North America

Weekend Bus Trip to San Luis Obispo & Santa Barbara

San Luis Obispo
San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo

After having paid a visit to the US‘ Big Sur, the only way further down south leads back to Monterey via bus 22 and then on to Salinas via the MST bus 20. From there, you can catch a Greyhound down to San Luis Obispo, after which the route leads back to the coastline. The bus ride from Salinas takes about two hours. While you’re there…

1. Drink some wine!
This town is a producer of Californian wine. Yes, Napa Valley isn’t the only location producing grape juice! The area between San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara is a spot where you should consider taking a wine tour, such as those offered by Slowine. How about completing the rest of the route via one of their shuttles? You’d definitely arrive in Santa Barbara in a really good mood after tasting all that wine! Did you know that Paso Robles, which is just a few miles north of San Luis Obispo, was the 2013 wine region of the year!

2. Pay a visit to the iconic Hearst Castle
Hearst Castle – one of the only true castles in North America – is at a stone’s throw from San Luis Obispo, in San Simeon. Just take bus 14 from the SLO transit station to Morro Bay and there switch onto bus 15 until San Simeon.

Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara

How to get there
Once the region around San Luis Obispo has been discovered, it’s time to go onto the final leg of the journey to Santa Barbara. Your Greyhound bus leaves town three times a day from the Amtrak station.

Santa Barbara is a nice town with Spanish flair on the coast of Southern California, which is often promoted as the “American Riviera.” The land was inhabited as early as 10,000 years ago and taken by the Spanish in 1782. From 1822 to 1848, the town was primarily Mexican and then fell to a battalion of American soldiers. Due to its history, Santa Barbara has several really nice sightseeing spots.

1. Visit the Santa Barbara County Courthouse
The Santa Barbara County Courthouse is in the middle of the town and is a really nice place to stroll around as the building was constructed in the Spanish-Moorish style. Entry is free and you get a great 360° view of Santa Barbara from the tower. There’s also a short tour provided for visitors who would like to learn a bit about the building.

2. Stroll around the Santa Barbara Mission
The Santa Barbara Mission is considered one of the crown jewels of all the missions in California. There is a very low entrance fee, and the building is easy to find (on 2201 Laguna Street). It’s open from 9am to 4:15pm in fall/winter, and from 9am until 4:30pm in summer.

3. See the Casa del Herrero
The Casa del Herrero is an example of Spanish Conolial Revival architecture and was designated Santa Barbara’s fourth National Historic Landmark in 2009. There are tours around this fabulous estate on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10am and 2pm. The admission is $20 per person and the building is located on 1387 E Valley Rd, Montecito.

4. Walk along Stearns Wharf
You won’t regret this beautiful walk, as you’ll get a nice view of the ocean and the beach – a must in Santa Barbara!

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