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45 miles S of Santa Cruz; 116 miles S of San Francisco; 335 miles N of Los Angeles
Local hero John Steinbeck captured the gritty lives of the working class in Cannery Row, when Monterey was the sardine capital of the Western Hemisphere. After the sardines disappeared, Monterey was forced to fish for tourist dollars instead; hence, an array of boutiques, knickknack stores, and theme restaurants now reside in converted sardine factories along the bay. Distance yourself from the Row, however, and you'll discover Monterey is a serene seaside community with magnificent vistas, stately Victorians, and a number of quality lodgings and restaurants.
Things to Do
When visiting Monterey, it has to be done: Stroll down Cannery Row for a historical journey in search of Steinbeck's muse (and a stuffed sea otter for your niece). Then sashay over to Fisherman's Wharf to nosh on little cups of ceviche, crab, clam chowder and shrimp. Journey inside the Monterey Bay Aquarium, the #1 aquarium in the world.
We beg of you: Take a sea kayak tour of placid Monterey Bay and get eye-to-eye with a sea otter. Next, rent some bikes and cruise the Coastal Bike Trail while keeping an eye out for sea otters, sea lions, dolphins, and whales. After scuba diving, paddle boarding, deep sea fishing, and whale watching, take a scenic drive to nearby Carmel, Pebble Beach, and Big Sur.
Nightlife & Entertainment
Monterey host's the world's longest-running jazz festival, so there's always live music somewhere in town. Pubs include Mucky Duck and Crown & Anchor. A nightcap at Schooners Bistro overlooking the Monterey Bay is always a pleasure. Or join the spirited crowd at the piano bar at Restaurant at Mission Ranch.
Restaurants & Dining
You'll find everything from greasy (Bubba Gump's) to gourmet (Montrio Bistro). By day nothing beats lunching at the seaside cafes atop Fisherman's Wharf. By night, it's Papá Chano's for chilies rellenos and local fave Tarpy's Roadhouse for meatloaf and mash. Rise and shine at Rosine's for belly-filling breakfast plates.
The temperate coast of California is an enjoyable destination, and American Airlines flights to Monterey put you in perfect position for discovering the best the area has to offer. There are so many fun things to do in Monterey, including surfing, whale watching, kayaking and golf. In addition, those who are fond of shopping or other indoor pursuits will find plenty of ways to spend their time.
A visit to the acclaimed Monterey Bay Aquarium is one of the most well-known activities in Monterey. The Aquarium features nearly 200 galleries and exhibits devoted to the diverse habitats of Monterey Bay. It even includes one of the world's largest jellyfish galleries. The Aquarium features more than 35,000 animals and plants representing over 550 species of fish, invertebrates, mammals, reptiles, birds and plants found in Monterey Bay and other marine habitats around the world.
The Aquarium stands on the site of what was historic Cannery Row's largest fish-packing plant, which brings us to another one of our favorite things to do in Monterey. Cannery Row itself features an alluring array of shops, restaurants and family-friendly activities. This historic waterfront district is said to be where the noted American writer John Steinbeck drew inspiration.
Once you've experienced Cannery Row, it's an easy walk along the city's Recreation Trail to Fisherman's Wharf, another one of the top activities in Monterey. You'll likely be able to spot harbor seals and sea otters in their natural habitats along the way when you pass by the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
Did you realize that Monterey is one of the most historic cities in the state of California? It's not unusual to stumble upon original adobe structures on street corners, some of which are open for tours.
Of course, there are also a number of things to do in Monterey for the more adventure-minded. The city's beaches and its over 35 parks offer any number of outdoor pursuits, from water activities such as surfing, sailing and kayaking to camping, hiking and biking, all with beautiful scenery.
If exploring this California destination sounds interesting, fly to Monterey with American Airlines. We make it easy and convenient to discover everything this friendly place has to offer. Search flights and plan your trip today.
Prices shown are round-trip fares, including taxes and carrier-imposed fees. Advertised travel may be operated by an American Eagle or an American Connection carrier. American Eagle® service is operated by American Eagle Airlines, Inc., SkyWest Airlines, Inc., ExpressJet Airlines, Inc., or Republic Airline Inc. American Connection® service is operated by Chautauqua Airlines, Inc.
|Monterey Chinese New Year Festival||Feb 2014 (annual)||Barnes Park|
|Dixieland Monterey Festival||Mar 2014 (annual)||Monterey Conference Centre|
|Wag n' Walk||May 2014 (annual)||Shoreline Park|
|Monterey Wine Festival||Jun 2014 (annual)||Monterey|
|Monterey Bay Blues Festival||Jun 2014 (annual)||Monterey Fairgrounds|
|Monterey Scottish Games and Celtic Festival||Jul 2014 (annual)||Toro County Park|
|Monterey Jazz Festival||Sep 2014 (annual)||Monterey Fairgrounds|
|Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. Restaurant & Market||American||Around Town||2||1|
|Cafe Fina||Italian||Around Town||2||2|
|Montrio Bistro||American||Around Town||3||3|
|Papá Chano's Taqueria||Mexican||Around Town||1||1|
|Paradiso Trattoria||Italian||Around Town||3||2|
|Stokes Restaurant and Bar||American Regional||Around Town||3||3|
|Tarpy's Roadhouse||American||Around Town||2||3|
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