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Travelblog Gone with the Wine

Travelblog and lifestyleblog. Life under the Californian sun - Gone with the Wine. Trips, food and wine from all over the world. Solo and family adventures.

Filtering by Tag: San Francisco Belle

The Best of California's Pacific Coast Highway

Paula Gaston

All these pictures are from my Instagram account. You can follow me @paulagaston

So many travellers have a dream to drive down the California Pacific Coast Highway or State Route 1. Many drive only a part of it, but you can also do a longer version. While living in California, we drove parts of PCH from time to time, and I have written articles about each place we visited. Now it is time to wrap them all up into one post which tells you everything you need to know about California Pacific Coast Highway.

Most of my travels in Southern California happened when I didn't have a blog yet. But in recent years, we have driven the northern parts a few times, so here is some information about them. I added the San Francisco Bay Area as a separate section since so many people stay here for a few days. Once I get down to Southern California again, I will add more articles on the list. And please, post some questions and wishes about what I should cover!
 

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA


Many people start their drive on Pacific Coast Highway from San Francisco or they end their trip there. Don't under estimate the north parts of PCH though. There is still plenty to see if you drive up north from San Francisco. Enjoy the redwood forests, national parks or Glass Beach in Fort Bragg. State Route 1 merges into 101 in Leggett, but if you continue your drive it will follow the coastline soon again, and you can drive all the way up to the Oregon border. The views are great! Along the way is the Avenue of GiantsRedwood National Park, and right after the city of Eureka, a place that was disturbed by many tsunamis, Crescent city.

Glass beach in Fort Bragg

Glass beach in Fort Bragg

Drive Thru Tree in Leggett.

Drive Thru Tree in Leggett.

SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
 

For a visit to the San Francisco Bay Area you want to reserve multiple days. Like any big city, there is plenty to see. There are of course the most known sights that everyone should see, but there are also many other places worth a visit. Because San Francisco is located right by the bay, you can hike along the coastline with amazing views, or rent bicycles and ride along the Golden Gate Bridge to the Marin Headlands. All this is part of the national park system, Golden Gate National Recreation Area

Golden Gate Bridge

Golden Gate Bridge

Sunset in Sutro Baths

Sunset in Sutro Baths

SOUTH OF SAN FRANCISCO


Many start their drive on Pacific Coast Highway from San Francisco. Even though you will be able to drive all the way to Los Angeles in one day, I recommend reserving at least one or two nights on the way. There are vista points and other stops all along the road, and so many things to see or do from nature activities to historic sites. Route 1 merges with I-5 in Dana Point in Orange County. 

Morro Rock

Morro Rock

Inside pool area in Hearst Castle

Inside pool area in Hearst Castle

Have you driven Pacific Coast Highway? How was your experience?

Mother's Day Under a Bridge - with San Francisco Belle to Golden Gate

Paula Gaston

What kind of Mother's Day traditions does your family have? Do you go out for brunch or do some activities together? When I was a kid, we mostly stayed home and spent time with the family. In the morning we woke mom by singing and taking breakfast to in bed for her. We also always had a mother's day cake and a gift. Later when my brother and I got older, we started taking our mom out for brunch.

This year I am going to spend my fourth mother's day as mom myself. I am not sure what is going to happen this mother's day but I would like to honour all the moms by telling about my mother's day last year. I was lucky to get a gift that I wont forget easily, it was a cruise under the Golden Gate Bridge at San Francisco Bay. Even though it was windy and chilly outside, it was a wonderful day.

Our cruise ship San Francisco Belle was an old fashioned river boat built in Louisiana in 1994. It looks beautiful and is the biggest dining yacht on the West Coast. As we were enjoying the brunch we also saw the city of San Francisco from the water which I had never seen before. San Francisco Belle offered traditional breakfast foods with bottomless mimosas and delicious desserts. Especially I remember the banana-bread pudding, yummy! Food was ok, nothing fancy, but we enjoyed the atmosphere and didn't go home hungry.

The highlight of the cruise was when we reached the Golden Gate Bridge. The ship turned around under the bridge and we got to see how different things looks like from the Bay. We also saw Alcatraz Island close by.

The rest of the cruise went fast since we had a DJ in the house and people were dancing and having some a good time. A lovely day in San Francisco!

Happy Mother's Day to all Moms and to my own mom in Finland!