It all happened within a span of 6 hours, I found myself with an accidental four-day-weekend. At that point, we don't ask questions ;)
I called Marco, explained the situation, and within 20 minutes we picked a destination and had our bags packed! He swung by to pick me up Friday morning and we sped north through the hills.
Just look at that big open sky!
We arrived in Monterey in the early evening, just in time to order some fish and chips on the docks.
Fun idea: I bought us each a disposable camera before we left so we could capture some memories and they'd be a surprise until developed! So we took a photo and made off for a nearby picnic table with our boxes of food.
He hates these photos but I think they're cute :)
We made it back to the little hotel in time for him to catch his Lakers game. The room itself was nothing worth photographing, just somewhere to sleep when we weren't exploring!
Day 1 of our grand adventure and we woke up early and went for crepes. Marco's never had a crepe before so we ordered 3 different ones to share. We both agreed the egg, ham and cheese was our favorite.
The best part of a spontaneous road trip is that you have no time to make plans. We jumped in the car and headed off down the Pacific Coast Highway. Look at the views!
Once we left the cliffside and dove into the trees, we turned around and backtracked to a strip we'd seen other people parking at. We followed a couple of locals down through some bushes and found ourselves on the quietest and most beautiful stretch of sand. I was shocked to discover it was a state beach and there was nobody around.
We sat down and stayed for a while.
Neither of us had planned for a beach day (and we certainly were not dressed for one) so when we eventually got up and brushed the sand off our feet, Marco turned to me and said, "I have a crazy idea."
"Do you want to have dinner in San Francisco?"
So we packed up and drove north. Then we drove across the Golden Gate Bridge. Twice. Just because we could :)
After driving across the bridge, we went to stand under it. Just because we could :)
We found a cute little ramen restaurant with TONS of people dining outside and not a soul inside, so we took a table inside and warmed up with big steaming bowls of noods. When we were done, we got back in the car and drove back to our teeny hotel in Monterey and promptly fell asleep.
Day 2: Sunday!
I love sunrises. I am definitely a morning person while Marco is absolutely not. I am therefore eternally grateful that he woke up in the dark at 5am to take me somewhere I could see the sun rise. Being from the East Coast, I love a good oceanfront view, and being from the East Coast I forgot that the sun doesn't "rise" in California. Everything just gets...brighter... until the sun finally shows up from behind a hill.
No matter! I still loved how quiet our spot was and how utterly *stunning* the views were.
I was able to put my new sweater to use and bring out the blanket scarf.
Now desperately trying to stay awake, we drove farther down the coast looking for sunrise views.
This was my favorite, everything turned gold.
We pulled over to inspect some cliffs and goof off (re: my power stance).
Mostly we were trying to pass the time until 10am. Yesterday we'd driven past a sign that subtly advertised lighthouse tours on the weekends. The view from the road looked like this:
Clear one day, foggy the next!
We could have skipped the lighthouse and gone back to sleep but we were invested.
It started out crazy foggy.
We saw some seals and sea lions playing in the waves below as we made our way up the cliffside with our tour group and guide.
They had some wild stories about Russian submarines off the coast during the Cold War, and some sunken aircraft carriers (in the form of a dirigible)!
We made it to the top and they showed us around the lighthouse (but not inside, because this was their first tour back since the start of Covid). The fog may have lifted but the wind certainly never relented!
I found these on the Point Sur Lighthouse facebook page. Thanks guys!
Back in the car we went straight to town to pick up a pair of burritos the size of our faces, and then went back and took a well deserved nap.
On the way home Monday we stopped in Solvang for a late lunch. You can never go wrong with a platter of sausages and infinite dipping sauces!
We were home by dinnertime :)