Known by locals as “SLO” or “San Luis,” the city serves as the cultural and commercial hub of California‘s scenic Central Coast. The city is centered around one of California’s historic missions, Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, which is one of the best-preserved examples of 18th century Spanish architecture. SLO has long been recognized as one of the best stopovers of the «one-tank tripsÁ between Los Angeles (200 miles south) and San Francisco (230 miles north).
Though the census currently reports roughly 45,000 residents, this two-college town has a much larger, more substantive feel. Rolling hillsides, breathtaking ocean views and untarnished beaches are all a part of the scenic landscape that makes the area the most diverse region in the state.
The city is home to California Polytechnic State University, which is most regularly referred to as “Cal Poly” and Cuesta College. The city’s relationships with these two communities helps maintain a freshness and intellectually fertile climate, and also bring a consistent stream of big name speakers and entertainers to the area. Students and permanent residents alike enjoy the combination of high-end styles and intimate boutiques. Walking around the streets, you feel the energy of a city on the rise.
A frequent and equidistant stopping point between San Francisco and Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo made its mark as a city of scenic grandeur in the late 1800s. Growing up around some of the most recognized agricultural regions in the world, the locals enjoy a mild, Mediterranean climate year round.
The thriving wine industry and endless acres of picturesque vineyards located only minutes from downtown, natives celebrate the harvests of each season with world-class wines and innovative, cosmopolitan-inspired cuisine.
One of the most popular attractions in the area is SLO’s weekly farmers market which takes place on Higuera and adjoining streets downtown. Sample a bevy of unforgettable flavors, visit the local shops that extend their hours for the evening, and enjoy live entertainment as the sun goes down. This event is how the locals kick off each weekend of the year (except Thanksgiving) and it goes from 6-9 p.m. And if you want to experience one of the more unconventional attractions in the area, take a slight diversion from farmers market to stroll down the famed Bubble Gum Alley.