Author Topic: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas  (Read 1756 times)

KeeKat

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San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« on: June 30, 2018, 05:19:52 AM »
Hello Mustachians!

This September, my fiance and I will be going to California for our honeymoon! We have 5-6 days to spend going from San Francisco to San Diego.

What do we definitely need to see/do/visit? Anyone have recommendations of slightly off the beaten path restaurants or places to visit?

Thank you in advance!!!

Mustache ride

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2018, 08:33:11 AM »
I think it goes without saying but drive the coastal highway down. My wife and I did this exact same trip last year. We did the 17 mile dr. in Monterrey which was really cool, and stayed overnight in Pismo Beach. Unfortunately that's all the info I have, as I only cared about driving down the coast and getting to SD asap.

OtherJen

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2018, 09:54:27 AM »
The tide pools were one of my favorite things in San Diego (one of my very favorite cities). I only visited the ones on Point Loma (Cabrillo National Monument), but I believe they can also be seen in La Jolla (which is also where the incredibly beautiful Torrey Pines State Reserve is located).

If you're a whiskey drinker, you will have a lot of fun at the Aero Club Bar on India Street in SD (basically across the freeway from the airport). The whiskey list is a book. 

Our friends live in Solana Beach, a pretty, walkable beach town on Hwy 101 in north SD county. Claire's on Cedros is a great brunch spot just a little further inland from Hwy 101.

Catbert

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2018, 11:27:13 AM »
If you spend time in San Francisco look up San Francisco City Guides (sfcityguides.org) for free neighborhood tours.  Tours are all done by volunteers though the SF library.  Truly free tours although it's always nice to donate a few dollars which goes toward program overhead.

Santa Barbara is a beautiful city to visit.   

nippycrisp

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2018, 12:06:28 PM »
San Francisco: Deli Board sandwich shop. Eat there if you only have one meal in SF.

You asked for unique, so I'll focus on that:

There's another place on the east side of the peninsula that is run entirely by felons released from prison - should be easy to find. Strawberry picking on the honor system at half moon bay. Redwood forests south of san jose.

If it's your thing, bike or drive over the golden gate to the marin headlands. Go to the marine mammal rescue center there.

Seconding 17-mile drive, carmel area. Check if the monarch butterflies are coming through when you're there.

Tide pools in SD are cool. La Jolla is neat to see. Coronado island. There's a "hidden" nude beach near torrey pines if you want way off the path stuff.

It's Blue Whale season right now, but whale watching is awesome. Tons of dolphin, and humpbacks here and there. There's an outfit called SD Whale watch that goes out of mission bay that's terrific and has a standing groupon.

Best beach is in Carlsbad or LA area (Santa Monica, Malibu are nice). Atlas Obscura has some interesting-looking things in LA area.

Find a farmer's market. Hillcrest is the biggest in San Diego. Others should be easy to find. Eat there.

SD restaurant recommendations: Bo-beaux grill, sushi ota, poke one n half, tajima (ramen), taco stand (that's the name) in la jolla.

Don't stay downtown.

I'm a San Diego local, so ask if you need specific recommendations. 

mm1970

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2018, 12:26:25 PM »
If you spend time in San Francisco look up San Francisco City Guides (sfcityguides.org) for free neighborhood tours.  Tours are all done by volunteers though the SF library.  Truly free tours although it's always nice to donate a few dollars which goes toward program overhead.

Santa Barbara is a beautiful city to visit.

Santa Barbarian here!

Yes, on the Central Coast, I'd visit Pismo Beach/ Arroyo Grande area.  We spent some time in that area during the wildfires and it was enjoyable.  Morro Bay is cool too.

Santa Barbara wine country (Solvang, Los Olivos) are nice if you like wine.

As for Santa Barbara city - visit!  Carpinteria is also a nice coastal town to visit.

FIRE@50

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2018, 12:29:49 PM »
Tahoe

OtherJen

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2018, 12:30:37 PM »
It's Blue Whale season right now, but whale watching is awesome. Tons of dolphin, and humpbacks here and there. There's an outfit called SD Whale watch that goes out of mission bay that's terrific and has a standing groupon.

