Cayucos Beach CA

Cayucos Beach CA is located on California’s scenic Central Coast, halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Cayucos sits quietly between the Pacific Ocean and the rolling hillsides of open ranch land and is what some people call “the last of the California beach towns.”  Listen to the quiet and stillness that only a small town in an untouched countryside can provide. Cayucos is perfect for those who deal with the frustrations of life in the fast lane in crowded cities. Peaceful, underdeveloped ranch lands with cattle grazing on oak-crested hills provide a great respite. There is virtually no city noise, no traffic, no pollution and no crime in Cayucos.  Cayucos, the tiny beach town that sits at the foot of the hills with its toes in the sand, awaits you and your exploration. So relax and come see what Cayucos Beach CA has to offer you.

Weather (When to Go)

Similar to a Mediterranean climate, the weather is mild all year long in Cayucos. Located on Coast Highway One between Monterey County and Santa Barbara County, this area of the coast enjoys almost ideal weather and over 300 days of sunshine per year. The terrain is made up of gently rolling hills and sand dunes, lush foliage and vineyards. It is known to have some of the best weather on the Central Coast. Cool ocean breezes keep temperatures from becoming too hot in the summer and the latitude and oceanic effects keeps things mild in winter. Low clouds and patchy fog are often reported often on summer days, but it almost always burns off by noontime. It can be rainy from November through March.  The busiest month for tourism in Cayucos, CA, US is June, July and August. Prices for hotels and flights will be most expensive during these months.

Area Attractions

Estero Bluffs State Park, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesEstero Bluffs State Park

The purpose of the Estero Bluffs SP, in San Luis Obispo County, is to preserve and protect a rich, diverse and particularly scenic area of the Pacific Ocean coast, with sea stacks and intertidal areas, a substantial area of wetlands, low bluffs and coastal terraces punctuated by a number of perennial and intermittent streams, and containing a pocket cove and beach at Villa Creek. The property’s rich diversity of habitat types includes marine, intertidal, estuarine, riverine, coastal salt marsh, freshwater marsh, coastal foredune, coastal and riparian scrub and grassland, collectively providing habitat for a number of endangered species, including the snowy plover.

Cayucos State Beach, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesCayucos State Beach

Cayucos State Beach is right on the waterfront in the town of Cayucos, California. The Cayucos Pier is a popular old wooden fishing pier that juts out from the beach and has been doing so since it was built in 1875 by Captain James Cass. “Cass’ Wharf” is open for public fishing without a license day or night.  The pier has excellent views of the town, the beach, the rolling hills, and even Morro Rock in the distance to the south. Just north of the pier is Cayucos Creek which flows across the sand at times. The slope of the beach is gradual so you can wade into the surf if you can stand the cold water.

Harmony Headlands State Park, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesHarmony Headlands State Park

Harmony Headlands SP is a 784 acre coastal park located approximately 5 minutes north of the coastal community of Cayucos in San Luis Obispo County on Highway One.  The park is open for day use hiking from 6am to sunset.  A one and a half mile trail from the parking lot extends west to coastal marine terrace grassland with steep hills and panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean. There are no services available other than a portable restroom next to a small historic ranch house near the beginning of the trail. Cell phone service is sparse.

Cayucos Pier, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesCayucos Pier

Cayucos Pier is located near the north end of Estero Bay, with a creek to the north. The shoreline, which is a mix of sand and rocks, frames a 953-feet-long pier. Popular as a fishing spot, surfperch, skate, white croaker, occasional starry flounder, halibut, sardines and mackerel have all been caught from this location. Cayucos State Beach, adjacent to the pier, is the northernmost beach in California with grunion runs. The sandy beach has picnic facilities and the pier is lit for night fishing.

 

Point San Luis Lighthouse, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesPoint San Luis Lighthouse

Founded in 1890, the Point San Luis Light Station has served as the beacon over San Luis Bay for 128 years. From it induction under the United States Lighthouse Board, then the Lighthouse Service, and lastly as being under the auspice of the U.S. Coast Guard, the Point SLO Light Station has had a varied and exciting past.  The Coast Guard still maintains a light at the station, an active Vega VLB 44-2.5 light, which blinks one second on/four seconds off, every night, and is visible up to 17 miles away. The rest of the station is operated as a historic site open to visitors who can reach the property on our trolley “Lucy,” by hiking with the Pecho Coast Trail Guides, or by kayaking to Whalers Beach. The park is open from sunup to sundown.

