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SLO County Sights That Will Make Students Say “WOW”

After a quiet summer in San Luis Obispo, we’re more than happy to welcome new and returning Cal Poly students back to our coastal college town as the annual Week of Welcome (WOW) carries on throughout this week. WOW gives students the perfect opportunity to explore their new home on the Central Coast before the hustle and bustle of the new school year begins, often including activities like hiking, kayaking, shopping downtown, and much more. With so much to see in such a short week, we’ve put together a list of SLO sights that will make new students say “WOW!”

Students—as you explore the area, don’t forget to use #CentralCoasting on your Instagram posts to be entered for the chance to win a 1-night stay at a Martin Resorts property! Come Parent’s Weekend or Graduation, that hotel room could come in handy!

Pirate’s Cove

Located just between Avila Beach and Shell Beach, you’ll find SLO County’s one and only clothing-optional beach, known as Pirate’s Cove. While that alone makes Pirate’s Cove one of the most interesting sights to see, the cave and hidden sea-arch are what make this spot really special. Give yourself some time to walk along the small trails along Cave Landing and explore the bluffs, providing exceptional views of our favorite stretch of coastline.

Bixby Bridge

Big Sur’s Bixby Bridge is a little further from campus, but well worth the drive up California’s scenic Highway 1. Bixby Bridge is Big Sur’s version of the Golden Gate, and probably the most iconic feature of the State Park, as it is exposure on Instagram grows by the day. Soaring 260 feet above a steep canyon carved by Bixby Creek, this is one of the highest bridges of its kind in the world, and it’s located right in your new backyard! Because of recent road closures, Bixby can only be reached from the North, so plan accordingly.

Morro Rock

As you may have heard in Finding Dory, Morro Rock is truly “The Jewel of Morro Bay, California.” This 23 million-year-old has served as a navigational landmark for seafaring travelers for years as it stood the most visible among the other peaks of the Nine Sisters volcanic chain. Today, Morro Rock is recognized as a State Historic Landmark and bird sanctuary. For this reason, you can’t climb the rock, but you’re encouraged to go kayak around it or stroll along the beach near its base.

Oceano Dunes

At the Oceano Dunes, you’ll feel the sand between your toes, behind your ears, in your hair…just about everywhere! These local sand dunes are actually recognized as the finest, most extensive coastal dunes remaining in California, and they’re just about 15-20 minutes away from Cal Poly, just beyond Pismo Beach! Read this blog for ideas on how to spend a day on this impressive playground.

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