5 Recommended Self-Guided San Luis Obispo Tours

San Luis Obispo is one of the oldest communities in California. Located near the coast, it is a relaxing, laid back town with lots of character. There are many things to do on one of your San Luis Obispo Tours.

Hearst Castle
750 Hearst Castle Road
San Simeon, CA 93452-9741

With 165 rooms and 127 acres of beautiful gardens, Hearst Castle is said to be one of the world's greatest showplaces. Built in 1919, the grounds were originally called "The Enchanted Hill." There are several tours to choose from, including a self-guided tour. Tour 1, an overview of the castle, is recommended for first time guests. It is the least strenuous of the tours, only lasting 1 hour and 45 minutes. 2010 tickets are $24 for adults. Call ahead for reservations from your San Luis Obispo Inn.

Bubblegum Alley
1039 Chorro St.
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Bubblegum Alley is a local tourist attraction San Luis Obispo whose name says it all. It is actually an alleyway with walls made of used chewing gum and is worth seeing on one of your San Luis Obispo tours. The idea started shortly after World War II and has grown from there. This is a free, one of a kind attraction that is considered a work of art. You can stroll along this alley just off Higuera Street and even add your own gum to the wall.

Mission San Luis Obispo de Toloso
751 Palm St.
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Include the historic Mission de Toloso on one of your San Luis Obispo tours. Built in 1772, the mission has been serving the community since before California was even a state. Visit the mission weekdays from 9:00 to 5:00 for free. You can tour the garden and walk through the church. Enjoy the architecture in the high cathedral ceilings, beautiful chandeliers and vintage woodwork. The mission has been restored, maintaining its historical integrity, and it is a sight to see.

Hiking Tour
1341 Nipomo St.
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

With over 40 miles of trails and 12 open space protected lands, the city of San Luis Obispo has natural beauty and lots of recreational opportunities. Each of the trails has its own natural elements and difficulty levels. The Valencia Peak trail ends with a stunning view of the coast, while the Islay Creek Trail takes you past an old barn and a waterfall. There are many trails. Find out more about them by calling the City Park and Recreation Department. They are open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Walk the city and then relax at your San Luis Obispo Bed and Breakfast.

San Luis Obispo Botanical Gardens
3450 Dairy Creek Road
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

The Botanical Gardens in San Luis Obispo have nearly two acres of plants and vegetation that are native to the coastal area. The gardens continue to expand and grow, with future plans to fill all 150 acres. There is an education center with information on the city, and a one-hour tour of the gardens. The gardens are open during daylight hours and admission is free.