One of our favourite coastal towns, quaint Carmel-by-the-Sea has a wonderful European vibe. Wander into boutique shops and art galleries and dine at fine restaurants.
Point Lobos State Reserve with its dramatic scenery and pretty Carmel River State Beach are particular highlights.
Situated inland, Carmel Valley is home to large resort hotels with golf courses and Spas- the perfect place to unwind, eat fresh food, play golf and visit the many vineyards. No visit to Carmel would be complete without seeing the active Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo, dating back to 1771.
Accessible only via Highway One, Big Sur is one of the real treasures of California’s Coastline.
With its stunning scenery, this area is a real treat if you want to escape from the world. Best visited in the spring, Big Sur is home to the famous and luxurious Post Ranch Inn. Whilst here, take a walk inside the Point Sur Lighthouse and discover some of the beaches of the area.
Further down the coastline, head inland to visit Hearst Castle, an impressive collection of buildings built by a tremendously wealthy publisher in the 1920s.
Located just 116 miles south of San Francisco, the town of Monterey was made famous by the author John Steinbeck. With lovely shops on Cannery Row, a highly-acclaimed family-friendly aquarium and a wonderful atmosphere at Old Fisherman’s Wharf, Monterey can’t help but please. Sea lions and otters appear in their numbers here and a glass bottom boat tour is a great way to see the underwater life.
We highly recommend a drive along Monterey’s surrounding coastline on the 17mileor Highway One drive. The latter is considered one of the best scenic drives with views of beaches, golf courses, large homes and Cypress trees.