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The Best Things to Do in Carmel

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Things to do in Carmel

State Park
Point Lobos , Carmel
4.8
Appreciate the pristine natural landscape and thriving habitat of the California coast at Point Lobos. The nature reserve is home to hundreds
Tours from $13
Beach
4.8
With two of Monterey's most pristine seaside locations, Carmel River State Beach offers white sands, blue ocean, and a classic panorama of th
Tours from $8
Aquarium
4.5
Located on the site of a former sardine cannery on the edge of the Pacific Ocean, Monterey Bay Aquarium features an 8.5 m (28 ft) viewing tan
Tours from $8
  • ©
4.9
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
Embark on a 4-hour whale watching tour. All trips are narrated by a naturalist or marine biologist guide, who will also spend one on one time with guests while on deck. Professional photographers are often sent to capture the spectacular sights seen from on board and are available to offer tips for your own photography.
Book on Viator from $80
Scenic Drive
17-Mile Drive , Monterey
4.3
A scenic road winding its way over the Monterey Peninsula, 17-Mile Drive runs along the Pacific coastline and passes several well-known golf
Tours from $15
Hiking Trail
4.9
Tours from $8

Recommended Carmel tours

Carmel

4.2
State Parks · Beaches · Spas
Carmel-by-the-Sea, often simply called Carmel, is a city in Monterey County, California, United States, founded in 1902 and incorporated on October 31, 1916. Situated on the Monterey Peninsula, Carmel is known for its natural scenery and rich artistic history. In 1906, the San Francisco Call devoted a full page to the "artists, writers and poets at Carmel-by-the-Sea", and in 1910 it reported that 60 percent of Carmel's houses were built by citizens who were "devoting their lives to work connected to the aesthetic arts." Early City Councils were dominated by artists, and the city has had several mayors who were poets or actors, including Herbert Heron, founder of the Forest Theater, bohemian writer and actor Perry Newberry, and actor-director Clint Eastwood.The city is known for being dog-friendly, with numerous hotels, restaurants and retail establishments admitting guests with dogs. Carmel is also known for several unusual laws, including a prohibition on wearing high-heel shoes without a permit, enacted to prevent lawsuits arising from tripping accidents caused by irregular pavement.Carmel-by-the-Sea is located on the Pacific coast, about 330mi north of Los Angeles and 120mi south of San Francisco. Communities nearby Carmel-by-the-Sea include Carmel Valley and Carmel Highlands.As of the 2010 census, the town had a total population of 3,722, down from 4,081 at the 2000 census. Use our United States trip planner to plan your trip to Carmel and other destinations in United States.

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Places to visit with Carmel

San FranciscoTrip planner Best for: Island, Bridge, Pier / Boardwalk Los AngelesTrip planner Best for: Theme Park, Specialty Museum, Historic Walking Area Yosemite National ParkTrip planner Best for: World heritage site, Geologic Formation, Waterfall San DiegoTrip planner Best for: Specialty Museum, Zoo, Beach AnaheimTrip planner Best for: Theme Park, Disney Park / Activity, Ride / Activity

Where to stay in Carmel

Most accommodations in Carmel sit inland, around the historical center. Most of these line the town's two major streets--Ocean Avenue and San Carlos Street--where you can choose from a range of independent inns, whose decor and ambiance captures the artistic reputation that has long been associated with Carmel. You can expect complimentary breakfast at most options in this area, from which you can reach the town's iconic beach on foot.
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