What to do in Monterey, CA? Read this article to learn about the 10 Best Things To Do this weekend In Monterey CA.
Monterey is a lovely coastal town with precious marine life, rich culture, and historic sites. Plan your weekend trip to Monterey, CA, with impressive things to do for all ages and tastes.
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Nearest International Airport –
- San Francisco – 107 mi/120 mins.
- San Jose – 75 mi/90 mins
- Oakland – 106 mi/120 mins
Rent a car and explore the best things to do in Monterey, CA, and the best places to visit near Monterey, CA
10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA
What is there to do in Monterey? Is Monterey worth visiting?
Let’s read to know more about Monterey, California.
Walk along Cannery Row
Entrance – Free
Cannery Row got its name from canning industries which were very commonly found in ancient times at Monterey.
This area is very historical, and taking a stroll across Cannery Row is worth it due to its old-world charm. The canning industry buildings are now converted into shops, restaurants, and businesses with historic charm.
Take a stroll across this historic district.
Old Fisherman’s Wharf – Weekend in Monterey
Entrance – Free
Old Fisherman’s Wharf is another famous historic area of Monterey. Until the 1960s, this location was a full-function wharf with a wholesale fishing business. Therefore it tops the list of 10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA.
The port is now shifted to the new port area. This region is developed into a colorful, charming shopping district, restaurants, whale watching tours, and other marine life activity centers.
You can shop for semi-precious stones, pearls, candies, and souvenirs as this place is full of these stores.
Also, you get stunning views of the Bay of California.
It is one of the best historical things to do in Monterey, CA
Monterey Bay Whale watching tours
Book Whale watching tours in Monterey.
Activity type – Paid
Monterey Bay is the premier destination for whale watching all year round, as the central coast of California is heaven for exotic marine life.
You can spot whales every day in Monterey. Take a guided trip with narrations by a marine biologist or naturalist with educational and engaging information about the wildlife.
Also, you can book glass deck boats to spot other fishes and marine animals at the Bay.
These tours primarily run from Old Fisherman’s Wharf.
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Activity Type – Paid
The Monterey Bay Aquarium is a public aquarium with 600 unique flora and fauna species.
It opened in 1984 and hosts all local species of California.
Pools and tanks display marine animals and plants conveniently as if you feel like real.
Do not miss the Kreisel tank exhibit, which has jellyfish in a circular water flow arena.
You can also find yellowfin tuna, sunfish, and Bluefin tuna, which you will not find anywhere else.
There are a total of 45 interactive exhibits which host octopi, invertebrates, birds, and interactive activities to feel more realistic.
Monterey Bay Aquarium is one of the most fun things to do in Monterey, CA. If you love marine life then do check Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary too.
Pacific House Museum / Monterey State Historic Park – Unique Things To Do In Monterey
Entrance – Free
A beautiful historic, two-storeyed building near Old Fisherman’s Wharf houses unique artifacts of the American Indians era.
You can take a self-guided and enjoy the interactive exhibits, which help you understand visitors to know about California history in depth. It takes you from the Native American era through the Spanish, Mexican, and finally, American governance.
The Custom House
Entrance – Free
You will get complete information on Californian colonization history from the Spanish era to Mexican and then presently American rule. It is the oldest government building in California(present-day).
In historical times, Monterey was once California’s capital, so you can find many state government headquarters ancient buildings here.
The Old Customs House is a National Historic Landmark that symbolizes the City’sCity’s Mexican heritage and Mexico’s political presence in the CityCity during the mid-1800s.
This landmark and its surrounding historic district are now converted into a living museum that interprets the rich early story of Monterey and the economic foundations of California.
The Custom house tour is one of Monterey, CA’s best things to do.
Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail
The Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail is a very favorite thing to do in Monterey, CA.
It stretches approximately 18 miles making its way towards Pacific Grove.
Shop Precious Gems/Pearls
Monterey is located in the Bay area with a beautiful coastline with exotic marine life.
So its location makes it perfect for getting some of the precious gems or pearls from the ocean. You will find many jeweler’s shops around the town where they sell good quality ocean pearls of various sizes and varieties.
Eat around – 10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA
Monterey has good food options, too, with a wide range of international cuisine options.
You can select some boutique restaurants or seaside view restaurants to have your relaxed meals with loved ones.
Marine theme Souvenir/Gift Shopping | 10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA
Monterey is a beautiful place to shop Marine-themed artifacts and home décor stuff.
You will find colorful and rustic home décor locally made by artisans here. Some of this décor is inspired by Mexican and Spanish culture. So it is a fantastic place for shopping too.
