Sep 2, 2022 - Things to Do

Road trip: 10 things to do in San Luis Obispo

san luis obispo county coastline
San Luis Obispo coastline. Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)

If you're planning your next getaway, consider a trip to San Luis Obispo, just under four hours from San Francisco.

  • Here's what to do, where to eat, drink and stay.
Where to stay

1. Hotel San Luis Obispo

With bright airy guest rooms and spa-like bathrooms (plus an actual spa) this hotel is a dreamy, restorative retreat. They have several packages for spa add-ons, longer stays and romantic getaways here.

  • Rates: $350+
  • Location: 877 Palm St.
Room at Hotel San Luis Obispo with a king sized bed
Photo: Tanveer Badal, courtesy of Hotel San Luis Obispo

2. Granada Hotel & Bistro

A 17-room boutique hotel, Granada Hotel & Bistro features cozy, well-curated bedrooms with exposed brick walls, Persian rugs and original hardwood floors. Some suites have fireplaces, too.

  • Rates: $229+
  • Location: 1130 Morro St.

3. The Hotel Butler

This hip hotel blends industrial and modern styles and includes luxury touches like waffle weave robes in every room.

  • Rates: $279+
  • Location: 1511 Monterey St.
Where to eat/drink

1. Firestone Grill

Their signature is the sliced tri-tip with barbecue sauce on a French roll, but the menu is packed with other sandwiches, barbecue and burgers.

  • Hours: 11am-9pm Sunday-Wednesday and 11am-10pm Thursday-Saturday
  • Location: 1001 Higuera St.

2. SLO Public Market

This new market hall has more than 20 different vendors/food options. No matter what you order for lunch or dinner, don't skip the ice cream from The Perfect Scoop for dessert.

  • Hours: Breakfast vendors open at 7am; lunch/dinner vendors are open 11am-8pm
  • Location: 3845 S Higuera St.
SLO public market
Photo courtesy of SLO Public Market

3. Buona Tavola

Treat yourself to a classic Italian meal, and if the weather's nice, dine al fresco under bistro lights.

  • Hours: Lunch is 11:30am-2:30pm Monday-Friday; dinner is 5:30-9:30pm Sunday-Thursday and 5:30-10pm Friday-Saturday.
  • Location: 1037 Monterey St.

4. San Luis Tacqueria

You'll find the best tacos in the city at San Luis Tacqueria. Bonus: It's open until 1am on weekends if you need some late-night sustenance.

  • Hours: 10am-10:30pm Monday-Wednesday; 10am-1am Thursday-Saturday; 10am-10pm Sunday
  • Location: 1032 Chorro St.
What to do

1. Hit up the downtown farmers market

This weekly market has been running since 1983. It features more than 100 vendors selling everything from produce to barbecue to crafts. Expect live entertainment, too.

  • Details: The market runs 6-9pm every Thursday year-round.
  • Location: 1135 Chorro St.
SLO farmers market
Photo courtesy of Downtown SLO

2. Go wine tasting in Edna Valley

There are plenty of beautiful spots to pick from. Here are a few of our recommendations:

Photo by George Rose/Getty Images
Photo: George Rose/Getty Images

3. Hike Bishop's Peak

The two-hour, out-and-back hike is about 3.5-4.2 miles, depending which route you take. Either way, you'll be rewarded with the best views of the cityscape.

  • Highland Drive Trailhead: 1 Highland Drive (roadside parking available)
  • Patricia Drive Trailhead: Patricia Drive Trailhead (roadside parking available)
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