How Long Should My San Luis Obispo Vacation Be?

November 16, 2020

Located along the famed coast of Central California, San Luis Obispo enjoys more than 300 days of sunshine a year, a friendly small-town vibe, and a host of outdoor recreational activities. While it’s a personal decision based on your unique tastes and interests, most visitors should devote at least five days to fully enjoy the area. It’s a good idea to plan ahead and schedule specific days to immerse yourself in each distinct feature.


San Luis Obispo boasts a proud history. Founded in 1772, the stunning Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa deserves a spot on your trip itinerary. An on-site museum features exhibits that tell the story of the Spanish missionaries and their importance to the development of the region. Make sure to leave time to stroll along the charming streets in San Luis Obispo’s historic district, which is full of traditional Spanish-style buildings. For something off the beaten path, pay a visit to the San Luis Obispo Railroad Museum, which provides a glimpse into California’s relationship with the railroad industry.

Sun & Surf

No trip to San Luis Obispo is complete without visiting its many nearby beaches. Less than 15 minutes away, you’ll find the stunning Pismo Beach, which offers wide stretches of sand, towering cliff landscapes, and a vibrant boardwalk. Other beaches to consider include Avila Beach and Shell Beach. If you’re a beach aficionado, you may want to add more days to your trip so you can fully explore the beaches of Central California. Make sure to reserve a room or suite at a comfortable boutique hotel near San Luis Obispo to make the most of your vacation experience. 

Arts & Culture

San Luis Obispo is known for its definitive artsy vibe. The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art is conveniently located in the western part of the popular Mission Plaza in the downtown area. Art enthusiasts will delight in the vast collection of contemporary pieces by California artists. If you’re traveling with your kids, make sure to check out the hands-on San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum.

Hiking & Hot Springs

The foothills of the Santa Lucia Mountains provide numerous hiking opportunities. Outdoor enthusiasts will love connecting with nature in this spectacular setting. The Avila Hot Springs boast a thermal soaking pool, perfect for rest and relaxation after a long hike. You can reach the springs via the three-mile Bob Jones Bike Trail. For great views, head to the top of the Bishop Peak hiking trail.

Wine Tasting

Central California is emerging as the latest wine-tasting hotspot. Just 10 minutes from downtown, you’ll find nearly 30 tasting rooms in the scenic Edna Valley region. Or stick around downtown to find a variety of tasting rooms that pair beautifully with the wide array of local restaurants and cafés.

If you want to have plenty of time to enjoy all San Luis Obispo has to offer, reserve a guestroom or suite at Sands Inn & Suites, a premier San Luis Obispo hotel. Bring the whole family to our pet-friendly inn and enjoy our on-site gym, heated outdoor pool and spa, and free WiFi. Our staff is dedicated to making your stay a relaxing one, so call us to reserve your room today at (800) 441-4657.

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