Yes! Our friends took us on that tour the first time we visited. It was amazing!

diapasoun

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2018, 01:23:10 PM »
FYI September is the hottest month of the year in most of coastal California. Be prepared for that -- I know a lot of east coasters think, "September! It's fall!" It's not fall here. :)

First, yes, Highway 1 (the Pacific Coast Highway) is the best way to get down to SD in terms of beauty. It takes a bit longer, but you have time! However, Highway 1 got hit hard by landslides last year, and there's a chunk in Big Sur that is closed until mid-September of this year. Because that area of the coast is particularly under-populated, there's not a lot of easy roads back-and-forth between 1 and 5 in that area. Plot your route carefully if you want to drive 1 down; your last sensible spot to switch over to 5 is likely going to be in Carmel, which is fairly far north.

What things do you like? Do you want to hike? (Big Sur all the way.) Do you want to surf or kayak or do other things on the water? Santa Cruz and Monterey, in Monterey Bay, are great for that. (Santa Cruz also has a very classic old school boardwalk and beaches.) Do you love architecture? The Heart Castle is in San Simeon.


patchyfacialhair

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2018, 01:56:56 PM »
San Francisco: Do a couple touristy things and eat a lot of sourdough bread.

Drive down the coast: Don't use the interstate if possible. This is awesome in and of itself.

Stop in Santa Barbara: Just gorgeous and awesome area. Lots of neat history.

Stop in Los Angeles: Getty Museum. Griffith Observatory. LACMA.

Stop in Orange County: Laguna Beach is chill and Dana Point has neat tide pools.

Hustle down the interstate from there to San Diego (it's mostly empty Camp Pendleton between Orange County and San Diego northern suburbs, so not much to see).

Stay in La Jolla. Walk around, find stuff to do. Check out the sea lions in the cove.

Most of all, relax, and don't put too many things on your calendar. It's your honeymoon!

JoJo

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2018, 05:10:38 PM »
On the Big Sur stretch, I love Julia Pfeiffer Burns park (you've seen the picture - waterfall on a beach next to the crashing ocean.  Hearst Castle is great - it's worth doing one of the tours, includes bus to the top for incredible views.  Just north of the castle is the Elephant Seal colony if you're into wildlife.  If it's lunchtime, I like the meat at Main Street Grill in Cambria. 

Sojourner

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2018, 08:35:04 PM »
If you venture over to the east bay while in SF, try Zachary's Pizza deep dish a block north of RockRidge BART station, Berkeley area.  Also Fat Apples or Betty's for breakfast.  In SF, try Scouma's seafood near Pier 39.

Monterey Bay aquarium.  Santa Cruz boardwalk.

L.A. - drive thru as fast as you can during the wee hrs while most are sleeping to beat the horrendous traffic.  If you are there during eating hours, try Din Tai Fung dumplings.

In San Diego for ramen, I second Tajima.  Recommend their carnitas ramen specialty.
Or, favorite of all SD ramen is Yamadiya on Clairemont Mesa Blvd.

West Coast Tavern SD - Recommend their chicken waffles!  Best I've ever had.

In and Out if you want a fast burger.  Burger Lounge in Little Italy if you want something more gourmet.

For fish and waterfront dining near the bay, try Fish Market on the embarcadero, or C-Level Lounge.

Go to Balboa Park in SD.

Have a great trip!

brooklynmoney

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2018, 09:18:49 PM »
Big Sur. Go to Nepenthe it might be my favorite place ever. The view is amazing and itís super romantic.

KeeKat

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2018, 08:27:06 AM »
FYI September is the hottest month of the year in most of coastal California. Be prepared for that -- I know a lot of east coasters think, "September! It's fall!" It's not fall here. :)

First, yes, Highway 1 (the Pacific Coast Highway) is the best way to get down to SD in terms of beauty. It takes a bit longer, but you have time! However, Highway 1 got hit hard by landslides last year, and there's a chunk in Big Sur that is closed until mid-September of this year. Because that area of the coast is particularly under-populated, there's not a lot of easy roads back-and-forth between 1 and 5 in that area. Plot your route carefully if you want to drive 1 down; your last sensible spot to switch over to 5 is likely going to be in Carmel, which is fairly far north.

What things do you like? Do you want to hike? (Big Sur all the way.) Do you want to surf or kayak or do other things on the water? Santa Cruz and Monterey, in Monterey Bay, are great for that. (Santa Cruz also has a very classic old school boardwalk and beaches.) Do you love architecture? The Heart Castle is in San Simeon.



