Sustainable Weekend Getaway
Rolling green hills. Fresh, salty breezes. Thousands of square miles of tree-covered trails to hike and bike. The SLO life is naturally beautiful. Keeping it that way takes a little help from everyone, so if you’re planning a visit, here are our best tips and tricks for leaving SLO better than you found it— while having a blast, of course.
- Welcome to San Luis Obispo! Head over to your hotel to check in and drop off your luggage. You might also want to make the Visitor Center your next stop–it has maps and other useful resources to help you get around our neighborhoods.
- Fuel up for your first day in SLO with a full spread…or just a simple cup of joe. Whether you tuck into farm-to-table fare at Big Sky Cafe or grab a quick bite at one of the three locations of family-owned Nautical Bean.
- Ready to head out? If you drove, consider leaving your car behind since SLO is so walkable. There are plenty of ways to get around San Luis Obispo, whether you go on foot, by bike, bus or carpool. You can even get rewarded for doing so when you register for a free SLO Car Free* membership.
- Stop for brunch or lunch at eateries that use locally sourced ingredients, like Bliss Cafe, Luna Red, or Sally Loo’s. San Luis Obispo is known for its fresh and hyperlocal ingredients, so there’s a good chance you’re eating fruits and veggies grown just a few miles away!
- Biking is a great way to explore the city’s nine distinctive neighborhoods. Hop onto one of our bike trails to stretch your legs and see some nature and historic landmarks: the paved, ¾-mile Madonna Inn Bike Path to downtown and the Railroad Bicycle Trail are excellent choices.
- Remember what we said about local produce? That includes grapes, and those grapes are what make Central Coast wine so delicious. End your first day in wine country with a glass of organic wine from local sustainable wineries, like Tolosa Winery & Vineyards.
SLO Life Tip
SLO your stroll with a glass in hand. See where the magic happens at local vineyards by booking a private solo or group tour ahead of your visit.
- Most days in San Luis Obispo are beach days, even when the weather is cool. There are so many shores (and parks and preserves) within 20 minutes of the city that you’ll never run out of miles to hike or bike. If conditions are right, though, we definitely recommend going for a swim — here’s our complete beach tasting guide.
- After you’ve gotten your fill of beach, fill up your belly with a quick bite and cuppa joe at a SLO cafe. Many of them use locally roasted beans, like BlackHorse and Scout Coffee.
- SLO’s shopping scene is worth exploring, especially if you’re on the prowl for goods made by local artisans and artists! For organic and wild-harvested loose-leaf teas and herbal remedies, check out the Secret Garden Organic Herb Shop. Check out SLO’s eco-friendly shops like Bamboo Batu, or head to Eco Bambino for a wide selection of natural children’s products.
- Everything is better in SLO — even the good old standby of dinner and a movie. Novo and Luna Red serve farm-to-table Central Coast cuisine, and our original solar-powered movie theater, the Palm Theatre, is always a great choice for a sustainable entertainment option.
- Hungry for desert? We recommend delicious, fair-trade Cal Poly Chocolates, available in Central Coast markets and on Cal Poly’s campus. Mama Ganache also offers a variety of ethically sourced, organic, artisan chocolates and sweets, right here in SLO.
The grass is always greener when you stay in San Luis Obispo. Start planning your next visit today!
SLO Life Tip
Life is better with four paws. San Luis Obispo is a dog-friendly city, so feel free to bring your furry friend along for a hike or even to restaurants that welcome pets. (Don’t forget the leash!)