24 Fun & Best Things to do in Monterey, California

Nestled alongside the idyllic central California shoreline, Monterey, California, is an exquisite West Coast city in probably the most picturesque areas of the state. Visitors from Southern California and the San Francisco Bay Area routinely make the drive to and thru the attractive city.

Is Monterey, California, value visiting? The reply is sure for anybody who desires a peaceable and enjoyable central California trip.

It often takes a number of hours of driving or a flight in a puddle jumper to the regional airport to achieve Monterey. Still, the funding of time is properly value it for those who’re on the lookout for a serene and fantastically enjoyable trip.

Monterey is inside an up-and-coming wine nation area, and it’s additionally a superb cease for a number of days on a household trip. Things to do in Monterey, California, with youngsters, embody visiting outside venues like parks, trails, and seashores, and the group has greater than its fair proportion of museums.

What is Monterey, California, identified for?

If you’ve heard the title of the city earlier than, it is likely to be due to its affiliation with celebrated author John Steinbeck, who wrote the seminal novels “The Grapes of Wrath” and “East of Eden.”

Monterey can be well-known for its unimaginable aquarium, which is, in and of itself, definitely worth the drive.


  • Most vital landmark The Cannery Row Monument
  • Best park – Lovers Point Park
  • Best free exercise – Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail
  • Best exercise for teenagers – Dennis the Menace Park
  • Best exercise for adults – Monterey Museum of Art
  • Best meals – Montrio Bistro Best nightlife – Segovia Tavern
  • Best all-around lodging Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa

Best & Fun Things to do in Monterey, California

1. Visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium

Address: 886 Cannery Row, Monterey, CA 93940

Known properly outdoors the confines of Monterey, the Monterey Bay Aquarium sits on the fringe of Cannery Row, the neighborhood made well-known in John Steinbeck’s “Cannery Row.”

The aquarium is a nonprofit establishment and focuses on preserving the regional marine lifetime of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. From the first-of-its-kind kelp forest exhibit to the lovely sea otters, the aquarium is a nationally revered and beloved establishment.

The aquarium opened in 1984 after marine scientists and residents spent years working to construct and open the aquarium.

The facility welcomed greater than 10,000 guests on its first day of operations. With its give attention to kid-friendly displays and internet hosting scholar teams, it might shortly change into probably the greatest issues to do in Monterey with youngsters.

For followers of the “Star Trek” universe of movies, the aquarium may look acquainted since filmmakers used it as one of many vital places within the 1986 movie “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.

Since the Nineteen Eighties, the aquarium has constructed an unimaginable status for participating in ocean conservation and selling sustainable fishing.

Some of the preferred displays on the aquarium embody The Astounding Lives of Octopuses, which opened in 2014, The Secret Life of Seahorses exhibition, which was featured in 2009, and the Juli Plant Grainger Animal Care Center for aspiring conservationists and veterinarians, which opened in 2018.

To go to the aquarium, get your skip-the-line admission ticket upfront.

See Related: Best California Road Trips | Your Ultimate Guide

2. Go Whale Watching

Address: 84 Fishermans Wharf, Monterey, CA 93940

The whales of the Pacific Ocean are well-known across the Central Coast of California, and whale-watching tours routinely take to the waters off Monterey Bay. Monterey Bay whale excursions are common as a result of there are fairly a number of whales that go to this a part of the Pacific coast.

Not solely can watchers see magnificent whales, however tour boats routinely go by different species like harbor seals, dolphins, pelicans, and sea lions. Whale-watching excursions run all 12 months lengthy; nonetheless, the very best time to see the whales is March by way of November.

Peak exercise tends to happen in July and August, nevertheless it’s attainable to see whales in nearly any month of the 12 months. It doesn’t price an arm and a leg to go whale watching, so for those who’re within the space outdoors of prime viewing season, it’s nonetheless value a shot to see the whales.

Pictures can solely convey a small a part of what it feels wish to see a large whale rise out of the water and create an amazing splash.

Seeing whales in individual is an exercise everybody ought to do no less than as soon as. It makes it straightforward to understand the significance of those majestic creatures to the ocean and the planet.