Shopping, eating out, family day out picnics, marine-based activities, and historic tours are some special things to do in Monterey CA.
Local Commuting in Monterey – Weekend in Monterey CA
- Free Trolley: One of the best things to do in Monterey is taking a ride by free trolley. The route of this trolley ride takes you through the historic town and stops downtown, at Fisherman’s Wharf, along Cannery Row and the Monterey Bay Aquarium. It runs on the weekends all year long and on special long weekend holidays.
- Self Drive – Monterey is very easy on driving as traffic is light and you can find many free slots for parking near the Fisherman’s Wharf.
- Walking – Explore the historic town of Monterey on foot.
Day Trips from Monterey – 10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA
Carmel-by-the Sea tour
Distance from Monterey – 10 min (4.3 mi) via Pacific St and CA-1 S
Carmel-by-the-Sea is a Victorian seaside town known for its rustic charm with historic Spanish mission and beautiful village vibes. A perfect romantic seaside town with sandy beaches, streets decked with trees.
So if you love charming village-type cities with beautiful beaches, don’t miss Carmel Valley during your Bay area weekend adventures.
Point Lobos State Natural Reserve – California State Park
Vehicles and Entrance Fees · Passenger cars: $10.00 · Vehicle with a senior citizen: $9.00 · Vehicle with disabled discount card: $5.00 · Small coach or van: $50.00
Distance from Monterey – 13 min (7.1 mi) via CA-1 S and CA-1 S
Point Lobos State Natural Reserve is a fantastic place for sightseeing, photography, painting, nature study, picnicking, SCUBA diving, and jogging.
It has one of the most spectacular beauties in all of California. Nearly every aspect of its resources is of scientific interest.
You can find many rare plant communities, endangered archaeological sites, unique geological formations, and vibrant flora and fauna of both land and sea.
Download Kids Coloring Book – Discover Marine Protected Areas for free.
17-Miles Drive – Weekend Getaway in Monterey CA
Entrance Fees – Admission to 17-Mile Drive is $11.25 per vehicle. You can reimburse your fees if you spend more than $35 in any restaurant inside.
Distance from Monterey: It starts in Monterey and ends at Carmel.
17-Miles Drive is the most scenic drive across Pebble Beach. You’ll see harbor seals and shorebirds galore all over. It is a lovely drive with many interesting places to stop, including a picnic area.
There is a 250-year-old tree – Lone Cypress, clinging to the rock formation along the curved coastline, which has now become the iconic postcard photo of Pebble Beach.
Distance from Monterey – 41 min (28.8 mi) via CA-1 S
Big Sur is known for its wilderness and unexplored virgin coasts and therefore tops the list of must-visit attractions in California.
Big Sur is formed of a rugged coastline and stunning views of the Pacific Ocean. Here Saint Lucia mountains meet the Pacific Ocean.
It is known as one of the most spectacular coastlines globally and the most scenic coastline in the USA.
Bixby Bridge – Weekend Getaway in Monterey CA
Distance from Monterey – 26 min (18.1 mi) via CA-1 S
Bixby Creek Bridge, also known as Bixby Canyon Bridge, on the Big Sur coast of California, is a perfect and must stopover during this road trip.
It is one of the most photographed bridges in California.
Santa Cruz – Weekend Getaway in Monterey CA
Distance from Monterey – 47 min (43.6 mi) via CA-1 and CA-1 N
Santa Cruz is a famous beach town in California and a hot favorite amongst surfers. This place is for sun, sand, and surfing.
So soak yourself into the sandy beaches and get some tan under the sunny town of Santa Cruz during a weekend road trip from San Francisco.
You will find amazing beaches, surfing opportunities, amusement rides, beer, and T-shirts related to surfing.
San Francisco – Weekend Getaway in Monterey CA
Distance from Monterey – 1 hr 56 min (113.5 mi) via US-101 N
A 49-square-mile city known for its Golden Gate Bridge and cable cars is a cosmopolitan city in Northern California. This fog city is blessed with cultural diversity, beautiful nature, and beautiful amenities.
This City offers breathtaking views from every corner due to hilly slopes, colorful streets, and top-notch food and wine. San Francisco looks stunning by the Bay and is a perfect romantic destination.
Monterey & Carmel-By-The-Sea video tour | 10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA
Best Time To Visit Monterey, CA – California Road Trip itinerary
All Year around. Spring is the best time to visit as you can see wildflowers blooming all around.
Summer is peak tourist season due to school vacations and suitable climate, so you will find all lodgings and stays very expensive.
You know about the 10 Best Things To Do This Weekend In Monterey CA. It would be a perfect weekend in Monterey, California, with your friends and loved ones.
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