Monday, August 4, 2014

Grand Tour of CA Day 3: Oh to be a princess...

Don't let the time fool you...... the drive up the coast is never a short one.

We woke up to a beautiful misty morning.... perfect for a run!  It was the perfect weather, no wind.  I ran along the waterfront down to the sailboats and resturants on the water.  I cannot say enough how much I love running through new places.  You experience so much more that way.  It was a beautiful run but I had to hurry back and take a $.25 shower so we could head off to the castle.
So when I heard there was a castle in "central" California.... I guess I didn't really know what to expect.  I guess I expected it to be like the Getty Roman Villa in Malibu.  The outside was exactly what I expected.... but the inside.  Totally different!  But let's back up.
The view from the PCH.
 We drove up the coast as the sun was barely burning through.  To get up to Hearst Castle you take a glorified bus from the parking lot on a super duper steep and curvy road up to the estate.  As crazy as it sounds, the music on the drive up and down probably brought the most wonderful emotions of the entire trip.  I wish I could figure out what songs were playing.... I loved it.  Alex Trebek narrated the story as we rode up and down the mountain to the magical place.

Here is where I start to feel like royalty.

One of guest "cottages"

So when we got inside I couldn't believe how quickly it was like we stepped back in time.... I couldn't believe how it was seriously a castle.  I know that sounds probably stupid.  Duh.  It's called "Hearst Castle"  but it was so dark, so Gothic, to medieval castle I couldn't believe it.  All of the art, furniture, ceilings, everything was imported or replicated from castles and churches in 1300-1600 Europe.

Interesting about this painting.  (especially if you recently watched Monument Men)
It was stolen from a Jewish family during WWII and sold to Hearst.
A few years ago the Jewish Family asked for it back.  So this is a copy.

It was insane to see how obsessed this guy was with European Castles.... but personally I liked the outside much better. :)

Oh and then there were the pools..................... oh the pools.

The Nepture Pool has no water because of a crack in the pool that causes it to
lose lots of water per day...... so because of the drought no water until they fix it.
But still!!!!!  It was amazing.

I want this one.

Modest is hottest......

But seriously??????????  I'm sorry, so many pictures of the indoor pool.  But it was amazing!
Then we started on our coastal drive up to Big Sur.....

We stopped in Big Sur for a delicious lunch at a darling restaurant and then kept on driving......
then we headed to Carmel.  Probably the cutest beach town at of all of them!  It's weird that there were no palm trees but man oh man Carmel was darling!
Pebble Beach in the distance...... beautiful white sand.
Don't be deceived.  This was the beginning of the cold weather.
 We walked around the cute Main Street in Carmel-by-the-sea.  *I can't believe I even wrote the by the see part..... anyway.  The shops were so stinkin' cute.  I'd love to go back and vacation someday in this cute little town..... someday.
 We then headed to Monterrey for some good Mexican!

 at this place.
 as we were eating our delicious fish tacos and of course my horchata..... we kept seeing walking by.  Finally we asked our server and she she told us it was the farmers market!  It was such an amazing farmers market.  I could just look at all the tables filled with fresh produce all day....

One classy Micky Ds....
Monterrey was seriously so beautiful!
After exploring Monterrey we were excited to check out our first experience using AirBNB.  It was amazing!  Half the price of staying a camp ground and a clean private bathroom.  Can not complain!

Up tomorrow:  Day 4: Under the boardwalk, Oh Christmas Tree, A pipe dream University and You can never have enough layers in San Francisco in the summer........

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