Things to Do

Central Coast Outdoors, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesCentral Coast Outdoors

Kayak, bike and hike Morro Bay, San Luis Obispo, Paso Robles, Big Sur and the Central Coast. They specialize in incredible California Central Coast outdoors tours and trips for individual travelers, small group tours or large group tours kayaking, biking or hiking in their natural playground.  For more information call 805-528-1080, or visit them on the web at Central Coast Outdoors.

Chablis Cruises, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesChablis Cruises

Chablis is a unique, 50-foot, two-story riverboat that graces the gentle waters of beautiful Morro Bay Harbor. The plushly decorated interior with its panoramic windows and rooftop deck make it the perfect setting for parties, business meetings, bridal showers, weddings, receptions, and events of all kinds. A cruise on Chablis will be a lasting memory. Their weekly Champagne Brunch is an event to be enjoyed by all. For more information call 805-772-2128, or visit them on the web at Chablis Cruises.

Sub Sea Tours & Kayaks, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesSub Sea Tours & Kayaks

They offer bay cruise offering above water and below water viewing, humpback whale watching, and gray whale watching. They also offer self-guided tours in the bay with stand-up paddle boards, canoes, and kayaks.  ?For more information call 805-772-9463, or visit them on the web at Sub Sea Tours & Kayaks.

Lost Isle Adventures, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesLost Isle Adventures

Take a guided harbor tour of beautiful Morro Bay aboard the Lost Isle. Enjoy scenic vistas and wildlife viewing in comfort with a full bar and tropical drink menu.  For more information call 805-771-9337, or visit them on the web at Lost Isle Adventures.

Morro Bay Stand Up Paddleboarding, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesMorro Bay Stand Up Paddleboarding

They are a full service retail shop dedicated to stand up paddling. They have a SUP rental operation that runs 7 days a week by reservation. MBSUP is an Academy of Surfing Instructors Accredited SUP School and they offer beginner to advanced stand up paddle lessons. They are the Central Coast’s authorized dealer for Infinity SUP, POP Paddleboards, Boardworks, and Starboard.  For more information call 805-225-7967, or visit them on the web at Morro Bay Stand Up Paddleboarding.

Best Rated Restaurants

$-Inexpensive $$-Moderate $$$-Pricey $$$$-Ultra High End

$$ – $$$  Sea Shanty

Located right off of South Ocean Avenue,  Sea Shanty  has  some of the best locally caught seafood in Cayucos  and is welcoming to our four legged friends.  Enjoy a burger or classic fish and chips with some local beer or wine, and top it off with some of their famous desserts.  For more information call 805-995-3272, or visit them on the web at Sea Shanty.

$$ – $$$  Schooners Wharf

Schooners Wharf is one of the best restaurants for seafood and cocktails on the Central Coast and has an extraordinary view of the beach and Cayucos Pier. Be sure to make a reservation because this restaurant fills up quickly. Between their great food, views, cocktails and reasonable prices there is no way you can lose!  For more information call 805-995-3883, or visit them on the web at Schooners Wharf.

$  A Deli and Pieman Pies

This place is perfect if you’re in the mood for a delicious, hearty breakfast or lunch. A Deli and Pieman Pies is famous for their build your own omelets and their pot pies with warm and delicious crusts. And if those don’t fill you up, they also have an assortment of pies for your enjoyment.  For more information call 805-995-1804, or visit them on the web at A Deli and Pieman Pies.

$$ – $$$  Duckie’s Chowder House

Duckie’s is a great place to visit, relax and enjoy the flavor of a small California beach town called Cayucos. They serve outstanding seafood, sandwiches, beer and wine. But the chowder is everyone’s favorite!  For more information call 805-995-2245, or visit them on the web at Duckie’s Chowder House.

$$ – $$$  The Cass House Grill

The Grill at the Cass House offers a menu using selectively sourced ingredients from the bounty of the Central Coast. They source from local farms, the Cass House Garden, and familiar purveyors who share their appetite for food made with care. They invite you to gather in the pavilion and enjoy a meal prepared with seasonal ingredients complemented by the flavors of our wood burning hearth.  For more information call 805-995-1014, or visit them on the web at The Cass House Grill.

