What to Do Down in Monterey
May 17, 2012 2:44 PM   Subscribe

I'll be visiting Monterey, CA for a weekend getaway soon (most likely the end of June), and I'd love some suggestions for what to do. I've been countless times with visiting relatives so have already done all the basic touristy stuff and chain restaurants, but don't know what else the area has to offer.

The only thing on the schedule so far is the Aquarium (and maybe a stop off at Ano Nuevo on the way down from the Bay Area), though I know we also want to do some photography and maybe go for a (road) bike ride. I am interested in: fun places to stay, great places to eat, easy or moderately challenging bike rides, interesting things to see and places to shop that are NOT on Cannery Row or the pier, and hopefully a cafe where two coffee snobs can get our caffeine fix. Stuff in the immediate surrounding area is great, too.
posted by rhiannonstone to Travel & Transportation around Monterey, CA (9 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: If you can get up to Carmel, bike the 17-Mile Drive. And get scones for breakfast at the Tuck Box. (I know you said Monterey, but I always stayed in Carmel as a kid and then went to Monterey for the day to see the Aquarium, so there's no reason you couldn't it the other way around, seeing as the two towns are pretty close to each other.)
posted by infinitywaltz at 2:56 PM on May 17, 2012

Best answer: Point Lobos is one of the most beautiful day trips I know of (I mean in the world.) Pack a picnic.
posted by fingersandtoes at 3:03 PM on May 17, 2012 [4 favorites]

Hah - fingersandtoes beat me by a minute!

We were in the area last weekend and took a hike at Point Lobos as well, which is a few minutes south of Carmel. Absolutely gorgeous - groves of Monterey Cypress perched on the dramatic bluffs overlooking secluded coves, great views of Carmel Bay to the north, harbor seals resting on beaches, etc. Well worth the trip, and a great way to spend a few hours walking around and just enjoying nature.
posted by mosk at 3:06 PM on May 17, 2012

Came here to say Point Lobos, but mosk beat me! Some of my best photographs ever have happened on trail here. It's really fantastic.
posted by smirkette at 3:10 PM on May 17, 2012

Best answer: Are you looking for a place to say? We stayed at the Jabberwock Inn and loved it.
posted by elizeh at 3:12 PM on May 17, 2012

I don't know if this falls under "touristy stuff" that you've already done, but you can take the local metro for an all-day wine tasting trip.
posted by jpeacock at 4:41 PM on May 17, 2012

Best answer: If you want a challenge, you can bike the 17-Mile Drive directly from Monterey. Bike trails and good roads will take you all the way there from the touristy bike rental places by the piers, but it adds some miles and hills to your total journey. I didn't make it all the way along the route, but I really enjoyed the parts I saw.
posted by tantivy at 4:42 PM on May 17, 2012

Best answer: Get coffee here: Acme Coffee - http://www.acmecoffeeroasting.com/
Eat here: http://www.passionfish.net/
n'thing 17mile drive, Point Lobos and adding: check out the village of Carmel.
posted by getmetoSF at 7:34 PM on May 17, 2012

However, if you want something amazing and off the beaten path and enjoy good, local food and wine and are around on a Monday night, go here for dinner: Cachagua General Store, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cachagua-General-Store/46630647054?sk=info.
posted by getmetoSF at 7:38 PM on May 17, 2012

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