Attractions & Things to Do in Monterey
Located on Central California's scenic Coastal Highway 1, Monterey is a popular vacation destination that offers a blend of natural beauty, sun drenched beaches and a wide variety of fun things to do in Monterey.
Monterey attractions and things to do include the Monterey Bay Aquarium, art galleries, whale watching, scuba diving, charter fishing tours, museums, festivals, golf courses, wineries, restaurants, and outdoor events. When you visit the Monterey Bay area and stay at our conveniently located boutique hotel, you'll be just steps from fun and exciting Monterey attractions.
Cannery Row -
Cannery Row is a popular waterfront street that was once the center of Monterey's bustling sardine canning industry. Today the area has been transformed into a tourist attraction and pulls visitors to famous attractions like the Monterey Bay Aquarium, restaurants, hotels, gift shops, an IMAX theater, and several historical monuments.
Monterey Bay Aquarium -
Located on Monterey's famous Cannery Row, the exciting Monterey Bay Aquarium offers exhibits of marine mammals and fish, including sharks, an impressive kelp forest, sea otters, jellyfish, and fascinating children's activities. The Aquarium is dedicated to marine education, research and preservation. Open daily, except Dec. 25 from 10am-6pm. Ticket packages
Coastal Recreational Trail -
This beautifully maintained, 18-mile long waterfront recreation trail is a paved pathway that follows the coast and is perfect for a family fun day of bike riding, skating or walking along the coast. Several shops along the trail rent bicycles, 4-person surreys, in-line skates, and kayaks that will help you explore the Monterey area.
Point Pinos Lighthouse -
Explore one of the oldest beacons on California's coast at this mid-1800s lighthouse located on the tip of the Monterey Peninsula. The lighthouse is open to the public on weekends.
Whale Watching -
Enjoy year round opportunities to view a variety of marine mammals and sea birds on board a Monterey Bay whale watching cruise. Trips vary in length and many whale watching tours feature an on board marine biologist available to point out sea otters and other interesting Monterey Bay features. Cruises depart daily from nearby Fisherman's Wharf.
Dennis the Menace Park -
The creator of Dennis the Menace built this free, family friendly park in the 1950s and it remains a beloved Monterey attraction to this day. Kids can play on the rope bridge, hide in the maze, ride the train or drink out the head of a lion in the park's whimsical drinking fountain.
Maritime Museum of Monterey -
Experience an up-close view of Monterey's rich and varied maritime history through an exhibition of more than 5,000 interesting artifacts, 50,000 photographs, 6,000 books, and the spectacular glass prisms of the original Fresnel lens from the Point Sur Lighthouse lamp.
Point Lobos State Reserve -
See the Pacific Ocean up close and explore interesting tidal pools, view rambunctious sea lion colonies, walk through rare Monterey Cyprus tree groves, hike along ocean trials, picnic on the beach, and marvel at views of the Pacific Ocean.
Big Sur -
Visit one of the world's most scenic natural areas, located just a few miles away. Hike or bike dramatic rocky shores to wild sandy beaches through Big Sur's Andrew Molera State Park.
Steinbeck Center -
Learn more about the life and home of famous author, John Steinbeck at the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas. Visitors can explore the old Monterey County and get to know the famous author through interactive exhibits highlighting the Salinas Valley, Steinbeck's life and his now-famous novels Open 10am - 5pm daily, except holidays.
Dozens of wineries dot Monterey County. Sample some of California's best wines at Monterey wineries such as Chalone Vineyards, Bernardus, Talbott, Galante Chateau Julien, Smith & Hook/Hahn Estates and Riverland Vineyard. Or for one-stop sampling visit the Taste of Monterey visitors center in Cannery Row, where you can sample wines from more than 70 Monterey area wineries.