Located in the central Californian pacific coast, there are a number of places to visit in Monterey and is perfect for some fresh air you need for a long time. Filled with parks, aquariums, museums, shopping destinations, amazing cuisine and sprawling beaches, plan you next visit to this little city to infuse its lovely vibe into your life.
Best Places To Visit & Fun Activities In Monterey California
1. Monterey Bay Aquarium
This aquarium opened from 10 to 5 charge adults $39.95 for adults and $24.95 for children. It is actually a conservation centre and is situated at the west end of Cannery Row. Booking a tour would be advisable for the best experience. Special creatures like the giant octopus and penguins reside there.
2. 17 Miles Drive
The long road by the coast connecting Carmel to Pacific Grove is must do a thing when you are in Monterey. Laden with breath-taking views, it is a great drive for only $10 for cars and free for bicycles but motorcycles are not allowed. The Fanshell, you would encounter, is a spot for harbour seals in spring, the Lone Cypress is a granite hillside of 250 years or you could shop and dine at The Lodge at Pebble Beach.
3. Cannery Row
Cannery row, made famous by John Steinbeck, is a great place to gather where you can shop till you drop right on the beach! A list of branded shops and souvenir shops are present there along with great places to dine. Hotels present in the area provide amazing sea-view rooms and personal beaches. This is a tourist attraction at large given the best place to satisfy your senses of travelling Monterey.
4. Whale Watching
Monterey Bay famous for its whale watching have tours conducted all through the year. You have to hire boats to reach the suitable spots to watch not only whales but also dolphins and a variety of seabirds amidst their usual habitation. You are likely to see Summer Whales between April and November and California Grey Whales between December and April, although no guarantee holds even after though the number. Different tours are available from regular boat trips to sunset cruises and birthday parties. They start from $45 for 2.5 hours.
5. Museum of Art
One of the museums is present at La Mirada and the other at Pacific Street. The exhibits at La Mirada change few times in the year, whereas, the antique Colton Hall building contains contemporary paintings, photography and art installations in the eight galleries. Museums stay open Thursday to Monday 11 am to 5 pm. They charge nothing for members, students, underages and military ID holders but $10 for adults.
6. Monterey Historic State Park
To discover the culture and unravel the Spanish and Mexican influences in their history, head to this park with your family between 10 am to 4 pm, Friday to Monday. It has a whalebone sidewalk in front of the old whaling station and hosts event like the Annual Christmas in the Adobes. They charge $3 for all and is free for under 12’s.It makes a good place for one to spend some relaxing time walking amidst greenery and following yellow plaques to discover the buildings present there.
7. Dennis the Menace Park
While counting all the places to visit, this surely is one of the amusing things to do in Monterey, especially if your kid is with you. Located at Pearl Street, this free park has a maze, a place for rock climbing and many random structures to climb and play. It’s a great place for picnics and family gatherings.
8. Point Lobos State Reserve
This place tops many photographers’ lists, a favourite for its abstract formations of rocks and granite cliffs and headlands. The free reserve park with kelp forests, Rolling Meadows, protected marine life and sea openings have a backdrop of an assertive rock face. Migrating grey whales, sea lions, otters and seals find their home here. If hiking is you a thing or scuba diving then this is the place to be, cradled in nature.
9. San Carlos Cathedral
Adorned with the statue of Lady Guadalupe, the oldest in the state, stand the first stone building in California, also called the Royal Presidio Chapel, since the year 1794. This majestic Spanish structure of the colonial times still has many pilgrims visit it every year from Monday to Friday between 7.45am and 12.15pm. Service timings: Saturday- 7.30am, 9.00am, 10.30am, 12pm and 5.30pm; Sunday: 4pm and 6pm.
10. Places to Visit in Monterey – the beach
Where else should one go when stranded in a place like Monterey if not the beach? The city boasts of having almost 100 miles of coastline along the vast pacific with great beaches to have fun. Garrapata, a beach famous for its active wildlife and the spectacular view has craggy costliness making it hard to swim, whereas, San Carlos beach is great for the divers. (psst! Parking is easily available here) Del Monte, the closest beach to the residential area is ideal for kayaking, sailing or just a stroll.
Travel Tip: Situated by the uneven beach of California, this city is easily accessed by planes trains or cars. The regional airport being a 10minute driveway or the daily trains to Saline through Seattle, Washington and Los Angles makes it a popular tourist spot. Given its year-round temperate climate, there are many places to visit in Monterey.