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 > Suggestions for Santa Barbera to San Francisco. .

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John / Angela

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Posted: 10/22/09 04:21pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi folks. We arrived in Palm Springs 4 or 5 days ago and are currently sitting on our lot in Outdoor Resorts Palm Springs. We intend to leave sunday for a quick visit with Mickey and Minny and then work our way slowly from Santa Barbera to San Francisco. Would appreciate input from anyone on routes, roads, points of interests and campgrounds along the way. We have a week or so to kill and we like the ocean so bring it on.

By the way it is great to be among our friends and neighbours in the USA again. Nice to see y'all. [emoticon]

John and Angela

2003 Revolution 40C Class A. Electric smart car as a Toad on a smart car trailer
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Posted: 10/22/09 04:35pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It looks like I arranged this upside down with more LA area things at the end. From Minnie & Mickey's place, I believe I'd take the 405 to I-10 then down to Santa Monica & the PCH; then up the coast to the 101 around Oxnard area. Lot of nice scenery along the PCH and things to do and see and places to eat. We took a day trip in our car once from Longbeach over a neat bridge to San Pedro and along Palos Verdes Peninsula which proved to be neat. However, I can not remember the route we used, but it seemed to be along the "rim" of the Peninsula at least at times.

"Hearst Castle", "Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument" is a must see. Castle
San Simeon State Park is just south of the Monument. Camping

Santa Barbara is a neat place to visit time allowing. A good visitor center by Harbor Drive, also a pier there, County Court House is neat, the old Mission, a drive into the wine country is neat. One of Many

Twelve miles south of Santa Barbara, Carpinteria State Beach offers a mile of beach for swimming, surf fishing, tidepool exploring and camping. Carp

In Santa Barbara, we had good seafood at the "FisHouse", close to the visitor information place near the wharf. Situated on Cabrillo Blvd across from East Beach and Stearns Wharf, the Santa Barbara FisHouse is a perfect destination for ocean-side dining, offering patio seating by an open fire pit. There is parking at the visitor center. The Wharf is in walking distance. SeaFood There are also places to eat on the wharf with higher prices.

The Monterey Bay Aquarium in Monterey is really great. Aqua
North of Monterey at Moss Landing is a great sea food place over by the docks, called Phil's Fish Market & Eatery. Phil's

On the Monterey Peninsula there is a very good scenic drive but I could not find a lint for it. Info can be gotten at a nice visitor center in Monterey. Monterey
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park would be a nice campgound to see the area. Big Sur
We looked at a private campground in Marina, but we were tent camping at the time and tent area not very good. RV Park
Moss Landing for sea food. Moss Landing

Enroute Campsites in CA to over-night at: Enroute

San Fanscisco lots to see there. Fisherman's Wharf (clam chowder in sour-dough bowl) Pier39 , Cable Cars, China Town, Alcatraz Cruises, etc. If you can get in, Half Moon Bay State Beach Campground is a nice place to stay (we had to stay at a priviate one when we last visited there) to commute into San Fanscisco, not to far from a BART station and ride in on the commuter train. BART
I believe we at at this one, but not for sure. It had great clam chowder. Pier Market Seafood Restaurant is well-known for its award-winning clam chowder and mesquite grill dishes. Where we ate was not right at the pier. Lots of places to eat.

We traveled mainly on 101, except for the trip to San Simeon to Big Sur to Monterey and over to Half Moon Bay. The trip along PCH Hwy 1 is neat and scenic.

There were several lighthouses alone the way which were neat to see & photo and great views of the Pacific.

If you go up towards Half Moon Bay, there is a neat lighthouse to see at the Pigeon Point Light Station State Historic Park. Half Moon Bay has a nice state beach with camping as well. PARKS

My painting of Pigeon Point Lighthouse

My second painting of Pigeon Point Lighthouse

We stayed at Carpinteria State Park when we wanted to see things around Santa Barbara. These are the options we had in 2006: Gaviota SP, Refugio State Beach & El Capitán SB but no dump stations and Carpinteria SB nice one with long beach area & a dump site.

Then we wanted to be near Malibu. Near but not too close to Malibu: Point Mugu SP also nice but small beach, Leo Carrillo SP excellent & with nice tide pools & Wi-Fi Service but small rocky beach. We stayed at Carpinteria and Point Mugu that summer, and have stayed at Leo Carrillo and Refugio earlier years.

Closer to Malibu: Point Dume SB & Zuma County Beach seem to have some camping in or by them if memory serves, we have stopped at Point Dume with its nice sand beach but not camped.

Leo Carrillo's campground and Point Mugu Sycamore campground are in wooded canyons up from the beach areas, Mugu has some beach camping as well off a roadway parking area type. We found Neptune's Net Seafood to have great seafood. The Scene – This glorified roadside shack is situated alongside Malibu's picturesque Pacific Coast Highway. As I remember, it is close to Carillo & Point Mugu. At least it was between Malibu & Point Mugu. Neptune's Site

We also stayed at McGrath State Park between Ventura and Oxnard in 2006. A very nice campground with trees & shade, a wooded, bamboo area with trails. A small river running by not far, not too neat a river. The the real downside, it is a long walk to the beach and the beach is not a nice one at all. It has a nice campground, not bunched up, sadly the beach was dangerous at best, with coarse broken shell-sand and very steep bank/drop off to the water. Lot of sand dunes getting to the beach. No Photos of the beach.

