Clint Eastwood owns an inn and restaurant called Mission Ranch in Carmel, CA. If you’re in the neighborhood, you should go there just for the unique ambiance and awesome views before sunset.
The food is not incredible, it’s fine, but the real reason to go is to watch the sun set.
The restaurant has an outdoor seating area (photo) from which you can see the amazing meadow (photo), with sheep grazing, that spans out to Carmel Bay.
Check out the view of Point Lobos out in the Bay. (photo)
No reason to fear the cold. They’ve got lots of heat lamps and this very cozy fireplace (photo).
This place not only has great food, it’s got history.
You can find it perched above and behind a Shell gas station (of all things) just south of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park on Highway 1
It’s a throw-back to the days of the hippies who thrived in this area back in the 1960s and 1970s. After you eat, check out their funky sculpture and trinkets garden in the back.
But don’t let the hippie thing throw you off, the food is fabulous. I have never had a bad meal here.
I was just here between hikes in Big Sur and I had a simple sounding white bean soup with a basket of bread. Let me tell you, the hand made whole grain bread in that basket was the best bread I’ve ever had! They served it with butter and a little pile of rough salt – man I wish I had some right now!
They do the full-on espresso barista cappuccino thing there too, so jam in there for breakfast as well – awesome pastries – everything made on the premises. And the staff is super friendly, groovy and I’m not sure if the brownies have weed in them or not?!? (just kidding)
Definitely check this place out.
Click here for more info about Big Sur
Wow … look at the fabulous view from this trail! This is a wonderful easy hike on wooded trails along Big Sur river as it empties into the ocean. Click here for more photos and info
Nicholas Flat is located high atop the Pacific Ocean and Leo Carrillo State Beach, in the Santa Monica Mountains north of Pt Dume and Zuma Beach. You can spend a good 2-2.5 hours on a few miles of family friendly, mostly flat trails. This area has a nice remote feel to it. Click here to see more photos, trail info and map
Solstice Canyon Loop is in the Santa Monica Mountains in the Malibu area off of Corral Canyon Road. This is an overall easy to moderate hike of about 3 miles and takes about 2 hours.
Click to see lots more photos of this awesome area
Temescal Canyon Loop is one of the more interesting hikes in the Los Angeles area, it’s close by, it’s got ocean views and some wooded shade.
Additionally, you can approach the loop from one side for an absolute kick-your-butt workout, or if you start in the other direction you have a more easy going gradual ascent up the mountain for a more leisurely hike. Either way it’s a good 2-2.5 hr hike of terrific exercise and wonderful views.
Click here for more details and photos