Guests of BEST WESTERN Carmel's Town House Lodge are within minutes of dozens of Monterey Bay attractions, shops, restaurants, and galleries. The Monterey Peninsula is rich with amazing things to see and do, from the Monterey Bay Aquarium to a drive along picturesque 17-Mile Drive. No matter your interests, there's something for everyone in Carmel, California.
Monterey Bay Aquarium -
This perennial Monterey Bay favorite features over 550 different species of aquatic animals and plants. It was the first aquarium in the world to exhibit a living kelp forest and this particular exhibit is a popular highlight. From up on the aquarium's decks, visitors can sometimes view dolphins, whales, sea lions, and, even orcas as they swim along through Monterey Bay. Go to http://www.montereybayaquarium.org
Monterey Bay Whale Watch -
There's no better place in the world for marine-life watching. The whale watch cruises experienced captains offer year-round tours to view all of the naturally beautiful marine mammals and seabirds. Depending on the time of year, you may see killer whales, humpback whales, gray whales, bottlenose dolphins, porpoise, and more. Visit http://www.montereybaywhalewatch.com
Laguna Seca Raceway -
Home to racing events like the Monterey Festival of Speed, the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix, the Corona AMA Superbike Finales, the Monterey Sports Car Championships, and more, no visit to Monterey is complete without coming out to the raceway. Camping sites are also available so that you can make a whole weekend out of being outdoors. Visit http://www.laguna-seca.com.
Carmel Mission -
Experience a bit of history and faith at the Carmel Mission Basilica and national shrine of the blessed Junipero Serra. Visit the exquisite Mora Chapel, Harrie Downie, Munras, Basilica, La Conquistadora, and more the rebuilt and preserved mission. For more information, visit http://www.carmelmission.org.
Point Lobos State Reserve -
This reserve takes its name from the offshore rocks at the Point of the Sea Wolves where the sounds of the sea lions carry inland. It offers chances for sightseeing, photography, painting, nature study, picnicking, scuba diving, lodging, and more with its majestic natural beauty. With rare plant communities, unique geological formations, rich flora and fauna, the reserve also offers much scientific interest.
Carmel Road Winery -
At the heart of Monterey County, the Carmel Road Winery sits shrouded in morning fog eventually blown away by a brisk Pacific breeze. A relaxed, cool climate greets all visitors touring the vineyards. Those over 21 can partake in a refreshing glass of wine. Be sure to taste the hand-made Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs. Visit http://www.carmelroad.com.
A Mecca for artists, writers, artists, and playwrights, Carmel-by-the-Sea offers an intellectual and cultural oasis, but still maintains an outdoor mystique and small-town appeal. The residential district has no sidewalks or streetlights and the beach is untouched by commercial developments. Homes are also known by name and not address. Experience the art galleries, antique shops, boutiques, small cafes, and restaurants yourself. Go to http://www.carmelshopping.com.
Big Sur -
For a spring getaway, nothing beats Big Sur. Lodging, camping, restaurants, gift shops, art galleries, and hiking, all among the best California has to offer, await you. Awesome nature walks and scenery will rejuvenate anyone's spirits. Go to http://bigsurcalifornia.org.
Ride Pebble Beach -
The gorgeous Del Monte Forest with 27 miles of marked equestrian trails surrounds the Pebble Beach Equestrian Center. Spectacular ocean views are also an easy ride away. Guided trail rides to the beach are offered daily. Riding lessons are given on both the beginning and advanced levels. For more information, visit http://www.ridepebblebeach.com.
Sunset Center -
This is the very cultural heart of Carmel. Symphonies, piano competitions, and all types of lovely classical music events take place here and will make your Northern California vacation extra special. For the latest offerings, visit http://www,sunsetcenter.org.
Forest Theater Guild -
This outdoor theater sits its visitors down on long wooden benches outside in a lovely forest. Movies then start at dusk and it's much like a drive-through theater without all the hassles of driving and parking your car. All visitors are encouraged to bring a picnic. Visit http://www.foresttheaterguild.org.
The Asilomar conference grounds are nestled along the Monterey Peninsula shoreline. This tranquil oceanfront retreat stands among lush forests and white sand beaches. Plan your family reunion, corporate getaway, vacation, or even a wedding here to know what natural calm and beauty really are. Get more information at http://www.visitasolimar.com.
Monterey Conference Center -
This 58,000-square-foot Convention Center provides 3 levels of meeting space including an exhibit hall, ballroom, theater, boardroom, breakouts, patios, galleries, terraces, and banquet facilities. It sits along the stunning Monterey Bay and among a number of exceptional restaurants and other great Monterey attractions. Go to http://www.montereyconferencecenter.com.