Small surfer town with white sandy beaches, waves, western sa­loon and an­tiques

Escalon Times - - PERSPECTIVE - For more in­for­ma­tion visit www.High­way1Dis­cov­

CAYUCOS — You don’t have to fly to Hawaii to ex­pe­ri­ence long stretches of white sandy beaches, killer waves, and charm­ing lo­cals.

You don’t have to travel to Las Vegas to play poker or Texas to drink at an au­then­tic western sa­loon with big swing­ing doors and cow­boys. And, you don’t have to visit the old towns of Europe or New Eng­land to dis­cover a plethora of an­tiques, the in­ti­macy of small-town charm and great restau­rants. You just need to visit the clas­sic beach town of Cayucos along the CA High­way 1 Dis­cov­ery Route lo­cated mid­way be­tween San Fran­cisco and Los An­ge­les.

Cayucos is an iconic sea­side town lo­cated on coastal High­way 1, where the old west meets the Pa­cific Ocean. The Cayucos Tav­ern was built in 1906 and is a his­toric sa­loon that still of­fers poker, bil­liards, live mu­sic, au­then­tic cow­boys and great drinks to wet your whis­tle. Cayucos of­fers a quaint old­fash­ioned main street called Ocean Av­enue filled with restau­rants fea­tur­ing lo­cal seafood, wine and craft brews, an­tique shops filled with mem­o­ries of the past, and mom and pop shops that have been around for decades. The beach and pier are just a block from Ocean Av­enue where surfers and kayak­ers abound, tide pools are abun­dant, and fish­ing off the 950-foot his­toric pier of­fers epic views of sea life in­clud­ing whales, dol­phins, and ot­ters

Surf, kayak­ing, pad­dle­boards & more

Shel­tered from the pre­vail­ing northerly winds, Cayucos is usu­ally warmer than other nearby beaches, pro­vid­ing many days of ride­able waves for the novice and vet­eran surfer alike. Cayucos is also an ac­tive play­ground for all lev­els of kayak­ers and pad­dle board­ers to gear up, view in­cred­i­ble shore­line scenery and en­counter all types of in­ter­est­ing sea life while pad­dling around the pier or into the se­cluded coves nearby. Good Clean Fun and Cayucos Surf Com­pany of­fer surf lessons, kayak tours, and beach equip­ment rentals and a col­lec­tion of com­fort­able ca­sual qual­ity cloth­ing and footwear.

Dine in His­toric Down­town

Cayucos was of­fi­cially set­tled in 1867 by Cap­tain James Cass and now you can en­joy a menu fea­tur­ing se­lec­tively sourced in­gre­di­ents from the bounty of the Cen­tral Coast at The Grill at the Cass House lo­cated on Ocean Av­enue. Cap­tain Cass’ house was the town’s show place and so­cial cen­ter back in the day and the Vis­i­tor Cen­ter has many items from Cap­tain Cass along with thou­sands of im­ages and a per­ma­nent col­lec­tion of ar­ti­facts of Cayucos’ rich his­tory.

Schooners Restau­rant boasts the best ocean views of any restau­rant in Cayucos while em­brac­ing a nau­ti­cal theme rem­i­nis­cent of the early his­tory of the Cen­tral Coast sailors and fish­er­men. The Sea Shanty has been a lo­cal fa­vorite for over 35 years fea­tur­ing fresh seafood, spec­tac­u­lar home­made desserts, sal­ads, and en­trees. Fea­tured in The New York Times, the Brown But­ter Cookie Com­pany is na­tion­ally known for its sig­na­ture sea salt cookie: a melt-in­y­our-mouth short­bread morsel with just a touch of sea salt. Yearn­ing for amaz­ing smoked fish and meats? Don’t miss Rud­dells Smoke­house, which also serves the best fish taco around. Duck­ies Chow­der House is also a lo­cal fa­vorite and fea­tures some of the best clam chow­der you’ve ever tasted. Rel­ish au­then­tic Ital­ian cui­sine and an ex­ten­sive wine list at Cafe Della Via.

Wildlife View­ing, hikes & stew­ard­ship travel

As you plan your trip to Cayucos along the Cal­i­for­nia High­way 1 Dis­cov­ery Route, add an hour or two of fun vol­un­teer time to your day, or sched­ule a travel ad­ven­ture to a nat­u­ral, cul­tural or his­toric site. Cayucos Stew­ard­ship Ac­tiv­i­ties: Cayucos Land Con­ser­vancy Bluffs & Na­ture Walks, Es­tero Bluffs State Park, Cayucos Es­tero Bluffs Clean-Up, Cayucos Na­ture Hol­i­day Bluffs Walk, Cayucos “The Lit­tle Town That Could” Es­tero Bluffs Walk & Talk, Cayucos Beach Free Stew­ard­ship Cleanup Kit & Tote Bag Gift, Cayucos Wildlife Kayak­ing Tours and Cayucos Wildlife Kayak­ing & Clean-Up Tours. Up­com­ing events in­clude:

Cayucos Sea Glass Fes­ti­val: March 9-11, 2018: Whether a sea glass fan or some­one looking to learn about this world­wide hobby, the 8th An­nual Cayucos Sea Glass fes­ti­val has some­thing for ev­ery­one. En­joy a week­end of lo­cal ar­ti­san goods, fun in the sun, live mu­sic, and of course an ex­ten­sive mar­ket­place of the finest sea glass art. Ven­dors are ju­ried and the art­work is first-class. July 4 In­de­pen­dence Day Fes­tiv­i­ties:

July 4, 2018: Cayucos is the place to be on the Fourth of July with a day full of ac­tiv­i­ties that ends with fire­works off the pier. The day starts early with the highly at­tended home­town pa­rade so make sure you come early to find park­ing and your ob­ser­va­tion spot. Sand sculp­tures are a big part of the mid-day fun at the beach cre­ated by chil­dren, novices, and pro­fes­sion­als - any­one can en­ter the fun. And the fire­works dis­play be­ing shot off the pier? Find that spe­cial spot for you and your fam­ily any­where along the miles of sandy beaches and en­joy the show.

Rock to Pier Fun Run: July 15, 2018: This 6-mile run/walk takes place on the hard-packed sand from Morro Rock to the Cayucos Pier. We wel­come peo­ple of all ages and fit­ness lev­els to par­tic­i­pate. The awards cer­e­mony is held at Morro Rock af­ter the event. There will be busses run­ning ev­ery 15 min­utes to shut­tle par­tic­i­pants back from the Pier.

Lodg­ing: Cayucos of­fers sev­eral lodg­ing op­tions from ocean­front ho­tels to mul­ti­room va­ca­tion rentals to suit ev­ery bud­get. Whether you are trav­el­ing with your fam­ily, gath­er­ing for a multi­gen­er­a­tional re­union, or looking for an up­scale bou­tique ac­com­mo­da­tion for just you two, there are a plethora of choices all within blocks of the beach.

Pho­tos cour­tesy High­way 1 Dis­cov­ery Route

T OPPHOTO: A Woody parked at the beach. BOT­TOM PHOTO: The Cayucos Pier.

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