3. Take a Walk Down Cannery Row

Cannery Scenery Row

Address: 765 Wave St. Monterey, CA 93940

Cannery Row started as the positioning of a large-scale sardine canning operation, and it might change into notorious within the John Steinbeck novel “Cannery Row.”

The avenue was as soon as known as Ocean View Avenue however would change within the late Nineteen Fifties to honor Steinbeck’s legacy. Today, Cannery Row is stuffed with eating places and is without doubt one of the most popular attractions in Monterey.

Many eating places and inns alongside the road reside in former cannery buildings, and numerous historic points of interest are sprinkled all through the tourist-friendly enclave. Just a few fishing corporations nonetheless do enterprise alongside the highway, however most guests to Cannery Row are vacationers reasonably than businesspeople.

Several data boards seem alongside the highway, too, which clarify the colourful historical past of the neighborhood and the historical past of the well-known canneries.

While strolling alongside the Row, don’t miss the Pacific Biological Laboratories constructing, which Steinbeck talked about in his e-book. The Cannery Row Antique mall can be value a go to.

Another sight alongside Cannery Row is the balcony at Dolphin Plaza. Take the steps towards the water, the place you’ll discover a good platform for sea otter and dolphin sightings. The ocean alongside Cannery Row is a part of the Edward F. Ricketts State Marine Conservation Area.

You can discover Cannery Row on a Monterey and Cannery Row Sea Car Tour.

After a night stroll round Cannery Row, think about checking into the handy and cozy Cannery Row Inn for the night time. If nonetheless, you’re on the lookout for a drop of luxurious, e-book a room or a set on the fabulous Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Big Bear, California

4. Scuba Dive at San Carlos Beach

Address: Cannery Row at Reeside Ave, Monterey, CA 93940

San Carlos Beach affords its guests a beautiful surroundings during which to chill out, nevertheless it’s additionally the place teams will depart for scuba diving adventures alongside the coast and close to Cannery Row.

Named after an area canning firm that after operated within the space, a few of the most beautiful sights on the seaside are simply offshore, the place scuba divers routinely go to.

Getting to the very best spots for scuba diving means swimming about 40 yards from the seaside parking zone, the place the water reaches 30 to 40 ft deep.

Divers will see a small reef stuffed with fish and different sea life. Experienced divers can swim a little bit farther to the massive granite blocks alongside the breakwater. There, divers will see large beds of anemones and an important number of fish.

One of essentially the most exceptional experiences for divers who enterprise out into the deeper water is the occasional brush with a sea lion. Usually fairly timid round people, sea lions are very snug within the water, they usually typically swim close to and round human divers who dive into the bay.

Even for those who’re not eager on getting outfitted in your scuba gear, San Carlos Beach remains to be value a go to, if just for how lovely the world seems on a shiny, sunny California day.

After an extended day on the seaside, you’ll most likely need someplace snug to relaxation up. Try the close by Portola Hotel & Spa. It’s simply as gorgeous as the environment.

5. Walk the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail

The Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail runs 18 miles alongside the ocean between Castroville and Pacific Grove. Castroville is north of Monterey, and Pacific Grove is south of the city. In the distant previous, the path was a set of tracks for the Southern Pacific Railway.

When the trains stopped working within the space, a number of conservation teams bought collectively to rework the tracks right into a recreation space. Today, the path is an exquisite path that winds its manner alongside the ocean with nice views and alternatives for bicycling, jogging, and strolling.

Tourists and households can hire bicycles on which to experience the path, in addition to Surreys (aka Surrey Bikes), that are quadricycles that maintain as much as six individuals. Sea lions and otters are acquainted sights alongside the route, and a few guests take a break from touring the path to hire kayaks.

The path welcomes canines however requires leashes for all canines. Travelers can get their parking charge reimbursed in the event that they eat at one of many eating places alongside the path.

Walking the whole course takes about 4 hours, so it’s a good way to spend the day in Monterey when mixed with a go to to Cannery Row, the Aquarium, or the seaside. Plus Pacific grove is without doubt one of the most visually lovely cities within the area.

Looking for issues to do in Pacific Grove?

