town is Sechelt, nestled in the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. One of the best parts about it is that you have to take a ferry to get there – it makes the journey that much better.

Julie // Northern Rustication

amy
7 years ago

Gorgeous photos and writing. Makes me long for summer, as I live in Wisconsin.

7 years ago

Hmmm now you’ve made me consider going to Cambria during my Cali road trip in the spring…

http://itsjpei.wordpress.com/

Alison
7 years ago

In October, every year Cambria has the most fun and amazing Scarecrow festival. The town is decked out in Scarecrows the whole community handmakes! There is also a charming used book store I visit everytime!The Apothocary in the middle of town has the best soaps. Hooray for Cambria! Love it on FP! Hope you are loving your roadtrip!

I should definitly visit California, it seems to be a nice place for vacation. Nice pics, thx.

Anneke
7 years ago

Oh my goodness, This is where I live! Thank you, Free People, for saying such kind things about our little town! There is also a town named, Harmony, which my family actually owns. Its right near Cambria and its the cutest town and perfect for photoshoots! Anyway, just some fun things about the central Coast.

Jen
7 years ago

Beautiful photo!
I want to go daytrip also~

http://www.safran-bolu.com

Anouk
7 years ago

Point Reyes, CA remains my sacred beach town. The history is palpable. The fog and eukalyptus are so healing.

C.J.
7 years ago

Cambria and Carmel are hands-down the best places to stop if you’re driving down the PCH!

LCP
7 years ago

Cambria is such a great town. It is low key and understated with the fierce beauty of the pacific coast. There is a great little pottery store in town,, Ephraim Pottery. They handmake the most wonderful nature inspired pottery. Love Cambria!

7 years ago

San Luis Obispo is so beautiful and quaint. I never realized this little gem was so close. Must go back. Thank you for posting about it.

http://www.thrumypeepers.com

6 years ago

I love Cambria and Moonstone Beach, and we go there often, since we only live half an hour away. Love your photos.

Anonymous
4 years ago

We have been going to Cambria for 36 years. It’s one of the most beautiful spots on the coast south of Carmel. Quiet. Engaging. Leffingwell point is where I go to let my mind go free to wander. The Sea Chest for dinner and Linns for Breakfast. Doesn’t get any better.

Anonymous
4 years ago

Discovered this special place over 60 years ago and have been returning ever since. It’s my go to place in my mind, and gives me a huge long AHHHHHH when I see lovely reminders like these pictures. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous
4 years ago

What about Salvang?

Anonymous
4 years ago

you cant get to cambria if the 101 is closed. and it was closed for a month and no word if its even open yet. so some updates would REALLY be helpful. nice pictures, though. if you cant actually find a road into cambria you can look at these pics.