Road Trip to Monterey
There are so many exciting places and fun things to do with your family around the Bay Area, but there are also awesome places to go that are just a short drive away as well. Over the next month or so I will be highlighting fun road trip destinations that are just a short car drive away from the Bay. Starting with our road trip to Monterey.
We love Monterey for so many reasons: the sandy beaches, warm weather, awesome aquarium, and bustling downtown scene. This year we found a new reason to visit Monterey, their yearly Good Old Days Festival that takes place every April.
What to do and where to go when you visit Monterey:
Dennis the Menace Playground: This is one of the coolest playgrounds around, definitley in Monterey but maybe anywhere! The playground is so big, has so many play structures, a garden maze, rock climbing walls, slides everywhere, a wobbly bridge, a fun roller slide, a small concessions stand, and is right next to Lake El Estero for paddle boating.
Paddle boating at Lake El Estero: The lake right next to Dennis the Menace park features paddle boating! The lake is a nice relaxing place to take a spin on a a paddle boat or a giant paddle swan. Especially pretty in the late afternoon, the way the sun is glistening off the water.
Monterey Bay Aquarium: Of course the big attraction here is the aquarium! It''s like the Disneyland of Aquariums, you won't find another one like this around in California. There are so many exhibits to explore you can literally spend hours here (and you should too for the price lol). Some of our favorite exhibits are the sea otters (my favorite) and the jellyfish (my daughters favorite). Children under 3 are free! Also this Sunday April 29th is Dia De Los Ninos and every child 12 and under gets in for Free!!!!
Lovers Point Beach: This is one of our favorite beaches in Monterey. The ocean looks turquoise here. The beach area is sort of in a cove so it seems a little protected from all the elements of the sea. Surfers can be seen trying to catch a good wave, seals and otters can be seen popping their little heads up, there is a couple food options right above the beach area, a beautiful walking path along the rocky cliffs and shore, and you can rent bikes from here as well from Adventures by the Sea.
Adventures By The Sea: You can pick up a bike rental from them with locations in downtown as well as Lovers Point. You can also pick up a Kayak rental and other modes of transportation from them as well. We like the four seater bikes and to paddle down the path overlooking the water.
Asilomar Beach: Ok this is our favorite beach! We love it here. The sand is so soft and light. The waves are amazing, and the beach is dog friendly so you can bring your furry friend with you for a run. My girls love to play in the waves here, poke the washed up jellyfish, and build castles in the soft sand.
Good Old Days: This is a fun festival that takes place in downtown Pacific Grove once a year for a full weekend in April. Carnival rides, a petting zoo, food, music, and lots of vendors makes for a fun day.
Vision Quest Safari: One year we stayed at Vision Quest Safari also known as the Monterey Zoo it is actually located a short drive away in Salinas. We stayed here once and got served breakfast by an elephant!
As summer approaches consider a road trip to Monterey and check out some of these fun places. You can't be a good explorer if you don't explore beyond the Bay once in awhile too lol.