Check out the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History to prime off your stroll!

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6. Visit the San Carlos Cathedral

Address: 500 Church St, Monterey, CA 93940

Built between 1791 and 1794, San Carlos Church is the oldest stone constructing in California.

The cathedral presents guests a uncommon look into 18th Century California when Spanish settlers lived all through the state and constructed a number of church buildings. The constructing was positioned on the National Register of Historic Places in 1960 as a National Historic Landmark.

The constructing underwent vital renovations within the early 2000s after parishioners raised cash to revive it. Due to its age, the church began leaking badly, and tree roots had been destroying the inspiration. Previous work on the constructing was additionally impacting its structural integrity.

Interestingly, the restoration revealed a number of artifacts that enhanced modern-day data concerning the Presidio of Monterey. Those artifacts are displayed in a heritage middle situated proper subsequent door to the church.

The heritage middle is sometimes closed throughout some holidays, and the Catholic Holy Week, so it’s greatest to verify upfront to see whether or not the heritage middle museum is open for guests.

Today, the cathedral stays lively, with Catholic mass held a number of instances every week. The San Carlos Cathedral is the oldest repeatedly working parish in California. However, guests of any perception could go to the church and revel in its magnificence.

7. Play at Dennis the Menace Park

Address: 777 Pearl St, Monterey, CA 93940

Located within the El Estero Park Complex, Dennis the Menace Park has entertained generations of native youngsters, and it’s one of many enjoyable issues to do in Monterey with youngsters. The park complicated covers 45 acres, and the park is subsequent to a ballpark and a youth middle.

First opened in 1956, Dennis the Menace Park was constructed by way of the beneficiant donation of Mr. Hank Ketchum, who created the Dennis the Menace sketch. Local teams additionally donated supplies and labor to finish the park.

One of the park’s greatest options was the steam engine, nevertheless it’s not usable and is barely on show at the moment.

However, the park stays one of many best spots for kids locally. Not solely is it the right place to take youngsters after they’ve sat within the automobile all day on a highway journey to Monterey, nevertheless it’s additionally one of many best free issues to do in Monterey, California.

Over the years, the park has undergone a number of renovations with new playground tools and enhancements. Dennis the Menace park is close to a number of concession and snack amenities, in addition to a skate park and canine park.

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8. Take a Hike Through Jacks Peak County Park

Address: 25020 Jacks Peak Park Rd, Monterey, CA 93940

If you’re on the lookout for an invigorating but straightforward outing into nature, probably the greatest issues to do in Monterey, California, is a go to to Jacks Peak Park. The park is open, typically from 8 am to five pm within the winter and fall and till 7 pm within the spring and summer time.

Several miles of horseback using trails and mountain climbing trails, and the Skyline Self-Guided Nature Trail is a superb option to see all the very best pure options of the park.

For devoted hikers who need some unbelievable views of the forests assembly the Pacific Ocean, choices embody the Jack’s Peak and Skyline Trail or the Lower Ridge, Rhus, and Coffeeberry loop.

The Jack’s Peak path is simple, and the Lower Ridge path is reasonably troublesome. Several trails within the park are glorious for vacationers with canines because the trails are sometimes only a mile or two lengthy.

Mornings are greatest for a relaxed stroll with the household canine, however you might need to wait till the afternoon when the marine layer burns off to get the very best views on the prime of the park.

Overall, the park presents 20 hiking trails which might be additionally glorious for path working, in addition to three horse trails. The park doesn’t enable mountain biking on the paths.

9. Visit Del Monte Beach

Del Monte Beach Scenery

Address: 132 Tide Ave Monterey, CA 93940

If you need to know the place the locals go to the seaside, you’ll need to put Del Monte Beach in your listing of what to do in Monterey, California. The park is situated at Del Monte Ave and Camino El Estero in Monterey and options tide swimming pools, sand dunes, a paved bike path, and bogs.

Dogs are allowed on the seaside so long as they keep south of the close by resort lodge and stay on a leash. Parking is free, too, so visiting Del Monte Beach is great while you’re making an inventory of free issues to do in Monterey.

