arroyo grande

Arroyo Grande- The Swinging Bridge

Arroyo Grande Village Green - Arroyo Grande, California



Arroyo Grande is a beautiful town not far from the beach San Luis Obipso County. Located next to Pismo Beach, Nipomo and Grover Beach, it enjoys fresh ocean breezes and a convenient location on both sides of Highway 101.  Steeped in history, one of the highlights of the city is a swinging bridge. Originally constructed in 1875 by Newton Short whose land was divided by the Arroyo Grande Creek, sides were added and it was given to the City of Arroyo Grande nine years later in 1911. It lasted for 84 years until a tree fell in 1995 and destroyed it beyond repair. Federal funds and fundraising efforts paid for rebuilding and it was opened to walking traffic again in May of the same year.


Fact: Only one of its kind in California
Length: 171 feet
Height: 40 feet above creek


Stroll through the Village to be transported back to a simpler (though not necessarily friendlier) time.  Still standing is the place outlaws were forced to call home - the Hoosegow. Home to The Terrible Tragedy in which a farmer was hung in a dispute over land, request the Village Walking Tour map and visit over 20 historic buildings and locations, all within several city blocks. 


Events in the Village
-Farmer's Market Every Saturday Noon to 2:30 pm
-Christmas in the Village during December, Santa strolls the streets daily. Sing along with Santa Wed. & Fri. evenings 5 to 6 pm
-Easter Egg Hunt, 4th of July Peddlers Fair with chili cook-off, Strawberry Festival-Memorial Weekend in May, Car Show last Saturday in July, Harvest Festival last weekend in September, Halloween Trick or Treat in the Village. Strawberry Festival named the place to be on Memorial Weekend by Sunset Magazine. Hotel rooms are booked six months prior.


The photo on the left below was taken in a residential neighborhood. The property sits on a bluff overlooking a valley with colorful crops in a field, a lake, sand dunes and the beautiful, blue Pacific Ocean. On the right is the historic building which is home to Taco Loco, a restaurant with big servings of burritos, tostados and other Mexican foods. The building was constructed near the turn of the 20th century. You'll find it on East Branch Street, the heart of downtown. Park behind the building in the free public lot to enjoy the Walking Bridge.


You can enter many businesses from the back side of the shops and exit on Branch, where you'll find numerous restaurants, antique and gift stores and the Walking Tour maps at the Visitor Center. It's a small, friendly town so just ask anybody working there to point you in the right direction. Continue driving on Branch and you'll head for the wineries. Or get back on the 101 Highway and stop down the road 10 minutes in Pismo Beach.