Things to do in Monterey

The Monterey Bay Aquarium

Monterey Bay Aquarium

In March 1977 a group of marine biologists were inspired by the old Hovden Cannery located next door to Stanford University's Hopkins Marine Station in Pacific Grove. The collective vision of Steve Webster, a professor at San Jose State University, Robin Burnett, a faculty member at Hopkins, David Packard's daughter Nancy Burnett, who did her graduate work at Moss Landing, Charles Baxter, also a faculty member at Hopkins and Julie Packard, who majored in marine algae studies at U.C. Santa Cruz was to create a new aquarium in the same location as the old Hovden Cannery.

In November 1977 Edward F. Ricketts, author, marine biologist and friend of John Steinbeck, suggested displaying the region's marine communities instead of individual species. The David and Lucille Packard Foundation provided the necessary funds for initial construction in spring of 1978 with the intention that the aquarium would be self sustaining by opening day in 1984.

The Monterey Bay Aquarium was officially opened on October 20, 1984 with an opening celebration including marching band parades, school floats, dancing, music and ending with a huge fireworks display over the bay. Throughout the years the aquarium has added multiple educational programs, unique marine displays and marine animal rehabilitation programs. Today the Monterey Bay Aquarium is a world renowned research and environmental organization. To learn more about the aquarium visit www.montereybayaquarium.org.

Pebble Beach Golf Links

Pebble Beach Golf Link

The Pebble Beach Golf Course is one of four courses owned by the Pebble Beach Corporation, the other three being The Links at Spanish Bay, Spy Glass Hill Golf Course and Del Monte Golf Course. Pebble Beach Golf Links is regarded as one of the most beautiful and scenic courses in the world due to the rugged coastal scenery and ocean views seen from most of the courses property. In 2001 Golf Digest selected Pebble Beach as the No. 1 golf course in America, which marked the selection of the first public course to hold such a title.

The course was designed by Jack Neville and Douglas Grant and opened in February 22, 1919. Neville's idea was to design the course to allow for optimum viewing pleasure from each green which forced the layout to consist of a figure eight. The first tournament at Pebble Beach was hosted in 1926, and in 1947 the course became one of the host courses for the Bing Crosby National Pro-Am Tournament, which is now known as the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Tournament. There have also been many U.S. Amateur championships staged at Pebble Beach Golf Links throughout the course's existence.

Lone Cypress Tree

Lone Cypress Tree

The most famous sightseeing attraction is the Lone Cypress Tree situated on a cliff overlooking the ocean. This tree is the official symbol of the Pebble Beach Community and is used frequently in advertising, tourism and television broadcasts. The only services open to the public in Pebble Beach are located at the Lodge at Pebble Beach and the Inn at Spanish Bay although there are numerous turnouts for hiking, picnicking and sightseeing along 17-Mile Drive.

17-Mile Drive

17-Mile Drive

The 17-Mile Drive is a scenic road that travels through Pacific Grove and Pebble Beach along the western coast of California. Most of the famous drive overlooks the rocky coast of the Pacific Ocean and passes famous golf courses and mansions. The 17-Mile Drive also serves as the main thoroughfare to the Gated Community of Pebble Beach and, like the community, is owned by the Pebble Beach Corporation.

Pacific Grove

Pacific Grove

The town of Pacific Grove lies on the western coast of California and is bordered by Montery and Point Piños. The small coastal town is known for its Victorian houses, Asilomar State Beach, the Point Piños Lighthouse and the annual migration of Monarch Butterflies which travel through Pacific Grove every year. Pacific Grove consists of more Victorian era houses per capita than anywhere else in the United States and many of the historic homes are now used as bed and breakfasts. Along with the towns famous homes is the Point Piños Lighthouse, the oldest continuously operating lighthouse on the west coast.

Pacific Grove's history is very similar to Monterey and Carmel and the town was once inhabited by a large number of plein air painters seeking a beautiful landscape to study. John Steinbeck also lived in a small cottage on the edge of town and has used the town as inspiration in several of his novels. Pacific Grove is a quaint community built on the foundations of art, nature and a serene coastal landscape.

Cannery Row

Cannery Row

In the mid 1800's the Monterey fishing industry began with a small population of Chinese fishing families who arrived by boat. Unfortunately, the first families to settle on Cannery Row were located too far from the fish markets to sell their catch fresh. Instead, they dried the fish using techniques learned in their home countries. Several years later Japanese fishermen arrived and began fishing for salmon, and by John Steinbeck's era Sicillian immigrants were the dominant cannery row population.

During the early twentieth century the East Coast fishing industry was collapsing due to the fear of German submarines while the sardine supply on the west coast propelled the Monterey Bay fishing industry into a frenzy of catching and canning. By the 1950's most of the canneries were closed due to a decline in the sardine population and overfishing.

Today Cannery Row is a mecca of restaurants, attractions, shopping and nightlife. For more information regarding Cannery Row in Monterey visit www.canneryrow.com.