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Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

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Greendale, Wisconsin
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Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

My husband and I, mid-50's, have 4 nights to spend on the California coast. We will be flying into Monterey October 18 and would love to experience some of the Pacific coast highway, do some hiking, explore the towns, maybe kayak and take a tour or two. Is it a good idea to base ourselves in Monterey, or should we stay just a night or two and move on? We are interested in seeing the Hearst castle, too. Any suggestions for a moderately priced hotel within walking distance of any sights? Thank you very much for the help. :)

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1. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

there is plenty to do from Kayaking to visiting elkhorn slough to hiking Point Lobos to visiting Carmel that you can easily spend a few days there but if you want to do Hearst Castle you might as well drive the Big Sur to Cambria and take in the last tour and then stay in Cambria for one night. It then depends on where you are flying home from you can cut across to 101 and go to your airport

The Big Sur Forum has a photoblog for you to check out. Plenty of info if you just read the Monterey forum for ideas on where to stay

www.montereypeninsula.info from Mr Toy is a great blog and guide

Greendale, Wisconsin
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2. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

Thanks so much!! :D

We will be flying in and out of Monterey.

How long is the drive from Cambria to Monterey airport? Thanks, again.

San Francisco...
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3. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

If you come back on Hwy 1, it would be close to 3 hours without stops as it is a two line bi-directional road .

California
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4. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

Another idea after your stay in Cambria would be to take 46 over to 101 and go north from there to the airport. If it interests you, Paso Robles has some great wineries you could check out on the way. Overall the scenery is not as great as hwy 1, but if you've already driven that route it would be different and slightly faster.

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5. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

Cambria is a beautiful area of the coast. The Fireside Inn is a nice place to stay on Moonstone Beach Drive. :)

Monterey Peninsula...
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6. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

There's plenty to keep you occupied around Monterey for several days. Lots of parks, shopping, historic sites, beautiful beaches, art galleries, live entertainment/theater, tours, outdoor recreation, etc. You might want to look through the visitors guide and other sections of my website to see the full scope of what's available. The link is below.

I don't really consider Hearst Castle to be a day trip, though, so if your heart is set on that a night in Cambria or nearby would be a good idea.

-Mr. Toy

www.montereypeninsula.info

Edited: 7:12 pm, September 13, 2013
Greendale, Wisconsin
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7. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

Thank you, everyone, for your suggestions. One night in Cambria sounds fantastic, as does the winery. Looking forward to a great trip to a beautiful area of our country.

Thanks.

San Francisco
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8. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

On the way back on Highway 101 make the 25 mile detour to take in Mission San Antonio de Padua. It's on an army base, which has kept the Mission in a rural, secluded environment and not in a busy town. It's a beautiful situation, tucked against the eastern side of the coastal range. Really gives one a sense of how secluded the Missions were.

http://missionsanantonio.net/

And while the scenery on Highway 101 can't compete with Highway 1 the section between Paso and Salinas is quite nice. Very evocation of Steinbeck.

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9. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

www.centralcoast.com is a nice website for your travel research. Have a great trip! :)

Riverside...
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10. Re: Monterey as a base for 4 nights??

definitely recommend Point Lobos in Carmel highlands for 2-3 hour walk and breakfast/lunch before or after at Carmel Highlands INN, just down the road.

Agree-Hearst Castle is not a day trip, but a must see. Drive Highway 1(Big Sur Hwy), see some sights, go to hearst castle and wine taste in Paso Robles. Return on HIghway 101 to Monterey.

And obviously go to Monterey Aquarium, Cannery Row and 17 Mile Drive.