What To Do When in Cambria? (2024)
Sitting midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, Cambria is a small seaside village that also translates to Wales in the Latin Language. Being a seaside village, the coastal influence here is obviously always on charm, and unlike the quintessential California beach towns, it has a particular character of its own. The town also features hills and extensive Monterey pines right adjacent to it, adding a unique flavour and appeal to the location.
Visiting Cambria is always fun and exciting as the city offers a number of recreational opportunities, including hiking, cycling, surfing, skimboarding, kayaking, boogie boarding, ocean fishing, and various other means of recreation. Also, being a seaside village, its local coastal communities and seafood are the added charisma that keeps people engaged and emerged.
What To Do When in Cambria?
Go through our list of 8 Most Popular things to do when in Cambria to know more insights. Have a look:
1. Enjoy Your Time At Hearst Castle
Nearly 15 minutes from the North of Cambria lies the Hearst Castle, a famous 20th-century mansion. It is renowned in the list of National and Californian landmarks and is a popular tourist spot in the State. The Castle is located atop a hill built by William Randolph Hearst taking a total of 28 years. Nothing less than an architectural and interior designing marvel, the Hearst Castle has a total of 165 rooms, all of which are filled with art and antiquities imported here from all around the world. It has its own airport, movie theatre, Romanesque bath complex, library and whatnot. Image Source
Hearst Castle’s exteriors are appreciated by lavish swimming pools, including the Roman Pool and Neptune Pool. It also has several gardens, along with the integrated Zoo and Pergola, which is today filled with Zebra and some other human-friendly breeds, which can be noticed roaming freely in their territory. While you are in Cambria, this extravagant sight is definitely worth spending some time at.
2. Visit the Piedras Blancas Rookery
Once you have head out of Cambria city, you cannot miss visiting the Piedras Blancas Elephant Seal Rookery before going back. It is the one, and only elephant seal rookery in the entire world and so is extremely special and rare. The site is free to access, and you can stand here at the boardwalk to observe elephant seals along with grabbing some Pacific views. During the breeding season (January, April, and October), the sight is filled with thousands of elephant seals.
Considering elephant seals aren’t that beautiful marine animal to admire, being here might not be everyone’s cup of tea, though as you will never find anything like this ever in the world, a quick stop is definitely worth it. Only make sure that you carry your binoculars and are at a safer distance from the seals, as with high interruption, they can even harm you.
3. Go to the Moonstone Beach
Moonstone Beach is any day the highlight of Cambria attracting people for its dramatic coastline and breath-taking views. The beach is named Moonstone for the Shiny gemstones that are easy to be found all throughout the sand, especially when the sun shines and the stones glitter up in bright colours. Though they aren’t of any worth in the gem market, visitors often collect them for memories or making jewellery out of them.
Parallel to the beach is a boardwalk that hugs the Pacific for its entire length here, and believe us that finding a beautiful spot like this is indeed a steal. When here, take a beach walk, watch the glorious sunset, spot marine animals and birds or simply admire the diversity and beauty of nature.
4. Stroll Down on the Fiscalini Ranch Preserve
Passing by the MoonStone beach drive towards the end of Windsor Boulevard will take you towards the unique beauty and solitude of Cambria, the Fiscalini Ranch Preserve. The preserve has everything that is wished on holiday, including dramatic ocean bluffs, unending shorelines, grassy marine terrace, forested ridge, rising inland, miles of trails, basically an eternal blessing of nature’s beauty. Here you can simply walk down the trails or admire the diversity around or simply sit back at the benches and soak in the views around.
While you are up for exploring the Fiscalini Ranch Preserve, you can spot several wildlife, marine life and birds around, especially some whales, otters, rabbits and deer.
Seasons bring wildflower and butterfly blooms to the preserve. A camera and binoculars here will help you in grabbing the most astonishing views. Only make sure you are safe from poison oaks and alert from the rattlesnakes.
5. Explore the Historic Downtown Cambria
While you are exploring any city in the United States, your trip will remain incomplete without visiting the downtown. Downtown Cambria is pleasant with rich rooted history and tales of the earliest human settlement. It is home to Guthrie-Bianchini House, which is a historical museum and the oldest remaining house in Cambria. Here you can explore the historic east village, local architecture, and homes that are as old as the ones of the 1800s.
Downtown Cambria has a bike rental place that provides easy bikes in order to explore the city more comfortably. The lanes of downtown are further adorned by antique shops, micro-brewery, restaurants, bakeries and a lot of places to buy handmade and exciting souvenirs.
6. Spend Some Peaceful Time At The Nitt Witt Ridge
Nitt Witt Ridge is one of the unique sights that you cannot miss to include in your Cambria itinerary. It is basically 50-year labour of love, a house standing over two and a half acres of land. It is built by Arthur “Art” Harold Beal, who bought this property in 1928 and spent 50 years of life building this uniqueness. It is said that the house was built by the discarded remains of Hearst Castle; however, if you will have a look inside, the beauty will surprise you.
Despite seeing the deterioration and ransacking after the owner’s death in 1992, the Nitt Witt Ridge still looks as glorious as it was during the initial years. Here inside, you can come across some knick-knacks and architectural uniqueness, including abalone shells, glass pieces, metal decors and even the wooden frames and the toilet seats. Much of the things inside are today in a broken condition but considering the house is one finest example of Folk Art; it is definitely worth visiting.
7. Adore the Uniqueness of Hamlet of Harmony
A tiny hamlet with not even a population of 20, the Hamlet of Harmony is a must-visit when in Cambria. You can reach here via California Highway 1 south of Cambria and enjoy the calmness of the tranquillity of the place. Being the tiniest town on the central coast, it is quite popular and loved by both locals and visitors alike. There’s even a State Park called Harmony Headlands that offers a clean and beautiful 1.5 miles hiking trail encompassing through grasslands right to the ocean.
This charming little town has a pretty chappel, some old building and a few local shops selling pottery work and glass work where you can even watch interesting glassblowing demonstration. And in case you are up for some wine and snacks, you can also head towards the Harmony Cellars and sip their specialities, including Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Cabernet, spicy Zins, Port, and Riesling.
8. Taste Their Local Food
Local eateries to excellent bakeries and restaurants, Cambria has everything to offer when it comes to munching and dining. The bakery highlight here includes Mojo’s Village Bean and the French Corner Bakery. Here you can shop for anything from pastries to loaves of bread and coffee. The mojo’s village even sells rich and creamy ice creams that are all worth the praises.
For well-spread dining options, Linn’s Farm Store, Boni’s Tacos, Robins Restaurant, and the Sow’s Ear are indeed the places that will fill both your stomach and heart with absolute pleasure. From healthy options to hearty comfort food and elaborated Italian spreads, there’s everything you might crave for. And if you are craving for some international dishes with a twist of local, then do try Robin’s signature dish, the salmon bisque.
That was all for the tiny town of Cambria. You can plan your visit here all throughout the year as the weather here rarely climbs up the mark of high 50s to mid-60s, making it ideal for exploring the outdoors. Days here have plenty of sunlight, whereas morning and evening are comparatively cooler. Year-end from October to December, the town hosts some colourful festivals, events, and even a vast Christmas market; thus, in case you are looking for some specific time, then winters can be your jam.