In addition to enjoyable and lounging on the seaside, you may also stroll the seaside to search out seashells, head to the water for bodyboarding or bodysurfing, or stroll across the tide swimming pools to search out a great deal of sea life. Seeing the tide swimming pools is best throughout low tide.

If you get hungry, you’ll be able to go to the resort lodge, which has a full-service restaurant for lunch or dinner.

If you’re using, strolling, or jogging the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail, you’ll ultimately go Del Monte Beach. You can proceed on the path because it passes the seaside and ultimately reaches downtown Monterey.

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10. Shop on the Old Monterey Farmers Market

Address: 98 Del Monte Ave, Monterey, CA 93940

If you’re on a road trip through California, a few of the belongings you may miss whilst you’re on the highway are recent fruit and greens. The Farmers Market at Old Monterey Marketplace operates each Tuesday beginning at 4:00 pm.

Located on Alvarado Street between Del Monte and Pearl, the farmers market has operated since 1991 and options all kinds of meals, in addition to arts, crafts, furnishings, jewellery, and clothes.

Not solely are you able to seize some fruit and greens for the highway, that are a superb different while you’re residing off luggage of chips and protein bars on trip, however you may also discover all kinds of ready meals.

Vendors serve Indian, Japanese, Korean, Mediterranean, Chinese, Russian, Yugoslavian, and Mexican meals, amongst others.

Try to stroll the whole farmers market earlier than selecting what you may need to eat. The market is common with locals and vacationers all year long and often will get round 10,000 guests every week, so arriving early is useful if you wish to rating a few of the hottest dishes.

Organizers say you’ll be able to “journey the world” in just some blocks when visiting the Monterey Farmers Market.

For a aspect quest, expertise the Scenic Half-Day Self-Guided Electric Scooter Tour and Monterey Half-Day Electric Bike Rental.

11. Walk the Streets of Old Monterey and the Path of History

Address: Alvarado St.Monterey, CA 93940

The National Trust for Historic Preservation acknowledged downtown Monterey’s Alvarado Street as a “Main Street Community.” Several native historic buildings like Colton Hall, the Cooper Molera Adobe, and the Stevenson House are inside strolling distance of Old Monterey on the Path of History.

One of the very best methods to see all these historic buildings is to stroll the “Path of History,” which options 55 historic websites unfold out over two miles of Monterey.

The metropolis has positioned yellow tiles on the sidewalks, which you need to use for a self-guided tour. You may also use the informational map revealed by the federal government of California for steering.

Many of the sights you’ll see alongside the Path of History are a few of the greatest Monterey vacationer points of interest. If you go to Monterey in October, you may need to attend the Monterey History Fest.

The competition options pirate reenactments, open homes of historic buildings, and a spooky but instructional historic cemetery tour. The competition additionally encompasses a reenactment of the California Constitutional Convention.

Some of the buildings you’ll need to try whereas strolling the Path of History embody Colton Hall, the Royal Presidio Chapel, Custom House, and California’s First Theater.

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12. Witness California History at Colton Hall

Address: 570 Pacific St, Monterey, CA 93940

The first California Constitutional Convention was held in 1849 at Colton Hall, so the placement is kind of vital in California’s historical past. The constructing was initially constructed as a public faculty and website for city conferences. A sailor named Walter Colton constructed the home between 1847 and 1849.

Today, guests can see a re-creation of the assembly room the place 48 delegates signed the important doc. The California Constitution was initially drafted in Spanish and English and was adopted by a mixture of European settlers and Californios, or Hispanics from California.

The state’s structure featured some notable protections for its residents that went past the federal Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

When visiting Colton Hall, most guests additionally check out the Monterey Jail, which is adjoining to the corridor. The jail was in-built 1854 and operated as town’s jail till 1956. Colton House and the jail are open nearly each day of the 12 months besides choose holidays.

If you’re strolling the Path of History and visiting Colton Hall, you’ll discover a picnic space close by the place you’ll be able to relaxation for a couple of minutes and have a number of snacks. Colton Hall is situated on Pacific Street, between Jefferson Street and Madison Street.

