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Shopping, fine dining, wine tasting, and an eclectic array of lodging, picturesque Downtown Paso Robles is an essential stop on your road trip.
To ensure safety and social distancing, the Downtown City Park is now home to Paso’s acclaimed Dine in the Park Experience. Thursday through Sunday, you can grab takeout and reserve for free a private farmhouse style table in the park’s exclusive and shaded dining section. When you arrive, a concierge will bring you to your own private and sanitized table. With comfy seating, overhead bistro lights, and farmhouse style tables, the physically-distanced space provides the perfect ambiance for a night.
Amazing chefs have long been drawn to Paso Roble for its world-class wine and prized local farms. As a result, you can dine like a king or queen at every meal -- with plenty of alftresca options. If you’re in the mood for classic French fare, head to BL Brasserie, which often features fresh-caught fish specials, or Les Petites Cannailles, which is helmed by Michelin-starred chef, Julian Asseo. For Italian, Buono Tavola and Il Cortile are local favorites for quality Mediterranean dishes and robust wine lists. Spanish (and El Salvadorian) roots are on display at Chef Santos’ La Cosecha restaurant, which also has a seasonal cocktail menu.
If hankering for upscale Mexican food – and one of the best tequila and mezcal lists in California – be sure to catch a table Fish Gaucho. For classic and inventive California cuisine, Thomas Hill Organics offers a rotating seasonal menu that can’t miss. For gourmet comfort food, hit up Paso Robles’ gastropubs: Pappy McGregor’s and The Hatch. To experience the art of pairing local wine and Central Coast-style barbecue, reserve an alfresco table at Jeffry’s Wine Country BBQ.
Begin Your Road Trip to Paso Robles
Over 100 hotel and vacation rental options to choose
As you stroll around Downtown Park take time to check out Paso’s bevy of specialty stores. From boutique women’s clothing at Bijou on the Park, Jayde, AndBe Boutique and Firefly to the shoes at Sole Tree, the ladies will be busy. Divine, Kaya and Ambiance take you down Park Street for hidden treasures. Surfs up at Kahunas and Alliance Board for all your surfing, skiing, skateboarding and active clothing needs. Looking for a unique gift or local provisions for your pantry and home? Look no further than General Store.Read More
And just a few blocks of Downtown, convene, relax, shop, and taste the best of the Central Coast at The Paso Market Walk, Paso Robles’ newest addition. This open-aired marketplace features a collection of handpicked farmers, vintners, artisans and producers committed to the values and practices of sustainability. Paso Market Walk offers a gracious experience steeped in the local culture of Paso Robles.
Downtown is the focus for Paso’s vibrant art scene. Anchored by Studios on the Park, a nonprofit open studios art center that hosts 15 working artists, four galleries and has a fine art gift shop. Dale Evers Studio a few blocks over is a must stop where you may run into the famous sculptor himself.
LAKE LIFE IN WINE COUNTRY
Just a few minutes from downtown is Lake Nacimiento, known as “The Dragon” for its unique shape of waterways, coves, and winding tributaries. The lake and surrounding hills and woods are a water and nature enthusiast’s dream. Whether you want to boat, kayak, paddleboard, or hike its endless pristine trails, “Lake Naci” has you covered. Stocked with largemouth and smallmouth bass, white bass, bluegill, crappie, carp, and catfish. You can find the perfect inlet to cast your line along the lake’s 165-miles of shoreline.
The Dragon boasts year-round, and pet-friendly accommodations, including Lakeview Lodges, RV trailers, and Naci Cottage – all with scenic views of the lake. For those looking for a rustic adventure, there are seven unique campgrounds situated amongst numerous hiking trails. Whether you plan to “rough it” or want to enjoy lakeside “glamping,” you will find lodging that pleasantly accommodates your vacation.