If you’re a Boomer, you’ll probably now and forever more associate Morro Bay with Andrea True Connection’s 1976 “More More More.” As I sit here eating salt water taffy from Crill’s, I know I could have had more than three days in Morro Bay.
The Morro Bay Rock is a volcanic plug that sits at the juncture of the ocean and the estuary.
At the invitation of the tourist bureau last week, I drove up with my younger son and sister Kymberly for a mini-vacation to Morro Bay, with the AMGEN Stage 3 Men’s bicycle race as our excuse to visit a place that’s only a few hours’ drive from both L.A. and San Francisco (only 1 1/2 hours from Santa Barbara).
And the winners of the AMGEN Stage 3 race arrive in front of the VIP section at the finish line in Morro Bay.
Look for an upcoming post from Kymberly about the community bike ride we took the evening prior to the pro race.
Boats at dock across from our hotel in Morro Bay.
We stayed at the 456 Embarcadero Inn & Suites, right on the beach, but that wasn’t even the best part. The best part was the customer service. The owner was super friendly and smiley, which set the tone for the entire staff. Definitely stay there when you go.
Super low tide in the estuary, with the Morro Bay Rock in the background.
Our kayaking guide was the owner of Central Coast Outdoors, and she knew all the birds, wildlife, history, marine, and culture about Morro Bay and the estuary. She even showed us a harbor seal and her pup. Important hot tip: When you go to Morro Bay, eat some of the oysters from the two local oyster companies. After your kayaking adventure.
With my son after we ate dinner at Dorn’s Original Breakers Cafe. I’m smiling because I had delicious scallops for dinner.
Can you spot the extremely loud sea lion? He and I were the only ones awake at dawn, but he was determined to bark his loudest. It pays to get up early, as I also saw otters at play.
When we weren’t kayaking or bicycling or walking along the waterfront or eating seafood, we were shopping at the various thrift and consignment stores in town. Set aside some time for going up and down Morro Bay Boulevard, as we felt like we hit the jackpot in thrift store land.
You can walk or drive out to the Rock at Morro Bay. On the north side is the beach. It was just past dawn and the fog was sitting just above the horizon.
Morro Bay Rock is the northernmost of 9 volcanic plugs in the area. Black Hill is just south of it, with a full 360 view of the area when you make the 10 minute climb to the top. Only a 5 minute drive from town, and you get this view of the estuary and San Luis Obispo.
Locals refer to Morro Bay as “Three Stacks and a Rock.” You can see why in this photo taken from above the Natural History Museum in the State Park on the south end of town.
The town is small enough that you can walk or bicycle nearly everywhere, which probably comes in quite handy during the summer season. For us, in mid-May, parking was easy even with the bike race in town. We loved the small town feel and the friendliness of the locals. Even the otters seemed to enjoy showing off to us.
ACTION: For more pics of Morro Bay, follow their Instagram account. While you’re at it, follow mine too: AlexandraFunFit.
Text & Photos: Alexandra Williams, MA