With six miles of white sand beach that stretch to the famous Morro Rock, Cayucos State Beach starts in the charming seaside town of Cayucos and is one of the best in California for surfing, swimming, tidepooling, and soaking up the sun.
The beach boasts nearby parking, picnic facilities, outdoor showers and restrooms, as well as easy access.
A large, unique playground also springs up directly from the sand near the base of the Cayucos Pier, and is a favorite among locals and visiting kids alike.
The Cayucos Pier was constructed in 1872 by Captain James Cass, and is a remnant from the days when Cayucos represented an important commercial port for ships sailing from Los Angeles to San Francisco. Rebuilt in 2015, the 982-foot pier remains a favorite spot for fishing, taking in epic Pacific Coast sunsets, and even whale-watching (Look for the “Whale Trail” sign!)
Taste the authentic flavor of Cayucos in this down-home Americana eatery, a local hot spot since 1983.
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day, the Sea Shanty is just steps from the beach and includes specialties like fish and chips, clam chowder, and “Billy’s Burgers” with skin-on fries, plus omelettes for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch. Plus don’t miss desserts like homemade fruit pies, cobblers, ice cream pies and gigantic sundaes.
Take in the quirky decor, including an extensive collection of baseball and trucker caps hanging from the ceiling.
Get out there! The trails on this flat, open hike welcome trekkers of all ages, stages and abilities.
The walk skirts coastline and bluffs, featuring panoramas of Morro Bay and Morro Rock, as well as a particularly nice view of the sunset in the evening. The trail is especially picturesque in spring, when wildflowers color the landscape.
Tide pools offer habitat for anemones and mussels, while otters and seals play just off the shore.
Hikers can take a dip in the ocean or walk on the sand by accessing the trail to the shoreline near San Geronimo Creek.
Go gourmet at the Cass House.
A distinctive farm-to-table restaurant, bakery, wedding venue, and inn, the Cass House was once the home of Captain James Cass, built in 1875 mere feet from the beach.
In The Grill, diners find dishes like Moroccan-spiced tri-tip, cauliflower empanadas, and fresh salads made with ingredients sourced from the Cass House garden and local farms, as well as tapas and a wine and beer list designed by the restaurant’s sommelier.
The Inn at the Cass House is a boutique five-room guest house featuring modern and traditional amenities.
Surrounded by seasonal flowers and foliage, the Cass House is a popular venue for luxurious, intimate weddings and special events.
This pint-sized, unpretentious shack has been pumping out what the Los Angeles Times called the “Best fish tacos ever. Yes, ever” since 2001.
Meats like albacore, ahi, salmon, shrimp, pork loin and chicken are smoked on-site and served inside giant tacos, or as sandwiches, with Ruddell’s distinctive garnish of lettuce, celery, carrots, green onion...and apple.
Some smoked meats can also be purchased for take-away, including smoked albacore and salmon by the pound, as well as whole smoked chickens. The favorite menu item, according to Ruddell’s, is the smoked albacore taco.