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Hearst Castle Æ on the Central Coast of California

Hearst Castle Æ is one of our most visited California State Parks. It is located a few minutes north of Cambria on Highway 1. The castle, high on the mountain top, overlooks the ocean. The visitors' center will keep you occupied until your tour bus arrives. Have your cameras ready as the bus winds up the mountainside, because you are sure to see zebras grazing on the hillsides as you travel along. When you arrive you will go immediately to the Neptune Pool. Here the walking tours begin.

Although the castle is the most notable place to visit on the Central Coast, our coast offers everything from hiking and camping to dining and staying on the ocean front. California Polytechnic State University and Cuesta College are an hour south, and Santa Barbara is almost three hours south on California's coast.

Hearst Castle Æ, a primary attraction on the Central Coast, is open daily. The tour guides can relate the history and anecdotes of the castle, William Randolph Hearst, his famous guests, and the castle's architect, Julia Morgan. For reservations call 1-800-444-4445.

In 1919 William Randolph Hearst met with Julia Morgan, the castle's architect, at the ranch to begin the work in designing the castle. The book, Hearst Castle: An Interpretive History of W. R. Headrest's San Simeon Estate by Nancy E. Loe, includes a section on the unusual working partnership between the two of them. Loe's book, eloquently written, comes highly recommended as brief and highly readable, illustrated guide to the history of the castle. Tours are daily, and tickets are available at the State Park Visitors Center at San Simeon.

William Randolph Hearst, son of Pheobe Apperson Hearst and George Hearst, was indulged in the money which his father made in mining ventures all over the West. He and his mother traveled to Europe where they bought many creatures. Later an agent would sometimes buy for Hearst.

The ranch, where the castle now stands, was purchased by his father, George Hearst. It served as a retreat for Hearst and his friends. Both movie celebrities and statesman from all over the world came to visit and stay as guests.

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San Luis Obispo, CA
September 10, 2011
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