Located in Monterey Bay, Carmel-by-the-Sea is a coastal city in California with a rich tradition in the arts and world renowned beaches. It’s a city considered so beautiful (and by association, so expensive) that fewer than 50% of the residents of Carmel live there full time. The rest are affluent artists and businessmen that use Carmel for their vacation homes.
Carmel is undoubtedly a small city, but there is still a wealth of things to do. Here are several suggestions for those considering a visit to Carmel-by-the-Sea.
What to Do in Carmel
· Eat at Dametra Café
Dametra café is more than simply a Mediterranean restaurant. It is a complete experience. The owners are friendly, the food is fantastic, the prices are affordable, the service will occasionally start singing songs from various cultures – Dametra Café is nothing short of a treat, and a must-visit for anyone looking for a meal in Carmel.
· Visit Carmel City Beach
Carmel has one of the most beautiful beaches in California. The sand is soft and a unique shade of gray. While on any given day you’ll find dozens of people laying out on the beach, there is enough room that you can easily enjoy a romantic walk up and down the coastline without feeling as though you’re surrounded by other tourists.
· Bring Your Dog
Carmel-by-the-Sea is one of the most dog friendly cities in the nation. Most restaurants allow you to bring your dog inside or have a patio area designed for pet owners. Most shops allow dogs (including the majority of antique stores despite the breakable items) and Carmel City Beach allows you to take your dogs off leash.
· Go Antiquing
The affluent Carmel community has made it possible for some very interesting antique shops to open with rare items unavailable at most other stores. The owner at Wittpenn’s Antiques will always chat with you about your interests and show you his favorite possessions. However, don’t forget that even the best antique stores make mistakes. One antique store that will go unnamed was selling a Target brand chess board ($19 at Target) for $75, believing it to be an antique themselves. Still, the selection in Carmel is substantial and browsing is a great way to occupy your time.
· Browse the Art Galleries
Finally, Carmel started as an art community, and today that tradition continues. There are numerous art galleries around the city, all of which have unique pieces by famous (and not-so-famous) artists. Art lovers will find all sorts of interesting art all around the city.
Carmel is easily one of the most underrated cities in California. While most will have trouble affording one of the high priced homes near the beach, Carmel is still a great place for a visit, and a must-see if you’re anywhere in Monterey Bay.
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