Thank you so much for the heads up on the road! When you say Carmel, do you mean Carmel by the Sea? Sorry, Google maps doesn't always make things super clear :) I do see a construction marker on Google Maps at Ragged Point - is that where the road is out? Google doesn't make that clear - I am so glad you said something!

On Google maps, it looks like it's possible to go down through Big Sur (we would like to visit to hike) and then go past Lucia and get on the road through Bradley to connect to 101 and then meet back up with 1 just south of Cambria. Would this route work?

We're looking forward to (short-ish, like 1 hour) hikes, the Highway 1 views, local hidden gems (breweries, food (preferably with vegetarian options), wineries), etc. We're newly into gardening, so I'd like to visit either the Botanical Gardens in San Francisco or San Diego.

Thank you all SO MUCH for the recommendations!!! I have so much to research! hahaha.

Keep the suggestions coming! I love hitting the locals' favorites rather than the typical stops (though we'll squeeze some of those in there too!).

mm1970

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #14 on: July 08, 2018, 08:49:57 AM »

Dicey

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2018, 09:31:55 AM »
CA is a huge state, you're going to have to be very focused. Tahoe is beautiful, but the wrong direction. Save it for another trip. Traffic is inescapable. In the major metros there is no such thing as rush hour, it's crazy all the time.

I have bicycled from SF to Santa Monica, plus I grew up in SoCal. My folks had a getaway place in SD so lots of time spent there, too. There's a book called Cycling the Pacific Coast, which I highly recommend. It's for bicyclists, which means it is sharply focused on the specific route you want to take. The recommended side trips are reasonable distances away.

Road closures are real, as @diapasoun mentioned. Don't trust Google to be up to date. Try the Caltrans website, AAA, Waze, and open Google searches (as opposed to Google maps). You may have to do the Coast in chunks. Install Waze on your phone and get familiar with its quirky self before you go. Also, Gas Buddy is a very helpful free app. Be aware that you will most likely not have cell signal at all times, due to terrain and population density (or lack thereof), so download stuff you might need In advance.

Also, I'm kind of surprised at the lists of restaurants, given that this is the MMM Fourm. Bring a collapsible cooler or buy a cheap one here. Fill it with picnic-y stuff for maximum flexibility, especially if you want to sneak in a few hikes. Although Nepenthe (means "No sorrows", IIRC) is truly remarkable, and worth a pit stop and stroll around the grounds, if they still let you do that. Frugal hack: sometimes, if you say you want to go to the gift shop, they'll let you in free. Not full access, but sometimes a taste scratches the itch without spending a lot of time and money.

Hearst Castle is amazing and worth the price. Beautiful setting, crazy good architecture, interesting backstories, etc. Do some research in advance so you choose the best tour. It's huge, so each tour is very focused, because you can't do it all at once. Probably wise (possibly essential) to book in advance or be willing to take whatever's available. Mid-week should be less crowded. Brace yourself for high ticket prices.

Spend no more than a day in SF. It's spendy and there's so much ground to cover. It's also well north of SFO. A hotel with parking in a spot you can walk everywhere from is optimal (and expensive - got any hotel points you can use?) in the City. Heading south, Carmel and Monterey are beautiful and 17 Mile Drive is lovely (but not free). As mentioned, JFB State Beach is iconic. So is the Bixby Bridge.

I'll stop here. Be focused, post your proposed itinerary here and you'll get lots more tips.

One more word to the wise: Groupon requires tons of advance planning. Sure, there might be deals, but availability is limited. You can buy a 2-for-1 deal for something, but then find it's booked solid well past your trip date.

Bonus tip: Buying an AAA membership could pay for itself in hotel discounts and route information alone.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2018, 01:28:38 AM by Dicey »

KeeKat

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2018, 11:59:07 AM »
Carmel by the Sea is Carmel.

Um, I personally wouldn't try to cut across near Lucia?

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g240329-i513-k4362390-Nacimiento_Fergusson_Rd-Big_Sur_California.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j0yJzBQN3Y4

but it's doable

OMG, thank you for posting this so much!!! I'm quickly learning that going off of Google Maps is a dangerous game. THANK YOU! (And for anyone in need of a laugh, RobChicago33's response about the road on trip advisor is great)

And @Dicey, thank you so much for all that info! I'm working to build our itinerary now but progress is soooo slow. So much to research, read reviews on, etc! I'm digging into the 17 mile drive now... so many fun ideas and options!!!

