California · Road Trip · USA

California Coastal Road Trip: Part 3 Paso Robles to San Jose

We did not know Paso Robles is famous for its vineyards. It was only when we took Green Valley Road on our way to Hearst Castle we found that the place is full of vineyards and a lot of places offer wine tasting sessions. Although it was not a season for plantation we took a stop at Donati Family vineyard for wine tasting.

Donati Family vineyard

Hearst Castle was another 30 mins drive on Green Valley Road. Drive on Green Valley is amazing and there are a lot of vista points in between. We stopped at one of them in between to click some photos.

We reached Hearst Castle at around 12:30, there are different kinds of tour offered to explore Hearst Castle. It is preferred to book the tours before your visit as the tickets get sold really fast. We were lucky to get 2 cancelled tickets of Grand Room Tour. Grand Room tour is what they suggest first-time visitors and along with it comes a ticket of Hearst Castle Theater which gives the complete background of how and when the Castle was built.

I had never thought of visiting a Castle is US not because I don’t like them but I had not heard of any famous Castle before and I had not expected that Castles is the US would be so grand and beautiful. Hearst Castle is situated at a hill near San Simon and you get to see this amazing view of hills and Pacific from the gardens.

There are 4 rooms which the tours cover and apparently the dining hall in Harry Potter is inspired from the dining room of this Castle. Once the rooms are covered you are free to explore the gardens and 2 pools which is main highlight of the Castle. There is an open-air Neptune Pool which is just amazing, the location, size of the pool and architecture around it is simply mesmerising and another is an indoor pool build in Roman style. Both the pools are very famous but unfortunately they are not open to public. The whole tour was around 2 hours, it took 1 hour for the guided tour and another 1 hour to explore the garden.

Hearst Castle was definitely an interesting experience, it is maybe not a must visit if you are visiting California for a few days but if you are live in California its definatily a must go.

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