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Two of California’s Gems: Morro Bay & Hearst Castle



We browsed around Morro Bay, a pristine small town close to Hearst Castle. It was a last chain of volcanoes. The huge rock in the background, covering 50 acres at the base and 576 feet tall, is the remains of the volcano. We loved the charming town with many sailboats tied to moorings in the bay.

The plants were amazing!

We toured William Randolph Hearst's castle, a magnificent architectural structure composed of his art collection from the period of BC to the 1930's. The art was mostly ancient Roman,Greek, and Egyptian, but it housed art from all over the world. His love for art came from touring Europe at the young age of 10 with his mother. He started building the castle at the age of 56 with his architect, Julia Morgan. The castle, its grounds, and art collection were still a work in progress when he died at the age of 88.

The top of the 'cathedral' castle, composed of many bells, came from a cathedral in Spain. It was breathtaking!

This is one of 3 cottages that surrounded the castle. Mr. Hearst vacated the castle and lived in this cottage in his latter years when his health began to fail.

The outdoor pool was massive and stunning with marble statues and columns. The state recently paid $10 million to repair the pool, which is the same amount Mr. Hearst paid to build all of the properties back in the 1930'-1950's.

The views from the hilltop were outstanding! You could see the coastline in some areas. Mr. Hearst owned 250,000 acres, most of it had been purchased by his father and grandfather. He "decided to build ' a little something' because he was tired of camping in tents", he told his architect, Julia Morgan who worked with him over the next 26 years to build it all.

The indoor pool with its golden diving platform and gold tiles was spectacular! It was built under the tennis court after the tennis court was built.

Mr. Hearst loved to entertain movie stars and famous people in his home. This is the room where he received guests. He would enter from a secret door, making a grand appearance.

Choir pews from ancient cathedrals lined the walls with the secret door enclosed.

The dining room had been very lively with guests including Bob Hope and Clark Gable. Mr Hearst loved to entertain and sat in the middle of the table with his mistress, Marion Davies, seated across from him. His wife lived in New York during the years of the Hearst castle, but they never divorced. She actually inherited most everything. The estate was gifted to California in the late 1950's to be preserved for all to view and enjoy.

The tableware, actually stoneware instead of china, was a gift from his mother. It was originally used during his camping days on the hill. Notice the symbol of power housed in the glass case . Mr. Hearst owned 96 businesses including the newspaper; his salary was around $60,000 a day! ( in 1930's)!!!! He was awarded the pulitzer for journalism!

All of the art, consisting of marble statues, tapestry rugs, paintings, and decorative tiles were so detailed. So much talent from around the world went into making the remarkable estate.

The stunning flowers in the gardens, trickle of the water fountains, and fluttering of many butterflies gave us a feeling of serenity walking through the grounds with our tour guide, Kay.

I was unable to capture it in a picture, but we saw many zebras grazing with the cattle as we were leaving the estate on the bus. Mr. Hearst had many zoo animals including giraffes and buffalos. The zebras remained after the zoo portion closed.

Upon returning to our airstream, we cooked more dishes using the local produce and homemade crab ravioli that we bought at the farmers market. With Doug's assistance of chopping fruits and begetables, we enjoyed cooking and eating more California dishes without the price tag of eating out. This cooking from scratch is getting real, folks!

Crab stuffed ravioli in garlic herb sauce with parmesan cheese

California cole slaw including fresh red cabbage, green cabbage, avocado, apples, red onion, and yogurt instead of mayo

Italian chicken with mango salsa 💃

Wow Jesus! In the mist of the fog this morning we thank you for your love and for walking with us on our journey!

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k75931088
Oct 23, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Beautiful! All the modern tools today and they still can't build like back then.

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belindaodell
Oct 23, 2023
Replying to

So true! It is truly different architecture design and materials.. taking much pride in their work!

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