Catbert

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2018, 12:42:10 PM »
Spend no more than a day in SF. It's spendy and there's so much ground to cover. It's also well north of SFO. A hotel with parking in a spot you can walk everywhere from is optimal (and expensive - got any hotel points you can use?) in the City. Heading south, Carmel and Monterey are beautiful and 17 Mile Drive is lovely (but not free). As mentioned, JFB State Beach is iconic. So is the Bixby Bridge.

I'll add to this by saying don't have a car in San Francisco.  Take BART from SFO into the city and use public transportation while you are there.  Only rent the car when you are leaving.  Maybe even take BART to an outlying area if its cheaper to rent a car there.  Parking could easily cost $50 - $75 a night and that doesn't let you have in-and-out privileges. 

sfnative

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #18 on: July 08, 2018, 06:14:54 PM »
5 days is not a ton of time to cover this amount of ground but here are a few tips:

Must See: Big Sur.  Hike in Garrapata (2-3 hours), eat at Nepenthe (2 hours), then catch the sunset at either Pfeiffer Beach or Julia Pfeiffer Burns (waterfall view point - 30 mins).  Highway 1 should be open by September but confirm wildfire activity before heading south of Carmel.

Skip: LA.  I lived there for 3 years - California has so much more to offer.

Stay: Mark Hopkins, San Francisco - a bit of old SF without breaking the bank.

Eat: Tacos, preferably in San Diego.

Tip: North county San Diego blends the best of OC and San Diego.  Del Mar is a great alternative to La Jolla and/or Laguna Beach that is slower paced and less pricey.  Take the Amtrak Surfliner from LA's Union Station to Solana Beach - nice views and saves the frustration of what can be a 3+ hour drive.
 

SachaFiscal

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #19 on: July 08, 2018, 08:27:13 PM »
San Francisco is really walkable and has great public transportation. I would spend a day seeing the various neighborhoods (eg castro, union square, haight-ashbury, fishermanís wharf and ghiradelli, Chinatown). I would drive across the Golden Gate Bridge and see Sausalito.

Drive down the coast and stop in Santa Cruz and Monterey. Keep driving south and see Big Sur. Stay there and go to Esalen for their public bathing (only available 1am-3am by reservation). This is an amazing experience to bath in their hot pools right on the ocean cliffs. Itís clothing optional so youíd have to be okay with that. https://www.esalen.org/page/public-night-bathing

Drive down to Cambria and make your way east to the 5. (The rest of the coastal drive is not that spectacular).

Skip LA and go directly to San Diego.

Stop in Carlsbad. This might be a romantic place to stay. Walk on the beach. Happy hour at Norte has good deals.

Stop in Cardiff at Kiís for lunch. Reasonable prices for an ocean view.

Further south, stop for a short hike in Torrey Pines, if you go early in the morning you can get one of the free parking spots.

Head into La Jolla and see Wind and Sea beach. You can also see the seals if you are into that. Lots of places have happy hour specials on weekdays and some on weekends too.

You can check out pacific beach if you want to people watch and hang out on the beach, itís kind of a college party town.

In downtown, check out Top of the Hyatt to get a really good view of downtown and Coronado. Yoi can get a drink there but it will be expensive, you can also just take a quick look without going into the bar. You can also take a ferry to Coronado from broadway pier. There you could rent bikes and ride to Hotel Del Coronado.

Balboa park is a nice place to go walking too.

Remember to tell servers at restaurants that you are on your honeymoon, they may give you a complimentary dessert!








dang1

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #20 on: July 09, 2018, 01:00:47 AM »
hmm, slightly off the beaten path: after your frisco day (lol!), next day, if you're staying in SF- in the morning, take the ferry to Oakland, wear Warriors gear, cuz you know. Get Lime bikes, breakfast at Blue Bottle near Jack London Square, ride through Chinatown, then around Lake Merritt- stops: The Gardens at Lake Merritt, The Cathedral of Christ the Light. Up Telegraph Avenue to Temescal, lunch at Asmara Ethiopian or Bakesale Betty. After lunch, ditch the Lime bikes, get a Gig car. Drive up to Joaquin Miller Park for the redwoods, Woodminster Cascade. Stop by the Oakland Mormon Temple for a great view from the hillside, of the bay. Ditch the Gig car in Berkeley's Gourmet Ghetto for dinner: pizza from The Cheese Board Collective. After, walk to the BART.