McGarth was a good place to base for seeing Ventura & Oxnard. We enjoyed it there as we did Carp and Mugu. We drove to the Getty Villa from Mugu. But Carrillo might be a nicer place to try of the two. But Mugu is close enough to see Ventura & Oxnard & Getty Villa / Malibu.

Carpinteria State Park has some parking lot like campsites, but have others that are not. The ones farthest back along the park road are nicest, up on a small "bluff".

Nice tital pools off Leo Carrillo's beach, also small scale ones at Point Mugu's small but sandy beach.

This site might help: RV Park Reviews

People have asked about RV Parks near Los Angeles. These are in LA County, but not too bad for traffic if on the roads at the right time of day:

East side of LA
East Shore RV Park SAN DIMAS
In same area Fairplex RV Park POMONA

North of LA
Malibu RV Park Very nice area.

On the east but not in LA county
San Bernardino RV Park

KOA San Bernardino

I'd go for Leo Carrillo State Park myself or even Point Mugu State Park Mugu 50 miles to LA. Or even San Clemente State Beach which is in Orange County but is close to San Diego County.

Or at Doheny State Beach Dana Point - Orange County * State Park * Doheny Campground Or at San Clemente State Beach * Coastline.

This one might work for anyone needing a long spot to camp (Max Camper Length: 40 Feet), but I have not been to it. Bolsa Chica State Beach Looks like the other state parks might not take a 40' rig.

What to do when there:

The Getty Villa is an educational center and museum dedicated to the study of the arts and cultures of ancient Greece, Rome, and Etruria.
Where to Find Us
17985 Pacific Coast Highway
Pacific Palisades, California 90272
Please note that access to the Getty Villa entrance is only from the northbound right-hand lane of Pacific Coast Highway (PCH). Getty Villa is on the way to Malibu on PCH in Pacific Palisades, one mile north of Sunset Boulevard. Getty
What to See
Greek, Roman, and Etruscan antiquities arranged by themes including Gods and Goddesses, Dionysos and the Theater, and Stories of the Trojan War and Roman-inspired architecture and gardens.
Admission to the Getty Villa and to all exhibitions is FREE. An advance, timed ticket is required for each adult. Each Villa general admission ticket allows you to bring up to three children ages 15 and under with you in one car. (This does not apply to tickets for events, such as lectures and performances.) Parking is $10 per car or motorcycle. The Getty Center is near as well, much larger, very neat with a varied art periods. Very worth seeing, if just the buildings & garden. Getty

The Getty Center presents the Getty's collection of Western art from the Middle Ages to the present against a backdrop of dramatic architecture, tranquil gardens, and breathtaking views. Admission to the Getty Center and to all exhibitions is FREE—no tickets or reservations required for general admission. Parking is $10 per car.
The Getty Center is located at 1200 Getty Center Drive in Los Angeles, California, approximately 12 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles. It is located near the intersection of the San Diego Freeway (Interstate 405) and the Santa Monica Freeway (Interstate 10). Take the Getty Center Drive exit from the 405 and follow the signs.
Getty Center is in the Hills above Santa Monica between the 101 or Ventura Freeway and Santa Monica. Getty

There is so much to see at the Getty Center, one can spend the whole day and not see it all. The buildings and gardens are a must see in themselves. There is so much art to see, it would take a week to see it correctly. A double must see. The Getty Villa is smaller but a must see as well. They are many miles apart.

The Norton Simon Museum is another really great museum to see in the Los Angles area. It is located at 411 W. Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena on the corner of Orange Grove and Colorado Boulevard at the intersection of the Foothill (210) and Ventura (134) freeway, is a great smaller art museum with the most significant collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art in Southern California. Reflections of modern life captured by Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Edgar Degas, who alone is represented by over one hundred works of art, are displayed alongside the vibrant palettes of Vincent van Gogh, Paul Cézanne and Paul Gauguin. Complementing these works are Auguste Rodin’s monumental bronze sculptures, which are displayed in the Museum’s front garden. Paintings by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres and Francisco de Goya mark the beginning of the 19th century and lead to superb examples of mid-century Realism executed by Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Gustave Courbet and Édouard Manet. Outstanding paintings by Édouard Vuillard and Pierre Bonnard carry us right to the doorstep of 20th-century Modernism. A must see!

The Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific is another neat aquarium to see. LongBeach
The Queen Mary is also in Long Beach, not far from the Aquarium.
We ate at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Restaurant and Market after our visit to the Aquarium. Good food, good service, maybe a little more pricey than some of the other places I have listed. There is a Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. on Cannery Row in Monterey by the Aquarium as well.

More on Trip Along West Coast .

* This post was last edited 10/22/09 04:55pm by DesertHawk *   View edit history

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Posted: 10/22/09 04:45pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Moved from General RVing Issues

John / Angela

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Posted: 10/22/09 07:14pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Holy cow. That is one detailed reply. Thank you so much for your efforts. Angela is already plotting some of your suggested points into the GPS and it looks like we may need a little extra time.

Thanks again. We'll put up some pictures of our travels after we get back.

J and A

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