March 26, 2023

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Searching for probably the greatest locations for a romantic getaway in america? Look no additional than Monterey! With out of doors actions, wine-tasting rooms, stunning seashores, famend golf programs, and romantic lodges — this metropolis alongside the California Coast presents a lot for {couples}. My husband and I celebrated our marriage ceremony anniversary right here and fell in love with Monterey (and with one another, over again)! You will fall in love, too, with this checklist of probably the most romantic issues to do in Monterey.

The romantic bay-front city of Monterey, California
The romantic bayside metropolis of Monterey, California (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

1. Cannery Row

In downtown Monterey, you will discover picturesque Cannery Row. This bustling historic avenue presents fairly ocean views and is the primary avenue by way of town.

Made well-known by John Steinbeck’s ebook, Cannery Row, Monterey pays tribute to the sardine manufacturing unit staff who labored right here from 1908 till the final cannery closed in 1973.

Cannery Row in Monterey, California
Cannery Row in Monterey (Picture credit score:,

The Presidio of Monterey Museum contains three attention-grabbing Cannery Employees’ Shacks, representing three migrant ethnic teams who lived and labored right here through the canning heyday.

Cannery Row Monument
Cannery Row Monument (Picture credit score:,

Situated within the heart of Cannery Row, you will discover the Cannery Row Monument. It options eight figures sculpted from bronze that characterize Monterey’s canning previous, together with Steinbeck himself.

Customers shall be happy to discover Cannery Row Antique Mall, positioned throughout the former Carmel Canning Firm warehouse. It’s also possible to wander by way of a mess of reward retailers alongside Cannery Row to buy t-shirts and different souvenirs of your Monterey romantic retreat.

Old Fisherman's Wharf
Previous Fisherman’s Wharf (Picture credit score: wolterke,

2. Previous Fisherman’s Wharf Clam Chowder

Seafood eating places abound alongside Cannery Row and the Old Fisherman’s Wharf buying and eating district. You’ll in all probability be supplied free samples of clam chowder from nearly each eatery on the town.

Clam chowder served in a sourdough bowl
Clam chowder served in a sourdough bowl (Picture credit score: f8grapher,

If it is a bowl of the city’s greatest clam chowder you are after, then I have to suggest the Fish Hopper or its sister property, Old Fisherman’s Grotto. I had by no means been a lot of a clam chowder lover, however after a style of their scrumptious soups, I turned a convert! For a scrumptious style of San Francisco, order yours served in a sourdough bread bowl.

Life-sized blue whale sculpture at Monterey Bay Aquarium
Life-sized blue whale sculpture at Monterey Bay Aquarium (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

3. Monterey Bay Aquarium

The most well-liked attraction in Monterey is its world-renowned aquarium. The Monterey Bay Aquarium is likely one of the most spectacular aquariums on this planet. It is set on 3.3 bay-front acres and is house to over 75,000 animals and vegetation. {Couples} will get pleasure from exploring the aquarium’s hands-on, academic shows of marine life collectively.

Jelly fish exhibit at Monterey Bay Aquarium
Jelly fish exhibit at Monterey Bay Aquarium (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

Skip-the-Line Tickets

The world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium may be very busy, and rightfully so. Anticipate lengthy strains to get in, particularly throughout excessive journey season, like summer time weekends. I like to recommend buying Skip-the-Line Monterey Bay Aquarium Tickets earlier than arrival to chop wait instances.

Sea Otters

Along with an unlimited array of fish, the aquarium’s sea otters are a continuous swirling, swimming, diving frenzy of leisure. Check out what I imply within the video above!

A penguin at Monterey Bay Aquarium
A penguin at Monterey Bay Aquarium (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)


The resident penguins are much less lively however intriguing as effectively. My husband and I watched one tuxedoed, indecisive gal waddle about and ponder diving into her exhibit’s chilly waters for a full quarter-hour.

