Away from the bustle of Silicon Valley, lies the breathtaking coastal towns that make up Monterey Bay. It’s an area rich of fisherman history, marine life, world-class wine and most recently became the backdrop for HBO’s hit series Big Little Lies. Even Langston Hughes took refuge in Monterey Bay’s Carmel-by-the-Sea to find inspiration in 1933, and the area’s charm continues to inspire visitors each year with its beauty and luxury. Monterey is the perfect recharge every Black woman needs to be inspired and relaxed. Here are five reasons every Black woman should visit this seaside town.
Perfect for Solo Travel
Are you looking for a place to be incognito? Monterey is ideal for a solo traveler looking for a quiet vacation of exploration. The town is not overcrowded, and tourists and locals are friendly. Stay at the InterContinental The Clement Monterey for their Novel Night Package where you can enjoy complimentary access to an Audible book from the hotel’s collection, a welcome drink and turn down service with a dessert. The hotel which sits on the famous Cannery Row and has rooms with fireplaces and balconies perfect for your novel listening. Nearby are great trails like the Monterey Bay Recreation Trail for exploring the coastal beauty that you see outside your window. The area has picture perfect Instagram backdrops at every corner, quaint shopping experiences and dining. Rent a bike or take a stroll while watching the seals sunbathe. You can also see the beautiful architecture of homes that line the coast and discover some famous spots like Lover’s Point where a wedding might take place as you explore.
There’s much to do indoors and outdoors in Monterey. From great walking trails to fun activities exploring marine life, you’ll have your share of new memories. Visit the famous Monterey Bay Aquarium which features 200 exhibits with more than 35,000 creatures representing over 550 species. The jellyfish are mesmerizing, and the penguins are always fun to watch. If you love the aquarium, then get up close and personal with marine life by visiting the Great Tide Pool in Pacific Grove. It’s one of the most populated tide pool habitats in the world and a great place to see a starfish or touch a mini crab. You could also visit Old Fisherman’s Wharf to schedule whale watching, fishing, sailing or a glass bottom boat tour. The famous private road, 17 Mile Drive will let you explore all that the area has to offer including a peek at celebrity homes, golf courses, more tide pools and restaurants to try. Take your time and make stops to capture your journey along the coast of the Monterey Peninsula.
This region makes sustainability a priority, and your travels here will allow you to participate and gain a valuable perspective on your next getaway. Over 90 businesses in the county are a part of the Monterey Bay Area Green Business Program. From the food you eat to the ban on polystyrene and on thin-filmed bags to the reduction of plastic cutlery and straws, the region keeps in mind the need to protect the environment that fuels its economy. The InterContinental The Clement Monterey is award-winning for its recycling program and reduction of energy consumption in guest rooms. Area restaurants including the hotel’s C Restaurant participate in the Seafood Watch program, initiated by the Monterey Aquarium is a sustainable food program in which restaurants in the area only serve sustainable and organic dishes highlighting seafood that has been fished or farmed in ways that have less impact on the environment.
There’s seafood galore, and you can pick whether you enjoy your shrimp during a fine dining experience in Pebble Beach or at a quaint spot at Old Fisherman’s Wharf. However, Monterey’s unique history also boasts a variety of other cuisines to choose from. Enjoy a European dining experience at the Bistro Moulin famous for their Parisian-style spinach gnocchi. The restaurant’s co-owner is a sommelier who will pair any entree with the perfect glass of wine from their extensive collection. You can also escape to Rome right on the Monterey Peninsula for a meal at the trattoria, II Vecchio. After devouring their authentic Italian dishes, make sure to leave some room for one of their signature gelato parfaits.
You can’t leave Northern California without enjoying a vineyard experience. Jump in your rental car and visit the small wineries off of the River Road wine trail. The region is home to 85 vintners and growers who create some the best Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines. If you are looking for experience within walking distance of your hotel, Cannery Row is also home to a variety of wine shops that offer wine tastings of the regions popular wines.
Every Black woman deserves a quaint seaside experience like Monterey full of charm, inspiration and luxury that will leave you at peace and well rested to face another Monday.