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Monterey CA - Overview
Monterey resident, author
Robert Louis Stevenson, described the Monterey peninsula as: "the greatest
meeting of land and water in the world."
The beautiful seaside community of Monterrey
combines all the charm of small town America with an endless variety of
recreational and cultural activities.
Monterey lies on
the Monterey Peninsula which ranges in altitude from sea level to 360 feet.
State highway 1 winds through redwood forests, along sheer cliffs, and past
fishing piers, the blue Pacific, and white sandy beaches as it moves along the
spectacular Big Sur Coast. It is one of the most scenic and dramatic stretches
of road in the world.
This continuous, scenic road
that follows the coastal curves of the bay is the world famous 17-Mile Drive.
Exclusive Pebble Beach with its well-known golf courses is located along it.
Monterey, the largest bay
town, lies in the center of the peninsula and has three major areas to explore:
Old Monterey, with its historic adobe buildings; Cannery Row; and Fishermen's
The Monterey Bay Aquarium is
the centerpiece of Cannery Row. It has
one of the largest displays of
underwater life in the world. Highlights include a 335,000 gallon Kelp Forest
tank, a touch pool where you can pet bat rays, a two-story exhibit devoted to
sea otters, and a "Drifters Gallery," with swirling, multicolored jellyfish..
A Path of History connects the
37 sites of the Monterey State Historic Park. The sites can be entered as part
of a ninety-minute guided historic walking tour that leaves hourly from the
park's Stanton Center. Included on the old Monterey portion of the tour is
Larkin House whose original owner, Thomas Larkin, pioneered the Monterey style
of architecture. This consisted of two story adobe houses with Greek
revival-style balconies and other ornamentation.
The Monterey Bay Peninsula has fairly constant 65
degree temperatures and more than 200 annual special events, making the area a
popular destination. Dining is a delight in Monterey. There are a multitude
of fine local California wines available, as well as fresh seafood and regional
produce. Most restaurants plan their menus around what is in season.
Nearby Pacific Grove is
known as "Butterfly Town USA.” Millions of orange and black monarch
butterflies winter there each year.
A bicycle path runs the two miles to Pacific Grove, along
Monterey's rich history, the
saga of California's Mission Trail, historic Fisherman's Wharf and Cannery Row,
17 world-class golf courses, the world's best aquarium, a unique variety of
shops and galleries and a spectacular assortment of parks and natural areas
combine to provide a fantastic vacation destination.