On your drive south along Hwy 1, between SF and Santa Cruz- stops: the very-accessible-from-the-road tidepools at Pescadero State Beach, Pigeon Point Lighthouse, fresh strawberry shortcake at Swanton Berry Farm just north of Davenport. In Santa Cruz, drive up to the University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC / Uncle Charlie Summer Camp) campus, and pick up a Banana Slug (the school mascot) t-shirt at the bookstore. Check out the Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems. Then along West Cliff Drive from Natural Bridges to the Boardwalk.

Dicey

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #21 on: July 09, 2018, 02:05:41 AM »
Couple more thoughts. Get an IHC Rewards credit card (Holiday Inn family of hotels). It's free the first year, plus it comes with one free night each year + bonus points. Better still, each of you get one for two free nights and lots of points you can use on the trip. <--- Looks like they're offering 80k bonus points with a 2k in 90 days spend, which is totally easy. Times two and you could have all your hotel nights "free". They are super user friendly, they have a decent app and if you're using points, very flexible, which could come in hand, if your itinerary changes.

The car is trickier. Weekly rates are generally lowest. Off airport rates are usually a better deal, and one-way drop-off fees can be a killer. Try Costco and a website called AutoSlash.

If you're flying Southwest, you might want to fly into Oakland, stay at the Airport (be careful where you stay) and hop Bart to the City. Once in SF, I'd seriously consider doing a Hop On/Hop Off Bus Tour. You can see a ton and you don't have to worry about parking - finding it or paying for it, lol. Take Bart back to Oakland and continue your journey south from there. OAK is much more accessible than SFO, and cars are likely to be cheaper there, too. The SWA Rewards CC is offering at least 40k points, if you really want to work the points angle. This thread is still active:

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/share-your-badassity/southwest-100-000-bonus-points-2-years-of-companion-status-badass-offer/

If you post more details, I'll be happy to help. You can PM me if you want.

Well Respected Man

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #22 on: July 09, 2018, 08:15:47 AM »
We did the drive the opposite way, so that we are on the INSIDE lane of the road :-) Make sure you price out the flights and one-way rental for both directions; I think it saved us a bunch (4 people, so flights outweighed car rental) going south to north.

17-mile drive is kind of a ripoff, Carmel is $$$$ to eat or stay, Hearst Castle is very cool but very pricey. Definitely hike in Big Sur if you can. Morro Bay was very nice; go out to the big rock early in the morning for good wildlife watching. Nearby is San Luis Obispo, which we missed, but apparently has good nightlife if that's your thing.

You can buy avocados and maybe some other fruits or veggies on the road between Santa Cruz and Monterrey, with avocados priced at 5 or 6 for $1 (2015).

mm1970

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #23 on: July 09, 2018, 02:31:04 PM »
Carmel by the Sea is Carmel.

Um, I personally wouldn't try to cut across near Lucia?

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g240329-i513-k4362390-Nacimiento_Fergusson_Rd-Big_Sur_California.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j0yJzBQN3Y4

but it's doable

OMG, thank you for posting this so much!!! I'm quickly learning that going off of Google Maps is a dangerous game. THANK YOU! (And for anyone in need of a laugh, RobChicago33's response about the road on trip advisor is great)

And @Dicey, thank you so much for all that info! I'm working to build our itinerary now but progress is soooo slow. So much to research, read reviews on, etc! I'm digging into the 17 mile drive now... so many fun ideas and options!!!

Funny story ... long ago and far away, my spouse and I were taking a 10-day trip around the southwest.  One of the days we were enroute from Grand Canyon to Sedona.  This was the late-1990s.  We'd gotten directions (and printed them out) for each leg from Mapquest.

We are driving south and we see the turn off signs for Sedona.  But we don't take them because: Mapquest.

Then we get off on the prescribed "Schnebly Hill Road".  The first thing we see is a sign warning of mud and flooding.  Yep, it's a dirt road.  For a long long time.

Needless to say, we got back on the highway going south, pulled out the actual map, and went around the LONG way to Sedona.

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g31352-d3297843-Reviews-Schnebly_Hill_Road-Sedona_Arizona.html



diapasoun

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #24 on: July 10, 2018, 02:32:47 PM »
I wouldn't try crossing near Lucia, either... those roads are gonna very, very twisty, and there's a good chance you're going to get sent down some weird private road that's not going to work out too well.

