Why Go with Us to Monterey & Carmel?
Why not just rent a car or take the big bus tour? Because driving yourself, you need to focus on the road (just 2 winding lanes in some places), not the scenery. The big buses can't go some places and rush you everywhere else. We show you the off-the-beaten-path places most visitors miss, let you determine our pace and choose where we lunch...helping you remember that you're on vacation, minimizing your stress, maximizing your enjoyment.
A FREQUENT ITINERARY
Following a scenic two-hour drive from San Francisco, we arrive in lively Monterey. There we cruise along family-friendly Cannery Row. Your choices there...visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium, among the world's best--the playful otters and luminescent jellyfish will enthrall you--or maybe you'd prefer to continue to ocean views.
Enjoy the colorful Victorian cottages of Pacific Grove, winter home of magical monarch butterflies. Then rolling along the famous Seventeen-Mile-Drive, let's stop several times to appreciate the Lone Cypress (the most photographed tree in the world) and dramatic vistas. At Pebble Beach Lodge & Resort, you may want to buy a souvenir for your golf enthusiast friends or just enjoy the luxurious surroundings. For lunch choose from several charming restaurants and delis in the artists' retreat of Carmel.
Afternoon can feature the Mission San Carlos Borromeo (1770)--its gardens, baroque Nativity scene and museum recall that California was once ruled by imperial Spain. We pause next door to take in the spectacular views from Clint Eastwood's Mission Ranch, or continue down the Pacific Coast Highway a little to catch sunset over the Ocean from the Pacific Edge restaurant or its Sunset Lounge. Or devote all your time to exploring the more than 80 art galleries and one-of-a-kind shops in Carmel-by-the-Sea, a "storybook hamlet in a forest." With so many compelling attractions nearby, you may wish to stay overnight—or at least for dinner. Or just relax during our two-plus hour drive home.
Duration = usually 10-11 Hours from downtown San Francisco