The Lone Cypress along the famous 17-Mile Drive
The Lone Cypress alongside the well-known 17-Mile Drive (Picture credit score: mmarfell,

4. Seventeen-Mile Drive

In some unspecified time in the future throughout your Monterey trip, you could embark on the well-known 17-Mile Drive. This winding personal oceanfront street costs a nominal payment, but it surely’s effectively value it for the views.

Plan to pause lots alongside the scenic drive to snap photographs of the rocky ocean cliffs and sandy seashores frosted with misty clouds. One required cease is at The Lone Cypress, which stands alone on a rocky peninsula in Pebble Seashore.

Adventurous {couples} could wish to tackle the 17-Mile Drive by way of bicycle. Sign up for an e-bike tour with a local guide prematurely.

Just a sliver of the sweeping view at Pebble Beach Golf Club
Only a sliver of the sweeping view at Pebble Seashore Golf Membership (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

5. Pebble Seashore Golf Hyperlinks

High off your drive with a cease at Pebble Seashore Golf Hyperlinks. In case you love golf and have deep pockets, then make a reservation to play a spherical or two at this widespread spot throughout your journey to Monterey County. The golf programs listed here are repeatedly voted amongst the best in the United States.

Pebble Beach luxury shopping
Pebble Seashore luxurious buying (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

Or, do as my husband and I did, and reside the wealthy life by sipping cocktails at their golf membership as an alternative. Soak up an impressive view of the course and ocean when you get pleasure from your refreshments. Browse high-end retail retailers at Pebble Seashore earlier than or after your treats.

Point Lobos State Reserve view
Level Lobos State Reserve view (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

6. Level Lobos State Pure Reserve

About six miles from Monterey you will discover the unbelievable Point Lobos State Reserve on the northern finish of Large Sur. This nature sanctuary on the Monterey Peninsula feels otherworldly with orange-colored moss, twisted bushes, flower-festooned boulders, and a wealth of animals.

Take within the reserve’s sounds of waves crashing, birds singing, and barking seals and sea lions. My husband and I noticed sea lions lazing on a seaside, dolphins diving within the water, a whole lot (if not hundreds) of birds, and a slightly outgoing mama doe and her fawn.

Fawn at Point Lobos State Reserve
Fawn at Level Lobos State Reserve (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

Fortunate guests can usually spy on sea otters enjoying in kelp forests at this nature reserve too, however we weren’t amongst them. To get a greater view of the realm’s animal residents, carry binoculars or give your automotive keys to the data heart to borrow a pair.

There are a number of trails for hikers to select from at Level Lobos. Pack a picnic basket to pause mid-hike to get pleasure from a romantic picnic alongside a number of the most beautiful panorama alongside the West Coast.

Humpback whales diving in the ocean
Humpback whales diving within the ocean (Picture credit score: fotoall,

7. Whale Watching Tour

Set sail from Previous Fisherman’s Wharf to see majestic whales of their pure habitat within the waters of the Monterey Bay Nationwide Marine Sanctuary.

Relying on what time of 12 months you go to, you may see humpback whales, dolphins, porpoises, orcas (killer whales), grey whales, and the world’s largest animal — blue whales. Winter and spring are greatest for recognizing migrating grey whales. In the meantime, summer time and fall are greatest for humpbacks and blue whales.

This is likely one of the most memorable and enjoyable issues to do throughout a Monterey romantic getaway. Book your 3 to 4-hour whale-watching cruise with our trusted associate, GetYourGuide now!

One of the most romantic places in Monterey, Lovers Point Beach
Some of the romantic locations in Monterey, Lovers Level Seashore (Picture credit score: hannator,

8. Lovely Seashores

The most effective methods to get pleasure from Monterey’s many out of doors actions is to move to the seaside.

Throughout your Monterey romantic trip, a cease at Lovers Level Park is a should. It presents fairly views, gentle sand, and entry to water sports activities like stand-up paddleboarding, swimming, and fishing.

Alternatively, San Carlos Seashore is conveniently positioned close to Cannery Row. It’s identified extra for scuba diving and tide swimming pools than lazy seaside days, nevertheless.

