Day 5: Big Sur, Bixby Bridge, Carmel-by-the-Sea, 17-mile Drive, and Monterey
We woke up and went for a hike to Phieffer Falls in the Big Sur State Park. We continued to drive over Bixby Bridge, stopped for a photo op, and continued to the cute town of Carmel-by-the-Sea for lunch.
We continued to Monterey, were we stopped at the Cannery Row Brewing Co for local brews and appetizers. We checked into the HI Monterey Hostel, took a nap, and woke up to walk around the Cannery district and enjoy Gharredeli ice cream.
Day 6: Monterey Aquarium, Santa Cruz Boardwalk, San Franisco
We eat an amazing breakfast at First Awakenings- Coconut Mango Pancakes and Breakfast Crepe, in a quaint courtyard, then we headed to the world-famous Monterey Aquarium. After spending a few hours looking at the fish, sea turtles, sharks, tide pools, otters, and jelly fish, we started driving up the PCH again. Towards Santa Cruz. We stopped in a few stores, and strolled along the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. It was not busy, so we were first (and only) in line for the roller coasters.
Then, we arrived in San Fransisco! We checked into our HI: San Fran Downtown Hostel and set out to explore the city!
San Fran Day 1 highlights: Lombard St, Ghirradeli Square, Pier 39 and 41, the Seals, Alcatraz from a distance, Coit Tower, China Town, and had dinner at a hole-in-the wall restaurant. We had the bacon-wrapped dates and goat cheese, per recommendation of a bar tender at another bar. Incredible.
Day 7: Sn Fran, Day 2
San Fransisco Bike Tour around the city and into Sausalito, including an unsuccessful attempt to see the Golden Gate Bridge. We took the taxi ride to happy hour at Toronados(!) and back up to the City Lights Bay Cruise, where we dropped anchor outside the SF Giants baseball game and made new friends at a locals' bar.
Day 8: San Fran, Day 3 and Napa Valley
Day 9: Rt 5 back to San Diego
It took about 9-10 hours to drive back to San Diego, but we made it time for Tio Ruli's Labor Day party. And thus ends our first San Diego adventure! More to come...