One of my goals for this year is to travel more. Whether it’s nationally or internationally– I don’t care! I just want to see places I haven’t seen before. After setting this goal and thinking about places I want to go, I realized I had never been to Monterey! Can you believe that? I’ve lived in Northern California practically my whole life and had never been to Monterey. I decided this needed to change immediately, so when Chris and I started thinking about what to do for Valentine’s Day/our two-year anniversary (since our first date), I recommended we spend the weekend in Monterey. And of course, being the laid-back-go-with-the-flow husband that he is, he agreed.
We left Saturday afternoon and got to our hotel around 3:30pm. After checking in and dropping off our bags, we headed straight to Old Fisherman’s Wharf where we shared some clam chowder in a bread bowl, then proceeded to walk around and explore. The sun was setting at this time, so we got some really beautiful views of the sky and ocean.
After exploring Fisherman’s Wharf, Chris and I headed to Downtown Monterey for dinner. Chris picked out a restaurant for us to eat at called Montrio Bistro, and I loved it! It was romantic, fancy but not pretentious, and the food was delicious. It was a perfect spot for a belated Valentine’s/early anniversary dinner.
After checking out of our hotel room Sunday afternoon, Chris and I headed over to Cannery Row for some more sightseeing. A few family members had recommended we go to The Fish Hopper and try their clam chowder, so that was the first stop on our list. Our family members’ recommendations did not disappoint; the clam chowder at The Fish Hopper was awesome! The restaurant itself was pretty touristy, but I would totally go back for their clam chowder in a bread bowl.
A trip to Monterey wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and for good reason; the aquarium was amazing! I saw so many sea animals I had never seen in person before, like sharks, jellyfish, and seahorses. Did you know that MALE seahorses are the one that give birth to baby seahorses? I was shocked when I learned this; I even saw a video of it happening (kinda disturbing). I also saw penguins having sex in the penguin exhibit (also disturbing)! Folks, after my visit to the aquarium, I feel like I’ve seen it all.
Once we were done exploring the aquarium, we made our way over to one of the entrances for the 17 Mile Drive, but unfortunately, access to the drive closes at 5pm. So we headed over to Lover’s Point instead where we sat and watched the sunset.
We ended the weekend by going to Carmel-by-the-Sea: a cute little area in Carmel with lots of cute boutiques and fancy restaurants. Unfortunately, it was dark by the time we got there so I didn’t get any pictures. Plus a lot of the shops were closed already, so we just got dinner at a casual seafood restaurant before we drove back to Sac.
Overall, I absolutely loved Monterey. The whole time we were there, I kept thinking to myself, “How have I never been to such a beautiful place? It’s only three hours away from where we live.” Monterey was the perfect spot for Chris and I to spend a romantic weekend together. The only thing I would have changed is the time we chose to visit. Apparently President’s Day weekend is a popular time to visit Monterey; there were so many people there! But regardless, we had a wonderful weekend and I can’t wait to go back.