The COVID Getaways Part 2: Pacifica


After a successful trip in May to Half Moon Bay, and with no clear end in sight for the pandemic, my girlfriend and I set off for the second of three “getaway” trips to the California coast. This time we spent two days in Pacifica.

The Lighthouse and a Lovely Night

Pacifica is located just 14 miles north of Half Moon Bay, and we stay a night at The Lighthouse Hotel. It is far nicer than the large majority of hotels I’ve ever stayed at, and one of the first things I do is try on the monogramed bathrobe and walk out on the balcony that overlooks the ocean. Delight!

For dinner we go to the Half Moon Bay Brewing Company. When we had dined there in May, we had to eat in the car as it was takeout only. Now we get the next best option: outdoor dining.

Back by the hotel, a gorgeous sunset closes out the day and we revel in the comfort of our room.

Pacifica State Beach

The next morning, I head down to Pacifica State Beach, just a few miles from Rockaway Beach were we are staying. Rockaway is more intimate with better views, but I go to the state beach to exercise some demons. I’d recently sold a car to a con artist. I spent several weeks stewed in anger at him and at myself for letting it happen to me. At the beach I wrote, reflected, and let the natural beauty before me calm my nerves.

For lunch we dine at Nick’s Restaurant, which overlooks Rockaway Beach. They actually allow us to eat indoors, and it feels like a real treat after not having had such a privilege for the last four months.

Final Reflection

We spend more time at Rockaway, and while sitting on a bench the delicateness of the moment is not lost on me. We have to get going, but want to sit there for hours, because returning home means having COVID staring at us more directly in the face. Although reality is ever-present at Pacifica – it is in the streets, in the shops, in the masks all around us – we somehow feel like we have escaped it, if only for a 24-hour period. Our escapism has taken the form of a wonderful hotel room, the magnetic pull of the ocean, and a break from staying home day after day.

Go to Part 1 (Half Moon Bay)

Go to Part 3 (Carmel)

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