A June 2000 trip
to San Simeon by camera-gal
Quote: The rising cliffs and crashing waves make some of the most beautiful scenery. San Simeon is truly a relaxing place and the Hearst Castle is magical.
The gardens at the Castle are gorgeous. When we visited in early summer, the trees were blooming and the flowers were frangrant.
Half Moon Bay is the optimal picnic spot. Nothing beats the view of the ocean while snacking.
Attraction | "*Hearst Castle*"
I took the general tour in which you see one of the guest houses, the Neptune Pool, part of the grounds and part of the actual mansion. The view is astonishing. You can see for miles at the top of the hill. The ocean looks like it was painted. While the grounds are not groomed as well as they were when Hearst lived on the 'Enchanted Hill,' you can imagine how beautiful the pergola and lemon trees must have looked. When I visited in June, the flowers were blooming all around. Fountains and sculptures are at every turn.
The guest house we visited was dark and decorated in many styles. It was as if Hearst wanted to show off his collection of priceless antiques rather than try to make the guests comfortable. Just a little peek into his mind.
Adjacent to the guest house is the Neptune pool. I have yet to see a bad picture taken of this pool. Decorating the sides are ancient Greek columns. Classical sculptures are perched on the edge. The water is bright blue.
Inside the house we were given a tour of several rooms including the billiard room, the dining area, the movie theater, the main living room and, my favorite, the Roman pool. Mosaic tiles line the entire area. Intricate blue and gold patterns swirl while globular lights reflect. The 10 ft. deep pool is complete with a diving balcony. It reminded me of old movies where synchronized swimmers splash around.
The visitors center at the bottom of the hill has a gift shop. The IMAX theater shows movies related to Hearst and his castle.
Visit the website at: www.hearstcastle.org
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 1, 2000
750 Hearst Castle Road
San Simeon, California 93452
Attraction | "Hearst Castle Gardens"
William Randolph Hearst collected many priceless sculptures and displayed them on the grounds of the "Enchanted Hill". One such statue is from ancient Egyptian ruins. Others are marble copies of originals placed throughout the grounds and around the Neptune pool.
Hearst had built a pergola which covered a horse-riding trail. As an avid animal lover, it was not unusual to see zebras or cows roaming the property. The trees and gardens are carefully manicured to preserve the beauty.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 31, 2001
It's a short drive south from San Simeon. Stop while
on your way to or from the Hearst Castle. If you're
driving Highway 1 north to San Francisco, it's a good
spot to stop and stretch your legs.
We found this perfect picnic spot because we needed
somewhere to stop for lunch. You'll have a great
view of the never-ending ocean, watching the waves
crash into the huge boulders on the shore.
Watch your Doritos closely. The seagulls and other
birds stalked us. Some of them swooped in and stole
our chips. The squirrells are hungry too, but don't
feed any of the wildlife. It's strictly prohibited.
Overland Park, Kansas