In January, Pismo Beach hosts more than 30,000 migrating butterflies just south of town at the seaside Monarch Butterfly Grove, the biggest gathering of the winged beauties in California. At the height of the season, monarchs cover the stands of eucalyptus trees in “a flurry of orange, yellow, and black,” says Central Coast local Kristin Huebner. You can get out and wander the manicured paths anytime on your own, but we suggest sticking around for a free, fact-filled, docent-led tour, held twice daily during the season at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. You’ll get enough cocktail-party fodder for years.
Pismo Beach, California
Off Dolliver St./State 1 near the North Beach State Campground
Pismo Beach, CA