{ best pumpkin patch : avila valley barn! }

Monday, October 15, 2012

We spent the weekend at Pismo and Avila Beach and the place is crazy bea-yooo-ti-ful.  The ocean is everywhere and totally soothes your soul.  Surrounding communities are quiet, so if you're looking for a place to party, this isn't the place to visit.  It IS, however, a spot to just kick back and relax, or take a hike on oceanic cliffs, golf, atv in sand dunes right off the shore.  Yup.  Never thought I'd be riding over sand dunes, but of course, being with my man after 10 years - not. a. surprise. when I found myself straddling an atv, head stuffed into a smelly helmet.  It was actually really awsome, even when sinking into the quicksand-like dunes every 10 minutes.  We stayed at gorgeous Dolphin Bay and just about died when I found out their swimming pool is saltwater and heated to 80 degrees F.  What i wouldn't give to have that pool in our backyard.

Best place to eat?  Splash's Cafe at Pismo Beach.  There will undoubtly be a 30-minute line out the door when you get there, but well worth the wait for their super creamy, rich and buttery clam chowder.  Oh Mother.  It is like no other.  I get a pint because a cup or bowl is too small.  We always seem to fall prey to the other items on the menu like fried oysters and fish, but honestly that clam chowder is SO rich and so yummy, it's enough, even for my hubs... and we eat every meal like it's our last!  Plus, the other items on the menu are not that great - clam chowder makes them wilt in comparison.  But, do your thing when you're there.  ENJOY!

Okay, on to the best part of the visit:  Avila Valley Barn.  We never miss stopping by on Sunday afternoon prior to heading back home to Los Angeles.  But, only in October, because I am the PUMPKIN QUEEN LOVER and in October they showcase their seasonal pumpkin patch.This pumpkin patch is beyond words and I feel I've been to quite a few patches in Southern California, some of which we've had to pay admission to get into.  Avila Valley Barn Pumpkin Patch is for free :)  They have a huge patch of orange pumpkins where you can pick your own pumpkins, or anywhere on the barn.  Around every corner of the barn is a throw-up of a different assortment of squashes and pumpkins in every shape, size and color - with the occassional farm animal sprinkled in.  They sell fresh apple juice, homemade pies, scones, breads, jams and jellies, perfect to snack on or to take home.  OMG.  To sum it up: it's a pumpkin-lover, carb-lover, barn-lover, autumn-lover's heaven.  You must go if you are in the area in October.  I'll bet a million bucks this place would put a smile on your most gloomiest of days. :)

(aww, swan shaped squashes!)

And... good thing we visited Avila Valley Barn to make us happy, because this was so not 2 hours later on the 101 freeway.

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