One of the many beautiful sections of the Central Coast is the stunning coastline between Monterey, Pebble Beach and Carmel. The bright blue skies, cypress groves, turquoise waters and white sand make this drive popular for good reason! Through the Del Monte Forest and along the treasured sparking waters of the Pacific situated right next to the famous Pebble Beach golf course, I’m sharing all the stops that won my heart over during our time exploring the area.
Once you enter the gates of the 17 miles drive entrance and pay a $10 fee, you’ll be surrounded by tall trees along the slow winding roads. A perfect first stop on the drive is Spanish Bay. We packed lunch prior to starting the drive and picnicked here for a short time before heading back to the car, as we were antsy to see what else the adventure had in store for us! The shoreline here is peaceful, which also makes it a really nice spot to stroll along the water and take photos.
The next 3 or 4 miles will lead you through the forest while passing many homes throughout the residential part of the drive and suddenly, bam! You’ll see China Rock on your right and then arrive at Bird Rock. Here, you can walk down along the rock shoreline and see harbor seals and lots of birds (as the name suggests!) We spent a good amount of time here dipping our toes into the water and admiring the wildlife.
THE LONE CYPRESS
As you do the 17-Mile drive, you’ll quickly discover the importance the Lone Cypress tree has to the Pebble Beach community. Though cypress trees are all around this area, this particular cypress tree has stood tall for over 250 years! Perched up on a few rocks at the water’s edge, the Lone Cypress tree is a living symbol of this stunning community. You’ll also want to stop at The Ghost Tree a small ways away, which has a white trunk bleached from wind over the years.
THE LODGE AT PEBBLE BEACH
After you’ve finished the drive and seen the many point of interest, you’ll end up at the golf course lodge. This area is a perfect place to soak in the atmosphere, shop around and get lunch! Once you exit the 17 mile drive, you’ll end up in downtown Carmel. This is another really nice, slow moving town that is just as charming as the name suggests!
Have you ever been to Pebble Beach, Monterey or Carmel? Did you have a favorite stop along the famous 17 mile drive? Looking for more adventure? Big sure isn’t too far away from this area and I’m sharing how to have the perfect day trip here!