Where to stay
6240 Moonstone Beach Drive
Great location, good rooms with fireplaces, simple breakfast included, $100-$295.
1215 Ysabel St., Paso Robles
Simple but super clean, good-size rooms, swimming pool, from $100.
Where to eat
Moonstone Beach Bar & Grill
6550 Moonstone Beach Drive
Yummy pasta, seafood, and steak dishes at decent prices, with inexpensive local wines, from $13.75 (lunch) to $30.95 (dinner market price).
442 Slo San Simeon Road
A hop from Hearst Castle, wine tasting room, huge sandwiches.
What to do
750 Hearst Castle Road
Gorgeous grounds, inspiring interiors, remarkable stories of Hearst. See the movie, take at least one tour, adults $25, children $12, slightly higher prices at night.
Elephant Seals of Piedras Blancas
Highway 1, seven miles north of San Simeon
Watch for the crowds and listen for the bellowing to locate the viewing station near where scores of elephant seals laze in the sun.
Tasting rooms are everywhere, in small storefronts, warehouses, and strip malls.