People tend to check in during these times:
The ladies at the information desk are nice
The movie on WR Hearst seems a bit contrived and one-sided (unsurprisingly) but neat to see some of the footage and story of the building.
No food or gum allowed in the castle so eat beforehand.
Bring your own water or buy some before your shuttle bus! You'll get thirsty during the tour and wandering the gardens.
Nice selection of hats at the gift shop.
we didn't have time to go up to the castle but the visitor's center is a good place to stop for food or restrooms if you're on the PCH.
Eat before you go up, no food or drinks allowed at the Castle, only bottled water
A lil expensive...
Get your TIX right away. The upper bedroom tour is one of the best.
California is delicately showcased at this state park. The ride up the mountain is worth the steep entrance fee. Go & enjoy the architecture & vast panoramic views of San Simeon's natural offerings.
This site was stunning. Not only were the views awesome but our tour guide Suzie was one if the best tour guides I have ever had in my years of touring historic sites.
They charge 10¢ for a paper bag to carry the mug I bought at the gift shop?!? Ridiculous! Reading through the other tips I guess I shouldn't be surprised.
Water is $3 and drinks are over $4!
Eat something before you get on the bus. No food allowed at the Castle. We had two tours scheduled so we were up there all afternoon. We ate at one of the places in the center.
I concur about the right side of the bus. Sit on the right side going up and the left side going down. Also key to grab a seat where you can have access to an open window.
Don't forget to bring your water bottles in with you as they are allowed!
Very dirty bathrooms
Un-update exhibition museum. It need to be update and turn the experience in the museum into exciting. The collection is amazing and eclectic though
Sit on the right side of the bus on the trip up to the castle. You'll have better views to take pictures
Great time here at Hearst Castle for first time visitors. The weather is sweet. The staff was knowledgeable. CALI4NIA history here. Would recomend this trip. Not for kids.
Stay away. They're only after your money with their restricted tours. European castles are real, accessible and cheaper. VERY disappointed
Prices and hours are nowhere to be seen, i think that's rude.