Step Back in Time

Monthly Archives: December 2014

Step Back in Time

Take a step back in time and visit the Cambria of yesteryear at the Historical Society’s Walking Tour. Learn about Cambria’s fascinating history deeply rooted in the old west. This coastal hamlet was not always the quaint artist’s community that it is today. Established in the 1800s, Cambria’s harsh landscape and rugged terrain made settling here a challenge. It took a special breed of pioneer to harness the Wild West. Early Cambrians were some of the original frontiersmen whose grit, tenacity and determination helped shape the Cambria of today.

With early roots in farming, ranching, mining and the lumber industries, Cambria grew to become a bustling hub of the Central Coast as region’s center for supplies and services. By 1880, Cambria had grown to be the second biggest town in San Luis Obispo County. But the growth was not without its challenges. From the great fire of 1889 to the sinking of the Montebello by a Japanese submarine during WWII, Cambria has overcome adversity and grown into a thriving coastal community.

The Historical Society’s self-guided tour will allow you to see East Village through the eyes of early Cambrians. Visit the historic buildings and lavish homes of Cambria’s founding families, restored and now operating as thriving businesses. You’ll learn the history of some the area’s oldest structures.

Tour the San Luis Obispo County’s first Catholic Church, the Santa Rosa Chapel and Cemetery, where stars like Bing Crosby and Gary Cooper attended services as guests of William Randolph Hearst. Stop by The Blue Bird Inn, originally the residence of prominent Cambria merchant George Lull and his wife Mary. It’s rumored that Mary’s ghost can still be seen roaming the halls at night. Or check out Camozzi’s Bar and Hotel (once known as Mariano’s Saloon), the site where bartender Tony Mariano was shot and killed for slapping his neighbor’s face after an argument over fence lines. From land speculators to bootleggers to professional gamblers, Cambria’s past is full of colorful characters that bring the Wild West to life.

Are you a history buff? Try your hand at our Cambria Historical Crossword Puzzle!


Over the years, the picturesque village of Cambria has grown into a favorite destination for a seaside retreat. From past presidents to glamorous stars Hollywood’s bygone era, Cambria has been host to society’s elite and travelers from around the world. The walking tour is a must see for anyone interested in California history.

For information on the Cambria Historical Society’s Walking Tour, visit

Holiday Happenings

Scenic Highway 1 Destination for Festivities

November 29 through December 31

The small village of Cambria, CA is readying itself to celebrate in a big way as the picturesque town along Highway 1 decks out with a bevy of lights, festive events, decorations, deals and discounts November 29th through December 31st.  This month long celebration that will light up the town and feature lots of fun events including live music, gifts, raffles and discounts at many lodgings, shops and galleries.   For holiday shopping in a unique, relaxed atmosphere, discounts, and a chance to win drawings and prizes join us for “CHRISTMAS IN CAMBRIA  2014.”  Call 972-3724  Website:

3rd Annual Cambria Christmas Market

Inspired by traditional European Christmas markets, with German food and drink, local craft vendors, live music, and spectacular holiday displays featuring more than one million lights. Fun for all ages! Wednesdays through Sundays from November 28 – December 21

 Location: Cambria Pines Lodge – 2905 Burton Drive, Cambria CA
Hours: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm 
Contact: 805-927-6109 
Web site:
Cost: Adults $5; kids 12 and under free.

Highway Closures

Highway 1 Closure

If you're heading to the Central Coast, be sure to be mindful of the stretch of Highway 1, 21 miles north of Cambria. Caltrans is busy with a major construction project to make traveling along the stunning Pacific Coast Highway a safer journey.

Highway 1 Storm Repair Along the Big Sur Coast Due to multiple active slides, State Route 1 is now closed between Ragged Pt. (SLO 72.87) and just south of Nepenthe (Mon 44).

Worried about Highway 1 Road Closures? Cambria and Hearst Castle are easily accessible from Highway 46 West from 101 South of Paso Robles or from northbound Highway 1 from the city of San Luis Obispo. Travelers from the north can easily take Highway 101 as an alternate route to Highway 1, which reduces travel time to Cambria by about 25 minutes.

For the latest road closure information visit the Caltrans website.