Best Bars

Full Moon Tasting Room Wine Bar & Bistro, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesFull Moon Tasting Room – Wine Bar and Bistro

Start your night out at Full Moon Wine Bar and Bistro, where they showcase local wines and knowledge to guests without the hassle of driving to multiple wineries. Their visitors enjoy hand selected boutique wines from Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, Santa Barbara and surrounding areas, as well as some highlights from around the world. Share some of the handmade dips, cheeses, tapas of meats and other specials while enjoying a comfortable European-inspired atmosphere with an ocean view.  For more information call 805-995-0095, or visit them on the web at Full Moon Tasting Room – Wine Bar and Bistro.

Old Cayucos Tavern & Card Room, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesOld Cayucos Tavern & Card Room

Historic tavern on old Pacific Coast Highway 1. Pass through the swinging doors located just beyond the hitching posts and wagon wheels to be taken back to 1906. Upon entering, grab a drink, check out the murals, and make your way back to the poker room. Happy hour M-F and on Fridays and Saturday’s live music (8 PM), dancing and Texas Hold’em starts around 9 pm.  For more information call 805-995-3209, or visit them on the web at Old Cayucos Tavern & Card Room.

Schooners, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesSchooners

Located in picturesque Cayucos, California, Schooners restaurant and bar has offered guests an unforgettable dining experience since 1993. Embracing a nautical theme reminiscent of the early history of the Central Coast sailors and fishermen, Schooners boasts the best ocean views of any restaurant in the area. Gaze into the deep blue and enjoy your favorite cocktail with their famous calamari strips or ahi egg rolls.  Happy Hour Monday-Thursday 3pm-6pm & Sunday 8pm-Close.  $2 off drafts, $5 house wine, $8 Bloody Mary, Margarita or Long Island.  For more information call 805-995-3883, or visit them on the web at Schooners.

The Libertine Pub, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesThe Libertine Pub

The Libertine Brewing Company has a number of locations through out the Central Coast region. Serving unique and delicious barrel aged wild ales has been their priority since the beginning. Their new locations have built on that pursuit by offering incredible beers from all over the world with tasty locally sourced fare to compliment!  For more information call 805-995-, or visit them on the web at The Libertine Pub.

Cafe Della Via, Cayucos Beach CA, best restaurants in Cayucos, best bars in Cayucos, best hotels in Cayucos, things to do in Cayucos, Cayucos beaches, California beaches, Central California BeachesCafe Della Via

Cafe della Via offers a little touch of Italy on the Central Coast. Not only do they offer a wide variety of traditional and fusion dishes, but they are also proud to host a handcrafted list of excellent wines to enjoy alongside your meal. From the moment you step through the door and throughout your entire dining experience, they hope you feel welcomed and just like family.  For more information call 805-995-, or visit them on the web at Cafe Della Via.

Best Hotels

Cayucos Sunset Inn

Come experience the true meaning of indulgence at the AAA-rated Four Diamond Cayucos Sunset Inn. From the moment you step through the large double doors onto the gleaming hardwood floors, you will be immersed in décor inspired by the French countryside, interspersed with tropical accents. Linger in the afternoon on the patio outside the dining room to watch the sun set while sampling their complimentary hors d’oeuvres and tasting carefully selected local wines.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Cayucos Sunset Inn.

On The Beach Bed & Breakfast

On The Beach Bed & Breakfast is a boutique hotel with easy access to Cayucos State Beach and the historic Cayucos Pier. The specially designed gourmet kitchen is home to the famous breakfast recipes dished up by chef Maureen Handshy. Hot breakfast is served every morning, evening wine and cheese socials feature special customized foods from the kitchen that pair with the selected wines. There’s also a communal deck with a hot tub.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit On The Beach Bed & Breakfast.

Pier View Suites

Pier View Suites is the premier beach-side boutique hotel of Cayucos, a coastal community half way between Los Angeles and San Francisco known as “California’s last small beach town”. It has gained notoriety among both international travelers and local explorers for its remarkably spacious bungalow-style accommodations, luxuriously-furnished ocean view balconies, and superb guest service. Owned and operated as a family business, Pier View Suites continues to provide personalized hospitality for nightly, weekly, and even monthly visitors.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Pier View Suites.

