17-Mile Drive#5 in Best Things To Do in Monterey
Tracing the rugged Pacific coastline, the 17-Mile Drive isn't just a road. The route offers breathtaking views of the ocean, hugging the Pacific coastline as it weaves through the Del Monte Forest. You can experience the natural wonders of Monterey and marvel at the multi-million-dollar homes along the coast.
We highly recommend getting out of your vehicle and parking at the marked points of interest along the 17-Mile Drive. Don't miss getting a picture of the Lone Cypress, or taking a short stroll along the wooden paths that line the shores of Spanish Bay. For truly unforgettable views, stop at the Pebble Beach Resorts, home of the world-renowned Pebble Beach Golf Links. The resort complex (where you'll find The Lodge at Pebble Beach, Casa Palmero and The Inn at Spanish Bay) features multiple restaurants for those feeling peckish on their journey.
Recent visitors reported falling in love with the scenery on the drive, and appreciated the various places to stop and park throughout the area. The only qualm some travelers had was that they had to pay $10 to access the route, noting that equally spectacular views can be found along the nearby Big Sur coastline for free.
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Located south of Monterey and Pebble Beach, Carmel-by-the-Sea is a humble seaside village with a few small shops and cafes -- at least that's the cover story. In truth, this pricey town has plenty of designer stores, gourmet eateries and upscale art galleries that cater to its wealthy residents (like Clint Eastwood). You'll find most shoppers and diners around picturesque Ocean Avenue, which leads to Carmel Beach.
Many forego the town's activities in favor of catching some rays on the expansive dog-friendly beach. Recent visitors recommend taking a long walk along the shore at sunset or sunrise. For more information about Carmel-by-the-Sea, check out the town's website.