California Coast

May 25, 2020 - June 2, 2020
9 days / 14 meals
Type:
Visits:

Featuring a spectacular ride on Amtrak’s Coastal Starlight and visits to two of our newest National Parks

Day 1: Los Angeles
Fly into Los Angeles and unpack for a 2-night stay. D

Day 2: Channel Islands National Park
Enjoy a 3.5-hour wildlife cruise through the waters of Santa Barbara Channel, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary and the Channel Islands National Park, which has more marine mammals in its waters than any other area on the planet. Over 28 species of whales and dolphins have been identified within these waters and traveling from the mainland to the island of Anacapa it is possible to see Harbor Seals, California Sea Lions, Humpback whales, dolphins or sharks as well as the famous Arch Rock and a working lighthouse atop the island. B, D

Day 3: Coastal Starlight and Morro Bay
Board the legendary Coastal Starlight train and gaze in wonder at the coastal views along the Pacific Ocean shoreline to San Luis Obispo. Widely regarded as one of the most scenic of all Amtrak routes, the views along the Coastal Starlight route provide a stunning backdrop for our journey. Unpack for a three-night stay in the seaside village of Morro Bay. B, D

Day 4: Hearst Castle
Perched atop a hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean, experience what life was like as a guest of W. R. Hearst while exploring his personal collection of rare and ancient works of art; encounter the majesty and beauty of this historical treasure firsthand with a guided Hearst Castle tour. At the Piedras Blancas elephant seal rookery, see the largest seals in the northern hemisphere, the northern elephant seals, during their time onshore during molting season. Dinner is aboard the Chablis cruising Morro Bay, with stunning views and sunset! B, D

Day 5: Cayucos and Paso Robles
Visit Brown Butter Cookie Company, the small cookie factory in Cayucos, home of the Original Brown Butter Sea Salt Cookie. Smell the butter browning, and watch the team of dough makers, bakers and cookie rollers hand roll each cookie. With the Santa Lucia Mountains in the background, enjoy wine tasting on the scenic deck overlooking the 38-acre Eberle Estate Vineyard in beautiful Paso Robles. Tour the winery and Eberle Caves to learn how these exceptional wines are made. At the Kiler Ridge Olive Farm, taste these fresh International award-winning olive oils and tour the production facility. B, D

Day 6: Pinnacles National Park – Condors and Spires
Visit Pinnacles National Park, added to the roster of national parks in 2013, the mountainous region is prime habitat for rare birds of prey and rock climbers. At the Nature Center in Bear Gulch, learn the history of how the Park’s towering rock spires were formed. Be on the lookout for a California Condor! Pinnacles Park is the only national park that is a release site for captive-bred California Condors, once an endangered species. A short interpretive walk leads us to the historic Bacon Ranch to glimpse early California ranching life in 1894 and beautiful Bear Valley. Check into Lighthouse Lodge for a three-night stay in Monterey. B, D

Day 7: Monterey and 17 Mile Drive
Follow the old 17-mile carriage route offered by the Hotel Del Monte in 1880 to show wealthy guests the most spectacular vistas the Monterey Peninsula had to offer. From historic Monterey the drive takes you along the shoreline of Monterey Bay, past Cannery Row, immortalized by John Steinbeck, to Pacific Grove with its beautiful Victorian architecture. In Pebble Beach, the 17-Mile Drive passes some of the world’s most prestigious golf courses along the rocky Pacific shoreline: Pebble Beach, Spyglass and Cypress Point. Visit the unique village of Carmel-by-the-Sea and learn cultural and natural history of this area with fabulous vistas and scenic stops. B, D

Day 8: Monterey
Visit the Carmel Mission, a US National Historic Landmark and the only California Mission that has its original bell tower. The rest of the day is yours to explore scenic Carmel, an artist colony turned chic coastal community that claims Clint Eastwood as a former mayor. Walk on the beach, shop, visit art galleries and historic sites. B

Day 9: Fly home

Per person rates*
double $2899
triple/quad $2649
single $3519
* Includes round-trip airfare from IND

Combine this tour with California Wine Country and subtract $400 per person off the combined rate!

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