13. Ride the Monterey (MST) Trolley

Address: 19 Upper Ragsdale Drive, Monterey, CA 93940

The MST Trolley is value a experience if just for how handy it makes getting round Monterey. Monterey points of interest see many guests throughout the summer time, and parking turns into difficult.

One of the very best options of the trolley is that using it’s free, which makes it tremendous straightforward to achieve Downtown Monterey, Cannery Row, the aquarium, and Fisherman’s Wharf.

To board the trolley and take it to all of the sights of Monterey, you’ll head to the Downtown Monterey parking garages at Del Monte Avenue and Tyler Street. Trolleys go away each 10 to fifteen minutes from 10:00 am to six:00 pm. An all-day parking go prices $12.00, however using the trolley is free.

Not solely are you able to get free rides on the trolleys, however you may also select to experience the electrical trolley, which implies no air pollution while you experience by way of city. The electrical trolley is tremendous quiet and makes nearly no noise when it strikes.

Note that the parking meters on the parking garages reset at midnight, so that you’ll have to feed the meter once more for those who’re wandering round city after midnight.

The trolley system has some restrictions, too. It runs day by day from Memorial Day by way of Labor Day however solely runs on the weekend throughout the low season.


You can e-book and be part of a Monterey: Guided Walking Food Tour.

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14. Visit Old Fisherman’s Wharf

Old Fisherman's Wharf Scenery

Address: 1 Old Fisherman’s Wharf, Monterey, CA 93940

Monterey was as soon as a busy delivery port, and one of many delivery corporations that operated within the space constructed the pier in 1846 to deal with the shipments of lumber and fish that might incessantly arrive. The wharf would ultimately serve the world’s multi-million greenback fishing trade.

Today, the wharf is a busy tourist attraction with a number of seafood eating places and pirate-inspired memento outlets. The dock typically looks like an old-world market with the kitschy memento outlets and the old-school really feel that a lot of the eating places supply.

Some could even say Old Fisherman’s Wharf is a little bit dingy, however that simply provides to its attraction. It’s not shiny and new, and it would remind older guests of their childhood and visiting busy vacationer spots on family vacations for clam chowder and fish & chips.

Old Fisherman’s Wharf is a superb place to get a seafood lunch, in addition to try the ocean lions that congregate within the space. Sometimes, the wildlife will get so shut you’ll see them lounging on the cement walkways on the water degree.

Old Fisherman’s Wharf is a good place to walk round with youngsters, nevertheless it’s additionally probably the greatest locations in Monterey to go to for a slice of outdated California attraction.

15. Explore Monterey State Historic Park

Address: 20 Custom House Plaza, Monterey, CA 93940

Another place to study concerning the historical past of California and Monterey’s significance to the founding of the state is Monterey State Historic Park, which options a number of historic homes, scenic gardens, and guided walks. As the capital of California, Monterey has existed below Spanish, Mexican, and US army rule.

The park is a superb cease for followers of Robert Louis Stevenson because the Stevenson House is on the park grounds and presents excursions to guests. Nearby, the Larkin House additionally hosts excursions and teaches guests about Thomas O. Larkin, an early and influential early California resident.

The parking zone closest to the park requires a charge, however for those who go to on a day that’s not too busy, you will discover free avenue parking. The historic websites all through the park characteristic useful informational placards, indicators, and shows, making it attainable to see most websites by way of a self-guided or cellphone tour.

The park sometimes hosts occasions for college kids and youngsters, so it’s value testing the obtainable actions for those who’re touring with youngsters. If you’re within the space for an prolonged summer time trip, you may see if the favored day camp has spots obtainable.

See Related: Best Family Vacation Spots in the World

16. Stroll Through the Secret Gardens of Old Monterey

The climate of Monterey presents an excellent surroundings for gardens and flowers, and it’s one of many causes a number of winemakers have moved to the area to develop grapes. In Monterey, the fruits of the idyllic local weather are on full show on the Secret Gardens of Old Monterey.

The gardens characteristic wishing fountains, cozy walkways, and flowers that bloom in nearly each season. As you wander across the paths, you’ll discover the Memory Garden, Casa del Oro Herb Garden, and the Memory Garden, in addition to a number of others.

