Things to Do & Attractions
Located on coastal Highway 1, Monterey, California is an unforgettable destination for romantic couples and leisure travelers alike. Enjoy an incredible sunset while strolling Monterey's white sandy beaches.
Peddal a bicycle along the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreational Trail, or enjoy a leisure cruise along scenic 17-Mile Drive. A wine tasting excursion in Monterey Wine Country is the perfect way to spend the day. Check out our favorite Monterey Bay attractions below:
Cannery Row -
Made famous by John Steinbeck's novel, Cannery Row, this one-mile stretch is considered the heart of Monterey. Guests will discover history and charm on this waterfront street that was once the center of Monterey's bustling sardine canning industry. Today, Cannery Row visitors will find it all, from world-class seafood restaurants and charming gift shops, to historic landmark attractions and stunning sandy beaches. For more information, visit. www.canneryrow.com.
Monterey Bay Aquarium -
Located at the north end of Monterey's famous Cannery Row, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is dedicated to marine education, research, and preservation. You'll enjoy a full day exploring unique exhibits featuring sharks, an awe-inspiring kelp forest, live otters, and mysterious jellyfish. At the Monterey Bay Aquarium, there are always unique educational programs and activities to choose from. For more information, visit www.mbayaq.org.
Coastal Recreational Trail -
Running from Castroville to Pacific Grove, this 18-mile long waterfront recreation trail is a well-maintained paved pathway that follows the coast along the old Southern Pacific Railway route. Outdoor adventurists will enjoy a leisure day of bike riding, in-line skating, and snapping photos from the incredible vista points. For more information, visit www.seemonterey.com/recreation-trail.
Point Lobos State Reserve -
Considered the "jewel" of the California state park system, Point Lobos State Reserve teems with interesting tidal effects, rare Monterey Cyprus tree groves, and spectacular beaches. Spot loud sea lion colonies resting near the shores, or enjoy adventure hiking along the lush oceanside trails. Point Lobos State Reserve offers the most spectacular ocean views. For more information, visit www.pointlobos.org.
Big Sur -
Big Sur is an outdoor lover's delight. Soaring mountains and coastal bluffs meet the shimmering Pacific Ocean, creating an unforgettable destination for exciting outdoor adventures. Discover stunning ocean and mountain views, enjoy hiking through Big Sur's pristine trails, or explore the area's quaint villages. For more information, visit www.bigsurcalifornia.org.
San Carlos Borromeo de Carmel Mission Basilica -
Originally founded in 1770 by Spanish missionary Father Junipero Serra, the Carmel Mission today is one of the area's top attractions. Visitors can delve into the world of traditional mission life through exhibits filled with significant religious artifacts, and antique Spanish and Native American implements. Explore the library, well-manicured gardens, and the quiet church sanctuary.
National Steinbeck Center -
The National Steinbeck Center in Salinas is a peek into Monterey County's agricultural history from the eyes of famed local author, John Steinbeck. Discover the history and life of this famous hometown hero through intriguing, interactive exhibits featuring historic photographs and fascinating artifacts that highlight the importance of the fertile Salinas Valley. For more information, visit www.steinbeck.org.
Monterey Wine Country -
Explore the unforgettable wine growing region of Monterey County. Wine connoisseurs and enthusiasts can tour over 45 wineries and sip on regional varietals, from aromatic pinot noir to cabernet sauvignon. Pack a gourmet wine and cheese lunch and enjoy a romantic picnic surrounded by the stunning landscape of the Salinas and Carmel Valleys.
Point Pinos Lighthouse -
It first shone its light on February 1, 1855. Since then, Point Pinos Lighthouse has been both a guide and warning to ships sailing along the rocky California coast. Step back in time with a tour of the Point Pinos Lighthouse, considered the West Coast's oldest continuously functioning lighthouse. For more information, visit www.ci.pg.ca.us/lighthouse/default.htm.