Monterey is beautifully situated on Monterey Bay. From 1770 to 1822 it was the capital of Spanish California. It is a beautiful and modest town on the Central Coast of California, decorated with gorgeous Cypress trees, constantly refreshed with a cool ocean breeze and blessed with exquisite oceanic scenery.
Today tourism is the main focus and there is much to entertain visitors. The town is visited by people around the world, attracted to its mellow Mediterranean climate and pleasant attractions.
Monterey Bay Aquarium: One of the fairly recent developments in Monterey was the building and opening of the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The site features the lovely and sometimes imposing sea life of Monterey. Not that you can’t see the wildlife out on the ocean almost everywhere you go in Monterey. However, the Aquarium offers views of this sea life, with an educational experience along with the ambiance of the exhibits.
Cannery Row: Cannery Row, made famous by novelist John Steinbeck, is located down the street from the Aquarium. The area is historic, site of old fish canneries. It is a waterfront street that originally served as a fish packing area and now operates as a tourist attraction, with shops and restaurants, as well as a beach of golden sand. Definitely worth giving a look. Today visitors will find a relatively up market row of chain shops, some boutiques, plenty of restaurants and a great place for a stroll.
Fisherman’s Wharf: Probably one of the most popular attractions at Monterey, Fisherman’s wharf has lovely restaurants with tasty food caught fresh from the sea, a glass-bottom boat ride and plenty of shops to get trinkets. Snacks abound and you’re liable to catch some very good street entertainment too, along with great artists who sit and create for your amusement. You can view the sea otters, sea gulls and other creatures of the ocean all along the wharf for free. In addition, there are various historical sites you will see in the vicinity, some of the oldest sites in California. You also might catch one of the many cultural festivals that occur in the Monterey area that are often held by the wharf. You will also have the opportunity to stroll along the beach just adjacent to the wharf, and it’s very refreshing after a tour of the wharf to take a dip in the ocean.
Lover’s Point and Ocean View Blvd: Lover’s Point is one of the loveliest beaches in the area, actually located in Pacific Grove which is right up against Monterey; it’s almost like the same town.
The beach fantastic and if you follow the road along the beach, called Ocean View Blvd, you will be traveling a very scenic and majestic ride along the ocean. The nicest thing about touring the scenery along this road is that there are spots along the side of the road where you can park, get out and sit on a bench to view the ocean or take a walk down the rocks to get a closer view.
Monterey Museum of Art: This is the Museum of Art has a large focus on California art and artists. There are two separate locations which comprise the Museum of Art. The Pacific Street location, simply called the Monterey Museum of Art – Pacific Street, is a rather austere looking building featuring eight galleries. Here you will find early American and California collections, including paintings, photography and contemporary art.
Fort Ord: If you’re in for something a little unusual, it is a fascinating trip to tour the old grounds of the Army base called Fort Ord, located where the city of Seaside meets Monterey. The base has been closed since the 1990s, so what you will see there now is primarily boarded up and abandoned army housing and training halls, among other things. It is fascinating, educational and gets the mind pondering.
And as you continue up the road on the Fort Ord grounds you will eventually run into the California State University, at Monterey Bay. So, is it any wonder Monterey is one of the most popular tourist spots in the world, attracting visitors across the globe, adding to its diversity and charm. The cool ocean breeze, the lovely surroundings and the entertaining activities will keep you coming back for more.