In the meantime, Del Monte Seashore is thought to be the most effective spot in Monterey for swimming, browsing, and sunbathing. Add pleasure to your journey with private surf lessons at Del Monte.

Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail
Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Path (Picture credit score: ApostolisGiontzis,

9. Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Path

Outdoorsy {couples} cannot miss Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail. This two-lane paved path stretches 18 miles from Pacific Grove within the south to Castroville within the north, passing widespread websites like Monterey Bay Aquarium and Cannery Row alongside the way in which.

Lease bicycles and surreys from native outfitters to traverse the path, taking in views of Monterey Bay as you pedal. It’s also possible to hire kayaks to paddle by way of the bay.

The Wine Experience in Monterey, California
The Wine Expertise (Picture from The Wine Expertise’s Fb web page)

10. Wine-Tasting Rooms

Monterey County boasts over 349 unique vineyards. {Couples} can pattern many varietals proper within the coronary heart of Monterey at wine tasting rooms alongside Cannery Row. Cease by A Taste of Monterey or Bargetto Winery to sip and store for native wines.

What might be extra romantic than sipping wine along with your sweetheart in Monterey? Creating your personal customized mix at The Wine Experience, that is what! Reserve your Mixing Session for Two prematurely, which features a cheese and charcuterie board. You will depart with your personal distinctive bottle of wine with its personal customized label as effectively.

Monterey Jazz Festival
Monterey Jazz Pageant (Picture from Monterey Jazz Pageant’s Fb web page)

11. Monterey Jazz Pageant

{Couples} who respect jazz shall be blissful to study the world’s longest repeatedly working jazz pageant takes place in Monterey each fall. The Monterey Jazz Festival options an array of famend jazz artists acting on 4 levels over the course of three days in September.

Along with superb reside music, count on jazz panel discussions and workshops, worldwide meals cubicles, buying, and festivities on the Monterey County Fairgrounds.

Monterey State Historic Park
Monterey State Historic Park (Picture from Monterey State Historic Park’s Fb web page)

12. Monterey State Historic Park

A part of the Monterey Previous City Historic District, Monterey State Historic Park options authorities buildings and old-time homes that inform the story of California’s earliest capital. Historical past buffs will wish to embark on a self-guided audio tour of the park.

Cottage Sweets candy shop in the darling Carmel-by-the-Sea
Cottage Sweets sweet store within the darling Carmel-by-the-Sea (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

13. Carmel-by-the-Sea

The most effective issues about Monterey is its proximity to the neighboring city, Carmel, and vice versa. This charming place in Carmel Valley presents artwork galleries, romantic eating places, and the gorgeous Carmel Mission. Carmel-by-the-Sea is the right place for a romantic stroll along with your associate amongst quaint retailers and fairy tale houses.

Cease by Carmel as a day journey from Monterey. Higher but, prolong your romantic street journey alongside California’s Central Coast with just a few nights in Carmel-by-the-Sea. Be taught extra about romantic issues to do in Carmel.

Monterey Bay view
Lunchtime Monterey Bay view at Aquarium Restaurant (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

14. Romantic Eating places

The Monterey Peninsula has no scarcity of eating places the place you possibly can get pleasure from a romantic meal.

Looking for sea creatures during our lunch at the Monterey Bay Aquarium
My husband in search of ocean life throughout our lunch at Aquarium Restaurant (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

Aquarium Restaurant

Monterey Bay Aquarium’s sit-down eating possibility, Aquarium Restaurant, boasts probably the greatest ocean views on the town. It got here extremely really helpful to us by locals and didn’t disappoint. It’s possible you’ll view otters, sea lions, dolphins, and ocean birds throughout your meal so plan to return pre-sunset.

In an effort to decrease the aquarium’s carbon footprint, you will solely discover sustainable seafood right here in addition to components from native ranchers and farmers.

