Ragged Point, CA

Well, that escalated quickly.

This trip, no matter how well-planned, did not start out like we imagined. Indeed, a car accident ten minutes after entering the freeway at 8pm on our way to Cambria, roughly four hours away, was not part of the itinerary. This unfortunate incident set us back a whole night as we were forced to sleep in the car at a gas station. Both our rear lights were dead and we couldn’t risk navigating highway 1 in the dark. It was the right choice in the end because as we left the gas station at 7am the next morning, we were more determined than ever to make the most of our very quick getaway from the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles. No pain, no gain. Or, at least, that’s what we were told.

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

Our destination was Ragged Point, a small community 15 miles north of San Simeon’s Hearst Castle and 20 miles north of Cambria. An hour and a half after leaving the gas station, with our phones slowly losing signal, we knew we had reached it. The feeling was sweet and victorious, tinged with a bit of disbelief, as we saw the sign for Ragged Point Inn, a spectacular cliff-top property with ocean-view rooms, an on-site fine dining restaurant, and its own nature trail down to the beach. We entered our room for the weekend and felt our worries slowly diminishing, overpowered by awe at the gorgeous Pacific Ocean from our balcony. It’s no wonder this place is often used for weddings.

We had no cell phone reception during our whole stay and the free Wi-Fi was less than reliable. None of these bothered us so much though because we were there to unwind after all. It actually felt liberating to not have been able to send or receive text messages from anyone. It’s simply the only way to travel.

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

As we settled and rested our bones for a little while, we whipped up some quick morning mimosas and toasted to a wonderful Saturday morning. We were done dwelling with the night before and were ready to explore the nearby attractions. Our first stop was the Historic Downtown Cambria, a quaint little area full of local niche shops and restaurant. Do you need a stained glass trinket for your home? There is a store dedicated to those around the corner! How about some local art and pottery? Oh, for sure. Some antiques perhaps? No worries! Oh, how about some good ol’ 35mm film? Oh, gee, what are those again? It was a funny awakening that we’ve gone sort of outside the grid and left the comforts of Ralph’s and Trader Joe’s behind. Take note that this is coming from someone who’s been spoiled rotten by the city life. We were outside our comfort zones and were a little clueless. Although, to be honest, film is sort of a luxury now and only hipsters use them. Sad, but true. So it’s not entirely Cambria’s fault!

Our second mission for coming to town was to grab some breakfast. We had Yelped a couple of places on the way, but eventually decided to go to Linn’s Restaurant after looking at their crazy breakfast menu. I say crazy because for a mere $12, you get an amazing omelette called the Inside/Outside. It has green onions, mushrooms, and bacon inside, while the outside has salsa, avocado and Mozzarella cheese. On top of that, you get a really good potato pancake, fresh fruit, and a choice between a muffin or scone.

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

Obviously, we left with leftovers. Everything was amazing and worth it. We were ready for some fun in the sun so we headed to Moonstone Beach, about 10 minutes away. It was largely secluded, save for a few joggers here and there, and it felt like our own little beach the whole time we were there. We wore swimsuits, but the water was freezing and it was just impossible to swim in. We did the next best thing – lounged around eating chips with salsa and talking about random things, including our accident the night before. No one was angry about it anymore because the sound of the ocean waves was just too serene and too beautiful to ever let any negative thoughts enter our heads.

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

After a couple of hours, we packed up our picnic basket and headed for Friends of the Elephant Seal viewing area. From the vista point, we saw at least a hundred seals sunbathing and doing adorable seal things. It was molting season so a lot of them were mostly just resting and still. The place was packed with bystanders and as you walked along the rails, you were guided by illustrated visuals on what it was exactly that you were looking at. Highly recommended for all ages.

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

When we got home, we were dead tired and ended up napping for a couple of hours. We had made arrangements for dinner at the Ragged Point Restaurant, the inn’s beautifully situated fine dining restaurant. We all ordered their seafood dishes, which were very delicious, but a little small for what they were worth. We stayed for a while because the ambiance was really lovely. Between friends, it felt extra special.

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

On our final day at Cambria, we all woke up extra early to get to the Hearst Castle, the sprawling historical landmark mansion designed by architect Julia Morgan and William Randolph Hearst. It has been operating as a state park since 1957 and has become an enchanting place for viewing the exquisite art collection of the Hearst family, as well as the hundreds of rooms that were expertly designed and arranged in a time of extreme glamour and abundance. As first time visitors, we did the Grand Rooms tour that took us to the main attractions of the castle. It was almost impossible not to get dizzy from so much detail at every inch of the house. Everything offered something extraordinary – numerous carved ceilings, antique tapestries, sculptures, and paintings. Even the tour guide admitted it would be impossible to say for sure how much the whole ranch was valued at the moment because of the thousands of priceless art it housed.

Before our tour ended, we were shown a compilation of black and white film footage taken during Hearst’s days at the castle with a number of high profile icons and celebrities. It was especially interesting seeing the likes of Charlie Chaplin being goofy and carefree in front of a camera. Life just seemed so much simpler before the era of selfies! After that, we were let out on our own and we got to explore the rest of the property, which led us to finding the amazing Roman Pool. Meticulously tiled from ceiling to floor with 1″ square mosaic tiles, it was quite a sight. Can you imagine swimming in this?

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

Our trip concluded with a picnic at the Hearst San Simeon State Park, just across the street from the castle. With the ocean behind us and the grandness of the castle in front of us, we were sad to be leaving this magical place behind. I can say for sure that we’ll be back very soon.

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]

[symple_spacing size=”30px”]

Thank you to Ragged Point Inn for hosting us and to the friendly folks at Hearst Castle for allowing us to capture its beauty!

[symple_spacing size=”40px”]


Some of my favorite things are beef jerky, bacon, Benedict Cumberbatch, pistachios (aka the nut of the gods), my husband's face, and coffee.

RELATED POSTS

INSTAGRAM
WHAT WE'RE UP TO