Shoreline Inn on the Beach

Welcome to Cayucos Shoreline Inn, the only beachfront hotel between Monterey and Pismo Beach that’s right on the water. Family owned and operated since 1980, they’re dedicated to ensuring that each and every one of their guests has a stay that exceeds their expectations.  All of the rooms have views of the pier, sand and surf. Shoreline Inn offers direct beach access. They welcome your furry family members as all the rooms are pet friendly, even during our Continental Breakfast or for walks on their leash-free beach.  For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Shoreline Inn on the Beach.

Cayucos Beach Inn

Just one block from one of Central California’s most uncrowded beaches on Estero Bay, Cayucos Beach Inn is a quiet respite halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Embrace the laid-back charm of this coastal haven as you unwind in spacious accommodations with home-like amenities like refrigerators and flat-screen TVs. Greet every day with a deluxe continental breakfast, or enjoy a family cookout in their outdoor barbecue and picnic area. Surrounded by scenic hills, pristine beaches and many popular attractions, their inviting hotel captures the warm spirit of Cayucos. For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room, visit Cayucos Beach Inn.

30 Comments

  1. Garen

    My girl friend has been bugging me to go kayaking and scuba diving for years. We may actually have enough money in a couple months or so. I have looked at scuba diving equipment and I know it can get kind of expensive. How much does it cost to rent scuba diving equipment?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Rental equipment prices can vary and it greatly depends on which equipment you rent. But on average think about $50 per person for rental. If you charter a boat for diving, sometimes it will be included in the price. It is a blast and certainly not too highly priced. Thanks for visiting Cayucos Beach CA.

      Reply
  2. Christen

    My sister lives in California, and I have visited many times, but hate to say that I have not seen many beaches at all there. On my next visit to see her, I think the Cayoucos beach sounds like a wonderful option! Thanks for sharing this unknown (at least to me) gem 🙂

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are so welcome Christen. This whole area has hidden gems. You will have a wonderful time exploring and relaxing. Thanks for visiting Beach Travel Destinations.

      Reply
  3. Daniel

    The state of my dream Cali, I’ve never been there but I will for sure. Definitely, you have made a great review detailing bars, restaurant… I love fishing and it’ll be a big pleasure to fish there.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Oh, you will really enjoy the fishing here. The area is great for fishing, and of course beautiful beaches and so much to see. Thanks for visiting Cayucos Beach CA.

      Reply
  4. Jens

    Coming from europe I know a lot of people including myself with a long list of places they want to visit while traviling through the USA and especially along the coast. Cayucos Beach has just made his way onto my list 🙂

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great, central California is a great area to vacation to. So much diversity and beauty. If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to ask. Thanks for reading about Cayucos Beach CA.

      Reply
  5. nicole

    This sounds fabulous, I was in LA way back in 2009 and ran out of time to explore the central coast, even though I had heard so many fantastic things (Santa Barbara!) So I plan to bring the family back in the next few years and will be putting Cayucos Beach on a must see list. 300 Days of summer sounds amazing, and so many great attractions to visit and enjoy. Thanks for compiling this list.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, it is wonderful. You and your family will have a wonderful time in Cayucos. Thanks for visiting Beach Travel Destinations.

      Reply
  6. Sammy

    Wow, this sounds like paradise! Didn’t know there was such an unspoilt place along that stretch of coast. I usually try to avoid the tourist hotspots when going on holiday although that’s not always possible. If I go to Cayucos in spring or autumn, I should have perfect conditions there. I just find it really amazing how much you can do there, so you don’t have to make the tough decision whether to go to a water sport destination or a national park for hiking – you can do all of it there.
    I think I might go there for my next autumn vacation and take my family. Do you think it’s a good place for teenagers as well? And which hotel do you think would be most suitable – do they all accept guests under 18?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      My teenage son loves visiting California. But he loves to do water sports, surf and play at the beach. So if your teenagers like this sort of stuff, they will have a blast. All hotels listed accept guests under 18. All of the hotels I have listed are the top hotels in the Cayucos area, so it would be hard to pick a favorite. But next time I visit, I plan on staying at the Pier View Suites. Thanks for stopping by Sammy.

