Momma Told Me: Day Trip To Cannery Row in Monterey, California #GrabYourMoment

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Saturday, July 23, 2016

Day Trip To Cannery Row in Monterey, California #GrabYourMoment

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Momma Told Me: The backyard is your playground.

I am a horrible Southern Californian.

I'll admit, my heart is on the East Coast. Some might say it's because I was raised here, just a short drive to the Pacific Coast beaches, and a stones-throw from glamorous Los Angeles and Hollywood, that I am wasted on it's appeal. I just never really cared much for sun and sand- A trip to Massachusetts when I was was 6, shoveling snow in the front yard of my grandparent's house quickly conjured all of these romantic ideas of seasons and foliage. As an adult I've been back many times, and it never seems any less wondrous.

But for the typical American, those not born to seek out cold, damp, and even frozen (Alaska) climates for vacation, the California Coast truly is a playground.
#GrabYourMoment and visit dog friendly Cannery Row Montery, California #AD
Because it's been several years since my last visit, and Monterey, California holds so many wonderful childhood memories for me, I decided to return with a fresh perspective. Last weekend we took a gorgeous drive inland (and then back down along the coast) to Cannery Row. Monterey County extends some 90+ miles of beautiful California coastline, and is a massive playground both on the shore, and inland. We'd originally intended to visit Big Sur, but the Memorial Day holiday made daytime coastal travel a bit of a headache so we scooted in to the highway for a straight shot up to Monterey, itself.
One of the things I recall, quite magically, from my own childhood is the number of trolleys that speed down the streets, up and down Cannery Row. That and the massive Monterey Bay Aquarium- a learning playground for any youth, or marine enthusiastic adult. No sooner had we stepped foot out of the parking lot onto Ocean View Blvd did we hear the familiar bells of the trolley, and see the mustard colored tram speeding by. It was about then the smell of the salt air began to hit me.
I was raised in Southern California, moments from the beach.

I have been from Coast to Coast and seen beaches at every corner of this nation. I hold a soft spot for Rhode Island beaches in the Summer, but, if you can't make it, Monterey comes pretty darn close. The water is warmer- kids and patrons walk right in on the beautiful sands. Teenagers climb the shoreline rocks, laughing as the tide rolls in and out. Families build sandcastles just moments from the Cannery Row shops, and the wildlife is abundant. You can look in either direction on the horizon and see a paddle-boat, a sailboat, a fishing schooner or more- and yet, all iss o incredibly peaceful. It's a one of a kind mentality.
#GrabYourMoment and visit dog friendly Cannery Row Montery, California #AD
It's hard to comprehend the prior beach photo was taken steps from the photo above. The shot of a bustling Cannery Row, full of tourists, locals, shops, restaurants, and galleries. The street certainly has a buzz to it, and the air is electric. Every face you pass is smiling, and everyone is exceedingly friendly! (Note: This may have been in part to the small dog we were pushing around in a stroller- people could NOT get enough of Nora.) We visited on a holiday weekend and there were many locals downtown shopping with us. They were happy to ask where we were traveling from, and give us a tip on where to visit before we left.
But you truly can't see it all in one day. Not even close on Cannery Row- and certainly not all of Monterey, let alone all the county has to offer! There are wineries nearby, outdoor experiences to be had (I spotted a zipline experience off the highway,) and numerous sites to be seen and discovered. Whether you're a couple looking for a weekend getaway with some fantastic food and an amazing view, or a family trying to relax and create some new memories, there's plenty to offer.
If you're headed to Monterey, specifically for the Monterey Bay Aquarium, be sure to plan at least an entire day to explore. Not all aquariums have penguins on site, but this one does- so bring your cameras as well! Exhibits change seasonally, with the newest Viva! Baja! exhibit featuring an array of colorful and exotic warm water fish, though daily shows and feedings remain constant year round. While there are food options inside the cafe, my advice is to walk out the door, directly onto Cannery Row, and enjoy meals locally instead.
Speaking of meals, we were suckered in tempted to try Louie Linguini's on the Cannery Row waterfront when a trolley sharing samples of their Clam Chowder featured a doggy menu. Did I mention Monterey is very dog friendly? Louie Linguini's offers an array of delicious Italian and Seafood human fare, as well as a selection of doggy bowls. Heated patio seating is available for patrons with canines, and it just so happens to overlook the beautiful bay.
Above you'll see Nora's generously sized bowl  of grilled hamburger, broccoli, carrots, and whole grain rice. I made sure to order her food before ours so she could be properly fed, and content, while we ate. Unfortunately I was not expecting to be seated directly at the top of the stair entrance to the restaurant, where patrons constantly crossed our paths. Needless to say it's a good thing we brought her stroller, because Nora was back and forth at every person who walked past.
Above you'll see the view- kinda-we were a bit higher up, of the plaza and bay we overlooked while dining. Not only were the skies, and waters, clear, but the atmosphere was amazing. A gentleman actually proposed to his girlfriend while we were eating, and the entire courtyard erupted in cheers when she said yes!
Louie Linguini's
#GrabYourMoment and visit dog friendly Cannery Row Montery, California #AD
While Jay insisted on having the Clam Chowder as a precursor to his meal, sourced with local seafood, no doubt- I dove into a White Garlic Shrimp Linguini. After all, the restaurant was named Louie Linguini's! The food was a bit pricey, for the portions, but delicious. I really can't complain given the amazing view we had- but I would order a starter for my meal next time.
#GrabYourMoment and visit dog friendly Cannery Row Montery, California #AD
When we rolled out of town, waving goodbye to Monterey, but not quite Monterey County, we put the top down and let Nora enjoy the sites. I have to say I was expecting our visit to be a madhouse, given the holiday weekend, but the atmosphere was more of a cheerful buzz than anything. Traffic wasn't bad at all. We made amazing time on the highway. I think we just might be back again soon!

What Daughter Says: Sometimes the best discoveries really are right in your backyard, so to speak.






7 comments:

  1. I've been to the Monteray Bay Aquarium - it was a lot of fun. We saw a lot of California when we were traveling in our fifthwheel. I laughed at your comment about not seeing your own backyard. I grew up in Philadelphia but never saw any of the historic sights of that city until my family moved to the Jersey shore.

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  2. Wow there is so much to do. I would love to visit some day! Your photos make me feel like I'm there!

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  3. I've never had the pleasure of visiting California before but I've ALWAYS wanted to go! I've heard great stories all about the area; so much to do and see while you're there. Can't wait to scratch it off my to-see list one of these days!

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  4. Okay, that dog stroller for Nora is about the cutest thing I ever saw. You should do a post on cute doggy things and cram it with affliate links. You would make a fortune with her as the model. And as to Monterey? Well Dorothy knew and now you do too...there's no place like home.

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  5. That looks like a lot of fun. Ditto on the dog stroller! I love California. I think your perspective on the East Coast might change if you lived here throughout a winter season, lol.

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  6. I love your blog I follow all your social media links would love for you to do the same if you could.

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    Also I love that stroller for your dog! Where did you get it at? I have a potbelly pig and would love to get one. Thanks

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  7. Childhood memories tweak a lot of people to return and many people wish to have a chance to go there. The way you writing your journey story with attaching enough images, is really so creative and attractive.The pro custom writing paper will provide all the information those are required to complete the book.You and your dog enjoyed a lot in your childhood places!

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