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California first week

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Michael Maasdam′s Wishlist
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71895 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
For such a remote region, Big Sur has more than its share of amazing places to stay. One of the most unique is Treebones Resort, nestled high in the foothills of South Big Sur overlooking the Pacific. The off-the-grid property offers 16 signature...
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47900 California 1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
$$$$
Described by devotees as the most luxurious, one-of-a-kind lodging experience in all of California, the Post Ranch Inn was purpose-built to blend in with the Santa Lucia Mountains. Opened in 1992, and designed by famed Big Sur architect Mickey...
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52801 California State Route 1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
After five hours in the car, I was more than happy to hop out and hike the 1.4 miles out to Pfeiffer Burns State Park and get the prize of a beautiful waterfall. The water's color is an unreal sea blue/green that I have never seen before. The best...
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Big Sur’s winding roads, plunging cliffs and canyon-spanning bridges may cause nausea but they provide some of the most striking scenery in the country. After miles of lush green forests and sapphire blue oceans, the palm trees and turquoise...
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Vista Point, California 94965, USA
If you're like me (which by the way would probably make you super weird and could be a good thing or a bad thing...) you want to take a good few snaps when you travel. Well, if you're like me and are a "Travel Landscape Photographer" then it could...
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610 1st St, Napa, CA 94559, USA
$$$$
“If you go to our own local market in Napa called the Oxbow, there’s a spice company there, and you get to open up all the lids and smell the spices,” says Pam Starr. “I like to go and be inspired by different smells. They...
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California, USA
“We wanted to go to Yosemite, but didn’t have time.” I’ve heard this refrain from several San Francisco visitors and they all have said it with regret. Yes, the reverent national park is outside of a short-drive comfort...
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U.S. 101, San Francisco, CA 94109, USA
If you thought you saw it all, then drive/bike on the Conzelman rd on a sunny day. You'll get to see San Francisco and the Golden Gate bridge in all of their splendor.
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800 Asilomar Ave, Pacific Grove, CA 93950, USA
The Monterey Bay area on California's central coast is possibly my favorite part of California--it is that beautiful. On a recent cold January morning, I took my dogs to Asilomar State Beach at one end of the town of Pacific Grove. As the clouds...
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62 California 1, Carmel-By-The-Sea, CA 93923, USA
A beautiful day on the Central Coast along Hwy 1 - seemed like a beautiful omen for the new year.
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Mission St & 5th Ave, Carmel-By-The-Sea, CA 93921, USA
De Tierra vineyard has a tasting room in Carmel California and they are now offering a food and wine pairing class. Initially, I didn't think much of it since my husband and I are really into food and wine. We just thought this would be a great...
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Point Sur, California 93940, USA
On a craggy rock in north Big Sur, the Point Sur lighthouse has beamed through furious fog, rain, and wind since 1889. Volunteers lead moonlit tours from late April through October that allow visitors access to the lighthouse tower, old housing...
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47540 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
$$$$
The Big Sur Bakery and Restaurant serves housemade granola, ginger scones, and seasonal fruit strudels in a cabin built in 1937. Wood-fired pizzas, with toppings such as squash and prosciutto, stand out on the dinner menu, and the blackberry...
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39171 Tassajara Rd, Carmel Valley, CA 93924, USA
In 1967, Tassajara (already a storied hot springs resort) became the first Zen monastery outside Japan. Run by the San Francisco Zen Center, the monastery is open to the public from May through September and closed the rest of the year for...
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45500 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
One of my favorite campgrounds in Big Sur is the big open meadow at Andrew Molera State Park. It's great for large groups and it's one of the best bases for hiking and surfing in the area. More than 20 miles of trails run throughout the park's...
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55000 California 1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
I was putting my bags in my car, getting ready to leave, when a man came up to me and said, “Is it really time to go?” I smiled and answered, “No.” There was mutual understanding that nobody is ever ready to leave this place, where a feeling of...
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2400 CA-46, Paso Robles, CA 93446, USA
$$$$
Driving thru the wine fields of central California wasn’t technically on ‘the list’ of things to see or do while we were out exploring, but wow was it pretty awesome! If I remember right this was right outside Paso Pobles, and the best part about...