By Susan Bejackian 

  With cooler temperatures hopefully  on the way, fall is the ideal season for a road trip to Lompoc! Sip award-winning wines from Sta. Rita Valley wineriess, warm up with a pumpkin latte in one of their cozy coffee shops, take a lazy drive on our scenic country roadss or relax at Jalama beach, catch a rocket launch,from Vandenberg SFB, and stay at one of the areas comfy hotels. 

Located on scenic Pacific Coast Highway 1, just 155 miles northwest from Los Angeles with close proximity to Santa Barbara and Solvang, Lompoc takes on a world of its own. Its valley setting, surrounded by spectacular rolling hills and vineyards, creates an invitation for visitors to detour off the main road, and explore what’s around the bend. 

Lompoc is a destination for wine tasting, golf, cycling, hiking, skydiving, birding, and surfing at nearby Jalama Beach. It is home to La Purisima Mission State Historic Park, the most fully restored and furnished of the 21 California missions, and adjacent to Vandenberg Air Force Base, where rockets 

Whether you visit for a week or a weekend, the comfortable weather conditions clear the way for outdoor activities like these:  

Take a self-guided Art Tour 

Slip on your walking shoes and get ready to see larger-than-life murals. Lompoc’s historic Old Town is home to 40+ murals that cover buildings, dot doorways, and liven up entire city blocks.  

Before you go, download the Mural Map so you can plan a route. Many of the murals are located in Art Alley, just between W. Ocean Avenue and W. Cypress Avenue. Park your car at the Lompoc Valley Chamber of Commerce, where 20+ murals are located within a two block radius.  

These picturesque murals showcase Lompoc’s history, with depictions of everything from mining and flower fields to pioneer families and the land’s Native American heritage.  

Tour La Purisima Mission  

Want to see what life was like in central California back in the 1800s? Visit La Purisima Missionn As the state’s most extensively restored mission, you can explore restored buildings, see livestock roaming in fields, or hike one of the many trails located inside the 2,000 acre park.   

Take a guided tour, offered Wednesday through Saturday, or consider visiting when La Purisima hosts a living history event where costumed docents show you how to shear a sheep, make bread, or weave a basket.  

Sip And Tour Lompoc’s Popular Vineyards 

Tour the crisp fall fields of Lompoc’s most renowned vineyards. Located in the rolling Sta. Rita Hills, visitors are just a short drive away from sprawling vistas and award-winning wine. You can create your own wine tour, visiting spots like Foley Estates Vineyard where a 3500 sq. ft. tasting room awaits, or Babcock Winery & Vineyard where they can sip Pinot in a retro rock-and-roll themed hangar.  

Cozy Up In One of  The Comfy Coffee Shops! 

As cooler temps prevail, lose yourself in a good book and sip a pumpkin latte or munch a pumpkin treat (or two)! From the quaint to the eclectic, in the coffee shopss are a great escape on your trip! 

Watch a Rocket Launch! 

Vandenberg Space Force Base is the primary spaceport on the West Coast and just minutes from Lompoc! Our valley is the best place to view rocket launches. The launches take place from several Space Launch Complex launch sites (SLC’s). Check out our list of several great launch sites where visitors are able to view the launch action. 

Take a Scenic Drive on Country Roads! 

If dramatic coastline views of frothy oceans or winding paths flowing through gentle hillsides are your thing, explore the winding country roads in and around Lompoc to satisfy your travelust! Take a country drivee. 

Enjoy Quiet Time In Nature 

If travelers are seeking to escape the city and shed some stress, consider spending some quality time in nature. Lompoc has a variety of calm, soothing outdoor activities that can help you refuel. Consider these options:  

  • Hike Bodger Trail a short, 1.5 mile hike just outside the city with stunning views of the Lompoc Valley at the top.  
  • Find the hidden Nojoqui Falls that are tucked inside a seemingly simple city park.  
  • Wander the soothing shores along Jalama Beach, located just 30 minutes outside the city. 

Lompoc has 12 hotels to welcome visitors. To discover more about the Lompoc Valley, and other things to see and do, visit: www.explorelompoc.com.   

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