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It seems like yesterday that I awoke to a beautiful morning fog drifting along the beach in front of my room in Cambria. And as I close my eyes the memories of the recent escape to the seaside village are all coming back to me.
My getaway began at the FogCatcher Inn, located across the street from the ocean and breathtaking Moonstone Beach. Highlighted by rounded thatched- roof, flower-lined brick paths and fireplaces in every room, the Fog Catcher boasts an Old English feel with modern comforts. The room came with two queen beds for me and my photographer who was with me, a 37″ flat screen TV, mini-fridge, microwave, coffee maker, free wireless Internet and an incredible views of the ocean.
The FogCatcher views are so great, the second we looked out our window we threw down our luggage and walked across the street to explore. It was a gorgeous afternoon, with the sun peeping through a layer of fog, exposing the outlines of surfers and people walking along the sand. Moonstone Beach is one of the area’s most romantic and unspoiled beaches. It’s also a great place to go tide pooling or see elephant seals and migrating whales from one of many coves.
After wondering along the beach and wooden boardwalk we drove a mile to Downtown Cambria for a gourmet dinner at Robin’s Restaurant (www.robinsrestaurant.com).
Located in an historic adobe house, surrounded by gardens and rustic nooks, Robin’s serves a unique and delectable array of curries, seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes. Our meal started out with two tasty appetizers: Crispy Vietnamese Spring Rolls with kim-chee, chili oil, sweet chili sauce; and spice roasted pork belly with marinated summer beans and tomato jam.
For the main course I had the heavenly Malaysian Chicken with spicy yellow coconut curry, toasted coconut, sugar snap peas and cucumber salad. My friend went with the Slipper Tail Lobster Enchiladas, with lime crèma, avocado, white cheddar, tomatillo salsa verde, cumin black beans, and brown basmati rice.
Back at the hotel, we soaked in the Jacuzzi, while listening to the waves crash on Moonstone Beach. In the morning, we hit the FogCatcher’s free bountiful buffet breakfast of sausage, eggs, toast, cereals, juices, coffee and more.
We then drove a few miles up the coast to San Simeon, where we found a large rookery of elephant seals sunbathing on the beach and posing for pictures. Weighing between 900 and 5,000 pounds, the seals are the city’s biggest attraction – aside from Hearst Castle of course.
Continuing up the coast we past fields of cattle, reindeer and a even a few zebras, until we reached majestic Ragged Point. Sitting on a cliff 400 ft above the ocean, Ragged Point offers one of the finest ocean vistas in the world. It also boasts a restaurant, hotel, gift shop, rest area, and an incredible hike down to the water.
The hike is a little tricky going down, but the rewards at the bottom are definitely worth it. They include a tall waterfall, a secluded beach with hidden coves, tide pools and lots of serenity.
For more information on visiting California’s Central Coast Wine Country, visit: WineCoastCountry.com. For more information on the FogCather Inn, visit www.fogcatcherinn.com.