The hottest backyard is the Memory Garden, which was designed within the Nineteen Twenties and is a well-liked venue for weddings and photographers. Several colours of roses develop within the backyard, and it’s the right place to search out some solitude in Monterey. The backyard is situated behind the Pacific House Museum.

Another lovely backyard value a go to is the Stevenson Garden, which was additionally created within the Nineteen Twenties. The backyard was designed to think about what a Mexican backyard might need regarded like within the distant previous.

The Stevenson Garden is one other quiet refuge good for strolling round after a day spent within the busier areas of Monterey, just like the Old Fisherman’s Wharf.

17. Explore the Monterey County Youth Museum

Address: 425 Washington St, Monterey, CA 93940

If you’ve younger youngsters that aren’t fairly able to ascend the paths of Jacks Peak, you may strive the Monterey County Youth Museum, which is situated at 425 Washington Street in Monterey.

The museum opened in 1997 and initially operated in a constructing on Cannery Row. The museum homeowners ultimately determined to maneuver the museum to its extra distinguished location on Washington Street to accommodate enlargement plans.

Even although the museum is geared towards very younger learners, it’s nonetheless a spot the place older youngsters might need enjoyable. Exhibits just like the play theater and the crafting space can entertain youngsters as much as ten, whereas the youthful youngsters can wander across the tree home or play on the miniature golf exhibit.

The museum options eight completely different interactive displays with themes just like the seaside, sports activities, well being meals, and the theater.

Kids may also discover a play hospital, a treehouse, and a craft station. Since the youth museum is inside, it’s additionally an important place to go to throughout inclement climate or when the winds are a little bit too gusty to benefit from the seaside.

The youth museum can be nice for celebrating birthdays or gathering with buddies. If you reside fairly near Monterey, you may think about reserving a toddler’s birthday party on the museum.

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18. Go Golfing at The Links at Spanish Bay

Address: 2700 17 Mile Dr, Pebble Beach, CA 93953

If you’re within the temper for golf, get your golf equipment prepared and head to The Links at Spanish Bay. Encircled by sand dunes and near the 17-Mile Drive, the course presents some critically attractive vistas.

You may neglect to swing as you gaze out on the towering Monterey Pines and the glowing white sands of Spanish Bay Beach.

 Spanish Bay is a public golf course and hosts the TaylorMade Pebble Beach Invitational annually. The 18 holes of golf meander by way of some difficult but rewarding options that mix in so naturally with the native surroundings.

 The course sits on land as soon as the house of a sand-mining operation. Course designers got here up with the plans within the early Nineteen Eighties and secured all of the permits they wanted to start out constructing by 1985. Builders endeavored to guard the native dunes, wildlife, and plants within the space.

 If you’re visiting Monterey, you’ll journey to the west aspect of the Monterey Peninsula to 2700 17 Mile Drive. The course is in Pebble Beach, which is the city that sits proper subsequent to Monterey. The Links at Spanish Bay supply glorious {golfing}, in addition to an exquisite venue for weddings and particular occasions.

Looking for a day journey?

Check out Carmel, Monterey & Big Sur Full-Day Private Tour.

19. Go On a Wine Walk at Carmel-By-The-Sea

Carmel-by-the-Sea Aerial View

Address: Carmel, CA 93921

If you need to see an instance of a seaside city that’s luxurious, rustic, and comfortable all on the similar time, a go to to Carmel By The Sea is a should. Located about 10 miles to the south of Monterey, Carmel-By-The-Sea is a quaint village with lovely historic houses and quiet streets.

The village has an exquisite, quiet seaside and a big variety of luxurious shops promoting antiques, clothes, and different high-dollar objects. If you need to go wine tasting or discover a restaurant that gives wine pairings, Carmel-By-The-Sea is a good place to start out your wine tour of the Central Coast.

The Carmel-By-The-Sea Wine Walk is one option to spend the day, and the city presents its guests a free and handy Wine Walk cell information that makes it tremendous straightforward to search out all the very best wine pairings within the village. Carmel-By-The-Sea is extremely walkable and welcoming for night strolls.

