San Luis Obispo in 48 hours

One of the most overlooked cities in California, San Luis Obispo boasts small-town living and a quaint atmosphere, that's both warm and welcoming.  Just minutes from Avila beach and Pismo beach, San Luis Obispo is nestled in between hills that trap the morning marine layer bringing ocean air to its inhabitants.  It has a number of lovely hotels, eateries and fun outdoor events that families can all join in!  Here's our 48 hours in SLO in photo form, of course.

This post is sponsored by The Apple Farm Inn.  Any and all opinions, however, are that of Mom Jeans & Mimosas. 

Where to stay: The Apple Farm Inn

One of the aforementioned hotels is The Apple Farm Inn located in the Northern part of SLO, just at the base of a hill.  The online photos were all we had to work off of until our arrival where we discovered that there was so much more to take in!  The grounds are gorgeous, complete with a water mill, pool and small creek to start and the service was excellent.  The kids were won over by freshly baked cookies every day and I was no stranger to the afternoon wine tasting.  

The pool offered a quiet and relaxing place to take in some sun until it was time to return to the hotel for a quick clean up.  Our particular room was big and included a fireplace with a seating area and all the amenities.  The kids loved the country decor and raced down the lengthy hallway every time we journeyed to the lobby.  There's a trolley nearby that will take you to downtown but we decided to drive so that we could scoop up my nephew to tour his hometown.

View our  California Coast Road Trip- San Luis Obispo in 48 Hours VLOG here

What to do in Downtown San Luis Obispo:

The centerpiece of SLO is Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, which was the original mission of the city in 1772.  The bells of the mission still ring on the hour and can be heard in nearby neighborhoods.  We stopped by the mission and then made our way down to the SLO creek which runs underneath downtown.  There's a slew of bars and restaurants that overlook the creek making it a dreamy way to dine.

We skipped the food and went straight to the nearest coffee spot but first, Bubblegum Alley.  A serious tourist attraction and a seriously gross combination of saliva and business cards.  Yep.  People advertise their expertise fastened to a wall with, bubblicious gum giving a new meaning to the saying all business in the front, party in the back.  

Where to grab coffee:  

You could stop at one of the newer coffee spots like Scout Coffee but we skipped over to a local favorite, Linnaea's cafe.  The first ever coffee shop in SLO, Linnaea's cafe serves Organic, fair trade coffee with many vegan and vegetarian options.  

Where to grub: 

Okay can you tell we've been to San Luis Obispo a few times?  I did mention my nephew living here all his 21 years of life.  That might make me biased but with that disclosed, I have to add that we crave SLO tri tip from Firestone grill every time we visit.  It is really THAT good and it's become a family tradition over time.  They say that the area specializes in Santa Maria style tri tip so it's a must try.  You won't regret visiting Firestone Grill but get there before the line starts getting crazy and order a basket of fries because they feed a heard of hungry friends.

View our  California Coast Road Trip- San Luis Obispo in 48 Hours VLOG here 

As far as beaches go... Avila Beach

Only 10 minutes away, Avila Beach is so close, you can smell it.  You get there by maneuvering down a small windy road nestled between grassy hills and scattered farms.  You will want to stop at every turn to take in the serenity.  But don't take too long because Avila beach parking fills up around noon and there's a good number of hungry patrons filling up eateries lining the sand.

We chose to grab a bite at Avila Grocery and Deli which has great views of the beach and a salty breeze blowing through.  Indoor and outdoor seating is available and they have amazing açaí bowls too!  After settling our bellies from our food, we ventured down the beach to some rocky cliffs.  The perfect background for a casual photo shoot.

The overcast weather was calling for some coffee which we satisfied at Kraken Coffee Company.  The coffee is local and strong and they had a little section where you could take something home.  They even had ice cream for the kids which made up for the bribery issue.  A parental win-win.

I really feel that the central coast is under rated on places to see in California.  As a frequent visitor, I never tire of the scene, friendly people and delicious eats.  If you want to see more, visit the Vlog:  
California Coast Road Trip- San Luis Obispo in 48 Hours for a better look at our trip.  We also went berry picking and you can view that here:  6 reasons you should start traveling with your toddlers. 

Would you visit San Luis Obispo?


Kristin Dawn Mejia
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