Personally, I’m not the most romantic guy. Sitting at the 50 yard-line at Lambeau Field in Green Bay is what is romantic to me. Still, after almost a decade of living in Paso Robles, and more than 40 years of visiting this unique Central Coast town, I’ve come to realize there is some special qualities about El Paso de Robles (pass of the oaks).
Look out Paris
However, don’t take my word for it. The relatively new women’s online magazine Bustle, states Paso Robles, California, has little equal when it comes to being a great, if unexpected, romantic getaway … in all the world.
The magazine asks: What Are The Most Romantic Cities? Wine country on the Central Coast may not be the first idea that comes to mind when thinking romantically. I mean, wasn’t this a dusty little out-of-the-way town between the giant metropolis’ of Los Angeles and San Francisco? The history of this area, is more about cattle, grain and almond orchards than anything quixotic, like say Paris. Well, Paso Robles has no airs about itself and certainly will never be like the ‘City of Light’, but that’s part of the attraction to this still somewhat quiet little town.
From wine-tasting, bike-riding, cultural attractions and the ever-present rolling hills and back country, the delightfully reserved atmosphere makes Paso Robles, or Paso as locals call it, the magical place that others are starting to find out about. Or as Bustle states:
“Known for its warm hospitality and rolling hills, Paso Robles is an unexpectedly romantic city and the perfect destination for romantic getaway. Whether interested in outdoor recreation, wine tasting or cultural attractions, Paso has a plethora of activities for you and your partner to do together. Nestled in the Santa Lucia Mountains of the Central California Coast, the city is home to expansive vineyards ideal for an afternoon bike ride or culinary treat. Couples will love strolling through the beautiful City Park – complete with majestic oaks and a picturesque gazebo – before enjoying an intimate dinner at one of Paso Robles’ renowned restaurants. “
Paso is ranked number two behind the oldest city in the United States, St. Augustine, Florida. Rounding out the top five are: Galena, Illinois – San Sebastian, Spain – Galway, Ireland.
The news and entertainment online magazine was started the year before last by Bleacher Report founder, Bryan Goldberg. Very briefly, I wrote for Bleacher Report, which is a website for sports. Maybe there’s some odd symmetry here, but I digress.
The website states that everyone has the own idea of perfection in what a romantic place would be, whether it’s:
“… beautiful cafes, the castles and landscapes that seemingly time has forgotten. Sharing a bottle of wine in a classic European city or in the rustic American woodlands can make you forget time as well, and just spend some time enjoying together.”
There are dozens and dozens of bed and breakfasts location in Paso as well as hotels. The Paso Robles Inn is one of the most historic landmarks in town and offers all amenities, while sitting across the street from the cities main park. The Hotel Cheval offers quiet elegance in the middle of town, while La Bellasera at the south edge of town, gives you a head-start towards all of the hundreds of wineries in the region.
Paso is located nearly four hours north of Los Angeles and nearly that far south from San Francisco. It sits right off Highway 101 and is about 20 miles inland from the Pacific Ocean in San Luis Obispo County.
I should note my parents vacationed in Paso on their wedding anniversary for years before finally moving here permanently.
Unpretentious by comparison to much more popular wine regions like Napa and Sonoma, this mainly untapped vacation destination, which was voted the number one wine region of the world back in late 2013, is comparatively untapped by travelers. However, as accolades and notoriety such as this latest tribute, will likely make Paso more popular in the years to come.
What Are The Most Romantic Cities? It appears romantics love Paso Robles.
Daryle W. Hier