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restaurant (and other)recommendations for July 4th in...

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posts: 212
reviews: 79
restaurant (and other)recommendations for July 4th in...

We (my husband and I and our 13-year-old son)will be spending two days in Monterey starting on July 4th and would be grateful for any restaurant recommendations and other "must-do" and "must-see" recommendations. We'll be staying at the Monterey Plaza and are looking for places to eat that have good food and are fun and interesting. We don't want places where it will cost us $150 for dinner for the three of us. Also: any recommendations on what to do and see? We will definitely go to the Aquarium. Is a drive down to Big Sur a must? Thanks!

Pacific Grove...
Destination Expert
for Monterey, Carmel, Pacific Grove, Monterey Peninsula
posts: 5,305
reviews: 24
1. Re: restaurant (and other)recommendations for July 4th in...

I think you all would enjoy Hula's Island Grill. It's on Lighthouse Ave. in New Monterey, not all that far from your hotel. It's got a surfing theme that your son would like and the food is very good--great fish selections as well as ribs and steaks and the sweet potato fries are terrific--you'll need a reservation. For something a littlle more elegant but very reasonable, try Robert's White House in Pacific Grove. They have a 3-course prix fixe menu with 3 or 4 choices of appetizer, entree and dessert. You need a reservation and can find out in advance what they'll be serving so you can see if they something your son would like. It's set in an old Victorian house--really quaint. The owner and chef, Robert Kincaid, is a well-known chef in this area. Other excellent restaurants that won't cost and arm and a leg: Taste Cafe and Bistro in Pacific Grove; Tarpy's Roadhouse in Monterey near the airport. The Duck Club in your hotel also has very good food and nice views. For lunch, I highly recommend The Red House Cafe in Pacific Grove. You can find some restaurants such as Bubba Gump's on Cannery Row that have fun themes, but if your priority is good food, then I wouldn't recommend it.

In addition to the aquarium (get tickets in advance to avoid the long lines--see the aquarium website), you can take a hike at Point Lobos State Park, about 10 minutes south of Monterey on Hwy 1--you'll see it on your way to Big Sur. There are several trails and the views are outstanding. Also, your son may enjoy kayaking on the bay. Adventures by the Sea rents kayaks and gives guided tours.

Have a great stay in Monterey.

Monterey, California
posts: 49
reviews: 3
2. Re: restaurant (and other)recommendations for July 4th in...

There are quite a few children friendly restaurants. Since you are staying at the Monterey Plaza, you can walk to Bubba Gumps (fun for the kids - not a good place if you don't like fried foods) which is also on Cannery Row. The Monterey Plaza has Schooners Bistro which has an outdoor patio which is still suitable for kids. A bit on the pricey side but beautiful ocean views. Within about a 20 minutes walk or short drive is Rosine's on Alvarado Street which is more of a family style restaurant with excellent reviews.

As far as Big Sur, it depends on how much of the coastline you really want to see. If you have limited time, you can take Ocean View Blvd all the way to 17 Mile Drive in Pebble Beach and then from downtown Carmel take Scenic Drive all the way out of town. There is no substitute for Big Sur but again it depends on how much time you have.

As far as other things to see and do, I like the site www.cityitinerary.com because it is arranged by activity so it is easy to find things that you will enjoy doing (it is also unbiased and has about 15 different things to do with kids listed). Once in town, you can pick up the Coast Weekly to check out weekly happenings. Also, the concierge staff at the Monterey Plaza is excellent.

posts: 212
reviews: 79
3. Re: restaurant (and other)recommendations for July 4th in...

Thanks, everybody! These all sound like great suggestions!