The tiny town of Pescadero, just a short drive from Half Moon Bay, is a unique rural environment where you can slow down the pace of your life.
Just 14 miles south of Half Moon Bay and 2 miles from the Pacific Ocean, the town of Pescadero is part of the coast’s rural farming and ranching community. The town is small but offers restaurants, shopping, markets, farms, and oozes with local charm. The picturesque main drag features historic buildings built in the 1800s in New England style, and while it may not have views of the ocean, it does have an appealing old-fashioned vibe and enough going on to warrant a day trip detour. Make the most of your visit with this list of top spots.
Here are some examples of what you'll find just 20 minutes from Half Moon Bay on the Northern California Coast.
Año Nuevo State Park
Highway 1 south of Pescadero and Pigeon Point Lighthouse (650) 879-0227, Hours vary - see website for details. Año Nuevo is largest mainland breeding colony in the world for the northern elephant seal. Reserve ahead for guided walks.
Pigeon Point Lighthouse
A state historic park, with one of the tallest lighthouses in America. Guiding mariners since 1872, is its five-wick lard oil lamp, and first-order Fresnel lens, comprised of 1,008 prisms. The lens is 16 feet tall, 6 feet in diameter, and weighs 2,000 pounds. Admission and parking are free.
A nature preserve with various types of habitats and features four different walking trails and lots of wildlife.
While no longer holding self guided tours, the farm stand remains open and offers seasonal produce, heirloom grain and wheat flour, and other local goods including books and pottery. And of course, pies, made by their partner, Companion Bakeshop.
205 North Street, Pescadero, CA 94060 (650) 879-0480, Open Daily
Come see the irresistible and friendly goats and the results of their milk at the Cheese Shop. You can also tour the restored 1910 dairy farm with a variety of farm animals.
Sante Arcangeli Wine Tasting
Now located at Harley Farms in a rustic barn in the countryside. Make a reservation and you can experience cheeses paired with the wines.
Made in Pescadero
A gallery with custom made furniture, and art from local furniture makers and artists. This attractive space focuses on beautiful wood Craftsman, Mission Style, Arts and Crafts and Shaker styles.
Located in a historic renovated barn, this boutique offers handcrafted creative jewelry, paintings, furniture, glassware, window decor, lamps, wearable art, greeting cards, garden art, kinetic sculptures and more from a wide variety of North American artists.
Arcangeli Grocery Co (Norm's Market)
287 Stage Road, Pescadero, CA 94060 (650) 879-0147, Open Daily
A unique offering of specialty breads that are a must for any visitor, baked goods, locally grown artichokes, strawberries, brussels sprouts and mushrooms. They also have an excellent meat market and deli.
202 Stage Road, Pescadero, CA 94060 (650) 879-0464, Open Daily
A James Beard American Classic award winning restaurant and bar that dates back to the late 1800s when it was a saloon. This family run business features seafood specials and their famous artichoke soup and olallieberry pie are both a must.
This tiny and funky coffee shop offers Sightglass coffee, vintage books, automobilia magazines, vintage toys and more. Groove to the Beatles soundtrack and take in the Beatles memorabilia.
Tacqueria de Amigos
You might be surprised to learn a gas station is such a good place to eat, but it is! People come for grilled fish tacos, huge burritos, enchiladas, tostadas, tamales, chile rellenos and more. A favorite amongst local farm workers and visitors alike. It’s the perfect place to get some food to go to take to the beach.
Highway 1 Brewing Company
Seven miles south of Pescadero (and on your way to Año Nuevo State Park) you'll find this oasis among the sand dunes. Enjoy locally brewed beer in their dog and family friendly beer garden, while you chow down on grilled burgers, chicken wings, and fresh salads before heading out to Gazos Creek beach right across the street.