A Carmel-By-The-Sea walking tour actually is a singular expertise alongside the Central Coast. The model of its cozy downtown feels European with its very un-Californian structure. Some of the venues you’ll get to go to embody Bar Napoli, Blair Wines Estate Tasting Room, and Dawn’s Dream Winery.

See Related: Best Beach Vacation Spots in the World

20. Visit the Monterey Museum of Art

Address: 559 Pacific St, Monterey, CA 93940

The Monterey Museum of Art shows greater than 10,000 works in its everlasting assortment and focuses on California artists in its displays.

Around 20,000 individuals go to the museum annually, and curators herald new artwork for momentary installations annually. Visitors can see wherever from 15 to twenty displays throughout their go to.

See works by artists just like the legendary Ansel Adams, in addition to attend particular occasions like artwork classes for teenagers and talks on California artists. Some of the artists featured on the museum embody Corinne Whitaker, Enrique Martinez Celaya, and Robinson Jeffers.

Ongoing and everlasting exhibitions embody one that includes William F. Ritschel, a German-born painter who lived in Carmel within the early nineteenth Century, and The Marble Gallery of California Art.

If you’re not from California and need to study concerning the state’s artists, the Monterey Museum of Art is a superb venue for immersing your self in California artwork and the works of famend artists.

If you’re touring with youngsters, try one of many museum’s kid-friendly lesson applications. The museum additionally presents guided excursions for adults and a free household enjoyable day with art-related actions, and free admission to the museum.

21. Enjoy the 17-Mile-Drive


The 17-Mile Drive is a stretch of highway alongside the Pebble Beach space that passes quite a lot of iconic coastal California vistas like white seashores, famend golf programs, and seaside cliffs.

Starting at Pacific Grove Gate, the gated drive options 17 stops alongside the way in which, the place you’ll drive by way of forests, stroll alongside the beachside boardwalk, and see large waves crashing in opposition to the jagged rocks of the shoreline.

After getting into by way of the gate to the 17-Mile Drive, you’ll be able to observe the route with a map that options 17 self-guided stops.

Travelers go the attractive and well-known Monterey cypress bushes, in addition to go many named rock formations like Point Joe, which was the positioning of many shipwrecks up to now, as mariners mistook the world for the doorway to Monterey Bay.

The drive requires a charge at the beginning, however drivers can waive their charge by procuring at one of many shops or getting a chew to eat at one of many eating places that drivers go whereas touring the world.

The drive has many alternatives for wine tasting, pairings, and procuring. You may also take an e-bike tour of the 17-Mile Drive or a Self-Guided Audio Tour.

If you’re eager on experiencing all the very best wines of the area, the 17-Mile Drive is a superb option to spend the afternoon when paired with wine tasting visits to the River Road Wine Trail, Carmel-By-The-Sea, and Monterey.

See Related: Best Things to Do in Guerneville, California

22. Visit the Carmel Mission Basilica Museum

Address: 3080 Rio Rd, Carmel-By-The-Sea, CA 93923

The Carmel Mission Basilica options an lively Catholic Church however welcomes all guests who need to study extra concerning the early Spanish historical past of California. The mission was based within the 1770s and was established because the Misión de San Carlos Borromeo de Rio Carmelo.

Today guests can attend mass, study concerning the historical past of the world, and see examples of early California artwork.

Several different missions had been additionally established within the area across the similar time, they usually performed a significant position within the European settlement of the Central Coast. After about 100 years, the Carmel Mission Basilica wanted repairs, which began within the Eighteen Eighties. The buildings would see extra restore work executed 50 years later within the Nineteen Thirties.

Builders lately retrofitted the cathedral to outlive an earthquake, and donations additionally helped restore the mission’s courtyard to its former magnificence.

Not solely is the mission a superb place to go to to find out about California historical past, however the property options hanging structure and alternatives for images.

If you’re on the lookout for a venue close to Monterey for a wedding ceremony, the Carmel Mission Basilica is one possibility. If your go to is only for enjoyable and schooling, you may go to the mission retailer, which sells books, meals, dwelling décor, and souvenirs.

