Content Produced in Partnership with Bishop Visitor
If California is for dreamers, then Bishop, California is for modern-day explorers. Located along Highway 395 just four hours north of Los Angeles, this once booming cattle ranching town is now an under-the-radar mecca for adventure enthusiasts, RVers, and nature lovers. With the Eastern Sierra as its backyard, Bishop offers an astounding number of backcountry adventures, including rock climbing and backpacking trails, and plenty more cultural activities within the city limits. If you only have 48 hours in the area, here's what we'd recommend trying.
8AM - CARBO LOAD AT ERICK SCHAT'S BAKKERY
763 NORTH MAIN STREET BISHOP, CA 93514
Rumor has it this Highway 395 bakery produces 10 times more bread than there are residents actually living in town. Safe to say, it’s futile to resist the aromas wafting down the street. The Dutch bakery makes everything — including its yeast — in house and has served up its trademark Original Sheepherder’s Bread since the early 1900s. Stock up on a loaf of cheesy bread, another of pull-away bread, maybe some spritz cookies, and pick up a sandwich from the deli for your mid-morning adventure.
10AM - DRIVE TO CARDINAL VILLAGE
321 CARDINAL ROAD BISHOP, CA 93514
Nicknamed the "second happiest place on Earth," Cardinal Village Resort is located up Bishop Creek in the small village of Aspendell — just a 15-minute drive from downtown Bishop. Once a gold mine town in the early 1900s, Cardinal Village now hosts visitors seeking out its other treasures: its mountain views. Popular with fishermen and hikers in the warmer months, visitors in the fall and early spring will love exploring the small town and tackling some seasonal adventures, like ice skating and sledding, as they take in the best of the Eastern Sierra Mountains at 8,500 feet.
2PM - RELIVE THE GLORY DAYS
SILVER CANYON ROAD BISHOP, CA 93514
Bishop served as a central railway between Carson City and Keeler for years. Today, you can view the original 1883 train depot and tour the grounds and other historic buildings at Laws Railroad Museum. Though the railway was retired in 1960, guests are permitted to hop aboard and ring the bell of the Slim Princess and get up close and personal with the classic train cars.
6PM - TIP ONE BACK AT MOUNTAIN RAMBLER
186 SOUTH MAIN STREET BISHOP, CA 93513
Known for its Pale Ales and Blondes, Mountain Rambler Brewpub is one of the most popular spots in downtown Bishop for locals and visitors alike. Open seven days a week, the kitchen gives preference to local ingredients, making for a truly special meal. The folks here aren’t afraid to mix and match flavors — in their food or drinks — so be sure to come hungry and thirsty for a enjoyable night on the town.
9AM - GO WEST, YOUNG MAN
If Alabama Hills looks familiar, we’d wager you’re a big fan of Westerns. The Duke — John Wayne — himself filmed Lone Ranger in the midst of Alabama Hills, spurring a parade of other Western filmmakers to the area as a result. While the Western film sets are gone, the spirit of the wild frontier lives on. You can pick from several hiking trails in the area and imagine yourself as a true Western hero.
NOON - MUSEUM OF WESTERN FILM HISTORY
701 S MAIN STREET LONE PINE, CA 93545
After a day spent on the trails where so many film stars once were, it seems fitting to head over to the Museum of Western Film History. There, you’ll find costumes and other memorabilia from more than 650 movies that were filmed in the area.
4:30PM - A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT
LOWER OWENS RIVER
The best sunset location in Bishop happens to be a favorite haunt for avid trout and fly fishermen in the area as well. The Owens River winds around Bishop and parallels Highway 395, giving visitors multiple vantage points to enjoy the waterway. If you plan to visit in the wintertime, stick toward the Lower Owens River where the fish are more likely to bite and the picturesque mountains are still visible in the distance.
6PM - TREAT YOURSELF AT SAGE RESTAURANT
621 W LINE STREET BISHOP, CA 93514
Easily one of the most popular restaurants in town, Sage Restaurant offers fine dining at affordable prices. Sticking true to its cattle ranching roots, Sage plates up Western fare all cowboys can enjoy. The bison meatloaf and lamb shank are two of the most popular dishes on the menu, but its tender steaks are a classic too. Weather permitting, opt to sit on the patio to bask in the sunset while sipping on a glass of wine.
WHERE TO STAY: CREEKSIDE INN
725 N MAIN STREET BISHOP, CA 93514
In terms of location, space and amenities, Creekside Inn is one of the top-rated hotels in the Bishop area. Centered in Bishop along Highway 395, Creekside Inn seamlessly blends the beauty of the outdoors and all the modern amenities we know and love in its spacious rooms. In addition to a fireside lounge perfect for winter nights, the hotel’s namesake creek — and one of the focal points of Bishop — winds its way directly through the inn's grounds so you're never far away from the beauty of the outdoors.