A city along the Central Coast and one of California’s nine National Parks were named among the best destinations for people looking to go somewhere “off the beaten path.”

Tripstodiscover.com, a website that provides trip planning suggestions and resources, named San Luis Obispo and Pinnacles National Park among its best destinations for vacationers looking for a place that’s beautiful and inviting, without the hustle and bustle of busier areas.

Aerial view of Bishop Peak trail surrounded by chaparral on the hill with San Luis Obispo in the background. (Getty Images)
Aerial view of Bishop Peak trail surrounded by chaparral on the hill with San Luis Obispo in the background. (Getty Images)

Saying of San Luis Obispo, “It’s often overlooked for places like Morro Bay and Pismo Beach, but it makes the perfect base for exploring world-class wine country.” The website said the home to Cal Poly is emerging as a tourist destination and offers easy beach access and a charming downtown.

“Visit the 18th-century Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa and the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, shop the unique boutiques, and don’t miss the Thursday night farmer’s market. There are craft breweries and many outstanding eateries with outdoor tables for taking advantage of the year-round sunshine,” the article reads.

Bear Gulch Reservoir in Pinnacles National Park. (Getty Images)

Located about 90 minutes north, Pinnacles National Park was also named an “off-the-beaten-path” getaway destination.

Pinnacles is located east of the Salinas Valley, about two hours away from the San Francisco Bay Area. It’s one of nine National Parks in the Golden State, but is among the least visited, meaning crowds are likely to be smaller and true immersion can be easier obtained.

“It offers a little of what many of the more famous parks are known for, including the soaring granite domes of Yosemite, the massive trees of Redwood National and State Parks, the ancient volcanoes of Lassen, and the Dr. Seuss-like vegetation of Joshua Tree National Park,” the website writes.

It also highlights the many trails for exploring, but says it’s best to avoid strenuous hikes during the hot summer months, instead encouraging a visit in spring and summer when wildflowers dot the landscape.

Trips to Discover named 15 places on the list, including:

  • White Sands National Park, New Mexico
  • Baker City, Oregon
  • Baxter State Park, Maine
  • Port Townsend, Washington
  • Hampton Beach, New Hampshire
  • Pinnacles National Park, California
  • Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
  • Ely, Nevada
  • Buffalo, Wyoming
  • Vernal, Utah
  • North Park, Colorado
  • McCall, Idaho
  • San Luis Obispo, California
  • Houghton, Michigan
  • Tarpon Springs, Florida

The same website has also weighed in on some other California gems, including the best beach town and the best town to visit for Christmas.