23. Explore the Wine Country round Monterey

If you’re visiting Monterey and need to construct an itinerary round wine tasting, you’ll discover countless alternatives all through Monterey wine nation and Monterey County. Explorations start at Big Sur’s rugged shores, proceed by way of Carmel and Pebble Beach, and conclude in Monterey.

The mixture of heat climate, misty mornings, and wealthy soil creates unimaginable wines in probably the most lovely environments on this planet. It was a bunch of Franciscan Friars who first planted grapes close to their mission in Soledad.

Over the subsequent 200 years, these authentic vines would disappear, however the area’s status for rising wine grapes would develop.

You can discover tasting rooms in Carmel-By-The-Sea, the Carmel Valley, Monterey, and the River Road Wine Trail. You’ll typically need to have about three days to discover all of those places throughout a leisurely and enjoyable itinerary. Monterey is a superb alternative for lodging throughout your wine tour.

If you are taking the River Road Wine Trail, you may go to the oldest producing winery in Monterey County, Chalone Vineyard.

Another possibility is the Hahn Family Wines Estate, which covers 650 acres of property vineyards throughout the Santa Lucia Highlands. If you’d wish to strive wine from natural grapes, strive a wine tasting at Odonata wines.

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24. Monterey Jazz Festival

Address: 2004 Fairground Rd, Monterey, CA 93940

Held yearly since 1958 (except for 2020 for apparent COVID-19-related causes) the world-famous Monterey Jazz Festival attracts tens of 1000’s of holiday makers yearly.

This 2-day music competition is held within the Monterey County Fairground and options round 50 toe-tapping musical acts to please all kinds of jazz followers.

While the musical acts definitely take middle stage, there’s a lot extra to the Monterey Jazz Festival. There are additionally lectures, seminars, and workshops to attend in addition to meals vehicles and stalls and tons of alternatives to buy jazz-themed presents.

Getting round Monterey, California

Like a lot of California, the easiest way to get round and see Monterey, California, is by automobile, significantly if you wish to see something outdoors the comfy city middle.

Monterey Regional Airport, the closest airport to Monterey, is serviced by nearly all the foremost automobile rental corporations like Alamo, Enterprise, Avis, and Hertz.

Alternatively, you may get a rental automobile organized forward of time by way of Kayak.

If you’re not eager on driving, you may also go to Monterey utilizing taxis, airbus transport, and the Monterey Trolley, which is a part of the Monterey-Salinas Transit (MST) system. Monterey additionally has rideshare corporations working inside its borders to be able to take an Uber or Lyft to your vacation spot.

You may also experience bicycles in Monterey because the climate could be very conducive to outside actions. Walking can be a preferred pastime, as evidenced by the mountain climbing trails surrounding the city.

For most vacationers, a rental automobile will work greatest whether or not touring with household or on a solo journey, however the city is simple to navigate on a bicycle or foot.


What are the very best vacationer points of interest in Monterey, California?

If you solely have a number of hours or someday in Monterey, go to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and take a stroll alongside Cannery Row to see the outlets. These points of interest are well-known properly outdoors of Monterey. You’ll discover meals, parking, and a number of other historic websites alongside the way in which.

What are some issues to do in Monterey when it’s raining?

Monterey is an outdoor-focused group, however its small collection of indoor museums will assist hold you occupied when it rains. Options embody the Monterey Museum of Art and the Colton Hall Museum and Jail. Going on a wine tasting journey can be an possibility, so long as the wine bars you go to are inside.

What are some enjoyable issues to do in Monterey?

Like many California cities, the very best issues to do in Monterey are outdoors. The seashores, parks, and trails are glorious methods to take pleasure in Monterey’s fantastically temperate, Mediterranean local weather.

You can hire bicycles, carry your mountain climbing footwear, or dress in your working gear on your journey on the California coast.

What is the very best factor to do with youngsters in Monterey?

The Monterey Bay Aquarium is successful with youngsters and adults. Kids will love the unimaginable jellyfish tank, and the aquarium can be dwelling to some critically lovely sea otters. Dennis, the Menace Park, is a stable runner-up for kid-friendly actions in Monterey.

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