Thursday 8 September 2016

Californian Adventure

So after Seattle and Sanfracisco came the road trip portion of our trip. We hired a car in San Francisco and set off on Route 1 sout which tracks it's way along the coast. There were some epic views and it was nice not spending all our time on the freeway-YEY! 

Our first stop was Monterey. We loved it here. We stayed for two nights and that was just enough time for us. In two nights you cane have some of the awesome local seafood, take in the aquarium and of course try some of the local wine. The first night we ate on the pier and had some epic fish whilst surrounded by seawater and a ton of crabs swimming in the bay-did you know swimming crabs swim backwards?

We also saw some cheeky seals sunbathing in the bay right out there on the rocks for all to see! 

We loved wandering along the Main Street in Monterey and along to Cannery Row. There was so much I didn't know about the area and it was really cool to find out. Me being me, I enjoyed going to the original Bubba Gumps and we also enjoyed sampling some local beers and wines.

From Monterey we went inland to Fresno. It was cool to drive in a bit and get away from the more touristy spots. It was a little more 'real' and so much hotter but everyone was so friendly here. We did some shopping and of course some good eating. We also went to an amazing bookshop in Ojay which was a mixture of new and second hand books and was literally outdoors! Of course we bought a book, but not for me this time! 

From Fresno we returned to the coast and to Sanra Barbara. The views as we were driving back along the coast were stunning and we even saw some dolphins, it felt like a real privilege to be able to watch the sunset like this! 

Our first night in Santa Barbara, we ate at an amazing sushi place. It was very chilled out and we had this scallop and avocado roll that I can still taste now. I knew that California was famed for good sushi but I didn't think it was going to be this good! 

The new day we took a walk along to the marina. It was eat walking down the kind of retail area and then suddenly being confronted with the ocean. We walked along the breakwater and then ate at Brophy Brothers for lunch. I had the seafood special and the other massive bowl you can see I the picture is their seafood pasta, just huge. Everything tasted so good and who could argue with a view like that. We suffered a little them next day, however, as there was a lovely breeze and so we didn't realise just how sunburned we were getting! 

One of the really cool things about doing this trip by road was being able to turn off and see interesting places and just interesting signs like this one! 

Here's a picture of the awesome 'outdoor' bookshop, they have an honesty box for when you need to go and buy a book but they're closed! 

Our next stop was a fab Air BnB in Culver city. It was an amazing cottage with a porch and everything. We loved it here and would definitely go back again. We chose this area because it was equidistant between LA and Santa Monica and so we were on for being tourists again. We saw all of the sites and visited Universal Studios and also Warner Bros Studios. I'm going to do an extra post about these two! 

We did do some shopping whilst we were here, but we couldn't quite afford the Beverly Hills prices after all the food we'd been splurging on! We found a cool bar that had some great love music and a nice selection of whiskies and beers and we also found some good BBQ! Everyone had told me about the traffic in LA but I wasn't quite ready for the madness-crazy! 

So we moved south to San Diego. I loved it here and would definitely come back again. It just felt so much more chilled out even though it is a city and has a downtown. We ate some more sushi whilst we were here and of course had some seriously good Tacos. We did a land and sea tour and saw amazing pelicans and sea lions whilst learning a little bit about San Diego's history. 

On the Sunday that we were there, we had a much-deserved chill out day and had brunch, which included a mimosa flight at Cafe 21 and then had some more drinks and did a quiz in Whisky Girl before heading back and chilling out by the pool. That night we found a really cool Duelling pianos bar call Shout House. We did pay an entrance fee but it was so worth it. They had drinks specials every night and the entertainment was just unparalleled. The three guys who took turns on the pianos were so talented and the repertoire in songs that they played just had something for everyone. We loved it so much that we went back there on Monday night too! 

We had such an awesome holiday and it was much needed. I think we both enjoyed it just a such, if not more, than we were hoping to and we've found places we will definitely go back to. The whole thing was just full of amazing experiences and such good food and now I'm onto the next stage of my Merican adventure-THE BIG MOVE!

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