Carmel is a beautiful coastal town located about 120 miles south of San Francisco. Also known as Carmel-By-The-Sea, this gorgeous place has been on my bucket list to visit. It is such a perfect place for a mini vacation or a romantic weekend getaway. As you enter the beautiful town, you will notice that the streets are full of people. There are lines outside of cute little candy shops, bakeries & restaurants. I personally love places full of people enjoying the surrounding when I visit a particular town or city. This tells me that the place is pretty happening and there is lots to explore here.
Where to stay In Carmel
Carmel is known for the beautiful Inns all throughout the town. I would definitely recommend the Carriage house Inn. It is a cozy and romantic place within the heart of Carmel. The rooms are very well organized and comfortable with great ambiance, beautiful fireplace and high ceilings. Every morning, the Inn provides their guests with delicious continental breakfast delivered to your door. The breakfast includes warm quiche, bagel, croissants and freshly brewed hot coffee. They also provide evening wine and hors d’oeuvres and fresh baked cookies every day for their guests.
Things to explore in Carmel
Carmel has some really nice little wine tasting rooms tucked in little shops. If you are in town, experience the Galante Vineyards Tasting Room. It is a small place with a relaxed vibe and good selections of local wines.
With its touristy vibe, Carmel has various shops full of unique souvenirs and goodies from different parts of the world. You can find Turkish lamps, hats, dresses, candies, pottery, antiques and a whole lot more here. The shops are located everywhere from streets to allies and some even underground. There are a lot of shops and boutiques in Carmel that one can explore here.
If you are looking to go on a hike while enjoying beautiful scenery, you must experience Point Lobos State Reserve. This place has breathtaking views and it is a photographer’s and nature lover’s delight. Definitely wear comfortable clothes and shoes and take lots of water with you. You can expect to spot some wildlife such as snakes while hiking here. This place is open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm and the last entry to the reserve is at 4:30 pm.
If you just want to relax, you can spend an entire day by the beautiful Carmel River State Beach. You will find lots of people here hanging out and enjoying a good day. Some even like to have a picnic here and play games.
Visit Mission San Carlos
Mission San Carlos is a beautiful artistic and historic gem, a must visit attraction when in Carmel. You will be amazed looking at its architecture and learning about the history. You can just walk around and explore the wonderful details of the entire mission. Inside the mission, you will also find the Carmel Mission Basilica Store. Here, you will find home décor, jewelry, books and other items representing the mission. The proceeds from your purchase are used to maintain the mission.
Explore Mission Ranch Hotel
This is one of a kind and my favorite places in Carmel. You can spend some good quality time here at the Mission Ranch in Carmel, walking around and exploring the place while taking beautiful pictures.
You will find a few different types of lodging cottages here with beautiful architecture. There is also a huge tree in the front entrance with plush green grass. You will also spot some sheep hanging out behind a white picket fence. It’s a beautiful place with countryside vibe.
Carmel has a great selection of restaurants and quick bites at the same time. You can experience fine dining, different cuisines like Mexican and Mediterranean, and desserts/ pastries & quick bites.
If you are looking for a nice fine dining experience with great food and ambiance, try Grasings Coastal Cuisine. I personally recommend their warm spinach salad and they have a great selection of wine and cocktails, perfect for a date night.
For a fun night out with friends and family, you must experience Dametra Café. This place has a lively vibe with delicious Mediterranean food and live singing and music. You are sure to enjoy this experience while relishing yummy kabob plates and excellent service.
For casual dining and eating on a budget, you can find many eateries throughout the town. There is also a food court located near a Turkish lamp shop, which serves anything from sandwiches to gourmet meals on a budget.
In the mood for a quick bite or afternoon tea! You got to try this cute little place called The Tuck Box. They are open only from 7:30 am to 2:30 pm, and serve breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea. They have a nice selection of choices for all three options. Here’s a tip, they only take cash.
Carmel is a fun little town with nice, friendly and happy people. It’s romantic, laid-back, classy and a great place for food and wine lovers. To explore and enjoy what Carmel has to offer. You need to spend at least 2-3 days there. You will fall in love with this place!