This post originally appeared on Yahoo! Travel.
We’ve all spent some time California dreamin’ at one point or another -- and who can blame us? The state has just about everything, including gorgeous natural scenery, sunshine, and miles upon miles of beautiful coastline. We especially love the idea of cozying up in one of the state’s coastal inns. To us, a trip that involves whale-watching, walking along rugged cliffs in misty mornings, exploring quaint towns, and relaxing in a rustic-luxe cottage with a glass of wine sounds like heaven. At many of these eight spots, it’s possible to do just that.
The cozy, cabin-like rooms at this upscale inn have paneling in knotty pine and wood-burning stoves. Binoculars are provided for whale-watching, which guests can do from Adirondack chairs in the garden or from their own private, ocean-view decks. The delicious, free breakfast with homemade baked goods, bottle of wine upon check-in, and afternoon tea with brownies complete the experience at this intimate property.
This lovely seaside inn in posh Sausalito has 31 sophisticated rooms, all with binoculars and bay views. Most rooms have decks and fireplaces, and thoughtful extras such as free continental breakfast and free wine and cheese receptions help ensure guests feel cared for.
This charming complex of wood-shingled buildings overlooks the bay, and is located just off of California’s scenic Highway 1. It’s not fancy, but it is relaxing, and nautical décor runs throughout the property. In season, the restaurants here offer special monthly events such as Dinners with the Winemaker and Crab Feeds, and the property’s beautiful rugged surroundings were once captured on film in Alfred Hitchock’s “The Birds.”
It can be hard to find a hotel in the Monterey area offering both ocean views and a central tourist location, but the Spindrift Inn delivers just that. It’s right on Cannery Row, and guests can expect pampering extras such as breakfasts delivered to the room and a daily wine and cheese reception. Romantic, feminine rooms have fireplaces, and in those with ocean views, guests can use binoculars to spot sea lions and dolphins.
This 23-room hotel is the only waterfront option in Tiburon, and the hotel’s deck has lovely views of the bay. All of the upscale boutique touches one might expect are offered: breakfast delivery to the rooms, afternoon tea, and evening wine and cheese. The modern rooms have fireplaces, and some have balconies with water views.
This motel-style property is the most popular budget pick in Pismo Beach — and for good reason. The sweeping ocean views from the pool and from every room, and direct beach access (via a steep staircase) are major draws. Rooms are basic, but the price is right.
This quiet hotel in quaint Cambria, off of scenic Highway 1, has cottage-style buildings set amid beautiful grounds. Though it’s not on the water, it’s not far, and it’s under a 20-minute drive to Hearst Castle and the Elephant Seal Vista Point. Some suites have fireplaces and private decks, and there’s a lounge with live music performances. The restaurant serves cuisine incorporating organic produce from the gardens.
This charming beachside bed and breakfast just outside of Santa Barbara has attractive coastal style on the outside (shaker siding, white decks) and a homey, country look on the inside (four-poster beds, floral prints). Amenities include ocean-view balconies, jetted tubs, and fireplaces. It sits right on Route 101 and overlooks the Pacific.
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