      Reply
  7. Apoorva

    What a beautiful beach it is! I have not visited California yet. But when I’ll plan to visit here with my family, I’m going add this beach in my list.
    You have explained here everything about hotels, activities, bars, attractions. It’ll surely help us plan our stay at Cayucos Beach. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I am glad you enjoyed reading and learning about Cayucos Beach CA. It is a beautiful part of central California. Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  8. Jesse A

    I grew up in Oregon and never been to California. Next summer I am putting a road trip together to take my Jeep and family on the Rubicon Trail and visit a number of beaches south along the coast. This post has definitely helped guide my where-to-go’s. Thank you -Jesse

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are welcome, and boy you will have so much fun! Being a fellow Jeep owner, I know that driving along the California and Oregon coast would be so much fun! Thanks for stopping by and reading about Cayucos Beach CA.

      Reply
  9. Pablo

    You have unveiled a great destination here, and you have nailed it also, by providing all the information needed, from where to stay to what to do, places to visit etc.
    You are definitely the Travel Consultant to go to when it comes to going on a trip!
    Thank you, Leah, as usual!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Pable for visiting Cayucos Beach CA and taking the time to leave me comments. You will not be disappointed in a vacation to the wonderful coastal community of Cayucos!

      Reply
  10. Robert M Doyle

    There is so much to see in California! The state has such a long coastline. The Harmony Headlands State Park seems so scenic and placid. I would love to walk along the beach there and visit the ranch house. So much marine life and trails to see too. I have some family out in California. Perhaps one day I will see it. Thanks again for sharing another great beach!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Well if you have family in California and you have not visited this area, you definitely must put it on your bucket list to do. You will love the beauty and the wonderful beach here.

      Reply
  11. CobusvdM

    Wow, reading this, I really feel the urge to go on vacation.
    You make Cayucos Beach California very inviting as a holiday destination.
    Excellent description of the area attractions and things to do. Exactly the info that I’m always looking for when scouting around for holiday destinations.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Cheers 🙂

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Glad you enjoyed reading about Cayucos Beach CA. Truly a great area to enjoy the natural beauty of the state and the wonderful beaches. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  12. Mick Krug

    There is virtually no city noise, no traffic, no pollution and no crime in Cayucos, amazing. That is good as far as tourism goes. According to the video, it looks like Cayucos is a great place to surf. Are homes located on the beach or are they hotels? Hard to tell. Great weather all year round. Very peaceful place to take a vacation especially in California where it is difficult to get away from the crowds.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are going to find homes and hotels on the beach. There is a mix of both. Yes, this place is hard to beat…so peaceful, beautiful, and then you have the great beaches 🙂 Thanks for visiting Cayucos Beach CA.

      Reply
  13. Vicki

    Leahrae. I just want to pack my bags and head on over for a holiday. I would love to sing in the Old Cayucos Tavern so might have to do some marketing on how to get me there
    This is such a great place and a must visit for me
    Thankyou

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Wow, that would be so cool to sing in the Old Cayucos Tavern! And then to just enjoy the whole area with the beauty and the beaches. Would definitely make a great vacation for you! Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  14. shalisha alston

    What?? No city noise, no traffic, no pollution and no crime in Cayucos? Never heard of such a thing. Every time I read one of your posts, you describe it in such a way that I feel like I’m there. I love that it has mild winters and not-too-hot summers. I’ve always wanted to go Kayaking, so this would be a great place to do it.

    Deli and Pieman Pies sounds like my kind of place, cheap, with a variety of hearty foods. Thanks for the great review.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are so welcome Shalisha and thank you for visiting Cayucos Beach CA. I know, it has everything and as a bonus, nothing to destroy the beauty and peacefulness. The Deli and Pieman Pies is a great choice too 🙂

      Reply
  15. Eric

    Cayucos Beach California is certainly a place that sounds interesting. I like that long pier and can imagine fishing there with no worries or thoughts about the big cities which or off in the distance. What I am wondering is whether or not there are any grills close to the pier for a quick lunch or dinner. You mentioned picnic facilities but not what those included.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      It is a wonderful and interesting coastal beach destination! Unfortunately, you won’t find grills close to the pier. Your quick lunch or dinner is going to be something brought along for the cooler 🙂 Thanks for visiting Cayucos Beach CA.

      Reply

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