Best Places to Walk in San Luis Obispo

August 26, 2021

Downtown San Luis Obispo is designed to offer an abundance of space for both drivers and pedestrians thanks to its well-lit streets, broad sidewalks, and friendly, inviting vibe. In fact, an argument can certainly be made that downtown SLO is the most walkable part of the city. Below, we present more details about this destination and some other San Luis Obispo areas you may find equally walkable.

Downtown SLO

The tree-lined streets in downtown San Luis Obispo provide plenty of opportunities to walk to charming boutiques, sample farm-to-table dishes, and try regional wines and craft beers. Many of the eateries in this area have outdoor seating that puts you in the middle of beautiful scenery and lively surroundings.

After you’ve snapped some selfies in the local attraction that is Bubblegum Alley, walk over to the plaza if you’re here when concerts are held during the summer months. The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art is located in this area as well if you prefer to check out featured works and exhibits as you walk your way through downtown SLO.

If you’ll be visiting SLO on a Thursday, pack your walking shoes and check out the Thursday Night Farmers’ Market. It’s a popular local open-air market where you’ll find an assortment of fresh veggies, fruits, and other treats along with locally crafted items. Live music further enhances the market’s ambience. 

The downtown area of San Luis Obispo is also where you can walk around and enjoy:

• A meal overlooking San Luis Obispo Creek
• A tour of Doc Burnstein’s Ice Cream Lab, a popular downtown creamery that serves up creative ice cream flavors
• Traditional Spanish-style buildings and other architectural wonders

Community Parks

SLO has charming community parks where you can walk along smooth pathways, take in the sights, and find a comfortable spot to have a picnic or toss a Frisbee. Many community parks here, including Santa Rosa Park and Sinsheimer Park, have sports courts, fields, and walking trails. Don’t forget to pack your swimwear, since some of the local parks also have on-site pools, and a few of the local parks have designated areas where you can skate, too. After a full day of fun in the sun and fresh air, you’ll be ready to head back to your hotel near San Luis Obispo to relax and relive the day’s adventures.

Pismo Beach Pier

Another walkable destination in the San Luis Obispo area is Pismo Beach. It takes less than 20 minutes to drive here. However, there are buses from SLO that go directly to Pismo Beach. The beach itself is walkable, but an even more foot-friendly spot is the Pismo Beach Pier. Offering a stunning view of the Pacific Ocean, the pier is well lit at night if you opt to go for an evening stroll. During the day, you’re welcome to fish from the pier if you follow local fishing guidelines. You can also walk over to the north end of the pier to see if you can join in or start a sand volleyball game at one of the courts below Cypress Street.

If you’re looking for a charming place to welcome you at the end of a day of exploring San Luis Obispo on foot, you’ll love the soothing Spanish-inspired décor and exceptional service at Sands Inn & Suites. From our beautifully appointed rooms to our tranquil fountain area and heated pool and spa, we can provide you with everything you need to relax in comfort. To learn more about our amenities and reserve your room at our premier San Luis Obispo boutique hotel, call us today at (800) 441-4657.

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