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My Side of California

Places I loved on our roadtrip in January 2013 - from Bakersfield to Morro Bay, San Fran to Los Angeles
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Venice Fishing Pier, Los Angeles, CA 90292, USA
We wandered up Washington, past all the cafes and restaurants, until we hit the beach. And then, the pier. The Venice Fishing Pier dashes straight out into the ocean, cutting its way between brilliant blue waves—surfers on one side, the sandy...
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Morro Rock, Morro Bay, CA 93442, USA
Maybe birds are your passion, maybe not. Me, I like watching them do their collective thing - but prefer to do so in comfort, with a hot coffee, and after having slept in past 8am. Wherever you are on the scale of bird-lover, from 'meh' to...
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Plaza del Cavalier, 250 San Simeon Ave Suite 3B, San Simeon, CA 93452, USA
We were driving south from Monterey, hugging the coastline for the views, when we found the elephant seals. Thousands of them, heaved up onto stretches of sand to give birth and suckle fat-rich milk into skinny black pups, the males keeping a...
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998 Monterey St, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA
We reserved a quiet tucked-away table for 2 at Koberl at Blue for New Years - an early seating because, well, we're parents and all that. We like to ring in the New Year in bed. (watching movies on the laptop, of course) I couldn't resist a great...
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Bakersfield, CA, CA, USA
It was Christmas Day, and the fastest route from Bakersfield to Morro Bay. The route that didn't involve freeways. {We like that.} So we headed west on Highway 58, through the otherworldly power stations and desolate cotton fields of Rosedale and...
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99 5th St, Cayucos, CA 93430, USA
We never intended to spend our afternoon walking the length of Cayucos State Beach (then Morro Strand State Beach), picking our way over rocks and around tidals washes, chasing shorebirds and hunting for tiny unbroken shells. But there we were in...
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4519, 261 Columbus Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA

In an age when many independent bookstores have surrendered to the advance of chain stores and Amazon, City Lights is a true survivor. Since it was founded by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti in 1956, it has served as a gathering place for San Francisco...

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Lombard St, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA
Sometimes all it take to make a road famous are eight, tight hairpin turns. This one way street was designed in this manner to compensate for the steep incline (27 degrees) of the hill it’s on. Traffic on the hairpin area is reserved for eastbound...
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Venice Fishing Pier, Venice, CA 90292, USA
The Pacific Ocean is a force that calls to some to jump in and join the dolphins that frequent its waters. Temperatures are warmest in August and September, but wet suits are available to rent year-round. Go surfing or take a stand-up...
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1200 Getty Center Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90049, USA
Crowning any one location as having the “best view in L.A.” would be controversial, but the Getty Center is certainly a contender. The anticipation that builds upon approach to the arts and cultural center—up a driveway to park,...
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1702 18th St, Bakersfield, CA 93301, USA
A roadtrip west brought us here, to Bakersfield - cold and quiet on Christmas Eve. The sky, the sidewalks, the parking lots - everything outside seemed gray, but not this hotel. The Padre originally opened in 1928, and still retains much of its...