Also for Santa Cruz: UCSC Arboretum; Wilder Ranch (park on the road and avoid the $10 parking fee); Henry Cowell Redwoods up in the mountains (same as Wilder).

Dicey

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #25 on: July 11, 2018, 12:02:13 AM »
OMG, this is a honeymoon trip! Check out the Madonna Inn. If you still have money left, you could also splurge on the Hotel del Coronado once you get to San Diego.

Spicolli

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #26 on: July 11, 2018, 04:38:25 PM »
So many great places to see from SF to Santa Barbara...Monterey, Big Sur (Hwy 1 set to reopen July 20), San Simeon, Cambria, Morro Bay, San Luis Obispo, Pismo Beach, Solvang...you need more time! Congrats on the upcoming wedding!

http://www.latimes.com/travel/la-tr-california-highway-1-to-reopen-by-july-20-story.html
« Last Edit: July 11, 2018, 04:40:05 PM by Spicolli »

trollwithamustache

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #27 on: July 12, 2018, 08:38:25 AM »
Big Sur (Hwy 1 set to reopen July 20),

This. note we in CA do not take infrastructure seriously so verify that highway 1 is fully reopened.

That being said, the whole big sur stretch is absolutely magical.

mathlete

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #28 on: July 12, 2018, 09:36:22 AM »
We did this drive a few years back and loved it!

I second, third, or fourth, or whatever driving the Pacific Coast Highway if it's open.

In San Francisco, we liked Codmother for some indulgent Fish and Chips. L'acajou is a nice little breakfast cafť and bakery. There are a million places to get a Mission Burrito if that's your thing.

Dutchman's Seafood House in Morro bay was pretty good. And the outdoor seating has a nice view of the "rock" in the bay.

Griffith Park/Observatory in LA is not bad for hiking. Santa Monica beach and pier is a neat sight on the coast, even if it is a bit of a relic of a bygone era.

La Playa taco shop in San Diego was good. Second doing Balboa park. Lots of museums there too.

Excited for you!!  You'll have a blast!

StarBright

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #29 on: July 12, 2018, 09:49:34 AM »
Are you wine drinkers? If so I'd recommend doing a one day stop and combining Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez Valley (wine country).

For classic beach towns in SD I really love the Carlsbad/Leucadia/Encinitas stretch of the 101.

KeeKat

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #30 on: August 27, 2018, 05:07:44 PM »
Hi all my very helpful CA Mustachians!

Google maps has it looking like Highway 1 near Big Sur is open now... can anyone make me feel better and confirm??

Thank you all soooooooooo much for your advice and places to stop! :)

KeeKat

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #31 on: August 27, 2018, 05:16:26 PM »
Also, one last question! Any recommendations on towns to stay in past LA towards San Diego? We love wineries, breweries, and laid back areas. Any suggestions in the Huntington Beach/Laguna Beach/slightly south towards San Diego area we should try to stay in? We're open to Air Bnbs or regular hotels :)

haypug16

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #32 on: August 28, 2018, 10:45:27 AM »
My Husband and I did this trip but in the opposite direction, and I'm planning on doing this again with friends next spring (LA to San Fran). I would also drive along the coast. I would recommend going South to North if you can though since some parts are on high cliffs and if you drive North to South you'll be on the outside lane but that's me. Some parts were a little scary though gorgeous!

We took 2 weeks to do this so were able to make many stops along the way.

San Francisco is one of my favorite CA cities. We took a walking tour which unfortunately isn't around anymore. It was called the Real SF tour and the owner may be opening a new tour company so I would suggest seeing if he has (I unfortunately don't have his name) but friends of ours were just there a couple weeks ago and took a WV bus tour and said it was great. Check out Pier 39, Angel Island, Golden Gate.
We loved Monterey and enjoyed the Aquarium they have there.
Big Sur is about an hour south and I would highly recommend stopping there to do a hike. It's beautiful with the trees and the beach.
Los Angeles I haven't spent too much time there but there is supposed to be a beautiful bike ride you can take along the beach from Venice to Santa Monica.


socaso

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #33 on: August 28, 2018, 11:13:23 AM »
If you want to do a bit of wine tasting in Santa Barbara County try the visitor's center in Solvang. We used to get coupons there for free and discounted tastings at different wineries around the area. You might call them beforehand to see if they still have coupons like this, it's been a few years since we did this. Wine tasting used to be very chill and inexpensive but now they've gotten quite strict. Usually they will give you one free tasting if you buy a bottle from them.

