Our road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway continues in this second part of the USA travel series, and this time we welcome you to join us in Pismo Beach. You know, before we departed on this trip I had read that the drive along the Pacific coast on California Route 1 was considered to be one of the most scenic drives in the world, and I can now see why.
After we departed Santa Barbara in the previous part, the road took as inland for a while. We stopped in Santa Maria, but only to buy some water in a Walmart, so I didn't take my camera out. Still, even roaming the outside mall of Santa Maria was a different experience then we would have here. Eventually the road took us to Pismo Beach, and, as the name suggests, back to the open sea and beaches of the Pacific.
Pismo Beach, the Clam Capital of the WorldPismo Beach adopted the name "Clam Capital of the World" in the 1950s, though this motto is no longer used. Clamming once drew thousands of people to the beach during low tides but due to over-harvesting and the sea otters who feasts on clams, few of them are to be found. The city still holds the Clam Festival every October, complete with clam chowder competitions and a clam-themed parade. We arrived midday, so a parade was not to be found, but the sights were charming nonetheless.
The Pismo PierAnother pier waited for us here in Pismo Beach, this time a bit low scale. It didn't have any restaurants or shops on it, but that didn't take away from its charm. In fact, it was nice to be able to walk down the wide pier and admire the sights on both sides of it. It's interesting to observe the world from this place.
On one side you can see the rugged shorelines of this part of California. I love how the cliffs cut of sharply as well as the layers of stone that show inside of them. The beach here is wide and sandy and the waves of the ocean were particularly uneasy on this day. Even though the sun was out, it was very windy here.
Above: A surfer is trying to fight the current; Below: the struggle yields results, and as the surfer is riding the wave back to shore, it foams up with a deep and loud sound of the ocean that surrounds him.
Inside the town of Pismo BeachWe moved away from the pier and headed into the town itself. It was a very quiet afternoon and there were not so many people on the streets. Stillwe did talk to some of the locals here, who told us that the town is usually packed and that it has visitors throughout the whole year. It was interesting to see peoples expressions when we told them where we were from, since most of them want to know. "So where are you guys from" a lady who owns a souvenir store asks us as her dog jumps around us. "Bosnia and Herzegovina" we answer, immediately noticing the question mark above her head. "Oh wow." she says with a smile, clearly not knowing where it is. I add "It's in south Europe, close to Italy". "Oh yeah, that's great." she replies, the frozen smile now defrosted by the familiar sound of Italy. We buy a magnet there and move on. It was fun though. Throughout our journey we would talk to many people, and we would also come across people who knew where we came from.
The town is very charming, and I loved the designs and artwork of the shops and various signs. There are many photo opportunities here and I hope I could bring the feel of Pismo Beach closer.
We return to the parking lot, hop into our rental and keep on driving. We are headed for Morro Bay, and as the sun slowly starts to set, that town was going to be our stay for the night.
End of Part Two
To be continued...