Travels with Tucker

Travels with Tucker

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Avila Beach and SLO

San Luis Obispo, know locally as "slo", is a historic California mission town, now home to a state university.  Like all these central coast towns have been, it is very clean and nice.  Only 15 minutes from the beach, great wine country, the university bringing some culture to the area, lots of reasons why people like living here.  The big drawback is how far it is away from major cities--200 miles to SF and 160 miles to LA, it is pretty much in the middle of nowhere. We took a short trip to SLO to check out the mission, hang out downtown, then headed 10 miles to Avila Beach to see their lighthouse.

Mission San Luis Opisbo, 1772, much more restored and in active use than other missions we've seen
Downtown SLO is shaded with huge trees and very active
One big claim to fame for SLO is bubble gum alley, Only about 6 feet wide and about 30 feet long, the walls are enitely covered with gum from the ground up to about 9 feet high
Avila Beach is a lovely little town and beach, but was once the site of a major oil contamination.  Much of the town was razed and nearly 7,000 truckloads of contaminated soil were hauled off by Unocal in the late 1990's
Probably the cutest lighthouse we've ever seen. Build in 1890, it still has the original paint colors, but the light has been replaced with an electrical one nearby.
The view from the top of the lighthouse.
Only trolleys can go up the access road to the lighthouse--it is a harrowing, but beautiful ride up a one-lane road.

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