If you like historic home tours Hearst Castle is very beautiful but the tours are rather expensive and I wouldn't suggest it unless it's something you are really in to.

Gaviota State Park is a beach front park that is very easy to stop at and hang out for a little while. It's right off the road so it's a nice place to stretch your legs and look at the ocean for a little bit.

Although I never went to Madonna Inn I know a lot of people who have and it's a fun, kitchy experience with all the themed rooms. I took a quick look at rates and they had some rooms in the $100 price range so it's not too bad.

dude

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #34 on: August 28, 2018, 11:16:28 AM »
In San Diego, go check out Ocean Beach. It's the least touristy area around. Old school. Just down the road are the Sunset Cliffs. Beautiful views, great sunsets. Grab some taquitos at Roberto's Taco Shop, which was there even long before I lived there back in the late 80's and is still going strong (I just visited the area last week!). Open 24 hours.

Great beer abounds from LA to SD. Monkish Brewing Co. in Torrance (LA) is a must-do. Laguna Beach Brewing in Laguna Beach is very good. Mikkeller Brewing in San Diego is top-notch.

The High Dive Bar in SD is a favorite dive bar.

Driving out to Coronado Island is worth the time.

La Jolla Cove is beautiful, and you might see whales depending on the time of year.

San Diego is one of my favorite places on the planet.

dude

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2018, 11:24:30 AM »
Also, one last question! Any recommendations on towns to stay in past LA towards San Diego? We love wineries, breweries, and laid back areas. Any suggestions in the Huntington Beach/Laguna Beach/slightly south towards San Diego area we should try to stay in? We're open to Air Bnbs or regular hotels :)

Sunset Beach (north Huntington), Seal Beach, Oceanside are all chill, beautiful beach areas, not overly developed for tourism (like Huntington Beach proper is).

mm1970

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #36 on: August 28, 2018, 12:34:34 PM »
Also, one last question! Any recommendations on towns to stay in past LA towards San Diego? We love wineries, breweries, and laid back areas. Any suggestions in the Huntington Beach/Laguna Beach/slightly south towards San Diego area we should try to stay in? We're open to Air Bnbs or regular hotels :)
I don't know much about those specific areas, but I do like Carlsbad.  A bit closer to San Diego though.

Catbert

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #37 on: August 28, 2018, 01:58:29 PM »
Yes, highway 1 is open all the way.  (At least according to all articles in So Cal newspapers about the grand reopening a couple of weeks ago.)

robartsd

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #38 on: August 28, 2018, 03:52:58 PM »
Yes, highway 1 is open all the way.  (At least according to all articles in So Cal newspapers about the grand reopening a couple of weeks ago.)
Yes, open. CalTrans website does list several places that are 1 way controlled traffic, so expect delays.

I agree that the coast isn't spectacular from Cambria to LA. If you do want to go to Santa Barbara, stick to US 101 south of San Luis Obispo (CA 1 gets on and off a few times, but you'll miss NOTHING except navigational troubles staying on 101 for this segment, you might even cut across on 154 south of Santa Maria skipping some coastline with views of offshore oil rigs). If you do take CA 1 south from Oxnard, you go through Malibu and Santa Monica, but this part of the coast is much less rugged and much more developed than Monterrey to Morro Bay.

If you're near San Luis Obispo on Thursday night, go downtown for their "World Famous" Farmer's Market. Food vendors include several good BBQs and the best kettle corn I've ever had (the actual farmer's market is only about 1/3 of the event).

StarBright

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #39 on: August 28, 2018, 06:28:22 PM »
Also, one last question! Any recommendations on towns to stay in past LA towards San Diego? We love wineries, breweries, and laid back areas. Any suggestions in the Huntington Beach/Laguna Beach/slightly south towards San Diego area we should try to stay in? We're open to Air Bnbs or regular hotels :)
I don't know much about those specific areas, but I do like Carlsbad.  A bit closer to San Diego though.

And they can stop in Cardiff and get breakfast burritos at Pipes! and happy hour tacos at Las Olas !

This is making me crave San Diego tacos.

COEE

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Re: San Francisco to San Diego Honeymoon Ideas
« Reply #40 on: August 28, 2018, 07:39:36 PM »
Catalina Island - Done.