This once sleepy passerby town with a name that literally means “the pass of the oaks” has now become a central spot on the California Coast. Located just a few hours north of Los Angeles and a short drive from San Francisco, Paso Robles has become a preferred destination for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the big city while still having abundant activities to choose from.
Known for its beautiful wineries and rolling hills, you might be surprised to hear that it is so much more than wine (although, trust us, it is still very much about delicious wines). From family-friendly activities, including many outdoor recreation options, to exciting museums and more than 200 wineries, we share some of the top things to do in Paso Robles.
Splash the day away at the local waterpark
If you're looking for a fun way to cool off during the hot summer months, check out the Ravine Waterpark
. This popular family-friendly destination features a lazy river, a wave pool, water slides, and many other ways to get wet and make memories. Visitors can even rent private cabanas and snacks while the little ones play the day away. It's a must-do for families to beat the heat in the summer at the waterpark, which is open from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Brighten up your visit
For a unique and unforgettable experience, head to Sensorio
, an immersive light and art installation just outside Paso Robles. This unique attraction features thousands of colorful LED lights, creating a stunning display that changes with the seasons. Visitors can stroll through the fields of lights and enjoy the beautiful scenery while listening to some relaxing zen music in the background.
Hike the Salinas River Trail
Paso Robles is surrounded by hills and mountains, making it a great place for hiking enthusiasts. The trails range from easy strolls to challenging climbs, so you will surely find one that suits your needs. Just don’t forget to pause to enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding hills and wildlife from the Salinas River Trail
Horseback ride through the countryside
Consider taking a horseback ride if you're looking for a unique way to explore the Paso Robles. Several companies in the area offer guided horseback rides to take in the stunning views of the rolling countryside. This is a great activity for horse lovers and anyone who wants to experience the area's beauty in a new way.
Pour, swirl, and sip
Paso Robles has long been known for its world-class wines, making wine tasting a must-do activity for anyone visiting the area. Wines produced in the region benefit from the Mediterranean climate's warm days and cool nights. With hundreds of wineries, there is no shortage of tasting opportunities for visitors, making it the perfect location for a wine-filled weekend getaway (or longer).
Here are some of the top wineries to visit in Paso Robles:
1. Tablas Creek Vineyard
: This family-owned winery is known for its Rhône-style wines, made using traditional French techniques. Visitors can taste their award-winning wines and snap plenty of selfies with the backdrop of their beautiful vineyards.
2. Daou Vineyards
: This winery is located on a mountaintop and offers breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Known for its full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, Daou Vineyards is a must-visit for big, bold red wine lovers.
3. Adelaida Vineyards & Winery
: Located on the rugged west side of Paso Robles, Adelaida Vineyards & Winery produces complex and elegant wines. The winery is situated on a picturesque property, and visitors can enjoy tastings in the winery's charming tasting room or on the outdoor patio.
4. J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines
: J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines is a family-owned winery producing award-winning wines for over four decades. Their spacious tasting room is the perfect place to sample their Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and other varietals.
Take to the skies in a hot air balloon
Consider taking a hot air balloon ride for a bird's eye view of the Paso Robles homes and rolling countryside. This is a great activity for couples looking for a romantic adventure or anyone who wants to experience the area's beauty from a unique perspective.
Keep little hands busy at the Children’s Museum
If you're traveling with kids, you won’t want to miss a trip to the Paso Robles Children's Museum
. Featuring hands-on exhibits that encourage learning and exploration, this interactive museum is designed for children ages 1-12. Kids can learn about science, technology, engineering, and math in a fun and engaging way.
Experience the charm of downtown
Paso Robles has a quaint downtown area with plenty of shops, restaurants, and events throughout the year. From farmers' markets to art festivals, there's always something happening in downtown Paso Robles. During the summer, one popular event is the "Music in the Park" concert series, where visitors can enjoy free live music performances at the downtown city park every Thursday evening.
Aside from the concerts, there are plenty of shops, art galleries, and restaurants to explore in downtown Paso Robles. Check out the calendar of events
to see what's happening during your visit.
Live the Paso Robles lifestyle
Paso Robles has something for everyone, so it's no wonder this hidden gem is quickly becoming a popular destination. With plenty of activities and attractions for visitors, it is easy to fall in love with the Paso Robles lifestyle.
If you are considering purchasing a second home or relocating to this beautiful area, Paso Robles homes provide a variety of price points and options. However, with many buyers looking into the Paso Robles real estate market, it can be overwhelming to navigate the process independently.
As a knowledgeable and experienced real estate agent passionate about Paso Robles homes, Hertha Wolff-Arend
can help guide you through the process and find the perfect property for your needs. With her extensive knowledge of the Paso Robles real estate market, she has established herself as a go-to for anyone interested in home ownership.
*Header photo courtesy of Unsplash