Day trip to Monterey Bay Aquarium and 17 Mile Drive

What should we do on a rainy day with relatives in town? The forecast was rain in the morning and clearing up for the afternoon but with a house full of people, we had to find something to do. The nearby mall wasn’t an option because it was too busy that close to the holidays.

Jellyfish at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

Jellyfish at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

We hadn’t yet made the trek to Monterey so we decided to check out the aquarium we have been hearing so much about.

Apparently, quite a few other people had the same idea but during our visit, we never felt rushed or crowded. Parking was a little difficult to find due to the rain but we managed to find a spot a few blocks away.

We had fun watching the sea otters play and eat their breakfast. The sea otter enclosure is part inside, part outside so it’s more of a natural habitat for them. The aquarium had a large jellyfish exhibit so we were able to see all kinds of jellyfish – even very tiny ones in a tube that one of the employees had in his hand as we walked in.


Turtle at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

The kids liked the hands-on portion, although the stingrays were huddled in the farthest corner in their enclosure, where none of the visitors could touch them. The starfish and crabs were on display and my kids thought it was a pretty neat experience.

Around lunchtime when hunger struck, we decided to see if the rain had stopped and ventured out to Cannery Row in Monterey. There are plenty of restaurants and shops, so we spent some time wandering around after lunch. As we looked over the bay, we watched some sea otters playing in the shallow water – no admission needed!

Not quite ready to end our day but being done with window shopping and standing, we decided to check out nearby 17-Mile Drive, which winds through the golf courses of Pebble Beach. There’s an entry fee of $10 per vehicle, but you receive a map and guide of the area with admission.

The area is really quite beautiful – from crashing waves, rocky beaches to sand dunes, forests and golf course greens – it has something for everyone and keeps your eyes on the scenery to find out what’s coming next.

The kids of course liked the beach that was filled with barking seals and tons of birds – a wildlife beach resort at its best.

The drive was the perfect way to end a day of sightseeing and trying to capture the elusive sunset photo on a deserted stretch of beach.

Categories: Travel with kids | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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