Fandango Restaurant in Pacific Grove on the Monterey Peninsula
Fandango Restaurant in Pacific Grove (Picture from Fandango’s Fb web page)

Fandango Restaurant

For a romantic hearth meal, make reservations at Fandango. This Mediterranean eatery in Pacific Grove is likely one of the greatest eating places on the Monterey Peninsula. {Couples} dine on dishes like their signature Osso Buco or native Sautéed Sand Dabs. Save room for Soufflé Grand Marnier or Chocolate Mousse for dessert.

Couple at Point Lobos State Reserve near Monterey
My husband and me at Pacific’s Edge Restaurant (Picture credit score: Journey Mamas)

Pacific’s Edge Restaurant

Make sure to make reservations for a romantic dinner at Pacific’s Edge Restaurant at Hyatt Carmel Highlands. Menus change with the seasons at this additional particular restaurant.

You may begin with Baked Oysters Rockefeller or a Roasted Beet Carpaccio. Then have fun your love with Surf and Turf of filet mignon with purple wine discount and Maine lobster with bearnaise. Desserts like Profiteroles with home made espresso ice cream are to not be missed.

The knock-your-socks-off views of Level Lobos Reserve, unbelievable service, and impeccable delicacies will impress probably the most discerning {couples}. If this place does not put you within the temper for love, then I do not know what’s going to.

Spindrift Inn lobby with fireplace
Spindrift Inn foyer with fire (Picture credit score: Spindrift Inn)

15. Monterey Peninsula’s Most Romantic Motels

Whether or not you are planning an extended weekend or a extra intensive trip, your romantic getaway in Monterey deserves a romantic lodge keep.

Continental breakfast served on a silver tray at Spindrift Inn
Continental breakfast served on a silver tray at Spindrift Inn (Picture credit score: Spindrift Inn)

Spindrift Inn

The waterfront Spindrift Inn on Cannery Row receives excessive marks for love on Anticipate Monterey Bay views, charming antiques, and included silver tray-served continental breakfasts. Many visitor rooms embody wood-burning fireplaces, good for {couples} to cuddle by.

Beachfront Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa
Beachfront Monterey Plaza Resort & Spa (Picture credit score: Monterey Plaza Resort)

Monterey Plaza Resort & Spa

Seashore lovers will wish to keep at Monterey Plaza Hotel. Pacific waves crash on the shores beneath this beachfront property positioned on Cannery Row. Sizzling tubs, fireplace pits, complimentary bicycles, trendy facilities, and the on-site Vista Blue Spa make this lodge probably the most widespread locations for {couples} to remain in Monterey.

Hyatt Carmel Highlands pool and incredible ocean views
Hyatt Carmel Highlands pool and unbelievable ocean views (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)

Hyatt Carmel Highlands

The luxurious, but woodsy Hyatt Carmel Highlands is located beside the Pacific Ocean and Level Lobos State Reserve. The rooms usually are not massive, however the views positive are. Take a dip of their heated out of doors pool or heat up after a day of mountaineering in a steaming sizzling tub. Then, pull up a seat at one in all their blazing fireplace pits for s’mores and a glass of vino.

Romantic wine and strawberries with a view at Hyatt Carmel Highlands
Wine and strawberries with a view at Hyatt Carmel Highlands (Picture credit score: Colleen Lanin)


Discover Extra Romantic Locations

Plan a romantic Disneyland trip.

Study issues for {couples} to do in New Orleans.

Uncover why to plan a romantic Royal Caribbean Cruise.

Take a peek at actions for {couples} in Basel, Switzerland.

Romantic Things to Do in Monterey

Save These Actions for {Couples} in Monterey

For future journey planning, you should definitely save this checklist of romantic issues to do in Monterey. Merely pin the picture above to Pinterest. I hope you’ll comply with Travel Mamas on Pinterest when you’re at it!

Do you may have different options for {couples} visiting Monterey? Tell us within the feedback beneath!

A Notice from The Journey Mama: My husband and I had been hosted by Monterey Bay Aquarium, Fandango, Pacific’s Edge Restaurant, and Hyatt Carmel Highlands for the aim of this story about romantic issues to do in Monterey. We paid full value for every thing else we did within the Monterey space. All opinions are my very own, as at all times.