About cara f
Lives in Capitola, California
Since Feb 2014
Historic Sites, Historic Walking Areas, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Neighbourhoods, Piers & Boardwalks
Cannery Row is the heart of Monterey past and present. Beloved writer John Steinbeck beautifully captures this area's lively past in his 1945 novel by the same name, which was largely based on Steinbeck's experiences growing up nearby, and his adventures with 'Doc' Ricketts, a local marine biologist. Walking along Cannery Row, you will see many murals and plaques that commemorate both Steinbeck's work and the area's history as a hub of the fishing industry.
It is no surprise that the Monterey Bay Aquarium is one of the most popualr things to do and see in Monterey. The combination of world-class facilities, exotic animals, and state-of-the-art displays will just take your breath away. From petting pools and penguins to sharks and furry sea lions, there is something fascinating for everyone here.
During the Gold Rush days, Italian-born Domingo Ghirardelli, noticing that gold miners needed some luxuries on which to spend their gold dust, opened a confectionary shop in San Francisco. Ghirardelli chocolate has been a California tradition ever since, and the Cannery Row shop makes for an ideal family treat. A delicious ice cream sundae with amazing ocean views? Talk about a cherry on top!
The Monterey Recreational Trail is a multi-use paved trail that goes from Seaside through Monterey and onto Pacific Grove. Rent a bikes or a surrey and cruise along.
Monterey is chock-full of outdoor adventures, and there are a variety of companies where you can rent everything from bikes to kayaks to stand-up paddleboards. Choose your activity and have a fun family outing!
Themed after the acclaimed film Forrest Gump, Bubba Gump is a fun-filled restaurant that caters to families. The movie-themed decor is entertaining, and the menu, featuring everything from popcorn shrimp and fish tacos to chicken strips and pizza, has options for adult palates and fussy eaters alike. Delicious view of the bay add to the fun.
Monterey Bay is one of the best spots for whale watching in California. Nearly every month of the year, some species is migrating through the bay, so (depending on luck and the time of year) you might see see humpbacks, grays, blues, fins, orcas, and more. And that's to say nothing of the abundance of other resident marine animals, such as otters, sea lions, and ocean birds.
The Old Fisherman's Wharf is a crazy, noisy, colorful collection of shops, restaurants, and amusements. In short, it's the perfect place for some boisterous family fun! Shop for souvenirs and gifts, grab a snack, or have a full sit-down meal — it's all here.
Situated in El Estero Park, Dennis the Menace Playground is an ideal place to picnic and then play off some energy. Definitely one of the coolest parks in existence, it was designed by the creator of Dennis the Menace and boasts lots of fantastic slides, tunnels, and attractions. It's long been a local favorite and chances are you will see as many locals as tourists.
Built in 1855 and one of six lighthouses on the coast, Point Pinos is a charming, petite model perched on the edge of Pacific Grove, near Lover's Point. Tours are limited, but even it the lighthouse is not open, it's worth walking around to take in the beautiful architecture. The tide pools below the lighthouse are excellent and there is a lot to see even at high tide.
A little off the beaten path but still close enough to be convenient, Mrs. DeLish's has arguably the best cupcakes in Monterey. Lunch items are also available in the expanded restaurant.
The Youth Museum is more of a party place than stuffy museum, with nearly a dozen hands-on, interactive exhibits. It's mostly geared towards kids aged two to nine, but there is enough fun to keep the whole family interested.