Cambria is about an hours drive north of San Luis Obispo on Highway 1. It is perhaps one of the most exquisite towns on our coast, and a favorite spot for visitors and residents alike.

The town itself is located among the pines which extend to the bluffs above the Pacific Ocean. It's annual Labor Day celebration, Pinedorado, is a three day event.

Cambria's streets meander up the hills and down while twisting and turning though the pine woods. The homes, standing the hills among pines, all have their own unique architecture. Cambria is one of the most interesting towns on the Central Coast to simply wander through the residential districts.

The beach is a bit cooler than the Pismo Beach, but Moonstone Beach has the famous stones for which it is named. Collectors come from a long way to find one of the little stones. Although much of the area is bluff, the bluffs are low, and the opportunities for photographs are an ample reward for anyone.

For those who wish to have lodging with an ocean view, Cambria offers many choices. Some of the highest quality items are in shops are here. Artists abound here as elsewhere on the Central Coast.


Cambria is the last town before going north to Hearst Castle. Further north Highway 1 goes along the high bluffs to Big Sur and Monterey. This highway which is high above the Pacific is known world wide, if not by name, then by sight.

One caution to the visitor. Check with officials before going north beyond Hearst Castle. Highway 1 has numerous slides during the rainy season which may leave it impassable.

Go to Coast Country Arts for more about what this area offers.

The nearby village, Cambria, had other names in the past, but it is thought to have been named after a store named The Cambria. According to Sharon Dickerson Lewis in her guide Making the Most of San Luis Obispo County legend had it a Welshman named his store The Cambria, which is the Roman word for Wales. The residents liked the name, so it was adopted for the town.

Cambria is a small, delightful tourist town with some of the best shops on the Central Coast. It maintains it's English atmosphere in many of its establishments and with its architecture. Visitors will find places to eat, to stay, to shop, and even the soldier factory for those who collect miniatures of soldiers.

The Automobile Club of Southern California strongly suggests making reservations between May and October.

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San Luis Obispo, CA
September 10, 2011
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