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San Simeon, California: Hearst's Xanadu

The remote hilltop pleasure castle of tycoon William Randolph Hearst -- open to the public since 1958 -- is so vast that it requires a dozen different tours to see it all (But you can hit the high points with just one). Bring lots of free time and a sense of inferiority.

Hearst Castle State Park

750 Hearst Castle Rd, San Simeon, CA
US 101 exit 228. Drive west 22 miles on Hwy 46, then north 12 miles on Hwy 1 to Hearst Castle Rd.
800-444-4445 (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Tours $30 and up.
RA Rates:
Worth a Detour
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Visitor Tips and News About Hearst's Xanadu

Reports and tips from visitors and Roadside America mobile tipsters. Some tips may not be verified. Submit your own tip.

Hearst mansion indoor pool.

Hearst's Xanadu

I suggest the "Cottages and Kitchen" tour for a smaller group, but you still get the see the pools and other iconic spots.

[Hanna, 07/07/2023]


Hearst's Xanadu

Terrifying truck up to the castle. Rode a bus that seemed almost too large for the road. I was scared, but beautiful drive.

[Lindsay Gurley, 12/11/2015]

Hearst Mansion.

Hearst's Xanadu

Tour 1 is a good one for your great photo ops. The film they show is good, too.

[Kim, 04/30/2010]

Tycoon William Randolph Hearst's opulent castle is a very popular tourist attraction, but its over-the-top, garish decor qualifies as an oddity. Prerequisite: Watch the movie Citizen Kane, then come here. Ask the tour guide annoying questions about the movie.

Nearby Offbeat Places

Watch the Elephant SealsWatch the Elephant Seals, San Simeon, CA - 4 mi.
Nitt Witt RidgeNitt Witt Ridge, Cambria, CA - 8 mi.
O'Man the OllalieberryO'Man the Ollalieberry, Cambria, CA - 8 mi.
In the region:
Madonna Inn, San Luis Obispo, CA - 39 mi.

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